shortlist no. 6 / august 20, 2010
Finally, we are up to date with the shortlists. This was what fed our shenanigans on Friday night, which turned out to be a lovely, boozy pre-election worry fest with our beloved neighbors (the ones who share the other wall and, thankfully, have no intention of moving to Wyoming). I say turned out because it almost didn’t happen.
My promise to mix it up a bit (see? No kielbasi!) was a bit trickier to keep than I’d have hoped because Francesco was (and still is) quite sick. So sick that up until the morning of, we weren’t even sure if we would go ahead with the dinner. The man completely lost his voice, had had a fever and a killer headache the night before and had reduced interpersonal communication to grunting and (naturally) gesticulation.
It was, in my mother’s estimation, entirely my fault he hadn’t recovered as I had failed to make chicken soup. (Sorry, mom, but I don’t think laryngitis works that way.)
Determined not to let a little cough/hoarseness/case of the chills/inability to taste or smell keep him from a party, Francesco was game. And so were we.
The dates, which are exactly what they sound like, were absolutely fantastic. I just popped them under the broiler for a minute or two. I served 2 per person, but easily could have doubled it. The pasta – made with eggplant, tomato and basil – is one of my go-to comfort dishes. The soup was just a blend of fried onions, some spices (smoked paprika), a potato and roasted beets. I figured some form of soup couldn’t hurt, all things considered. Right, mom?
pre-election night dinner for 6 (with minimal prep work)
baked gorgonzola-stuffed dates wrapped in prosciutto
roasted beet soup with feta
pasta alla norma with fresh buffalo ricotta and ricotta salata