Recipes Provided by Marcia


August 8, 2008

  • Alexander Valley Vineyard Estate Chardonnay

Cilantro Pesto

Serves 4 From Jeff Young of Alexander Valley Vineyards

1 bunch cilantro, root end removed
3 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
¼ cup almonds, slivered
½ cup olive oil
½ cup Asiago cheese, grated
Salt and pepper to taste

2 pounds medium prawns, (21-25 per pound), peeled and deveined
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
½ cup AVV Estate Chardonnay

Place cilantro, garlic, rice wine vinegar and almonds in a food processor and pulse until roughly chopped. Turn food processor on and add oil in a thin stream until incorporated, then add cheese with salt and pepper. Set aside ½ cup for prawns and freeze or refrigerate the rest of pesto for future use.

Heat olive oil in a saute pan and add prawns. When underside turns a bright pink, turn the prawns and add the wine and pesto and cook another two minutes. Serves 4.

July 18, 2008

  • DeLoach Pinot Noir

Bacon Roasted Salmon with Mushroom Sauce

Serves 6 From Cyndicy Coudray of DeLoach Vineyards


3 skinless salmon filets, about 1" thick (about 2 lb) cut in half lengthwise
Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
9 slices bacon, 3 slices cut into small pieces
lb shiitake mushrooms, stemmed & quartered
c flat leaf parsley, minced
c chives, minced
2 t garlic, minced
c hot water
1-2 T Chinese oyster sauce
2 T unsalted butter, chilled, sliced

Preheat the broiler. Lightly season the salmon filets with salt & pepper. Wrap a slice of the bacon crosswise around each salmon filet. Secure with toothpicks. Place the filets in a roasting pan and broil the fish 6 inches from the heat for about 4 minutes per side until filets are just cooked through. Cook the bacon pieces in a skillet over high heat until lightly browned and crisp, about 4 minutes. Pour off all but 2 t fat and reduce heat to medium. Add mushrooms and cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-high, add parsley, garlic and chives. Cook about 1 minute. Whisk the hot water with the oyster sauce in a small bowl until blended. Add to the mushrooms and cook over moderate heat, stirring until the sauce thickens slightly, about one minute. Whisk in the butter until just melted. Remove from heat. Remove the bacon from filets and reserve for another use. Transfer to plates, top with mushroom sauce and garnish with chives.



July 18, 2008

  • Pinot Noir

Coq Au Vin    

8 servings

10 slices  bacon, diced

2 chickens (2-1/2 to 3 lb each) quartered

16 small white pearl onions, peeled

6 scallions, sliced

1 head garlic, cloves separated and peeled

1 lb. mushrooms, wiped clean and quartered

3 T all purpose flour

3 cups dry red wine (Pinot Noir  suggested)

1 cup chicken broth

1 t dried thyme

salt and pepper to taste

16 small new potatoes

12 oz. baby carrots, peeled

chopped fresh parsley (garnish)

1.  One day beore serving, fry the bacon in a large Dutch oven until crisp.  Remove the pieces from the pan, drain on paper towels and reserve.  Brown the chicken piece in batches in the hot bacon fat.  Set the chicken aside.

2. Add the onions, scallions, and garlic to the pan and saute over medium high heat for 5 minutes.  Add the mushrooms and saute 5 more minutes.

3.  Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and cook 1 minute.  Slowly pour in the wine and stock, stirring constantly.  Season with the thyme and salt and pepper to taste.  Heat to boiling.  Remove from heat; add the bacon, chicken and potatoes, and distribute evenly.  Refrigerate covered overnight.

4.  The next day, let the coq au vin warm to room temperature before baking.

5.  Preheat the overn to 350 degrees.

6.  Bake covered in th oven for 1 hour.  After 1 hour, add the carrots and stir to distribute.  Bake for 50 minutes.  The chicken should be almost falling off the bone and the vegetables tender.

7.  Spoon the coq au vin onto large plates, serving everyone 2 potatoes, 2 onions, and plenty of carrots.  Sprinkle with fresh parsley.


July 11, 2008 - Compliments of Lucas and Lewellen Vineyards

  • 2005 Lucas and Lewelllen Petit Verdot

Herb Crusted Grilled Lamb with Arpicot

4 servings

1/4 c coarsely chopped oregano

2 T coarsely chopped rosemary

1-1/2 T Kosher salt

1 T black pepper

1 T minced garlic

3 T olive oil

2 (1-lb) lamb leg top roasts


6 apricots, cut into 1/4 inch pieces

1 bottled roasted red pepper, rinsed, patted dry, and cut inot 1/4" pieces

3 T minced shallots

3 T coarsely chopped mint

2 T red wine vinegar

2 T orange juice

2 T extra-virgin olive oil

1 t packed brown sugar

3/4 t dried hot red pepper flakes

1/2 t ground coriander

1/2 t salt

1.  Stir together herbs, salt, pepper, garlic, and oil, then rub all over lamb.

2.  Stir together all relish ingredients and season with pepper.

3.  Preheat all burners on high, covered, 10 minutes.

4.  Sear lamb on lightly oiled grill rack, covered with lid, turning over once, until well browned, 8 to 10 minutes total. Turn off 1 burner (middle burner if there are 3) and put lamb above shut-off burner. Reduce heat on remaining burner(s) and grill lamb, covered with lid, until hermometer inserted diagonally into center registers 135F for medium-rare, 15-20 minutes.

5.  Transfer lamb to a cutting board and let stand, loosely covered with foil, 15 minutes. Thinly slice lamb across the grain and serve with relish. Serves 4.


July 4, 2008

  • An Argentinian Torrontes

Baby Eggplant, Tomato, and Basil Casserole with Parmesan

8 servings

16 baby eggplants (about 4" long)

4 cloves garlic, cut into slivers

4 medium-size bunches fresh basil, stems removed

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/2 cup best-quality olive oil

2 T fresh lemon juice

4 ripe large tomatoes cut into 1/4 inch slices

7 T grated Parmesan cheese

1 bunch fresh thyme, leaves chopped (or 2 T dried thyme)

2 T chopped fresh Italian parsley

1.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees

2.  Cut the stems from the eggplants and cut each one lengthwise in half.

3. Place the eggplants, skin side down, on a cookie sheet.  Make a slit in the center of each eggplant half and insert a garlic slice and a small basil leaf.  Sprinkle with pepper to taste and drizzle 1/4 cup of the oil over all the eggplant.

4.  Cover the pan tightly with foil and bake 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven and turn the oven down to 350 degrees. 

5.  Place 1 layer of eggplant, skin side down in a shallow 13X9-inch  casserole.  Sprinkle with 1 T lemon juice and pepper to taste.  Arrange a layer of half the tomatoes over the eggplant and sprinkle with 3 T of the Parmesan.  Sprinkle half the thyme evenly over the cheese and completely cover with a layer of basil.  Drizzle with 2 T of the oil.

6.  Repeat layers, using the remaining layer ingredients including all the Parmesan.

7.  Cover the baking pan tightly with aluminum foil and bake 45 minutes.  Garnish with the parsley and serve immediately.


June 27, 2008

  • Pinot Gris

Chicken Marengo

6 servings

3 lb. roasting chicken, cut up

1/2 cup flour

1 t salt

1/2 t pepper

1 t tarragon

1/4 c olive oil

1/4 c butter

1 cup dry white wine

2 cups of canned tomatoes

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

8 large mushrooms, sliced

chopped parsely for garnish

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2.  Mix together flour, salt, pepper and tarragon.  Dredge the chicken in the mixture.  Save the left-over flour mixture.

2.  In a heavy skillet, heat olive and butter and brown the chicken on all sides.  Remove the chicken to a heavy casserole.

3.  Into the fat remaining in the skillet, add the left-over flour mixture and using a wire whisk, gradually stir in the wine.  When the sauce is thickened and smooth, pour over the chicken and add tomatoes, garlic and mushrooms. 

4.  Cover the casserole with a heavy lid and bake until the chicken is tender, about 45 minutes.  Before serving, sprinkle with chopped parsley.


June 20, 2008    

  • 2007 Brancott Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc

Salade Nicoise

6 servings


1/4 cup red-wine vinegar

2-1/2 T minced shallot

2 t Dijon mustard

1 large garlic clove, minced and mashed to a paste with 1/2 t salt

Rounded 1/2 t anchovy paste

1 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1-1/2 t minced fresh thyme

1-1/2 T finely chopped fresh basil

Salt and pepper to taste


3/4 pound green beans, trimmed

1-1/2 pounds of small potatoes

1 10-oz. can albacore tuna

1/4 cup capers, drained

2 heads of Boston lettuce leaves, separated, large ones torn into pieces

1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes

6 hardboiled eggs, quartered

2/3 cup nicoise or black Greek olives

3 T finely chopped fresh parsley and/or basil

Make the Dressing

Whisk together vinegar, shallot, mustard, garlic paste and anchovy paste in a small bowl until combined well, then add oil in a slow stream, whisking until emulsified.  whisk in thyme, basil and salt ad pepper to taste.

Make the Salad

1.  Cook beans, uncovered, in a pot of boiling salted water until crisp-temder, 3-4 minutes, then transfer with a slotted spoon toa bowl of ice water.  Add potatoes to boiling water and simmer, uncovered, until tender, 15-20 minutes, then drain in a colander.  Halve potatoes while warm, and toss with 2 T dressing in a bowl, then cool.

2.  Drain and chunk tuna.  Toss with 2 T dressing and salt and pepper.

3.  Drain beans and pat dry.  Toss beans in a bowl with 1 T dressing and salt and pepper to taste.  Toss lettuce in a bowl with 2 T dressing and salt and pepper to taste, then transfer to platter.  Toss tomatoes in bowl with 1 T dressing and salt and pepper to taste.

4.  Line a platter with the lettuce, and arrange tuna, potatoes and green beans on the platter.  Add hard-boiled eggs, olives and tomatoes, and sprinkle with capers and parsley or basil.  Spritz with more dressing if desired.



