Let’s not mince words: this was repulsive. Not one of the components worked for me and the combination of all three was a culinary train wreck. I’m willing to take 2/3 of the blame since I can never seem to get polenta right and God knows I can’t poach an egg for love or money. And regarding poached eggs let me just say this: I quit. I’ve decided I hate poached eggs and I’m not just saying that because I can’t make them (although I look like I’m pulling it off in the picture, right?)  They’re pointless.  Hard-boiled or scrambled: pick a side.

As for polenta, I’m not ready to admit defeat. What I always envision when I make it is something smooth and creamy and more like corn-flavored aligot but what I keep getting is a gritty, grainy sludge with an aftertaste that’s maddeningly hard to identify but slightly metallic (gum wrapper? flagpole? car keys?).  I’m open to suggestions here because I like polenta and it’s sort of driving me crazy that I can’t get it right.

Even the artichokes were hopeless in this dish.  I love artichokes and marinating them in olive oil, vinegar and red pepper flakes seemed like a brilliant enhancement but it amounted to nothing.  A big nothing.

I’m sure you’re all dashing to your copies of the book right now so it’s on page 98.  It’s also here on Whole Living.  Yes, yet another blonde hair in the massive coiffure that is the Martha empire.   Good thing she’s not spreading herself too thin and dropping the ball on things like recipe testing and quality control.