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The New York Times Cooking: No-Recipe Recipes

Who is the author: Sam Sifton, an assistant managing editor of The New York Times and founding editor of NYT Cooking. Sam has inspired millions of home cooks with his informal, improvisational No Recipe Recipes, published in The NYT Cooking newsletter, “What to Cook.”

What's it about: The central proposition of The New York Times Cooking: No-Recipe Recipes is simple: you do not need a recipe in order to cook. This might seem like an odd premise for a cookbook, but author Sam Sifton believes that improvisational, intuitive cooking is a skill every home cook can and should learn. Unfussy, recipe-free cooking will improve your confidence, deepen your understanding of how various ingredients work, and liberate you from prescriptive formulas. Perhaps most importantly, it can transform weeknight cooking from a chore into a fun, creative, and dynamic process.

The New York Times Cooking: No-Recipe Recipes is a stylish, compact guide to the kind of informal cooking championed in the NYT Cooking newsletter: ingredients are suggested, rather than prescribed, and measurements are given in "glugs" and "fistfuls" rather than grams and millilitres. The book contains over 100 no-recipe meals, each beautifully photographed and described, ranging from Fettuccine with Minted Ricotta to Smothered Pork Chops with Onions and Sautéed Greens. Far more than a collection of recipes, this book will expand your repertoire and permanently reshape your attitude towards cooking.

Recipes we love: Taleggio Grilled Cheese with Egg and Honey, Ham and Radicchio Toast, Weeknight Fried Rice, Spicy Caper and Olive Pasta, Quick Roasted Chicken with Tarragon, Oven S'Mores,

Perfect for: Anyone interested in becoming a more intuitive cook, regardless of their skill level; fans of flavour-focussed, unfussy food; students and those living away from home for the first time; devotees of the NYT Cooking website, app, and newsletter.

More about The New York Times Cooking: No-Recipe Recipes

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Cook from the Book: No-Recipe Recipes

A group of volunteer home cooks tried their hands at some of the “no-recipe recipes” featured in The New York Times Cooking: No-Recipe Recipes


The intuitive cook’s store cupboard

Improvisational cooking is much easier than you think, especially when your store cupboard is stocked with all of the basics. In this extract from The New York Times Cooking No-Recipe Recipes, author Sam Sifton shares his prepped pantry must-haves.


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From the book: The New York Times Cooking: No-Recipe Recipes

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