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Holiday Recipes for Wine and Food Pairing
December 10, 2012

Here are a few recipes for the holidays that I wanted to share with you. They are from our great friend Tim at Winexpert. They will showcase the fruits of our labor, our prized wine, that we have spent hours nurturing.

Food and Wine Pairing

What you are looking for is harmony and balance in your pairing. Wine on its own tastes different than when it is paired with food. If it is complementary, wine can bring out flavor in a dish, thereby giving the food an added layer, or vice versa. If they clash, or if one overpowers the other, the experience can be a disappointment since you will not realize the flavors of the wine, like an unpleasant metallic taste which can result from high tannin content and oily fish. With the right pairing, wine and food can combine to give your palate great pleasure!

Wild Mushroom Risotto

Best served with a Cabernet Sauvignon

Yield: 4 Servings Ingredients:

  • ● ½ cup wild mushrooms
  • ● 2 ¾ tbsp unsalted butter
  • ● 1 ¾ cups chicken stock
  • ● ½ small onion, finely chopped
  • ● ½ cup Arborio rice
  • ● 3 tbsp dry white wine
  • ● ½ tbsp parmesan cheese, grated
  • ● 1 tbsp parmesan cheese, shaved

Method: In a small sauté pan, melt half the butter over medium heat. Add the wild mushrooms and sauté until tender; set aside. In a medium sized pot, bring the stock to a simmer. Melt the remaining butter over medium heat in a large, heavy saucepan. Add the onion and sauté gently until soft and translucent; do not brown. Add rice to the onion and butter. Stir well until all grains are coated in butter. Add wine and stir until it is all absorbed. Add the stock to rice, ½ cup at a time, stirring until each cup of stock has been absorbed. Once all the stock has been used and rice is al dente, remove from heat and stir in the sautéed mushrooms and parmesan cheese. Garnish with shaved cheese and serve immediately.

White Bean & Truffle Toast

Best served with a Riesling.

Yield: 4 Servings
White Bean Puree

  • ● ¾ cup dried white butter beans
  • ● 1 tsp truffle oil
  • ●1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ● kosher salt to taste
  • ● 1 clove garlic
  • ● ¼ cup chicken stock (or reserved bean water)

*1.5 c canned beans can be used instead of dry


  • ● white bean puree
  • ● 8 slices pancetta, very thinly sliced
  • ● 8 slices baguette, ¼ inch thick
  • ● 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil plus extra for drizzling

White Bean Puree

Soak beans overnight in cold water. Drain beans and transfer to a small pot. Cover beans with cold water and add garlic clove. Bring beans to a boil and simmer until very tender. Drain the beans completely, keeping the garlic clove. Put beans, garlic, olive oil, chicken stock, salt,and truffle oil in a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth, adding more stock or water if needed to make a smooth puree. Check the seasoning and set aside.

Preheat oven to 375F.

Lay pancetta on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake until golden and crisp, about 10 minutes. Cool on pan. Remove and lay on paper towel to remove excess fat. Turn oven to broil. Brush the baguette slices with olive oil on both sides. Put on a baking sheet and toast until slightly golden. Turn slices over and toast the other side until golden. Spread the white bean puree evenly over each piece of baguette slice, drizzle with a bit of olive oil and garnish each bruschetta with a piece of pancetta.

Lamb Sandwich

Best served with a Malbec.

Yield: 4 Servings

  • ● 1 large baguette
  • ● 1 handful arugula or mixed greens

Roasted Lamb

  • ● 1lb lamb sirloin
  • ● 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ● salt and pepper to taste
  • ● 2 garlic cloves, minced

Garlic Mayonnaise

  • ● 1/2 head of garlic
  • ●1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ● ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ● squeeze of lemon juice
  • ● salt and pepper to taste

Pickled Red Onion

  • ● 1 cup white wine vinegar
  • ● ¼ cup white sugar
  • ● 3 pinches salt
  • ● 1 pinch black peppercorns, whole
  • ● 1 pinch dried chili flakes
  • ● 1 small red onion, peeled and sliced thinly


  • ● 1 large handful basil, leaves only
  • ● ½ clove garlic, chopped
  • ● 1 pinch salt
  • ● 1 ½ tbsp pine nuts, toasted
  • ● 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Roasted Lamb
Preheat oven to 375F.

Season lamb with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in an oven safe sauté pan over medium high heat. Sear the lamb until golden brown on all sides. Roast in oven for about 15 minutes, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 125F. Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes.

Garlic Mayonnaise

Cut the top off the head of garlic. Drizzle with olive oil and wrap in foil. Roast in the oven at 375F for 25 minutes or until garlic is soft. Remove cloves from the skins and mash with a fork. Mix in the mayonnaise and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Pickled Red Onion

Bring the vinegar, sugar, salt, peppercorns and chili flakes to a boil in a non reactive saucepan. Put the onions in a glass container and pour the vinegar mixture over top. Let sit until cool. They can be used right away or can be kept in the refrigerator for up to one week. Drain and pat dry before using.


Put basil, garlic, salt and pine nuts into a food processor and chop. With the food processor running, drizzle in the olive oil. Puree until smooth. Remove from the food processor and set aside.

Sandwich Assembly

Thinly slice lamb. Cut baguette into four even pieces, then cut each piece in half lengthwise. Spread garlic mayonnaise evenly on the bottom half of each sandwich. Spread the pesto evenly on top half of each sandwich. Arrange lamb evenly on each sandwich and top with a few pieces of pickled onion and greens.

Place top half on each sandwich and serve.

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe holiday.
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