Harry presents: Impressing the Hot Interior Designer Marinara

(This post is the final in a series which begins here and continues here and here.)

On Friday I visited my delightfully mad aunt who totally rocks. It was my turn to cook, so I brought the ingredients for the second version of a Italian seafood dish with which to impress the Hot Interior Designer.

My aunt is an avid cook and generally awesome woman for whom I acted as chauffeur and butler on a two week driving holiday/seafood odyssey into Victoria last October.

We discussed many recipes on the way including many she disparaged.
Aunt: I mean, look at this! Fennel and Rocket Salad!? Easy! And yet there’s a recipe for it.
Nephew: Yes, it’s hardly Fennel and Rocket science.


The morning after the marinara, I suffered a sneezing fit as she talked about the unique way she puts extension leads away on coat-hangers. An old friend was insufficiently impressed by this.
“Sorry, I’m allergic to anecdotes,” I manage to splutter.

Later I found a jar of hers that formerly held chilli seeds, labelled ‘Long Thin Hotness’.
“That’s me when I’m lying down” I say.

Apparently I am an unending source of disappointment to her.

But, she _did_ like the marinara if not so much the way it was executed.
“There you were leaping about in a drunken rage: “What do I do with a stab blender?!” and I *told* you some woman managed to cut ALL her fingers off because she wasn’t paying attention….”

Impressing the Hot Interior Designer Marinara

To serve two:
A tray of Swiss brown mushies
400 g tin of chopped tomatoes
300 g of Marinara mix from a reputable yet swarthy fishmonger with a salty nickname
Juice of one lemon
Clump of flat leaf parsley (chopped)
Several sprigs of one Italian herb eg Oregano
Blob of honey (thanks to Nabakov)
Salt
Pepper
Cayenne pepper (or dried chilli if your Aunt/Hot Interior Designer/Whom-ever doesn’t like cayenne, but who doesn’t like cayenne pepper? Weirdos, that’s who.)
One clove garlic chopped/crushed.
Pasta of choice
Grated parmesan garnish

Chop the mushies semi finely. Cook in a bit of olive oil.
Once done, chuck into blender with tomatoes and Italian herb.
Blend.
Pour back into saucepan.
Add salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, honey.
Reduce on low heat in saucepan ’til thick. Stir to lessen volcanic spitting.

Put pasta on to boil.

When pasta is ready, turn off heat under sauce; add chopped flat leaf parsley and garlic and stir it through sauce.
Drain pasta, and cook marinara.
Cook marinara in deep fry pan quickly. Add lemon juice just before you turn all the bits of seafood over. I cook it with lid on to preserve the liquor.

When seafood is done, turn off heat, and pour the sauce into the deep fry pan. Stir thoroughly.
Add drained pasta and stir.

By now you will realise that there is more food than you need and that you should have bought 400 g of Marinara and served three people. Shrug. Top up wine glass.
Serve.
Garnish.

That night I dreamt of a man who sacrificed his two unicorns and his soul to Bill Clinton, but I guess there are better ways to advertise that I have a loose concept of reality.
I miss my girlfriend.

16 comments ↓

#1 Harry presents: Vivid Dream Lasagne | Progressive Dinner Party on 09.09.08 at 12:50 pm

[...] Harry presents: Impressing the Hot Interior Designer Marinara → [...]

#2 Zoe on 09.09.08 at 12:55 pm

Aww! I think. But I have some questions.

  1. Is your Aunt an interior designer?
  2. Is your girlfriend the interior designer in question?
  3. Are you always so one-herbist?
  4. Shouldn’t you garnish before serving, or do you like to do it with a bit of pizzazz?
#3 harry on 09.09.08 at 2:08 pm

1) Aunt is an ex-nurse.
2) Yes.
3) No. It’s just a phase I’m going through to isolation particular flavours.
4) Oh. Um, sure, before sounds better. How can you pizzazz it up? “And here is a sprig of parsley: Ta daaaa!” (illicits ironc ‘wow!’) I guess the only garnish I was using was parmesan and I always let people do their own from a bowl on the table.

#4 ampersand duck on 09.09.08 at 2:35 pm

But parsley is a herb, so there’s two herbs.

Sorry, seem to be very pedantic at the moment. Blame him.

#5 Fyodor on 09.09.08 at 2:40 pm

For a moment there I thought the Hot Interior Designer was named Mari Nara. She’s Japanese, and likes to dress up in a schoo…uh-oh…

I’ll be in my bunk.

#6 Dr Sister Outlaw on 09.09.08 at 5:02 pm

Yum, that’s really delicious, especially the hidden mushroom trick … am very partial to vegetable hiding methods as I have a son with an aversion to anything that resembles its original form, with the singular exception of chicken drumsticks

#7 harry on 09.09.08 at 5:04 pm

“…the hidden mushroom trick”
I think that might be what Fyodor was alluding to with Mari Nara.
Oh, who invited me?

#8 worldpeace and a speedboat on 09.09.08 at 9:56 pm

Zoe did, I blame her.

#9 FDB on 10.09.08 at 1:49 pm

I’ve taken this one-herb thang to heart Harry, and thank you for it.

Enforced minimalism is the only solution to those who, like me, just keep thinking that adding something is always the answer.

#10 Pavlov's Cat on 11.09.08 at 12:06 am

I think it’s like that fashion advice from Dior or whoever it was — ‘Stand in front of the mirror, look at what you’ve got on, and then take one thing off.’

But I actually came here to ask whether ‘his two unicorns’ is a metaphor. It seems wrong somehow.

#11 Fyodor on 11.09.08 at 8:17 am

But I actually came here to ask whether ‘his two unicorns’ is a metaphor. It seems wrong somehow.

I thought the meaning was obvious: clearly, Harry is bi…corne.

#12 FDB on 11.09.08 at 4:34 pm

I think it was Coco Chanel PC.

And I think it was “take off the first thing to catch your eye”.

Alls I can say is, be sure you’re wearing clothes and accessories before you try it.

#13 Kat on 16.09.08 at 8:08 pm

I think yours has to be the funniest blog I’ve read in a good long while. I am a lethargic cook at best and, though I loathe seafood, I’m sorely tempted to cook your ‘Impressing the Hot Interior Designer Marinara’ just because I laughed out loud when reading it. I wish I had a salty nickname.

#14 harry on 17.09.08 at 10:35 am

“But I actually came here to ask whether ‘his two unicorns’ is a metaphor. It seems wrong somehow.”

Think how bad *I* feel! It was my subconscious after all.
Why unicorns?
Blood sacrifice to Bill Clinton I can understand, but why unicorns!?!?

#15 Harry presents: Vivid Dream Lasagne | on 02.08.12 at 10:21 pm

[...] series concludes here. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. This entry was posted in [...]

#16 Hussina on 30.11.12 at 1:55 pm

Walk up to Broadway to Tom’s, they’re open till 1:30 am most nights and if you want to cook sonehtimg Westside Market, Duane Reade and Rite Aid on Bway are open 24/7

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