June 6, 2008    

  • 1999 Iron Horse Chardonnay

Jerked Pork Tenderloin

6 servings

2 1-pound pork tenderloins

1/2 cup chopped onions

2 slivered garlic

1/2 small hot chili pepper

2 T soy sauce, sodium reduced

1 T vegetable oil

1 t orange zest, grated

1 t lemon zest, grated

2 T orange juice

1 piece of ginger, about 1"

1/2 t thyme (dried)

1/4 t cinnamon

1/4 t ground allspice

1/4 t nutmeg

1/4 t curry powder

1/4 t salt

1/4 t black pepper

1.  Trim pork tenderloins, place in shallow glass dish and set aside.

2.  In a food processor, puree onions, garlic, hot pepper soysauce, oil, orange and lemon rinds, orange juice, ginger, thyme, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, curry powder, salt, and pepper.

3.  Pour onion mixture over pork tenderloins turning to coat all sides.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 8 hours, turning pork occasionally.  Reserving marinade, transfer pork to foil-lines rimmed baking sheet

4.  Broil, basting once with marinade, for about 20 minutes or until meat is browned but still has a hint of pink inside.

4.  Tent with foil; let stand for 10 minutes before serving.


May 30, 2008    

  • Chardonnay

Halibut wrapped in Prosciutto w/Asparagus Sauce

Serves 4

5T unsalted butter

4 scallions, thinly sliced

1 lb asparagus, spears sliced 1/2  thick, tips reserved separately

1 c water

1 c packed baby spinach leaves

salt and pepper

8 THIN slices of prosciutto

4 skinless halibut fillets (about 5 oz. each)

8 small sage leaves, halved

1 T extra virgin olive oil.

1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  In a skillet, melt 4 T of the butter.  Add the scallions and cook over low heat until softened about 3 minutes.  Add the asparagus spears and the water and cook until the spears are tender and the water is reduced to 1/4 cup.  Add spinach and cook just until wilted.  About 2 minutes.  Puree the mixture ina blender until smooth, season with salt and pepper.  Transfer the sauce to a small saucepan and keep warm.

2.  Arrange prosciutto slices in pairs overlapping them slightly.  Place a halibut fillet in the center of the prosciutto and top each fillet with 2 sage leaves.  Season with salt and pepper and wrap the prosciutto around the fish.

3.  In a large ovenproof skillet, melt the remaining 1 T of butter in the olive oil.  Add the halibut and cook over high heat until browned on the bottom, about 3 minutes.  Carefully flip the fish and add the asparagus tips to the skillet.  Transfer to the oven and roast the prosciutto wrapped halibut for 5 minutes. 

4.  Spoon the asparagus sauce onto plates.  Arrange the halibut and asparagus tips alongside and serve imediately.


May 23, 2008    

  • Muscat

Mexican Double Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

36 cookies

Announced at Death by Chocolate, February 18, 2006
Mexican Double Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies
By Chaim B. Potter of Napa, California

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/8 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
1/4 pound coarsely chopped good quality dark chocolate
1/2 cup (one stick) unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°F.

Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and black pepper. Set aside.
In a small heatproof bowl set over a small saucepan of simmering water, melt the coarsely chopped chocolate with the butter. Let cool slightly.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the melted chocolate mixture with the sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Mix on medium speed until combined. Reduce speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Line a 17-by-12-inch cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a 1 1/2 inch ice cream scoop, drop the cookie dough onto the parchment paper, spacing 2 inches apart. Bake the cookies for about 15 minutes, until they look flat and the surfaces crack (cookies should still be soft in texture). Let the cookies cool on the parchment on wire cooling racks. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days.


May 16, 2008    

  • Pinot Noir

Flaming Madeira Quail

6 servings

6 quail

salt and ground black pepper

1-1/2 c Madeira wine

1/2 cup raisins

3 cloves

1 cup cooked white rice

1/4 t powdered ginger

1 t grated orange peel

1 T butter, melted

2/3 c chopped pecans

1/2 cup butter, melted

juice of one orange

1/2 cup cognac, heated

1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees

2.  Wash and dry the quail.  Sprinkle inside and out with salt and pepper.

3.  In a aucepan combine the Madeira, raisins and cloves.  Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer five minutes, Strain the mixture, discarding the cloves and reserving the wine and raisins. 

4.  In a mixing bowl combine the raisins, rice, ginger, orange peel, tablespoon of melted butter and the nuts.  Mix well and use the mixture to stuf the quail.

5.  Place the quail on a rack in a shallow open roasting pan and brush with part of the butter.  Bake five minutes.  Reduce the oven trmperature to 300 degrees and bake twenty-five minutes longer, basting frequently with a mixture of the remaining butter, the reserved Madeira and orange juice. 

6.  Place the quail in a chafing dish.  Season the liquid in the roasting pan with salt and pepper to taste and pour over the quail.  When steam rises from the chafing dish, pour the warmed cognac over the quail, ignite and serve at once.


May 9, 2008    

  • Reisling

Shrimp Curry

6 servings

1/4 lb butter

4 large onions, chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped

3 c water or coconut milk

3 large tomatoes, peeled and chopped

2 large apples, peeled and chopped

1 cup chopped celery

1 T shredded coconut

1 piece fresh ginger root, or 3/4 t powdered ginger

1 T sugar

1-1/2 T curry powder (or more)

1-1/2 T flour

1-1/2 t salt

1/4 t pepper

3 pounds raw shrimp, shelled and deveined

1.  In a large skillet heat the butter, add the onions and garlic and cook until lightly browned.  Add the water and bring to a boil.

2.  Add the tomatoes, apples, celery, coconut, and fresh ginger.

3.  Blend the sugar, curry powder, flour, salt and pepper.  Add enough cold water to make a paste and add gradually, stirring, to the boiling mixture.  simmer, partially covered, stirring occaisonally, until the vegetables are very tender, about 40 minutes. 

4.  Add the shrimp and cook for 5 minutes longer.  Serve on rice.


May 2, 2008    

  • Gerwurztraminer

Luau Pork Tenderloin

4-6 servings

1/2 cup honey

2 t prepared mustard

1/4 c brown sugar

2 T vinegar

1/4 c soy sauce

1-1/2 to 2 lb pork tenderloin(s)

1.  Mix all ingredients in a shallow pan.  Roll pork tenderloin in the mixture.

2.  Marinate 2 - 4 hours turning once or twice.

3.  Roast 1 hour at 350 degrees, basting frequently.  Slice thin diagonal slices and serve.


April 25, 2008    

  • Pinot Grigio

Basque Chicken Breasts

2 servings

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 7 oz each)

1/2 t salt

pepper to taste

1 T butter

2 T olive oil, divided

2 oz pancetta, cut into 1/4 in. pieces

2 T shallots minced

1 clove crushed garlic

1/2 c dry white wine like Pinot Grigio

1/2 c chicken broth

3 sprigs thyme

1/2 c diced tomato, cut into 3/4 in. dice

1/4 c nicoise olives

1.  Place each chicken breast between two large pieces of plastic and flatten using  rolling pin or heavy skillet.  Pound until 1/4 inch thick.   Season each with 1/4t salt and a pinch of pepper.  In a large skillet, heat the butter and 1 T of the olive oil over medium high heat until hot  Add the chicken one piece at a time and saute until golden brown, about 2-1/2 minutes on the first side and 30 seconds on the other.  Remove the chicken to a plate.  Set aside in a warm place.

2.  Drain the excess fat from the pan and add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.  Add the pancetta and saute until browned, about 2 minutes.  Add the shallot and saute for 1 minute, until tender, then add the garlic and saute just until aromatic (a few seconds, do not brown). 

3.  Add the wine stirring to scrape up the browned bits at the bottom of the pan.  Stir in the chicken broth, thyme, tomatoes.  Allow sauce to come to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes so that the flavors develop.  Stir in the olives.

4.  Add the chicken back to the pan, spooning the sauce over it.  Cook for 1 minute, then remove the chicken to a plate and spoon the sauce evenly over each piece and serve immediately.


April 18, 2008    

  • Big House The Birdman

Halibut in Foil Packets

4 servings

4  1/4 lb cuts of Halibut

4  pices of aluminum foil 12"X18"

1 lb asparagus, cut into 1" lengths

2 large red bell peppers, stemmed, cored and cut into 1/4" strips

1/2 pound of snow peas

Lemon Dill Sauce

1/4 c extra virgin olive oil

4 large cloves garlic, minced

4 large green onions, thinly sliced

1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

1 t lemon zest

1 t each of salt and pepper


1.  Preheat oven to 500 degrees.  Set racks at lowest level

2.  In a bowl, blend together olive oil, garlic cloves, green onions, dill, lemon zest, and salt and pepper. 

3.  Add the halibut and vegetables to the mixture and coat on all sides.

4.  Divide mixture into 4 and place each serving onto the foil, arranging the fish atop the vegetables.

5.  For each packet, bring long sides of foil together and fold over about 1/2 inch; crimp to seal.  Repeat folding and crimping, lengthwise, twice more.  Fold ends twice to seal.

6.  Bake packets in hot oven for 8-10 minutes.  Let packets stand 3 minutes before serving.


April 11, 2008    

  • Pinot Blanc

Baked Butter Herbed Orange Roughy

4 servings

1/2 cup butter or margarine

2/3 cup crushed saltines

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 t each:  basil, oregano, salt

1/4 t garlic powder

1 lb. Orange Roughy or any other firm white fish

1.  In a 13x9x2 baking pan, melt butter in preheated 350 degree oven.

2.  Combine crackers, cheese, basil, oregano, salt and garlic powder.  dip fish in melted butter then in crumb mixture. 

3.  Bake at 350 degrees 20 to 30 minutes, or until fish is tender and flakes with a fork. 


March 28, 2008    

  • Carol Shelton Mongo Zin

Duck Breasts with Plum Sauce

4 servings

4 duck breasts, cleaned and rinsed

garlic salt

1/4 c butter or margarine

1 medium onion, chopped

1 - 17 ounce can purple plums

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

1/2 cup chili sauce

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/4 cup soy sauce

1 t ground ginger

2 t prepared mustard

1 t worchestershire

1.  Prick the duck breasts with a fork and sprinkle with garlic salt.  Place in a roaster pan with a lid.  Roast in 350 degreee oven for 2 hours or until tender.

2.  Meanwhile in a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter or margarine.  Cook onion until tender.

3.  Into a blender, place liquid from the plums.  Pit the plums and add them to the liquid.  Add onion mixture, brown sugar, and remaining ingredients.   Cover and blend at high speed until smooth.

