Andy Baraghani Talks Meals, Id in New Cookbook

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Baraghani shares his philosophy on food and identification with Healthline — additionally, the Chickpea Cacio e Pepe recipe from his new e-book.

Andy Baraghani describes himself as curious — curious about cooking, touring, mixing those passions, and sharing what he’s learned with others.

That curiosity underlies the philosophy driving his forthcoming cookbook, “The Cook You Want to Be: Everyday Recipes to Impress,” established to release May 24 from Lorena Jones Books (Penguin Random House).

“I want to obtain as a great deal info and understanding as attainable and process it, and then be in a position to possibly keep onto it or, even better, go that information and facts along,” Baraghani told Healthline.

A cook, food items writer, recipe developer, and previous Bon Appétit and Saveur editor, Baraghani seeks to do particularly that in his cookbook: guidebook visitors as a result of developing dishes that never demand a lot of cooking knowledge, diet know-how, or kitchen devices.

The additional than 120 recipes are influenced by his identities as a queer, very first-generation Iranian American, as properly as his ordeals touring all over the globe and cooking for and with some others, such as in places to eat like Chez Panisse and Estela.

To that finish, the cookbook characteristics own essays that take a look at those inspirations and provide realistic advice for cooking far more basically.

“There are particular stories and ordeals in this guide that I generate about, but I wanted to carry in the reader to embrace people stories, embrace these tactics, embrace these recipes, and truly combine and utilize the knowledge that they’ve figured out by way of my activities into their have existence so that they can really feel much more empowered in the kitchen and develop into the prepare dinner they want to be,” Baraghani mentioned.

The cookbook’s offerings variety from “Mighty Small Recipes” — this sort of as sauces and dressings — and shareable treats (like Borani, aka the Queen of All Yogurt Dips) to meat-based fare and a couple desserts, such as an Apple and Tahini Galette.

But, Baraghani explained, “this reserve is generally veggies.”

In actuality, he mentioned that a person of his most loved chapters is “Salad for Days,” which is — you guessed it — devoted fully to revolutionary salads, like Try to eat-with-Every little thing Cucumber Salad and Extra fat Pieces of Citrus with Avocado and Caramelized Dates.

Another beloved chapter, “Mind Your Veg,” brings vegetables entrance and middle in recipes these as Caramelized Sweet Potatoes with Browned Butter Harissa and Peas with Large Hunks of Feta and Zhoug.

“I actually experimented with to give solutions and variations to people today,” Baraghani stated. “I genuinely experimented with to consider of what would be quick for individuals to have access to but also experience excellent about immediately after they’ve well prepared this meal.”

“I want food to not just taste good, but I want it to make you sense fantastic.”

— Andy Baraghani

Part of that energy, he claimed, bundled crafting recipes that never assume readers to use kitchen area devices like juicers or garlic presses if they don’t want or have these goods on hand.

While the reserve does include a information to kitchen area products and utensils that individuals might find practical, Baraghani mentioned it’s critical to continue to be sensible.

“I believe there is this concern in so numerous people in cooking,” he mentioned. “Adding all this tools, it overcomplicates responsibilities that aren’t intricate at all.”

That’s also why, in the era of YouTube cooks and TikTok recipes, Baraghani was encouraged to publish a print cookbook alternatively than share these recipes on-line.

A print cookbook, he said, encourages some thing significant that social media cooking does not automatically make area for: taking your time.

Plus, it afforded Baraghani the opportunity to function with designers, photographers, and other artists to lay out the cookbook so the book by itself can contribute to the storytelling in its personal way.

“There’s anything that is continue to pretty fulfilling, to me at the very least, to cook dinner from a e-book and not scroll down a web page or look as a result of your cellular phone,” he said. “I want individuals to sit with the imagery. I want men and women to sit with the sort, the title, the duplicate, the headnote, the sidebars, the flavor of the recipe. I really do not think that is something that takes place as frequently with electronic media.”

