Column Ripens in Op-Ed Pantry

Food writer Mark Bittman of The New York Times this week ends his weekly recipe column “The Minimalist.” It’s run more than 13 years, nearly 700 columns.

A serious reporter and witty commentator, Bittman actually is moving on to a new column, on the Times’ op-ed pages and in a blog, about the politics of food and nutrition. He’ll still write up recipes in The New York Times Magazine.

He explains nearly everything in his final column.

The point of “The Minimalist,” he writes, was to create or share recipes that “use minimal technique, minimal time or minimal ingredients; many recipes meet two of those standards, and quite a few all three.” In a list this week of his 25 favorite or most popular recipes, Bittman proves that a column concept so simple must take talent as he makes it look easy. I bet it’s not.

Most of his columns were accompanied by video columns where he demonstrated how to prepare his dish of the week. Bittman also has written several cookbooks. Fans of good columns, who like to eat, may be lucky he didn’t just jump to the Food Channel or something.

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