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Meals for a New Year

We made it! Happy New Year, and welcome to Five Weeknight Dishes. I’m hopeful we’ll have a year that is better than the last, though 2020 was not entirely without small pops of good news. (If you haven’t heard it yet, there is a wonderful episode of “The Daily” devoted to this subject.) For me, it was the arrival of my second child, whose first word (besides Mama), uttered in December, was “Hi!” It feels particularly sunny and gregarious after a year that was so dark and insular. We hear her yelling it all over the house. HI!

There’s still time to cook black-eyed peas today for good fortune. Or you can press on with the recipes below, something a little lighter for the week ahead. And email me anytime at [email protected]

Here are five dishes for the week:

1. Chicken and Rice Soup With Celery, Parsley and Lemon

Chicken soup with rice: a combination so lovable, Maurice Sendak devoted a whole book to it. Ali Slagle has updated it with celery, parsley and a generous amount of lemon. Fast-cooking boneless thighs make it possible to pull together on a weeknight.

View this recipe.

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2. Broiled Salmon With Chile, Orange and Mint Butter

Such a simple way to prepare salmon, with a bright burst of citrus and herbs, courtesy of Colu Henry.

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3. Sheet-Pan Chicken With Sweet Potatoes and Fennel

Yewande Komolafe finishes roasted chicken thighs and vegetables with a lemon, black pepper and pecorino vinaigrette, a move that makes this sheet-pan dish special.

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4. Cauliflower, Cashew, Pea and Coconut Curry

One of my New Year’s plans is to spend time with Meera Sodha’s new cookbook, “East,” so enamored I am with her others. This recipe comes from “Made in India,” and it’s a superb vegan dinner with rice.

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5. Baked Spinach-Artichoke Pasta

Perhaps not everything on this list needs to be light, or even lightish. If you’re ready to steer into something creamy and cheesy, then here we are at Aaron Hutcherson’s very easy and delightful baked pasta, inspired by spinach-artichoke dip.

View this recipe.

Happy New Year, once more. You can follow NYT Cooking on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest for inspiration in the kitchen; you can also follow me on Instagram, where I’m probably baking something. Please consider supporting our work by subscribing to NYT Cooking. I’m [email protected], and if you are having technical issues or problems with your account, email [email protected].

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