The Most Adaptable Pesto Pasta

Hello! I’m Krysten, filling in for Em this week. I’ve edited this newsletter since the very start, and it’s one of my greatest joys. I love knowing that the recipes in this space are making it onto your tables — and hopefully making dinner a little easier for you and your families. It’s almost like getting to eat with you all. (Is that too earnest? I’m very earnest.)

My crew’s pretty small: It’s just me and my dog, Rudy (Rutabaga), and my partner, who lives about a mile down the road. Our signature dish is one of brats and Tater tots topped like okonomiyaki (brats and tots!), but the rotation also includes a lot of pasta, chicken and fish. On my own, it’s a parade of eggs. So I’ve given you a little of all that and more below. And to my friends who sent their little ones off to school this week, or who are already in the back-to-school grind, I hope you’ll find comfort and ease in these dishes.

Anyway, that’s it from me. It’s been a real dream to get to say hello. And don’t be shy! You can find me on Instagram, with Rudy.

Runny egg fans unite! This dish from Melissa Clark is wonderfully reminiscent of shakshuka, its acidity and heat balanced by yogurt. For the same crunch without the pine nut price tag, you can swap them out for almonds. Chop the eggplant and tomatoes a bit smaller, if you want this on the table even faster.

Double, triple, even quadruple the sauce in this vegan recipe from Hetty McKinnon, and keep it in the fridge for dinner in a true instant. I made it on a downer of a Monday night and was filled to the brim with the joy of good eating that evening and beyond.

View this recipe.

This recipe, which Ali Slagle adapted from the cookbook author Marcella Hazan, simmers tomatoes in a fennel-flavored broth until they’re softened and ready to gently poach fish. It’s delicate, almost ethereal, but the char of grilled toast grounds it.

View this recipe.

I know this recipe is on the longer side, but to me, it is the epitome of weeknight. Growing up, my cousins and I would gather around my grandmother’s table for arroz con pollo, plantains and crisp, ice-cold Coca-Colas. This version from Von Diaz, with its layers of flavor, takes me right back. (To save a little time, you can also always use frozen sofrito.)

View this recipe.

Thank you all so much for hanging out Five Weeknight Dishes! If you like the work we do at New York Times Cooking, please subscribe! (Or give a subscription as a gift!) You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest. Reach out to my colleagues at [email protected] if you have any questions about your account.

View all recipes in your weekly plan.