When I wrote Fast Food My Way in 2004, I hoped that my friends would prepare my recipes. Now, more people cook from that book than any other I’ve written in the past 30 years. That’s why I decided to publish a follow-up, Jacques Pépin More Fast Food My Way (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).
Just because I am a chef doesn’t mean I don’t rely on fast recipes. Indeed, we all have moments when, pressed for time, we’ll use a can of tuna and a tomato for a first course. It’s a question of choosing the right recipes for the rest of the menu. If I get stuck in traffic and come home late, I concoct a few dishes from what’s available in my pantry and fridge, using only one pan— as in my fast version of my mother-in-law’s skirt steak with lime. When quick-roasting my chicken with mustard and garlic, I line trays with foil to save time on washing. When peeling the apples for my skillet apple charlotte, I work directly over the sink or garbage can.
These dishes are for anyone in a hurry or limited by a poorly stocked supermarket or a family of finicky eaters—for anybody who wants great food quickly.