Recipes are organized in chapters according to the way most of us approach a mid-week meal: Fast/Faster/Fastest, Pizza Night, Supper Salads, and so on. Most ingredients are now readily available at any well-stocked supermarket and may already be lurking in your pantry. For example, the bags of dried Mexican chiles I purchased for a tamale-making marathon a year ago inspired me to try Pork Chops with Peanut-Guajillo Sauce. The chiles are lightly toasted, briefly soaked, then pureed with some of the liquid in a blender with dry-roasted peanuts and a few other staples. The result is a bold-flavored sauce that lifted quickly-seared, chili-spiced chops out of the ordinary and into the memorable category, needing only the simplest of sides for a feast.
Recipes on every page are clearly written such as this one, with just enough helpful tips and cultural context to guide you toward success, without overwhelming you. The sumptuous photographs that accompany them both inform and entice. In fact, the biggest challenge in using this book may be figuring out what to make next. I won’t wait until Tuesday to decide.