You can order “The Prepare dinner You Want to Be: Each day Recipes to Impress” from Lorena Jones Textbooks (Penguin Random Household) by way of Amazon in this article.

“I certainly don’t guarantee that you will be the biggest prepare dinner in the environment right after this book,” Baraghani said. “I guarantee that you will study at the very least one particular point that will make you a additional confident and curious prepare dinner.”

There are numerous recipes for pasta e ceci (aka pasta with chickpeas). The bulk that I’ve encountered are brothy, just about souplike. This recipe emphasizes both equally the chickpeas and the pasta but is equally comforting and a lot creamier than the typical variations. A great deal of the magic of this dish lies in crushing the chickpeas, so they launch their starches and remodel the pasta water into a creamy sauce. Some of the chickpeas retain their shape, while other people convert to delicious mush, and the caramelized lemon lends some chewy tang and delivers the pasta again to existence submit-boiling. It is incredibly fulfilling. If I however require to persuade you to make this, know that it was the to start with meal that I created for my boyfriend, and he has been hooked up to me ever considering the fact that. —Andy Baraghani

Serves: 4 (moreover, it’s possible, some leftovers, even though I doubt it)


  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup excess-virgin olive oil
  • 1 compact Meyer or typical lemon, thinly sliced, seeds picked out
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 significant shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 rosemary sprig, or 4 thyme sprigs
  • Freshly floor pepper
  • 1 pound tubular pasta (these kinds of as calamarata, paccheri, or rigatoni)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, lower into small parts
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, as well as more for serving


  1. Deliver a massive pot of drinking water to a boil, then toss in a handful of salt (about 1/4 cup).
  2. Though the drinking water is accomplishing its point, established a individual large pot or Dutch oven in excess of medium heat and pour in the olive oil. Incorporate the lemon and cook, applying tongs to flip the slices right until they start out to evenly brown and shrivel up, 6–8 minutes. Applying the tongs, transfer the caramelized lemon slices to a bowl, leaving the oil in the pot.
  3. Dump the chickpeas into the oil and enable them get a very little crisp and golden, stirring often, 5–7 minutes. Increase the shallot and crush the rosemary to launch its oil and fall it into the pot. Period with salt and lots and lots of pepper and give everything a stir. Prepare dinner right up until the shallot is starting to soften, 3–5 minutes. Meanwhile, incorporate the pasta to the boiling drinking water and cook dinner right until just about al dente, about 2 minutes much less than what the package deal implies (it’ll complete cooking in the sauce).
  4. Just in advance of the pasta is al dente, scoop out 2 cups pasta water. Incorporate 1 1/2 cups pasta h2o to the pot with the chickpeas and bring to a simmer, nevertheless more than medium heat. (This may possibly seem to be like a ton of liquid, but it will thicken once the remaining ingredients are additional.) Just one piece at a time, stir in the butter until finally the pasta water and butter have grow to be one.
  5. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pasta to the sauce. Prepare dinner, stirring frequently and sprinkling in the Parmesan a very little at a time. (Never add the cheese all at when, as that can make the sauce break up and transform grainy.) Hold stirring until the cheese is melted and the sauce is creamy and clings to the pasta, about 3 minutes. If the sauce seems to be way too thick, increase a lot more pasta water, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time to slender (but know that saucier is excellent simply because it will thicken as it cools). Turn off the heat and fold in the caramelized lemon. Sprinkle with an nearly ridiculous volume of pepper and additional Parmesan just before serving.

Rose Thorne is an affiliate editor at Healthline Nutrition. A 2021 graduate of Mercer College with a degree in journalism and women’s & gender scientific tests, Rose has bylines for Company Insider, The Washington Write-up, The Lily, Georgia General public Broadcasting, and more. Rose’s proudest professional achievements consist of currently being a college newspaper editor-in-chief and performing at Good Fight Action, the countrywide voting legal rights firm. Rose handles the intersections of gender, sexuality, and overall health, and is a member of The Affiliation of LGBTQ+ Journalists and the Trans Journalists Association. You can uncover Rose on Twitter.