4.  Pour plum mixture into saucepan.  Over medium heat simmer 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5.  When duck is done, remove from oven; turn oven up to 400 degrees.  Remove duck breasts from pan, discard any drippings.

6.  Return breasts to roaster, brush with plum sauce.  Roast breasts 15 minutes longer, brushing occasionally with sauce.  Serve duck with remaining sauce on the side.



March 21, 2008    

  • Reisling

Shrimp and Broccoli Stir Fry

4 servings

1/4 cup chicken broth

2 T rice vinegar

2 T soy sauce

2 t cornstarch

1/2 t dark sesame oil

1/4 t crushed red pepper flakes

1 T canola oil (divided)

1 T minced peeled fresh ginger

1 T bottled minced garlic

1 lb. peeled, deveined shrimp

1/4 t salt

4 cups small broccoli florets

1 cup vertically sliced onion

1.  Combine the first 6 ingredients in a small bowl and whisk.

2.  Heat 2 t canola oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat.  Add ginger and garlic to pan; stir fry 30 seconds.  Sprinkle shrimp with salt.  Add shrimp to pan and stir-fry 3 minutes, or until done.  Remove shrimp mixture from pan.

3.  Add remaining 1 t canola oil to pan.  Add broccoli and onion to pan; stir-fry 4 minutes, or until broccoli is crisp tender.  Add shrimp mix and broth to pan.  Cook 1 minute until thickened, stirring constantly.


March 14, 2008    

  • Chardonnay

Cheese Popover Appetizers

Makes about 36

Walnut oil

6 eggs

1-1/2 c flour

1 t salt

1/2 t pepper

1 t dried thyme

Pinch of nutmeg

2 c milk

1/2 c heavy or whipping cream

4 oz brie OR herbed chevre (goat cheese)

1.  Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Brush 36 miniature muffin cups with walnut oil

2.  Place the eggs, flour, salt, pepper, thyme, and nutmeg in a blender.  Blend until well combined, about 10 seconds  Scrape down the sides of the container.

3.  With the blender running, slowly pour in the milk and cream and blend until smooth.

4.  Place the prepared muffin tins in the oven to warm slightly  Remove the warmed tins and fill each halfway with batter.  Place a piece of the cheese in the center of each cup.  Pour in the remaining batter to fill each cup two-thirds full.

5.  Bake the popovers until puffed and golden, 25 - 30 minutes.  Serve immediately.



March 7, 2008    

  • Chianti Classico (and a red checkered tablecloth)

Chicken Puttanesca

Serves 6 - 8

3 T olive oil

8 chicken legs (or whatever parts you like)

1 medium size onion, cut into thin rings

12 large cloves of garlic, halved

1 can (35 oz) plum tomatoes

1 can (2 oz) anchovies, drained and chopped

1/2 c pitted Nicoise olives

1/3 c capers, drained

3 T coarsely chopped sun-dried tomatoes (packed in oil)

1 T mixed Italian herbs

1 T balsamic vinegar

pinch of red pepper flakes

Salt and freshly gound black pepper to taste

1.  Heat the oil in a large skillet.  Add the chicken and brown on both sides.  Remove from the pan and set aside.

2.  Add the onion and garlic to the same pan and saute until the onion is soft and translucent, 5 - 7 minutes.

3.  Stir in the plum tomatoes and their liquid and then the remaining ingredients, one at a time.  Return the chicken to the pan and coat well with sauce.

4.  Cover pan and simmer until the chicken is tender, about 45 minutes.  Serve immediately


February 29, 2008    

  • Chianti Classico (for extroverts)
  • Pinot Noir (for a classic)

Lamb Medallions with Hazelnut Holandaise

Serves 6

1/2 up hazelnuts, toasted and skinned

1 T unsalted butter, room temp

3 egg yolk

1-1/2 T fresh lemon juice

Pinch of cayenne pepper

1 cup (2 sticks) plus 3 T unsalted butter

salt and pepper to taste

12 lamb medallions (3 - 4 oz. each)

1.  Process the hazelnuts and 1 T butter in a food processor fitted with a steel blade until ground.

2.  Mix the egg yolks, lemon, and cayenne in a blender for 30 second.

3.  Melt 1 cup butter in a small saucepan until bubbly.  With the blender running, pour in the hot butter in a thin steady stream to make a thick and creamy sauce.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Add the hazelnuts and process just until combined.  Remove the sauce to a double boiler and keep warm while sauteing the lamb.

4. Sprinkle the lamb on both sides with salt and pepper.

5.  Melt 3 T butter in a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the lamb medallions and saute 3 - 4 minutes on eash side.

6.  Place 2 medallions on each warmed individual serving plate and top each medallion with a tablespoon or so of the hazelnut hollandaise.


February 15, 2008    

  • 2006 Peltier Station Viognier

Creamy Butternut Squash Soup

Serves 4

2 pounds of butternut squash

4 cups chicken stock

1-1/4 cups sour cream, creme fraiche or heavy cream

2 T butter

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 t cayenne

1 T sugar

sauteed or grilled shrimp or mushrooms (optional)

several chives cut into 1 inch pieces as garnish


1. Cut squash in half, place in a microwave safe dish with 1" of water.  Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high for 9 minutes.  Cool until safe to handle.  Scrape squash into a blender and blend until smooth.

2.  Combine in a saucepan on high heat the squash, butter, stock, salt and pepper and cayenne.  Cook, stirring until heated through.  Lower the heat to medium-low so that the soup is no longer boiling, then stir in the sour cream, creme fraiche, or heavy cream being careful not to boil.  Keep warm over low heat.

3.  Serve the soup with a few cooked shrimp or mushrooms if you like, and garnish with chives.


February 8, 2008    

  • 2006 Tensley Syrah

Filet Mignon with rich Balsamic Glaze

Serves 2

2 4-6ounce filet mignons

1/2 t freshly gound black pepper

salt to taste

1/4 c balsamic vinegar

1/4 c dry red wine


1.  Sprinkle freshly ground pepper over both sides of each filet, then salt to taste.

2.  Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Place the steaks in the pan and cook for 1 minute on each side, or until browned.  Reduce heat to medium-low and add balsamic vinegar and wine.  Cover, and cook for 4 minutes on each side basting with sauce when you turn the meat over.

3.  Remove steaks to two warmed plates, spoon one tablespoon of glaze over each filet and serve immediately.


February 1, 2008    

  • Now and Zen

Chicken Marbella

Serves 10-12

4 Chickens, 2-1/2 lbs. each, quartered

1 head garlic, peeled and finely pureed

1/4 c dried oregano

salt and pepper to taste

1/2 c red wine vinegar

1/2 c olive oil

1 c pitted prunes

1/2 c pitted Spanish olives sliced

1/2 c capers with a bit of juice

6 bay leaves

1 c brown sugar

1 c white wine

1/4 c Italian parsley or cilantro finely chopped


1.  In a large bowl, combine chicken, garlic, oregano, pepper and salt, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and juice, bay leaves.  Cover and marinate overnight.

2.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

3.  Arrange chicken in a single layer in one or two large shallow baking dishes and spoon marinade over it evenly.  Sprinkle chicken with brown sugar and pour white wine around them.

4.  Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour basting frequently.

5.  Transfer chicken and prunes, olives, capers to a serving plate.  Moisten with a few spoonfuls of pan juices and sprinkle generously with parsley or cilantro.  Pass remaining sauce in sauceboat.


January 25, 2008

  • A Cold brew

Super Bowl Red Chili

Serves 8 to 10

3 T bacon drippings

3 pounds round steak, coarsely chopped

6T chili powder

1T ground oregano

1T crushed cumin seed

1T salt

1/2 - 1t cayenne pepper

2 large cloves garlic, minced

1-1/2 qt. water

1 cup white cornmeal or 3 T masa harina

In a heavy skillet or Dutch oven, heat bacon drippings and brown the steak cubes on all sides.  Add seasonings, garlic, and 1-1/2 quarts water.  Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 1-1/2 hours.  Skin off fat.  Stir in cornmeal or masa harina and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Adjust seasonings.  Serve with cooked pinto beans, warm tortillas, and beer.



January 18, 2008

  • '05 A. Rafanelli Zinfandel

Meatloaf Stuffed with Proscuitto, Spinach, Carrots, and Cheese

Serves 8

*2 large carrots, each cut lengthwise into 6 slices

*4 cups spinach (3 ounces), thick stems discarded

*2 pounds lean ground beef

*2 pounds ground pork

*2 1/2 cups fresh bread crumbs

*2 cups freshly grated pecorino cheese (6 ounces)

*6 large eggs, lightly beaten

*Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

*3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

*12 thin slices of prosciutto (4 ounces)

*1/2 pound caciocavallo or provolone cheese, cut into twelve 1/8-inch-       thick slices

*1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

*4 sprigs of rosemary

*2 cups dry red wine

*1 cup water

1.  Preheat the oven to 400.  In a saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the carrots until tender, 7 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate.  Add the spinachto the boiling water and cook just until wilted; drain well and add to the carrots.

2.  In a large bowl, combine the beef with the pork, 2 cups of the bread crumbs, the pecorino, eggs, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper; mix well with your hands.

3.   Line a work surface with a 15-inch-long sheet of plastic wrap. In a bowl, mix the flour with the remaining 1/2 cup of bread crumbs. Sprinkle half of the crumb mixture all over the plastic wrap. Transfer half of the meat loaf mixture to the plastic and press it into a 12-by-10-inch rectangle, about 1/2 inch thick. Lay half of the spinach leaves over the meat, leaving a 1-inch border on the short sides. Arrange half of the carrots over the spinach, and top with half the prosciutto and sliced cheese. Starting from the long end of the plastic wrap closest to you, tightly roll up the meat loaf, tucking in the filling and using the plastic wrap to guide you; discard the plastic. Repeat with another 15-inch sheet of plastic and the remaining bread crumbs, meat mixture, spinach, carrots, prosciutto and cheese. Drizzle each meat loaf with 2 tablespoons of oil.

4.   Put the rosemary sprigs in the bottom of a broiler pan and pour in the red wine. Cover with the broiler pan grate. Set the meat loaves about 2 inches apart on the grate. Bake in the center of the oven for 40 minutes. Turn the broiler pan around and pour the water through the grate. Continue baking for about 35 minutes longer, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of each meat loaf registers 165.

