September's Eat This, Drink That!
The days are getting shorter, the nights are getting cooler and the wine is getting darker with this month’s Eat this! Drink that! From the wine known for its berry flavour and medium body, to the full-bodied wine with dark flavours, this month we are bringing you double the delicious varietals with Grenache (or the Spanish counterpart – Garnacha!) and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The nose contains aromas of ripe red fruit, cassis, black chocolate and sweet spices such as vanilla and cinnamon, complemented by cedar and tobacco notes. The palate is oily with firm tannins, having an extraordinary balance that is prolonged and persistent. Ideal for accompanying cheeses, red meats and pasta with heavy sauces.
A classic Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon! An abundance of dark berry aromas with notes of cedar and licorice. On the palate, plush berry flavours accented by hints of milk chocolate and cherry cola.
This full bodied dry red is made from organically farmed old vine Garnacha (Grenache). Fermentation takes place in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks using natural yeast and the wine is aged for 12 months in 2-3 year old American oak and for a further 6 months in bottle prior to release. Vivid purple colour. Ripe red and blue berry, peppery, and fresh rose aromas. Black raspberry, cherry and vanilla flavours. Soft finish with a touch of sweet raspberry and floral notes.
This juicy Garnacha has bright aromas and flavours of cherry, licorice and freshly cracked pepper. With firm tannins and a long finish, this wine is perfect with grilled red meat.
Fried Tofu with Spicy Ginger-Sesame Sauce
Recipe type: Appetizer
Serves 2-4 people
Wine pairing: Real de Aragon Garnacha Centenaria
Rich and juicy this Spanish Garnacha will complement the hint of spice in this dish
- 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon Korean red pepper flakes or 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
- 1 large garlic clove, very finely chopped
- 1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
- 1 14-ounce container firm tofu vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 scallion, thinly sliced
- Steamed rice, for serving
In a small bowl, whisk the soy sauce with the sugar, red pepper, garlic, sesame oil, ginger and sesame seeds.
Slice the tofu crosswise into 8 thin slabs. Dry the tofu with paper towels, pressing until no moisture remains.
In a large skillet, heat 1/4 inch of oil until shimmering. Add the tofu and cook over moderate heat, turning once, until browned and crisp, about 8 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. Spoon the sauce over the fried tofu and sprinkle with the scallion. Serve with steamed rice
Patty Melts with Charred Onions
Recipe type: Main
Wine Pairing: Nativa Growers Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernet and beef – the classic pairing, particuarly with this Chillean example with its extraordinary balance and prolonged, persistent finish.
- 1 lb (500 g) ground chuck
- 1 lb (500 g) ground sirloin
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 12 slices rye bread
- 6 tablespoons (3oz/90g) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 sweet onions, thickly sliced
- 6 slices good-quality Swiss cheese such as Gruyère or Comté
- Prepare a charcoal or gas grill for direct grilling over high heat. Brush and oil the grill grate.
- In a large bowl, using a spoon, not your hands, gently mix together the chuck and sirloin. Run your hands under cold water and divide the mixture into 6 equal portions. Shape each portion into a patty about the size and shape of a slice of bread, being careful not to compact the meat too much. Season on both sides with salt and pepper. Make a depression in the center of each patty with your thumb. Refrigerate the patties until the grill is ready.
- Brush both sides of each bread slice with the butter.
- Place the patties, indent side up, and onion slices on the grill directly over the fire. Cook, turning once, until both the patties and the onions are nicely charred on both sides and the burgers are cooked to your liking, 4-5 minutes per side for medium. During the last 2 minutes of cooking, top each patty with a slice of cheese and put the bread slices along the edge of the grill, then cover the grill. Grill, turning the bread slices once, until the cheese is melted and the bread is lightly toasted.
- Place each burger on a slice of toasted rye. Toss the onion slices to break up the rings, and divide evenly among the burgers. Top each burger with a second slice of toasted bread and serve at once.
Recipe type: Appertizer
Wine Pairing: Filon Garnacha
Grenache is extremely versatile and can pair with a range of flavorful poultry dishes as well as heavier red meats
- 1 1/2 pounds chicken breast
- 1/3 cup coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 2 teaspoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1/4 cup peanuts roasted, chopped
Add peanut butter, coconut milk, soy sauce, lime juice, honey, garlic, ginger, and sriracha to a blender. Puree until smooth, about 30 seconds to 1 minutes. You can also whisk ingredients together in a medium sized bowl until combined. Set aside or refrigerate until ready to serve
- If using wooden skewers, soak in water for at least 15 minutes before cooking
- Slice each chicken breast into ¾ to 1-inch thick strips; I slice them with the grain, so it yields a longer piece. You should be able to get about four pieces per breast
- In a medium sized bowl whisk together coconut milk, lime juice, curry powder, fish sauce, honey, olive oil and garlic. Add chicken slices, coat and allow to marinate at room temperature for at least 15 minutes. If you are not cooking within an hour, transfer chicken and marinade to a resealable plastic bag and refrigerate until ready to use. Thread once piece of chicken on each skewer. Lightly season each side with salt and pepper. Set aside until ready to grill
- Heat grill to medium heat. Add a small amount of vegetable oil on a folded piece of paper towel, and then carefully grease the grill with the oil. Once the grill is nice and hot, add the marinated chicken skewers. Cook chicken on each side until no longer pink (160-165°F), about 4-5 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of the chicken. Serve with peanut sauce and top with chopped peanuts.
Mac and Cheese Bites
Recipe type: Entrée
Serves 8 people
Wine pairing: Parker Cabernet Sauvignon
The rich texture of this cabernet will pair perfectly with the strong flavours in these cheesy bites.
- ½ pound elbow macaroni
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1½ cups milk
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 ounces cream cheese
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 egg beaten
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Spray mini muffin tins with cooking spray.
- Cook pasta according to packaged directions and set aside.
- In a medium size pan combine butter and flour over medium heat. Whisk until butter is melted and mixture is smooth. Slowly add milk and bring to a simmer.
- Add 1½ cups of the cheese, cream cheese, salt and pepper. Stir until smooth and creamy. Remove from heat.
- In a large mixing bowl, carefully stir pasta, cheese sauce, and egg until evenly mixed and pasta is evenly coated.
- Spoon mac and cheese into mini muffin tins and top each with a small pinch of remaining cheese.
- Bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
- Allow to cool 5 minutes before gently removing the bites