Wine and Dine

Mushroom and cheese tartlets

To delight guests, try this garlicky mushrooms baked with butter in golden pastry cups recipe. Lovely with a glass of Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion – finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
  • 1  cup mushrooms of your choice – finely chopped
  • 2 Tbs olive oil + extra
  • 3 Tbs dried porcini (or other mushrooms) rehydrated in hot water to cover – chopped finely
  • 2 Tbs Italian flat leaf parsley – finely chopped
  • 250 g ricotta cheese
  • A pinch of nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup butter – melted + 2 tbs olive oil

 

Method:

Heat a pan on the stove on medium heat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Fry onions till softened and starting to brown. Add garlic and stir for a few seconds.

Add chopped fresh mushrooms and a little more olive oil. Fry for a few minutes, stirring, then add porcini mushrooms.

Add parsley, stir and remove from heat, allowing to cool slightly.

In a bowl add mushroom mix to the ricotta. Add nutmeg and seasonings and mix well.

Pre-heat oven to 180°C.

Grease a mini muffin or cupcake pan – 12 holder.

Set aside three sheets of phyllo pastry, covering with a damp cloth as you work.

Use a silicon mat or wax paper and place a sheet of phyllo over.

Brush one phyllo sheet with melted butter/olive oil and lay the next sheet over and repeat with remaining two sheets.

Cut the stack of three sheets into 12 rectangle of dimensions 12 x 10 cm.

Lay each rectangle into the muffin holder – scrunch up a bit.

Fill with ricotta mushroom mixture.

Spoon a little melted butter over.

Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.

 

Recommended wine: Try the Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc with these treats.

Source: food24

 

Charismatic Camembert

The charismatic Camembert is a soft, creamy, surface-ripened cow’s milk cheese. First production of this cheese was in the late 18th century at Camembert, Normandy in northern France.

Each cheese surface is sprayed with an aqueous suspension of the mould Penicillium camemberti and then left to ripen for at least three weeks.

A wonderful wine to pair with camembert is a Sauvignon Blanc and a great example is the Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc.

Powerful perfumed nose of sweet fruit with green pepper and grassiness. The palate is concentrated with a herbal grassy character and thick-textured fruit. A powerful wine of real personality.

Read more on this wine… Arniston-bay

Pan-fried Hake

Deliciously pan-fried hake with olives recipe to try this week. Lovely flavours to pair well with a glass of Arniston Bay.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper – to taste
  • 2 hake fillets – approx 250g each
  • 1 tub olive tapenade
  • 4 Tbs finely grated parmesan or pecorino cheese
  • 100 g baby spinach leaves
  • Fresh lemon wedges
  • Fresh parsley

 

Method:

Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat and add in 1 Tbsp olive oil. Pat the fish dry with kitchen paper and then season with salt and pepper on both sides.

Fry the fish for for about 4-5 minutes on each side, depending on their thickness, or until they have a golden crust and the flesh flakes away easily with a fork.

Remove the cooked fish fillets from the pan and allow to rest for a couple of minutes while you blanche the spinach in boiling water for 1 minute then remove and drain well. Also mix the olive tapenade and grated cheese together in a small bowl.

Spread the top side of each fish fillet with the tapenade mixture and serve immediately over the wilted spinach with a drizzle of lemon juice and some chopped fresh parsley.

 

Recommended wine: Try the Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc.

Source: food24

Banana flan bread with amaretto biscuits, white chocolate and almonds

Here’s a delightful banana flan bread with amaretto biscuits, white chocolate and almonds recipe. Perfect for entertaining and with a glass of Arniston Bay.

 

Ingredients: 60ml Butter at room temperature 125ml Castor sugar 1 egg 2 Bananas smashed 1t Vanilla essence 250ml Cake flour 1t Baking powder 1/4t Salt 50g White chocolate buttons 50g Amaretto biscuits – broken into pieces 40g Almond flakes Crème Fraiche for serving

 

Method:  1. Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Butter a medium loose bottom flan pan. 2. Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy. Then add the egg and mix it in with the butter and sugar mix. 3. Mix the bananas and vanilla essence into the mixture. 4. Add all the dry ingredients gently – be careful not to over mix – and pour into prepared pan. 5. Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean. Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes. 6. Serve with a sprinkling of icing sugar and a few dollops of crème fraiche

 

Recommend wine: Try the Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonny with this bread.

Source: food24

To Camembert, or to Brie

The cheese lovers of the world are very privileged, due to hundreds and hundreds of different cheese for all over the globe. Just like wine, their textures, styles and flavours differ. The French are renowned for wine and cheese and two of those most famous cheeses are Camembert and Brie.

But what is the difference between the two cheeses?

Brie is a soft cows’ cheese named after Brie, the French province in which it originated. It is pale in colour with a slight greyish tinge under a rind of white mould; very soft and savoury with a hint of ammonia. The whitish mouldy rind is typically eaten, the flavor quality of which depends largely upon the ingredients used and its fabrication environment.

Camembert is a similar soft cheese, also made from cow milk. However, there are differences beyond the simple geographical fact that brie originates from the Ile de France and camembert from Normandy.