5.   Transfer the meat loaves to a carving board and cover loosely with foil. Discard any cheese from the bottom of the pan and strain the pan juices into a small saucepan. Boil the pan juices over high heat until reduced to 1 cup, about 5 minutes. Pour into a serving bowl and season with salt and pepper.

6.   Using a serrated knife, slice the meat loaves 1 inch thick and serve, passing the pan juices at the table.



January 11, 2008

  • Foppiano Petite Sirah (if served with prime rib)

Gruyere and Custard Baked Potatoes

(compliments of Susan Foppiano)

 Serves 4

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 large Idaho potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4 -inch-thick rounds
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Gruyre cheese
8 large eggs
2 cups heavy (whipping) cream
1 teaspoon chicken bouillon granules
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Preheat the oven to 350F. Coat large oval or 9-by-13-inch baking pan with the butter.

Arrange a layer of potato slices, slightly overlapping, in the bottom of the prepared dish. Top with a layer of the cheese. Repeat the layers twice, finishing with a light layer of cheese. In a bowl, whisk the eggs until well beaten. Add the cream, bouillon granules, salt, pepper, and nutmeg and whisk until well blended. Carefully pour the egg mixture over the layered potatoes and cheese. Cover with aluminum foil, sealing the edges well. Serves 8.

Bake the gratin until the center is soft and just beginning to set up, 45 to 60 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake until the center is firmly set and the potatoes are nicely browned, 20 to 30 minutes longer. Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Cook's Note: The potatoes can be served immediately, or they can be cooled in the dish and reheated. To reheat the gratin, cut the potatoes into serving-sized squares or triangles, arrange 2 inches apart on a buttered, rimmed baking sheet, and then brush the tops with a little melted butter. Baike n a 400F oven until heated through and nicely browned, 12 to 15 minutes. Serve immediately



January 4, 2008

  • Chardonnay

Hungarian Porkchops with Baby Spinach

Serves 4

4 (1/4 lb) boneless pork loin chops, trimmed

1/2 t salt

1/4 t pepper

3/4 cup reduced sodium chicken broth                                                

1t onion powder

1 (5-6 ounce) bag baby spinach                                                        

2T fat-free sour cream                                                                        

2T paprika


1.  Place the pork chops between 2 sheets of wax paper.  Pound to 1/4 inch thickness using th smooth side of a meat mallet or bottom of a heavy saucepan.  Season the chops with salt and pepper.

2.  Spray a large nonstick skillet with nonstick spray and set over medium-high heat.  Add pork chops and cook until browned and cooked through, about 2 minutes per side.  Transfer to a plate; keep warm.

3.  Add the broth to skillet, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.  Stir in the onion powder and spinach.  Reduce the heat and simmer covered, about 1 minute.

4.  Stir in sour cream and paprika; cook until heated through, about 30 seconds, DO NOT BOIL.  Add pork chops and any accumulated juices into the sauce, stirring well until blended.

December 21, 2007 

Compliments of Chef Chris Manning at Domaine Chandon

  • Chandon Reserve Chardonnay Brut

Grilled Potato and Arugula Salad

Serves 4

½ lb. baby red or fingerling potatoes sliced into ¼-inch thick slices
1 onion sliced ½-inch thick
1 red bell pepper, cut into 2-inch wide pieces
1 yellow bell pepper cut into 2-inch wide pieces
1 eggplant, smaller size, sliced ½-inch thick
½ c. extra-virgin olive oil
4 c. arugula, washed and dried in a salad spinner
½ c. feta cheese, crumbled
8 basil leaves, torn into ½-inch pieces
¼ c. red wine vinegar

¼ c. extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and black pepper to taste

Heat grill on high heat. Lay the potatoes, onion, pepper, and eggplant pieces on a cookie sheet. Brush both sides of the vegetables with ½ c. of olive oil. Place vegetables on the preheated grill. Grill 4 minutes on each side, and check for tenderness. Remove vegetables back to cookie sheet and let cool until you are able to handle them. Cut the vegetables into rustic, bite size pieces.

Place the chopped vegetables in a bowl with the arugula, feta cheese and basil. Drizzle with the vinegar and ¼ c. of olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss gently so dressing is evenly coating salad. Serve immediately


etoile Autumn Butternut Squash Soup with Spiced Creme Fraiche

1 large Butternut Squash
3 Garlic, cloves, chopped
3/4 cup Orange Juice
3T Dark Brown Sugar
1 Cinnamon stick, broken into 6 pieces
1/4 cup Sweet Butter
3 Leeks, large, chopped (white part only)
1/2 cup Onion, white, chopped
1 Apple, large Granny Smith, peeled, cored, chopped
1 Quart Chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
To taste sea salt & freshly ground white pepper


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cut large Butternut squash in half, remove filament and place skin side down on foil-lined sheet pan. Combine garlic, orange juice, dark brown sugar, and cinnamon stick pieces and brush onto cut side of squash. Bake for 1\2 hour, then turn over and cook another 1\2 hour skin side up or until tender. Remove from oven; remove skin and discard it and cinnamon stick. Drain juice and set aside with pulp.

In heavy-bottom stock pot, place sweet butter, leeks, onions, and apple. Cook slowly over medium flame until very tender. Do not allow to color. Add chicken stock. Bring to low boil. Add squash and squash juice. Cook for five minutes then add heavy cream and simmer for another five minutes. Add seal salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste. Cool and puree in blender until very smooth. Thin with additional chicken stock if desired.

Garnish Ingredients

Crème Fraiche 1\2 cup
(or sour cream)
Heavy cream 3 T


December 14, 2007

  • Ruffino Orvieto

Deviled Dungeness Crab

Serves 4

6-8 T butter

2 T flour

1 cup light cream

1/2 t Worceswtershire sauce

1/2 t grated onion    

3/4 lb fresh Dungeness crab

1/2 cup bread crumbs

4 lemon slices

1/2 t paprika

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Melt 2 T butter in a saucepan until foamy.  Add flour and cook for 3 minutes.  Slowly add light cream, Worchestershire sauce, and onion, stirring until thoroughly blended and thickened.  Remove from heat and stir in crab meat until well mixed.  Spoon mixture into 4 scallop shells and refrigerate until well chilled.  Remove filled shells from refrigerator and top with bread crumbs, dots of remaining butter, lemon slices and paprika.  Bake for 15 minutes or until bread crumbs are browned and crab mixture is bubbly.  Serve immediately.


Complements of Grand Central Oyster Bar Restaurant:

Pasta E Fagiole with Seared Day Boat Sea Scallops



Some olive oil

1 cup Spanish onion, medium diced

1 cup cooked Cannelini beans, rinsed

2 tablespoons garlic, minced

2 cups Chicken stock

1 cup tubetini (elbow macaroni or any other bite sized pasta)

1 28 oz. can peeled Italian tomatoes


parmesan cheese

salt and ground black pepper to taste

12 fresh dry extra large day boat Sea Scallops

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil



-In a large pot, saut the onion and garlic in the olive oil

-Break up the tomatoes, and place in the pot along with the stock.

-Add the parsley, salt, pepper and cheese to taste.

-Cook LOW, for about 2 hours, making sure the tomatoes are VERY soft

-Add the pasta and beans, and cook for about another hour, on low.

-Heat a large saut pan over high heat

-Add the olive oil and heat until almost smoking hot.

-Season the scallops with salt and pepper and sear them for 2 minutes on each side.

-Place 8 ounces of hot soup in warm soup bowls

-Place 3 Sea Scallops on top of soup

-Sprinkle with chopped flat parsley.

-Serve immediately.


December 7, 2007

  • Landmark Grand Detour Pinot Noir

Veal Scallops with Lemon

Serves 4

1 to 1 1/2 pounds veal scallops, pounded to flatten

2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 tablespoons butter

2 teaspoons lemon zest

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

6 thin slices of peeled lemon

1 teaspoon dried tarragon

1 tablespoon dry white wine

salt and pepper

parsley sprigs and sliced lemon for garnish, optional


1.  Heat butter and olive oil in skillet over medium heat. Dip veal scallops into flour. Place veal in skillet; saut quickly, turning once.

2.  Add lemon zest; turn scallops again. Add lemon slices, tarragon, lemon juice, and wine. Turn scallops several times to coat well; season with salt and pepper to taste.

3.  Simmer for about 4 minutes; transfer to hot platter. Pour pan juices over the veal and garnish with parsley sprigs and lemon slices, if desired.



November 30, 2007

  • A Spanish Rose

Succulent Salmon Sauce

2 T butter melted

2 t Worchestershire Sauce


1. Combine melted butter and Worchestershire Sauce.  Brush lavishly on salmon filets.  Broil for 5 minutes without turning.  Half way through the broiling, brush again with the sauce.

2.  Use remaining sauce to pour over salmon before serving.


November 16, 2007

  • '04 Frank Family Chardonnay

Oyster Chowder

4 - 6 servings

2 medium potatoes, diced

1 carrot finely chopped

2 stalks of celery, chopped

1 quart milk

1 T chopped onion

salt and pepper to taste

2 T flour

6 T butter

1 pint shucked oysters, cut up

2 T chopped parsley


1.  In a large saucepan, boil the potatoes, carrot and celery in a small amount of boiling salted water until tender.  Drain.  Add the milk, onion, salt and pepper, and bring to a boil.

2.  Cream the flour with two tablespoons of the butter and gradually add to the boiling mixture.  Cook, stirring until thickened.

3.  Cook the oysters with their liquid in the remaining butter until the edges curl.  Add to the soup and serve immediately sprinkled with parsley.


November 9, 2007

  • Viognier

Marcia's Gourmet Turkey Stuffing

About 10 cups of stuffing

1-1/2 cups of chopped onion (about 2 med. onions)

1 cup chopped celery, leaves included

2 sticks of butter

1/2 pound ground sausage meat

1/2 cup coarsely chopped mushrooms

8 cups unseasoned coarse bread crumbs

1 T salt

1/2 teaspoon each of pepper, thyme, rosemary, nutmeg

1 teaspoon sage

1 cup white wine OR chicken stock

1 large egg, lightly beaten

3/4 cup chopped dried apricots


Saute onion and celery in butter until tender  In a separate skillet, cook sausage and mushrooms.  Pour off the fat and add the mushroom mixture to the onion and celery.  Combine this mixture with the bread crumbs and add all the seasonings.  Moisten with the wine or chicken stock, add the egg and apricots and mix well.  Stuff the turkey just before roasting.


