Wondering what to do with the wild card bottles of wine you got on sale? Or the half dozen host & hostess gifts from every dinner you’re throwing this year?
You’re not going to sauté anything in your favorite vintage, but those stragglers collecting dust in your pantry…why not?
So, if you aren’t going to drink it and re-gifting it is out of the question (put down the bow and tissue paper, it’s just not nice!) then pop the cork on your favorite bottle and breathe deeply: cooking with wine is more than a witty slogan on an apron.
- Add ¼ cup of wine to your usual sauté oil (I’m a fan of olive oil) when cooking veggies.
- Make a marinade by decreasing the oil from ½ to ¼ cup and add ¼ cup wine.
- Instead of adding ¾ cup of oil to a cake mix recipe, add ¾ cup of white or dessert wine to the batter.
Here are some of the subtle food-like flavors that can come through in wine — which you may want to capitalize on by adding some vino to dishes containing these foods:
- White wine: melon, apple, pineapple, pear, citrus, vanilla, caramel, olives, and mushrooms
- White wine is a great addition to dishes containing chicken, turkey, fish, shellfish, ham, and veal. It also adds a great dimension to white and light sauces, chicken and vegetable soups and stews.
- Red wine: berries, peaches, currants, plums, cherries, oranges, chocolate, and coffee
- Red wine works incredibly well with beef, pork, game, duck, goose, and pasta dishes. It adds richness and moisture to heavily seasoned foods and warmth to traditionally autumnal and winter dishes.
So, just to get you moving in the right direction, here are a few recipes to play with and some fantastic wine pairing ideas from the shop!
Le Tastevin Fine Wines
Merlot & Onion Roast (pair with Domaine Belle Les Pierrelles Crozes- Hermitage 2009)
2 pounds beef top round roast, or similar (this roast is usually already trimmed of all visible fat)
Salt and pepper
8-10 garlic cloves
1 ½ teaspoons canola or olive oil
¾ cup French onion soup, condensed, from a can (such as Campbell’s)
¾ cup Merlot (or other mellow red wine)
- If your roast is the rolled-up type, remove mesh or ties from surface and unroll the roast. Arrange garlic cloves evenly on top, and then sprinkle freshly ground salt and pepper over the top. Roll the roast up (but don’t put any mesh or ties back on).
- Start heating the canola or olive oil in a medium nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the rolled-up roast to the pan and let the bottom brown for a couple of minutes. Flip and brown the other side (a couple minutes more). Carefully place browned roast in slow cooker so that it remains rolled up.
- Pour onion soup concentrate and wine over the top. Cover and cook on LOW for about four hours.
Chardonnay Spice Cake (pair with Chateau Aydie Pacherenc Du Vic Bilh 2007)
1 box (18.25 oz) white cake mix
1 package (5 oz) instant vanilla pudding mix
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
¾ cup fat-free sour cream
¾ cup chardonnay (or other white wine)
2 large eggs
½ cup egg substitute
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray the inside of a bundt pan with canola cooking spray, then dust with about 2 tablespoons of flour.
- Add cake mix, vanilla pudding mix, and nutmeg to mixing bowl and beat with electric mixer on LOW speed to blend well.
- Add the sour cream, wine, eggs, and egg substitute to mixing bowl and beat with mixer on medium speed for five minutes (scraping sides and bottom of bowl after a minute).
- Pour into prepared bundt pan and bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cake cool on rack in pan for 10 minutes. Invert pan on serving plate carefully to release the cake. Serve.