I recently was part of a team at The Chopping Block that hosted a cooking demonstration and book signing with celebrity chef Ming Tsai. It’s not often that I am part of such events, but I was nonetheless surprised at how the evening opened my eyes and senses to new ideas for simple but satisfying cooking in the months ahead.
Having recovered from the sugar buzz of Halloween treats, many of us no doubt are eagerly anticipating the feast of Thanksgiving and the parties throughout the year-end to celebrate the holidays. This excitement for me is also tempered with a dose of reality—just how much time will I have to cook the major meals, bake for family and friends and participate fully in all the festivities while keeping up with everything else?
Enter “Simply Ming One-Pot Meals,” or really, any other one-pot/comforting style of cooking. I use Ming’s new book as my own example here, as several of the recipes resonated with some of my childhood favorites, but with an Asian twist: Sloppy Joe’s with Hoisin, Mushroom Chicken Fricasee with Edamame and Cranberry-Hoisin Chicken ‘n’Rrice. These are straightforward to prepare but truly have a refreshing element of interest with the change-up in seasonings or sauces. Simple as they are, they also lend themselves to experimenting with other ingredients that may come to mind as you prepare them.
One doesn’t need Ming’s book only to help with simple cooking through the months ahead, though. The Chopping Block is offering some fantastic classes, like Cold Weather Soups and Stews and the ultimate comfort food class: Chicago Stuffed Pizza. With the holiday festivities soon upon us, I know I look forward to taking some nights easy and preparing some of the simplest but no doubt satisfying one-pot meals while also knowing I can indulge a bit for Thanksgiving and the rest of the holidays.