November 2, 2007

  • Iron Horse Un-Oaked Chardonnay

Crab Cakes


1/2 cup of breadcrumbs

1 pound flaked crab meat

1 T chopped fresh parsley

1/4 t Worcestershire Sauce

1 cup Mayonnaise

salt and pepper to taste


Butter as needed

1.  In a small bowl combine the breadcrumbs, parsley, Worcestershire sauce, mayonnaise, and salt and pepper.  Mix well

2.  Add crab to mixture and gently mix in.

3.  Form crab into 6 1" patties and chill for at least 1 hour.

4.  Place crab cakes on a lightly greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.  OR carefully saute the crab cakes in butter until heated through and golden brown, turning once. 




October 26, 2007

  • Amarone

Stuffed Whole Pumpkin


1 small whole pumpkin, about 10" in diameter

Boiling salted water

2 T salad oil

2 lbs. ground beef

1 Large onion, finely chopped

1 medium green pepper, finely chopped

2 t salt

2 t oregano

1 t vinegar

Freshly ground pepper to taste

2 cloves garlic, mashed

3/4 cup seedless raisins

1/3 cup sliced pimiento-stuffed green olives

2 t capers

1 8-oz. can tomato sauce

1/2 cup red wine

3 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  With a sharp knife, cut a circular top about 5" in diameter out of the pumpkin.  Save the top to use as a lid.  Scoop out the pumpkin seeds and scrape inside of pumpkin clean.  Place it in a large kettle and cover with boiling salted water; cover kettle.  Bring water to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for about 30 minutes until pumpkin meat is almost tender.  The pumpkin should still be firm enough to hold its shape well.  Carefully remove from water and drain well.  Dry the outside and sprinkle a little salt on the inside.  Set aside.


In a heavy skillet with a cover heat salad oil  Add ground beef, onion, and green pepper, cook over medium high heat until beef is browned and crumbly.  Remove from heat and add salt, oregano, vinegar, pepper, and garlic.  Stir in raisins, olives, and capers, then gradually add tomato sauce and red wine.  Cover skillet, return to heat , and simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Cool slightly and add beaten eggs, mixing thoroughly.  Fill cooked pumpkin with meat stuffing, pressing to pack firmly.  Cover loosely with pumpkin lid and place in a greased shallow baking pan.  Bake for 1 hour.  Allow to cool for 10 - 15 minutes before serving.  To serve, carefully lift stuffed pumpkin onto a serving plate.  Slice from top to bottom in flat wedges, spooning more meat filling onto each slice.


October 19, 2007

  • Zinfandel

Mexican Style Beef Casserole


1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef

2 T cooking oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 can Rotel (chopped tomatoes and chilis)

Salt and pepper to taste

12 corn tortillas, cut into quarters

cup of red taco sauce

3 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese

1 cup sour cream

2 10 oz. packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and WELL drained


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In a large skillet brown the beef.  Our off any fat and remove beef, set aside.  Add oil to skillet and saut onion until limp and golden.  Return beef to skillet and Rotel, salt and pepper.  Dip tortilla quarters in taco sauce, covering both sides.  Cover bottom of a buttered 3 qt. casserole with half the tortilla pieces, slightly overlapping.  Spread beef mixture over tortillas.  Sprinkle beef with 1-1/2 cup of the cheese.  Layer remaining tortilla pieces on top and spread with sour cream.  Sprinkle on the spinach and top with remaining cheese.  Bake, covered, for 30 minutes, uncovering for the last 15 minutes.  If reheating, have the casserole at room temperature and bake at 375 degrees, uncovered, until hot and bubbly.


October 12, 2007

  • Mettler Petite Sirah

Cross Rib Roast with Garlic Herb Rub


4 pound cross rib roast, tied

2 T balsamic vinegar



2 T minced garlic (about 5-6 big cloves)

2 T chopped fresh thyme (or 2 t dried)

1 T chopped fresh rosemary (or 1 t dried)

2 - 3 T salt (depending on the size of the roast)

1 - 2 t black pepper

1 T olive oil


Preheat oven to 450 degrees. 

Brush the meat with balsamic vinegar

Apply herb paste to the roast

Roast in middle of oven for 15 minutes, then turn down the heat to 350.  Continue cooking for approx. 35-45 minutes.  After 25 minutes, check the internal temperature with an instant read thermometer (or a meat thermometer).  Remove from the oven when the temperature reaches 125 to 130 degrees for medium rare.  Take meat out and cover loosely with foil for 15-25 minutes at room temperature during which time, the internal temperature will rise about 10 degrees.  Be careful not to initially overcook.


October 5, 2007

  • Champagne

Chicken Breasts in Champagne


4 whole chicken breasts, boned, skinned

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 t salt

1/8 t white pepper

4 T butter

2 T olive oil

1-1/2 cups champagne

1 cup heavy cream

sauteed mushrooms (optional)


Flatten the chicken breasts with palm of hand.  Combine flour, salt, and pepper and dust brerasts on both sides.  Saute, full side down, the butter and oil for 5 minutes, shaking the pan to prevent sticking.  Turn the chicken and add champagne.  Cook for another 15 minutes until the chicken is done and champagne is reduced by half.  Remove the chicken to a heated serving platter and keep warm.  Add the cream to the pan juices and cook until thickened.  Add sauteed mushrooms if desired.  Pour sauce over the chicken and serve.


September 28, 2007

  • Viognier

French Chicken with Apples

8 servings

3 T butter

2 T oil

4 tart green apples, peeled, cored, sliced, and sprinkled with lemon juice

1/2 t cinnamon

2 t sugar

1/4 t thyme

1/4 t ground cloves

8 whole chicken breasts

1 cup white wine

3/4 cup apple juice

1 T cornstarch

1 cup heavy cream

Salt and pepper to taste

2 T calvados or apple brandy


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Melt butter and oil in a skillet and saut apples with cinnamon, sugar, ginger, thyme and cloves for about 5 minutes, or until limp, stirring occasionally.  Place apples in the bottom of a baking dish and set aside.  Brown chicken breasts in the skillet in remaining butter, adding more if necessary. Place on top of apples.  Pour in wine and apple juice, cover the baking dish with foil, and bake for 30 minutes.  With a bulb baster remove juices from the baking pan to a small saucepan and reduce to 1 cup.  Dissolve cornstarch in 2 T of the cream, blend into rest of cream, and then add to juices.  Cook, stirring until thickened, but do not allow to boil.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Add brandy to sauce and pass sauce separately with chicken and apples.


September 21, 2007

  • Grand Cru Chablis

Grilled Tuna with Capers and Tomato Sauce

4 servings

4 center cut tuna steaks (about 4-5 ounces each)

2 T olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

1/4 t hot red pepper flakes

4 sprigs fresh thyme, coarsely chopped, or 1 t dried

1/3 cup drained capers

4 small ripe plum tomatoes, cored and cut into small cubes

1 T fresh lemon juice

4 T chopped fresh basil or parsley


1.  Prepare a charcoal grill or preheat the broiler

2.  Place the tuna on a flat dish and spoon 1 T of oil over it.  Sprinkle with sale and pepper, red pepper flakes, and thyme, and spread well into the steaks.  Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at least 15 minutes before grilling.

3.  Heat the remaining tablespoon olive oil in a small skillet.  Add the capers and cook briefly over medium high heat.  Add the tomatoes, sat and pepper, lemon juice and cook for about 5 minutes.  Keep warm

4.  If using a grill, rub the rack lightly with olive oil.  Place the fish on the grill and cook for 3 minutes on each side.  If you wish the fish to be more well done, cook just about 30 seconds longer on each side.  If broiling, place in pan and  broil for 6 minutes on each side.

5.  Remove the fish and cut it into thin diagonal slices.  To serve, divide the tomatoes among 4 warm plates.  Place the tuna slices on top and sprinkle with basil or parsley.


August 24, 2007

  • 2005 Big Horn Cellars Chardonnay

Shrimp on the Barbie with Garlic Butter

Serves 4

2 lbs. jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined, tail left on

1 large clove garlic, crushed


juice of 1 lime or lemon

1/3 cup olive oil

Use scissors to remove shells without disturbing talis.  In a non-reactive bowl, combine crushed garlic, salt, lime juice, and olive oil  Put shrimp in bowl and coat well.  Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.


Garlic Butter for Dipping

1/2 cup butter

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

1/8 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

1 large garlic clove, crushed


In a small saucepan, melt butter.  Add remaining ingredients, heat for 1 minute.  Serve with shrimp.


August 17, 2007

  • Viognier

Pork Chops with Peaches

Serves 6

1/2 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon thyme

6 loin pork chops

2 Tablespoons oil

1 can (16 ounces) sliced peaches, drained

1/4 cup apricot liqueur OR almond liqueur

Combine flour, salt, pepper, thyme.  Dip pork chops in mixture, coating both sides.  Heat oil in large skillet, brown chops.  Cover and simmer 20 minutes.  Add peaches and liqueur.  Simmer covered an additional 20 minutes or until meat is tender.


August 10, 2007

  • Any Grand Cru Chablis

The Ultimate Ratatouille

Serves 6

1/3 cup olive oil

2 or more cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

1 large onion, sliced

2 zucchini, well scrubbed

1 small eggplant, cut into 1" cubes

3 Tablespoons flour

2 green peppers, seeded and cut in strips

5 big ripe tomatoes, peeled and sliced

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 Tablespoon capers

1 T vinegar


1.  Heat the oil in a large skillet, add the garlic and onion and saute until onion is transparent.

2.  Wash the squash, slice the squash, peel and cube the eggplant.  Flour the pieces lightly.

3.  Add the squash, eggplant and green peppers to the skillet, cover and cook slowly about one hour. 

4.  Add the tomatoes and simmer, uncovered, until the mixture is thick.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add vinegar and capers during last fifteen minutes of cooking.  Serve hot or cold.


