What We’re Cooking in December

In between our holiday parties, we're digging up winter salad recipes, soups, and pastas to keep out the cold

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and the upcoming month is a non-stop barrage of parties filled with chit-chat, itchy red sweaters, sugary cocktails, and those sneaky paper cuts that come from prolonged contact with wrapping paper (don’t even think about touching any lemons until New Year’s Eve). It also can come with a lot of party food, which is sometimes great, but when you are eating that for a few meals every week, sometimes you find yourself longing for the comfort of your own kitchen, with tools and ingredients you bought for yourself.

When we finally get a few minutes at home this month, we’re going straight for the soups. We’ve got a hearty pork stew, some thick peanut soup, and heaps of vegetables in olive oil. We’ve even got a chickpea and pasta version. And when the liquid diet becomes too much, we’ll move on to a simple pasta or a salad sprinkled with pomegranate seeds.

Gamjatang (Spicy Pork Neck and Potato Stew)

A classic hearty Korean stew made with meaty pork neck, potatoes, and nutty perilla seeds. Sesame seeds cannot be substituted for the perilla in this recipe; seek perilla seed, also called wild sesame seed, out at Asian markets. Optional but recommended: Serve this dish with its accompanying dipping sauce. Get the recipe for Gamjatang (Spicy Pork Neck and Potato Stew) »

This stew is full of meaty pork neck, potatoes, and nutty perilla seeds. Sesame seeds cannot be substituted for the perilla in this recipe; seek perilla seed, also called wild sesame seed, out at Asian markets. Get the recipe for Gamjatang »

Pasta Cacio e Pepe (Cheese and Pepper Pasta)

Less is more in an elemental Roman pasta dish which takes its spiciness from cracked black pepper toasted in oil. Get the recipe for Pasta Cacio e Pepe (Cheese and Pepper Pasta) »

Sometimes in winter, you want to keep it simple. This dish is the epitome of simple but delicious. Get the recipe for Pasta Cacio e Pepe »

Hatch Green Chile Enchiladas

Hatch Green Chile Enchiladas

These enchiladas will give you a tiny taste of summer while still keeping you warm and full in the winter. Get the recipe for Hatch Green Chile Enchiladas »

Italian Bean and Vegetable Soup

In this traditional Lucchese soup, vegetables and beans are slow-cooked until little to no bite remains, making it a rustic, comforting dish. Be sure to give any tougher vegetables all the time they need to scompare, or disappear. The quantities are flexible, so use whatever you have on hand. Get the recipe for Italian Bean and Vegetable Soup »

You can use pretty much any vegetable on hand in this soup, which is part of why we love it. Get the recipe for Italian Bean and Vegetable Soup »

West African Peanut Stew

If you like peanut butter, you’re going to love this thick and spicy soup. Get the recipe for West African Peanut Stew »

jeyuk bokkeum stir fried pork

Bokkeum is an umbrella term given to dishes—often made with inexpensive, strong-flavored cuts of meat—that are stir-fried over high heat. Get the recipe for Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Pork Belly »

Egg and Cheese Soufflé

Its name derived from the French verb souffler, meaning “to breathe” or “to puff”, a soufflé’s pillowy top will naturally rise in the oven but slightly deflate just moments after removal. The eggy treat’s fleeting moment of perfection is one of the reasons the dish is handled so delicately by chefs and cherished so deeply by diners. This savory cheese version is courtesy of chef Daniel Skurnick of Le Coucou restaurant in New York City. Get the recipe for Egg and Cheese Soufflé »

Wintertime breakfasts are the best, especially when they come in a pillowy soufflé. Get the recipe for Soufflé au Fromage »

Mexican Braised Spare Ribs with Squash and Corn

Braise pork ribs with a homey, vegetable-rich sauce with a touch of heat, and use the leftovers for tacos. This is a classic recipe from Mexican cooking sage Josefina Velázquez de León. Get the recipe for Mexican Braised Spare Ribs with Squash and Corn »

Even if your grill is collecting dust under a cover in your garage, you can (and should) still have ribs. Get the recipe for Mexican Braised Spare Ribs with Squash and Corn »

Chickpea and Pasta Soup

Chickpea and Pasta Soup

This soup is a meal in and of itself, full of lots of vegetables, chickpeas, and pasta. Get the recipe for Chickpea and Pasta Soup »

Chicory and Herb Salad with Apple, Pomegranate, and Creamy Miso Dressing

If you get tired of soup and feel like you need a little green, add some herbs to your salad and sprinkle it with pomegranate seeds. Get the recipe for Chicory and Herb Salad with Apple, Pomegranate, and Creamy Miso Dressing »