Mara, Debbie, and I ate at home on Friday, with Ellie as a guest. Two dishes – both from Epicurious, need I say?
The Grilled Summer Vegetables with Harissa Dressing could be made in advance, so I grilled them in the midst of a Djibouti-like Washington DC summer day. One goofup, which worked out okay: the “Harissa Dressing” is harissa powder whisked into oil and lemon juice basically. I thought that some stuff called “Harissa” at Whole Foods was just the powder in oil. Turns out – and, dummy me, I didn’t see it until after I had mixed it with lemon juice – that the major ingredient in the Whole Foods stuff is tomato. Mara tasted it, however, and said it tasted like sun-ripened tomato and would be OK as a dressing. So it was.
So I really only had to assemble the grilled veggies at meal time. I guess this is my first experience plating.
The other dish, Shrimp and Pancetta on Polenta, was pretty tasty for how easy it was. Just make some quick polenta (we do it in the microwave, per Debbie, with one part polenta to 4 parts water) and cook the other stuff in a pan.
Here’s what Ellie wrote the next day:
Thanks for the dinner. I loved the shrimp, polenta dish. I came home and read the crummy blog. I gather that pancetta can be tricky. Nice to visit . ellie
I guess that’ll do in lieu of criticism/self-criticism.