August 3, 2007

  • Eberle 2004 Estate

Gary's Paella, by Gary Eberle

Serves 12

1/4 c olive oil

1/2 lb boneless chicken, cut into bite size pieces

1 large onion

1/4 c water

2 c uncooked rice

3 garlic cloves - chopped

24 oz tomatoes, chopped plus juice from can (if using canned)

3 tsp salt

1/2 Tbsp chicken bouillon

1 Tbsp paprika

3/4 tsp pepper

1/4 tsp saffron

1/2-1 tsp crushed red pepper (to taste)

1 1/2 lbs cleaned deveined shrimp (tails are optional)

1 1/2 lbs sea scallops

1 1/2 lbs sausage - beef or pork

24 oz artichoke hearts, quartered

16 oz frozen peas

1 small jar pimientos or roasted red bell peppers

1 large can of large, pitted black olives

1 c Cabernet Sauvignon

Heat oil in large stock pot. Cook chicken in oil about 10 minutes and then remove from pan. Cook onion and garlic in oil until onion is transparent. Stir in water, wine, tomatoes, bouillon and all spices. Heat to boiling. Add chicken, shrimp, scallops and sausage. Simmer 15 minutes. Add more wine and water as needed. While other ingredients are cooking, cook 2 cups of rice in a separate pot. When cooked, drain and hold. Stir peas and artichoke hearts into first pot. Add about 3/4 of the rice and simmer for 5 minutes. If desired, add more rice for a drier dish. Serve in a paella dish or shallow baking dish. Garnish with pimentos or red bell peppers and black olives.  Serve with Eberle 2004 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

July 27, 2007

  • Shichi Hon Yari Junmai sake

Fusion Chicken

Serves 4

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1/4 cup water

3 T Hoisin Sauce

2 T peach preserves

1 T sugar

2 t soy sauce

4 tangerines OR 2 oranges

3 T snipped cilantro


1.  In a small bowl combine 1/4 cup of water, hoisin sauce, peach preserves, sugar, and soy sauce.  Shred 1 teaspoon of the peel from one of the tangerines or oranges, add to hoisin mixture.  Set aside.

2.  Peel and coarsely chop tangerines or large oranges, remove seeds.  In a bowl bently toss chopped tangerines (or oranges) and snipped cilantro.  Set aside.

3.  Rinse the chicken breasts, pat dry.  In a large skillet cook chicken in 1 tablespoon of hot oil over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes or until chicken is browned, turning once.  Drain off the fat.  Carefully pour hoisin mixture over chicken.  Bring to boiling, reduce heat.  Simmer, covered, for 8 - 10 minutes or until chicken is tender and no longer pink.

4.  Remove the chicken from the skillet.  Boil sauce gently, uncovered, about 5 minutes or until reduced to 1/3 cup.  Retun chicken to skillet.  Heat it through, turning once to coat with glaze.  Remove to individual serving plates or serving platter; spoon glaze over top.  Sprinkle with additional tangerine or orange peel, if desired.  Serve tangerine mixture alongside the chicken. 


July 20, 2007

  • Pinot Noir

Medallions of Lamb with Basil

Serves 4

2 boned loins or racks of lamb (about 1-1/2 Pounds) Fat removed.

4 ripe plum tomatoes (about 1 lb)

2 T olive oil

2 t finely chopped garlic

1/4 c chopped fresh basil

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1 t ground cumin

2 sprigs fresh thyme, or 1/2 t dried

2 T finely chopped shallots

3 T coarsely chopped basil or parsley


1.  Cut the lamb into 12 pieces of equal size. Pound them lightly with a meat pounder.

2.  Drop the tomatoes into a pot of boiling water for 10 seconds.  Remove and let cool.  When the tomatoes have cooled, remove the skins, core them, and cut into 1/4 inch chunks.  There should be about 1-1/2 cups.

3.  Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat.  Add the garlic and cook briefly until soft but not brown.  Add the tomatoes, basil, salt, pepper.  Stir, lower heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.  Keep warm.

4.  Blend salt and pepper to taste with the cumin and sprinkle over the olamb medallions.

5.  Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a nonstick skillet large enough to hold the pieces in one layer.  Add the lamb and thyme.  Brown the lamb quickly on all sides and cook over relatively high heat, about 2 minutes on each side for rare or longer if desired.  Remove the lamb to a warm platter.

6.  In the same pan, add the shallots and cook briefly, stirring until wilted.  Add the tomato mixture and any meat juices that have accumulated in the platter and blend well.

7.  To serve, divide the tomato sauce evenly among 4 plates.  Place 3 pieces of lamb over the sauce on each plate and garnish with chopped basil or parsley.


Great Vodka Recipes from Tim Laird the CEO, Chief Entertaining Officer


This drink was created for Churchill Downs as a refreshing alternative to Mint Juleps

The Oaks Lily

1 oz. Finlandia Vodka

1 oz. Sweet and Sour Mix

3 oz. Cranberry Juice

Splash of Triple Sec

Serve in tall glass with crushed ice


French Martini (tasted on the show)

1 1/2 oz. Finlandia Vodka

1/2 oz. Chambord

1/2 oz. pineapple juice

Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a martini glass.  Note, by shaking or stirring this drink vigorously, you will achieve a refreshing collar of foam on the top of the drink


Raspberry Cosmo

1 1/4 oz. cranberry juice

1 oz. Finlandia Vodka

1/2 oz. Chambord

1/2 oz. orange liqueur

1/4 oz. fresh lime juice

Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a martini glass.



July 13, 2007

  • Groth Sauvignon Blanc

Panfried Baby Soft Shell Crabs with Garlic Herb Butter

Serves 4

From Grand Central Oyster Bar Restaurant's Menu

Garlic Herb Butter

1/2 lb. butter

2 T minced garlic

2 T sliced shallots

1T finely chopped parsley

1 T fresh chopped basil

1 T chopped fresh dill

1 T fresh chopped tarragon

1 T fresh chopped chives

1 T fresh chopped cilantro

1 T Sauvignon Blanc wine

Prepare butter in work bowl of an electric mixer, beat on medium speed for 5 minutes or until softened.  Combine wine and herbs in a food processor.  Process until very fine.  Add herbs and wine to mixing bowl and mix for another 3 minutes scraping sides and bottom.


1 c flour

1 t salt

1/8 t ground white pepper

1/4 c olive oil

16 soft shell crabs

In a shallow plate mix flour, salt, and pepper.  Heat oil in large saute pan until it smokes.  Dredge crabs in flour, shaking off excess.  Add crabs to hot oil  Saute for about 2 minutes on each side until brown and crisp.  Transfer to 4 warm plates.  Melt the herb butter.  Top each crab with the warm garlic herb butter.


July 6, 2007

  • Concannon Petite Sirah

Rosemary Crusted Porterhouse Steak with Red Wine Sauce

Serves 4 (or 2 "manly men)


Red Wine Sauce

2 cups beef stock

1 cup dry red wine

1/2 cup ketchup

1/4 t dried thyme

1/4 t black pepper

Rosemary Crusted Steaks

2 porterhouse steaks, 1-1/4 pounds each, 1-1/4" thick

1-1/2 T olive oil

2 T finely chopped fresh rosemary

2 T kosher salt

1 t black pepper    

Added to red wine sauce:

2 T butter, cut into two equal pieces

1.  Make the sauce in a medium saucepan and whisk together the stock, wine, ketchup, thyme, and pepper.  Bring to a boil over high heat, then lower heat to medium and simmer until the mixture is reduced to 1 cup, about 30 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside.

2.  Coat the steaks on both sides with the olive oil and season evenly with the rosemary, salt, and pepper.  Let sit for 20 - 30 minutes before grilling.

3.  Prepare a charcoal fire covering one-half to two-thirds of the charcoal grate; if using gas grill, turn flame to high heat.  Sear the steaks over the fire, with the lid closed as much as possible, for 6 minutes, turning once and swapping their places as needed for even cooking.  Then move the steaks away from the fire, or with a gas grill, reduce the heat to medium and cook until done to your taste.  4-6 minutes for medium rare.  Remove the steaks from the grill and let rest for 3 - 5 minutes.

4.  Bring the sauce to a simmer and whisk in the butter until emulsified.  Remove from heat.  Carve the steaks and serve warm with the red wine sauce.


June 29 2007

  • Any Spanish Alvarino

Fillet of Sole with Crunchy Orange-Garlic Breadcrumb Topping

Serves 4


2 pounds of fillets of sole, cut into 4 pieces


Freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup dry white wine

1/4 cup + 2 T olive oil

1/2 cup dry bread crumbs

2 cloves garlic, minced

Grated zest of 1 orange

2 T chopped fresh parsley


1.  Heat the oven to 400 degrees.  Season the fish fillets with 1/4 t of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper.  Put the fish fillets in a glass or stainless steel baking dish and add the wine and the 1/4 cup oil to the dish.  Bake the fish until just done, about 12 minutes, for 3/4 inch thick fillets.

2.  Meanwhile, in a small frying pan, toast the bread crumbs over low heat, stirring, until they're light brown and fragrant, about 4 minutes.  Stir in the garlic, orange zest, and parsley and cook 1 minute longer.  Remove from the heat and stir in 1/8 t each salt and pepper and the remaining 2 T olive oil.

3.  Transfer the fish to plates.  Sprinkle with the bread crumbs and spoon the pan juices around the fish.


June 22 2007

  • Egri Chardonnay

Chicken a la Provencale

Serves 4 - 6


6 T olive oil

4 lbs. chicken parts, rinsed and dried

2 cups green pepper strips (about 2 large)

1-1/2 lbs. tomatoes (4 medium)

2 cloves crushed garlic

1 bay leaf

1/4 t thyme leaves

2 cups sliced onion

1/2 lb spicy sausage, sliced (kielbasa, smoky links, chorizo)

2 t salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 T flour

1/2 cup water


1.  Heat oil in 5 qt. Dutch oven.  Add chicken a few peices at a time.  Brown slowly on all sides over medium heat.  Remove as browned.

2.  Saute green pepper strips in same oil about 5 minutes, stirring.  Add tomatoes, garlic, bay leaf,  and thyme.  Saute stirring, for 5 minutes.

3.  Return chicken pieces to Dutch oven.  Add onion and sausage; sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Heat to boiling.  Reduce the heat and simmer covered 30 minutes, until chicken is tender.

