Years ago Mark Bittman gathered together a list of 101 meals that could be prepared in 10 minutes or less, later edited up to 111. Two of his suggestions in particular have made regular appearances on our table since then, because not only can they be assembled in that period of time, but they’re both delicious, and both depend on ingredients I can easily keep on hand without worrying much about a spoil date.
Last night we went to the opera, and we knew we would be back home too late to do any regular meal preparation. It was also a cold night, so the answer was obvious. It wouldn’t be the unheated tuna with cannellini beans and chopped red onion, but the chick pea soup, with pimentón, chorizo, garlic, and sherry. The basic formula,which appeared in the New York Times eight years ago, was pretty minimal:
40 Put a large can of chickpeas and their liquid in a medium saucepan. Add some sherry, along with olive oil, plenty of minced garlic, smoked pimentón and chopped Spanish chorizo. Heat through.
To that simple recipe I added, this time at least, a little of the tomato juices I had left over after using a can of very good Italian plum tomatoes in another meal, and I finished the hearty mix with some chopped fresh parsley from Manhattan Fruit Exchange; the excellent chorizo came from an amazing Amish family farm in rural Pennsylvania, Millport Dairy, which sells its produce in New York greenmarkets, including the one I visit regularly, in Union Square
- The wine was a Spanish red, Terra Única Tempranillo-Monastrell Valencia 2006
- the music was Dvořák’s Piano Trio No. 4 in E Minor, Op. 90, B. 166, the ‘Dumky’ Trio
Like most of the 10-Minute meal suggestions, this one almost begs for creative additions; We’ve enjoyed it with leftover wilted kale, collards, or other greens, but I can imagine any number of other cooked vegetables working as enhancements, giving them a chance to leave the refrigerator and shine a second time.