I have very few foods that I outright dislike, but there are a few combinations I can't stand, such as fruit and chocolate. I realize that this is verboten for a foodie. But I've adhered to this opinion for more than three decades and I just don't see myself changing my mind. It doesn't matter what kind of fruit you pair with what kind of chocolate: the idea of any of it turns my stomach. So please don't start listing in astonishment all the different kinds of fruit you adore with chocolate; it will only make me dig my heels further in my anti-fruit-and-chocolate stance.
I know I'm not alone in having immutable preferences. The husband, for instance, doesn't care for eggplant. I can offer it in parmigiana, moussaka, or baba ghanoush form, all of which I find absolutely delicious, but he holds fast to his belief: eggplant is no good. And given that he eats pretty much everything else, I don't foist eggplant on him. Although I love it, I can understand why he wouldn't.
So when I mention the recipe I made the other night, yet another old faithful from Marcella Hazan, if you don't like mushrooms, you may as well not bother with this post. Mushrooms play a starring role here and there is no substitute.
But if you do like mushrooms, this might up your alley: creamy mushroom and ham sauce, tossed with fettucine. Mushrooms and ham happen to be two things I like quite well, and if you add shallot, parmesan, and cream and toss it with beautiful strands of pasta, I'm sold.
I'm feeling a little lazy and am not going to type out this recipe. But as I said with Marcella's pot roast, feel free to email me and I'll scan and send it to you. I cross my cream-and-butter-logged heart.
On Friday, after a long week, this was the perfect dinner to send us into the weekend. It's important to have a relaxing Friday evening, as it shapes your mindset for the weekend. So whatever that means to you--creamy pasta with mushroom sauce or chocolate-dipped strawberries-- make sure it's something that makes the work week recede rapidly into the distance and lets you focus on the delicious plate in front of you.