4.  To thicken the sauce, stir flour into water until smooth.  Add to Dutch oven.  Heat, stirring until sauce boils.


June 15 2007

  • Rombauer Chardonnay

Bev's Zucchini Jack

Serves 6


3 lbs. squash cut in bite size pieces

4 eggs beaten in large bowl

1 cup chopped parsley

2 lbs. Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded

2 t salt

2 t baking powder

3 T flour

1 cup milk

1 can Orgega green chilis, cut fine

1/2 cube of butter

1/2 cup bread crumbs

1 can French Fried Onions


1.  Cook chopped squash in boiling salted water 3- 5 minutes.  Remove and cool.

2.  Mix eggs, parsley, cheese, salt, baking powder, flour milk, green chilis. add cooked squash. Stir in 1/2 can of the French Fried Onion rings.

3.  Butter 9 X 13 baking dish, sprinkle bread crumbs on bottom of dish (just cover bottom)  Pour mixture and sprinkle top with bread crumbs.  Top with butter.  Cover top with remaining onions.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until it bubbles.



June 8, 2007

  • An "on-oaked" Chardonnay

Artichoke Frittata for Karl's Birthday

Serves up to 20 for appetizers

2 6 oz. jars marinated artichokes

1 small onion-freshly chopped

1 clove garlic, mashed

4 eggs

1/4 cup bread crumbs

1/4 t salt

1/8 t pepper

1/8 t Tabasco sauce

1/8 t oregano

1/2 lb Cheddar, shredded

2 t minced parsley


1.  Drain marinade from 1 jar of artichokes into frying pan.  Discard marinade from second jar.  Chop artichokes, set aside.

2.  Saute onion and garliec in marinade, until onion is transparent.

3.  Beat egggs in small bowl until frothy.  Add breadcrumbs, salt  pepper, oregano, and tabasco.  Stir in cheese, parsley, chopped artichokes and onion mixture.

4.  Turn into buttered 7" x 10" pan.  Bake 30 minutes at 325 degrees.  Cool in pan.  Cut into 1" squares.  Serve cold or reheat at 325 degrees for 10-12 minutes. 


June 1, 2007

  • Bandersnatch Milk Stout Beer

Beer-Citrus-Peppery Marinade for Lamb or Beef Shish-kebobs

Serves 4

2 12 oz. bottles amber ale
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon grated horseradish
1/2 cup minced onion
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more, to taste)
4 pounds of lamb or beef cut into 2" cubes

Mix all ingredients together in a blender, pureeing until onions and garlic are liquified. Reserve one cup for basting, and use remainder as a marinade for beef or lamb. Use a shoulder or leg cut. Marinate meat for at least two hours for best flavor. Thread onto thin metal skewers and grill at least 5 minutes on one side, turn and grill 3 minutes, basting frequently.



May 25, 2007

  • 2004 Bodega Norton Malbec Reserva

Grilled Short Ribs of Beef

Serves 4

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

5 large cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 cup chopped parsley

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil (or 2T dried)

2T dried oregano

2t coarsely ground black pepper

1t salt

4 pounds beef short ribs (about 8 pieces) 2-1/2" - 3" wide and 1-1/2" thick


1.  Combine oil, vinegar, garlic, parsley, basil, oregano, pepper, and salt and pour over the ribs in a deep casserole.  Refrigerate covered 6 hours, turning the ribs frequently.

2.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees

3.  Bake the ribs in the marinade uncovered for 1 hour.

4.  Prepare hot coals for grilling

5.  Thread 2 rib pieces on each of 4 thin metal skewers, and grill 4 inches above the hot coals for 45 minutes, basting with the marinade and turning the ribs frequently.  The meat should be very tender.  If necessary, grill a bit longer.

6.  Serve immediately


May 18, 2007

  • Cameron Hughes Lot 31 Syrah

Chaateaubriand with Garlic-Ginger Sauce

Serves 6

1 - 2-1/2 pound Chateaubriand

1T Soy Sauce

1T Sesame Oil


1.  Make the sauce (below)

2.  Preheat broiler or grill

3.  Sprinkle both sides of the steak with soy sauce and sesame oil, rub into the steak.

4.  Broil or grill 6 inches from the heat for 5-7 minutes per side, depending on desired doneness.  Cut the steak diagonally into thin slices.

5.  Overlap 5 or 6 slices on each serving plate and top with several spoonfuls of the garlic-ginger sauce.



3/4 cup olive oil

6 cloves finely minced garlic

3 T chopped ginger root

4 big carrots, peeled and diced

5 scallions, sliced (white part and 2 inches of the green)

1 cup dry white wine

1/2 cup water

1 T dried oregano

Pinch red pepper flakes

1/2 cup chopped Italia parsley

salt and pepper

1.  Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.  Add the garlic, ginger, and carrots and saute for 10 minutes.

2.  Stir in the scallions and saute 2 more minutes.  Add the wine, water, oregano, red pepper flakes and simmer uncovered over low heat for 20 minutes.

3.  Stir in parsley.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Makes 3-1/2 cups


May 11, 2007

  • 2006 Smith Madrone Spring Mountain Reisling

Mango Chutney Chicken

Serves 6

6 T of unsalted butter

2 T curry powder

1/4 cup dry white wine

2 frying chickens, cut into quarters

1-1/2 cups mango chutney, chopped with syrup

2 T shredded coconut

1 T chopped chives


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2.  Melt butter in small saucepan over low heat.  Add the curry powder and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.  Add the wine and stir until blended.  Remove from heat.

3.  Place the chicken pieces in a baking pan and baste with the curry/butter mixture.

4.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Remove from the oven and spread the chutney over the chicken.  Bake for 30 minutes more, basting frequently.

5.  Remove the chicken to a serving platter.  Pour the pan juices into a small saucepan and boil for 3 - 4 minutes to reduce the sauce slightly.  Pour the sauce over the chicken and sprinkle with coconut and chives.


May 4, 2007

  • Chandon Brut Classic

Chicken Breasts in Champagne

Serves 6

4 whole chicken breasts, halved

salt and pepper to taste

5 Tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 cup Cognac

3 Tablespoons flour

2 Teaspoons dried tarragon

3 1/2 cups Champagne

1/2 cup whipping cream


1.  Sprinkle the chicken breasts with salt and pepper.  melt the butter in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat.  Brown the chicken breasts, a few at a time, on all sides about 10 minutes.  Remove from the pan and set aside.

2.  Pour Cognac into the pan, warm it, and flame with a match.  When the flames subside, stir in the flour and tarragon.  Cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly.  Gradually whisk in 3 cups of the Champagne.  Return the chicken to the pan.  Cover and simmer until the chicken is tender, about 45 minutes.

3.  Remove the chicken to a warmed serving platter,  Stir in the remaining 1/2 cup of Champagne and the cream.  Cook over high heat until reduced and slightly thickened.  Pour the sauce over the chicken and serve immediately.


April 27, 2007

  • Groth Sauvignon Blanc

Baked Salmon with Salsa Verde

Serves 6

6 4-oz salmon fillets

coarse salt and ground black pepper


Salsa Verde

2 cloves garlic

1 poblano chile, stemmed, seeded and chopped

1/2 bunch of Italian parsley (leaves only), chopped

1/2 bunch of parsley (leaves only), chopped

8 scallions, white and light green parts only, chopped

3 Roma tomatoes, chopped

1/3 cup water

2 Tablespoons fruity olive oil

1Tablespoon white wine vinegar

2 teaspoons dried oregano

1 teaspoon coarse salt

lemon wedges, for serving


1.  Preheat oven th 350 degrees, season the fish all over with salt and pepper and place in an oiled baking dish.

2.  To make the salsa, combine all of the ingredients in a blender or food processsor and puree.

3.  Pour salsa over fish and bake 8 - 12 minutes until the thickest part of the fish is cooked through.  Serve with lemon wedges and the salsa spooned on top.


April 20, 2007

  • Bock Kekfrankos (A Hungarian wine)

Hungarian Goulash in a Crock Pot

Serves 6

2 lbs round steak, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

1 cup chopped onions

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 Tablespoon flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 Tablespoon paprika

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1 bay leaf

1 12-oz can tomatoes

1 cup sour cream

1 package wide egg noodles


1.  Put steak cubes, onion and garlic in a crock pot.

2.  Stir in flour and mix to coat steak cubes.

3.  Add all remaining ingredients EXCEPT sour cream.

4.  Stir well

5.  Cover and cook on low 7 - 10 hours

6.  Add sour cream 30 minutes before serving.

7.  Cook noodles

8.  Serve goulash on top of noodles. 


April 13, 2007

  • Bordeau Savignon Blanc

Chicken Breasts Stuffed wih Leeks, Orange, and Mint 

Serves 6

12 leeks, 1/2"-3/4" wide

8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick)

2 oranges

Salt and pepper, to taste

6 whole chicken breasts (12 halves) skinned, boned, and each half            pounded thin (1/4")

2 Tablespoons of melted unsalted butter

1 cup fresh mint leaves

1 cup heavy or whipping cream


1.  Trim the root ends of the leeks.  Cut the lower part of each leek into a piece that's approx. the same length as the width of the chicken breasts.  Rinse all the leek pieces and remaining stems thoroughly and pat dry.  Cut the tender stems into 1/2" slices.

2.  Boil the 12 leek pieces in boiling salted water until tender, about 10 minutes.

3.  Melt 6 tablespoons of butter in a medium skillet over medium heat.  Add the 1/2" leek slices and saute until soft.

4.  Grate the zest of the oranges and then squeeze the juice from the pulp.  Stir the juice from the oranges and half of the zest into the sauteed leeks and simmer covered over low heat for 15 minutes.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

5.  Place the chicken breasts, boned side up, on a work surface.  Brush each breast with a little of the melted butter.  Sprinkle lightly with pepper and the remaining orange zest.  Place 3 mint leaves down the center of each breast.  Place 1 leek crosswise on each breast near the bottom and roll up tightly to form a neat package.  Wrap and tie each breast in 2 or 3 places with kitchen string.

6.  Saute the rolls in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet until browned on all sides and cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes.  Keep warm in the oven while you finish the sauce.

7.  Pour the cream into the leek sauce, increase heat to high and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 7 minutes.

