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The Secret to These Shrimp Tacos Is Worcestershire



Good morning. It’s skinned-knuckle season, the time of the year that’s all about stuck bolts and crushed washers and hydraulic fluid and bottom paint, sacrificial zincs and ceramic wax — old boats coaxed back to health so they can run us to the fishing grounds, so we can cast flies to bass.

I skinned my knee on the edge of a trailer. My reading glasses slipped out of my breast pocket while I was draining motor oil into a compound bucket: splash. Where’s that gasket for the vapor separator tank? Time for a long shower, two ibuprofen and tacos for dinner.

Specifically, these cheesy shrimp tacos (above), a take on tacos Gobernador. The original is a dish out of Sinaloa, Mexico, where it’s said to have emerged from the restaurant Los Arcos, in coastal Mazatlán, in the early 1990s. Christian Reynoso’s version amps up the flavor: chopped shrimp sautéed in butter with garlic and Worcestershire sauce, poblano chiles and diced onions, with melted cheese on flour tortillas. You might add some oregano or cilantro, a smidge of tomato paste, a few chopped tomatoes. But don’t omit the Worcestershire sauce, which offers a nice umami pop against the sweetness of the shrimp.

With Sunday sorted, we can turn to the rest of the week. …

Make a quick aioli with store-bought mayonnaise while you’re cooking spaghetti and you’ve got the base for Christian Reynoso’s new recipe for garlicky pasta with greens. Toss the pasta with greens to wilt, and then coat with the pungent sauce. Weeknight simple and deeply delicious.

Mark Bittman brought his recipe for a minimalist roast chicken to The Times back in 2011, and it has been delighting our readers ever since. Four ingredients (chicken, olive oil, salt and black pepper), a preheated cast-iron skillet and a hot oven will deliver a superlative dinner in roughly an hour, with leftovers for later!

And then, to welcome the weekend, take your leftover chicken from Wednesday and use it to build Millie Peartree’s terrific recipe for a jerk chicken pot pie beneath a buttery, turmeric-stained crust that’s reminiscent of a Jamaican beef patty. So good!

There are thousands and thousands more recipes waiting for you on New York Times Cooking. It’s a fact that you need a subscription to read them. Subscriptions make this whole glorious undertaking possible. If you haven’t taken one out yet, would you please consider doing so today? Thanks.

If you find yourself flummoxed by our technology, please write for help. We’re at [email protected], and I promise someone will get back to you. Or you can write to me if you’d like to register disappointment or delight. I’m at [email protected]. I cannot respond to every letter. But I do read every one I get.

Now, it’s some considerable distance from anything to do with blanching carrots or carving a duck, but if I’m never going to read the 20 novels in Emile Zola’s “Les Rougon-Macquart” (and neither are you), at least we can have fun reading, in The London Review of Books, Brandon Taylor’s account of doing so, “Is It Even Good?”

Joan Nathan’s new cookbook, “My Life in Recipes,” arrives in stores on Tuesday, but I was lucky enough to get an early copy and can recommend it now. Lots of terrific recipes and a bunch of truly excellent ones for dips. Joan’s dip game is very strong.

A job I didn’t know existed, but of course it does and it’s pretty cool: firefighter in Antarctica, profiled briefly in Hakai Magazine this month.

Finally, here’s Jawbreaker, “Boxcar,” from 1992, kissing off the Bay Area punk scene. It’s a reminder that when it comes to music as to cooking, authenticity is for the birds. Cook something delicious, and I’ll be back next week.

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