8.  Chop any remaining mint and stir into the sauce.  Cook 1 minute more.

9.  Spoon a pool of the leek sauce on each plate, place 2 chicken breasts on each plate, and serve immediately.


April 6, 2007

  • Pinot Noir (with ham or lamb as main course)

Broccoli Lorraine - a great side dish for Easter dinner 

Serves 6

1-1/2 pounds broccoli

3 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

4 eggs

1-1/2 cups half and half

1/2 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese

1.  Trim and cut broccoli into flowerlets and stem peices, steam for 4-6 minutes.  Drain well and turn into a 2 quart shallow baking dish.

2.  Cook bacon crisp and crumble over broccoli.

3.  In a bowl, combine the salt, pepper, nutmeg, and mustard.  Add eggs and beat lightly with a fork, then stir in half and half and Parmesan and pour over the broccoli.

4.  Set baking dish inside a pan of hot tap water so that water comes to within 1/2 inch of dish rim.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until you can shake the pan back and forth and only a 3-inch circle in the center moves.  Serve at once.


March 30, 2007

  • Elk Cove Vineyards 2005 Pinot Noir

Veal Chops Saute

Serves 4

1 cup of milk

4 Veal rip chops, about 1" thick

Flour for dredging

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 Tablespoons butter

6 Tablespoons dry white wine

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/4 cup firm butter

Minced parsley


1.  Put the chops in a large plastic bag with the milk.  Soak the chops overnight, turning a few times.  Remove from the milk.

2.  Dredge the chops with flour seasoned with salt and pepper.  Heat the butter in a heavy skillet, add the meat and brown on both sides.

3.  Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and cook about twenty minutes.  Turn the chops two or three times.  Transfer to a hot platter and keep warm.

4.  To the juices in the pan add the white wine.  Reduce by cooking uncovered over fairly high heat two or three minutes.  Add the lemon juice.

4.  Add the firm butter to the sauce in little curls, swirling the pan to incorporate the butter without its melting rapidly.

5.  When the butter has barely melted, pour the sauce over the chops and sprinkle with minced parsley.



March 23, 2007

  • Dolcetta

Angel Hair All' Amatriciana

Serves 4

3 cups of partially drained coarsely chopped tomatoes

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1 pound pancetta, cut into pieces 1/4 inch thick, 1 inch long

1 cup diced onion

1 cup white wine

2 Tablespoons minced fresh chili pepper, remove seeds

1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes

1 cup sliced fresh basil leaves

1 cup finely grated Pecorino Romano

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 t black pepper

1 pound Angel Hair pasta


1.  Heat olive oil over medium heat, add pancetta, stirring until pancetta is crisp, about 15 minutes.  Remove pancetta with a slotted spoon and set aside.

2.  Pour off all but about 2 tablespoons of fat from the pan.  Add the onions and cook over medium heat until golden, about 5 mintues, Pour in the white wine, and reduce by 3/4.  Add the tomatoes, chili pepper, and red pepper flakes.  Simmer gently for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.

3.  Add the reserved pancetta, basil and 3/4 of the Pecorino Romano.  Season with salt and pepper.  Simmer for an additional 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the cheese from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

4.  Bring 1 gallon of water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon of salt.  Cook the pasta al dente.  Toss with the sauce.  Transfer to a warmed bowl, and serve, sprinkled with the remaining cheese.


March 16, 2007

  • Pinot Noir

Succulent Lamb Chops with Honey Mustard and Rosemary

Serves 4

8  Loin lamp chops cut 1" thick

3  Tablespoons of honey mustard

1  teaspoon curmbled rosemary

1  clove garlic, crushed

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper


1.  Preheat broiler or barbeque grill to high. 

2.  In a small bowl, blend together honey mustard, rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper.  Spread over both sides of the lamb chops.  Let stand at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before cooking.

3.  Place chops 4 - 6 inches from the heat and grill or broil, turning once, until browned ourside but still pink and juicy inside--no more than a total of 10 minutes. 


March 9, 2007

  • Earthquake Petite Sirah

Seared Filet Mignon with Blue cheese and Sweet & Spicy Walnuts

Serves 4

4 8-oz. filet mignons

1 cup Blue Cheese crumbles

1 cup Sweet & Spicy walnuts (recipe below)

Juice of 1 lemon

1 cup demi-glaze*

1/2 cup butter

salt and pepper to taste


*  Demi-glaze is a combination of beef or veal stock and Madeira or sherry, which is reduced by half.  The common alternative is a stock quickly thickened with cornstarch.  You can also buy it pre-made in grocery stores.


1.  Season the filets with salt and pepper.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2.  Heat a cast irom skillet to very hot.  Add a tiny bit of olive oil to the pan, swirl to coat the bottom of the pan, and add the filets.  Sear until well carmelized on both sides, and then finish cooking the the oven to the desired temperature.  Use a meat thermometer.  For medium rare, remove meat from oven when thermomether reaches 130 degrees because it will continue to cook. 

3.  Gently mix the sweet and spicy walnuts and blue cheese together and divide evenly on top of the filets.  Return the filets to the oven just until the cheese is melted.

4.  Arrange the filets on a serving platter.  Deglaze the cooking pan with the lemon juice, scraping all the brown bits up from the bottom of the pan.  Add 1 cup of demiglaze.  Whisk in the butter quickly and remove from the heat.  Season if necessary with salt and pepper.


Sweet and Spicy Walnuts

4 servings

1 lb. walnuts, halves and pieces

2 egg whites, lightly beaten

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3 Tablespoons cayenne pepper


1.  Toss walnuts with egg whites.  Mix sugar with cayenne pepper and toss wit the walnuts and egg whites.

2.  Spread walnuts on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with cooking oil.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes.


March 2, 2007

  • Provenance Sauvignon Blanc

Pepper Crusted Monk Fish with Red Pepper Relish Sauce

Serves 4

2 pounds of Monk Fish cut into 4 pieces

1-1/2 rounded tablespoons of mixed whole peppercorns

4 Tablespoons olive oil

2 rounded Tablespoons flour

1 t salt


Relish Sauce

2 medium red peppers, deseeded and cut into strips

2 medium tomatoes, peeled

1 large clove garlic, peeled

3 anchovy fillets, chopped

1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 Tablespoon olive oil

salt and pepper

parsley sprigs for garnish


1.  Make the relish first by heating the oil in a medium saucepan until very hot.

2.  Add red pepper strips and saute until browned at the edges.  Add tomatoes, whole garlic clove, and choppped anchovies.  Stir. lower heat to lowest setting and gentrly cook for 25 minutes.  Stir it a couple of times.

3.  Put mixture in a food processor and blend to a coarse puree.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Empty mixture into a serving bowl and stir in the balsamic vinegar.  Set aside.

4.  Crush the peppercorns with a mortar and pestle (or between two pieces of plastic wrap with a rolling pin).  Place in a small bowl.  Add flour and salt.

5.  Heat oil very hot in a frying pan.  Dip each piece of fish in the flour and peppercorn mixture, pressing them gently on all sides to get an even coating. 

6.  Fry the fish in two batches, 2-3 minutes on a side until they're nicely browned.

7.  Top with 2 tablespoons of relish sauce and a sprig of parsley.  Pass the rest of the relish sauce separately.



February 23, 2007

  • Mer Soliel Silver, Chardonnay 

Insanely Easy Scallops

Serves 4 

15 or so Rosemary and Olive Oil flavored Triscuits

1-1/2 pounds scallops

1 stick of butter, melted

3T Chardonnay, or dry white wine

1T Lemon juice

1t dried red pepper flakes

Chopped parsley for garnish


Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease an 8X8 baking pan.  Place crackers in a medium bowl and finely crush with your hands.  Add scallops to the crumbs and gently toss until lightly coated.  Place scallops in baking pan.  In a separate bowl, combine melted butter, wine, lemon juice, red pepper flakes; pour over scallops.  Bake until scallops are light golden brown, about 20 minues.  Garnish with chopped parsley.  Serves 4.




February 16, 2007

  • The Burning Bird Pale Ale - Sonoran Brewing Co.

Beef Kebabs with Honey Chile Glaze

Serves 4 - 6

1-1/2 pounds of top sirloin cut into 1" cubes

1 bell pepper (any color) cut into 1" squares

1 onion cut into 1" pieces

24-30 cherry tomatoes



1/2 cup of red wine

1/4 cup olive oil

1 onion, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon pepper

4 cloves of garlic, crushed

2 serrano chiles, seeded and coarsely chopped

1 bay leaf


Honey Chile Glaze

2 Tablespoons honey

1 Tablespoon orange juice

1/2 teaspoon ancho chile power


1.  Mix the marinade ingredients together in a heavy plastic bag and add the beef.  Make sure the beef is coated with the marinade, then refrigerate overnight.

2.  Mix together in a small bowl all ingredients for the glaze, stir well, and set aside.

3.  Remove marinated meat from refrigerator and thread on skewers alternating the meat, onions, tomatoes and peppers.  Brush skewers with Honey Chile Glaze.

4.  Heat barbeque to medium heat and cook about 4 minutes per side then another 3-4 minutes until vegetables are slightly charred.


Broil in preheated broiler for 3-4 minutes per side.  Be careful not to overcook.


February 9, 2007

  • Vertex, a Bordeaux style red blend from the Gabrielle Collection, Napa Valley  OR
  • Barbera  OR
  • Beer

Western Award-Winning Meaty Chili

Serves 8

1/2 pound dried pinto beans, washed

6 large onion, chopped

4 large green or red peppers, chopped

4 cloves garlic, finely minced

1/4 cup corn oil

1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

1 28-oz. can tomatoes, drained

2-1/2 pounds beef chuck roast, cut in 1/2 inch pieces

1-1/2 pounds lean pork butt, cut in 1/2 inch pieces

1/3 cup chili powder

2 Tablespoons chopped, seeded green chilies

1 Tablespoon salt

1-1/2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper

2 Tablespoons cumin powder


In a 1-quart saucepan cover beans with water.  Cover saucepan and cook for 1 hour or until beans are tender, adding water if needed.  In a heavy kettle saute onions, green peppers, and garlic in oil until onions are transparent.  Add remaining ingredients.  Simmer, covered, for 1 hour; uncover and cook for at least 1/2 hour longer or until thick.  May be frozen and reheated.






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