Brie is produced in large wheels and thus ripens differently: when sold it typically has been cut from a wheel, and therefore its side is not covered by the rind; camembert, meanwhile, is ripened as a small round cheese and sold as such, so it is fully covered by rind. This changes the ratio between the rind and the inner part of the cheese. Furthermore, brie contains more fat than camembert.

So in the famous words of Hamlet , To Brie or not to Brie that is the question.

The Arniston Bay Merlot will pair exceptionally well with both these cheese styles.

Quick beef & broccoli noodles

Here’s a great meal for those midweek lazy days. Great in taste just like a glass of Arniston Bay would be with this meal.

 

Ingredients:

-3 blocks egg noodles

-1 head broccoli , cut into small florets

-1 tbsp sesame oil

-400g pack beef stir-fry strips

-sliced spring onion

 

For the sauce:

-3 tbsp low-salt soy sauce

-2 tbsp oyster sauce (not oyster stir-fry sauce)

-1 tbsp tomato ketchup

-2 garlic cloves , crushed

-1 thumb-sized knob ginger , peeled and finely grated

-1 tbsp white wine vinegar

 

Method:

Start by making up the sauce. Mix the ingredients together in a small bowl. Boil the noodles according to pack instructions. A minute before they are ready, tip in broccoli.

 

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a wok until very hot, then stir-fry the beef for 2-3 mins until well browned. Tip in the sauce, give it a stir, let it simmer for a moment, then turn off the heat. Drain the noodles, stir into the beef and serve straight away, scattered with spring onions.

 

Source: bbcgoodfood

Cooking with Wine tips

Wine in food, if it’s used properly, can enhance the taste of the food. With all the wonderful flavours wine releases, one can truly make a great meal, magnificent. Here are a few guidelines to help get you started.

 

Wines labeled “Cooking Wine” are typically salty and include other additives that may adversely affect the taste of your chosen menu. If you choose to use a cooking wine, adjust your recipe to reflect the salt content already in the wine.

 

An expensive wine is not necessary, although a cheap wine will not bring out the best characteristics of your dish. The process of cooking/reducing will bring out the worst in an inferior wine. A good quality wine, that you enjoy, will provide the same flavor to a dish as a premium wine. Save the premium wine to serve with the meal.

 

If you are intent on cooking with a premium wine, do not simmer the wine for a long length of time. To preserve a reasonable part of its flavor, cook the wine slowly and do not let it come to a boil. If you are creating a sauce through reduction cook it separately in an enamel skillet. Premium wines require careful handling, more so than good quality wine, to maximize the quality of your finished dish. For the novice it is best to use good quality, well balanced, young and powerful wines. These good quality wines will stand up to higher temperatures and longer cooking time. Save the premium wine to serve with the meal.

 

Read more… recipetips.com

Picnic Recipe: Bacon and Broccoli Salad

Here’s a very quick recipe for a nice summer picnic meal:

 

Ingredients

 

  • 10 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 cup fresh broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar

 

Directions

In a medium bowl, combine bacon, broccoli, raisins and sunflower seeds; set aside. Mix together mayonnaise, sugar and vinegar; pour over broccoli mixture and toss to coat. Cover and chill for 1 hour. Stir before serving.

 

Recommended Wine. The Arnsiton Bay Rosé will be the ideal wine with this picnic meal.

 

Have a great picnic!

 

Source: allrecipes.com

 

 

 

Great recipe- Almond Baked Fish

Seafood can always be an interesting meal.  With friends and fish, what do we need more? Here’s a great hake recipe.

 

Ingredients

  • 1 kilogram Steaks of hake
  • 80 ml Mayonnaise
  • ¼ teaspoon Mustard
  • 1 pinch Robertsons Mixed Herbs
  • 125 ml Grated cheese
  • 1 Clove garlic, crushed
  • 30 ml Finely chopped red onion
  • 250 ml Toasted flaked almonds
  • 100 ml KNORR Italian Robusto Salad Dressing
  • 1 pinch Salt and pepper to taste
  • 30 ml Chopped fresh parsley

 

Instructions

 

  1. Place fish in an ovenproof dish.
  2. Mix mayonnaise, mustard and mixed herbs and spread over the fish.
  3. Sprinkle cheese, garlic, onions and almonds over the fish and drizzle with KNORR Salad Dressing.
  4. Bake at 220°C for 20-30 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and garnish with parsley.
  6. Serve with fresh salad greens or vegetables.

 

For the best wine pairing with this dish, try the Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay.

 

 

 

Source: whatsfordinner.co.za

 

Festive Season Recipe: Sparkling Wine Cheesecake

Holiday  celebrations usually conjure up thoughts of sweet treats and some bubbly. Here’s an easy, delicious dessert which incorporates the best of both these elements. You’re bound to receive a barrage of compliments from your guests!

Ingredients - 200g digestive biscuits -90g butter, melted

Filling - 15ml gelatine - 60ml water - 500g cream cheese - 85ml castor sugar - Finely grated rind and juice of 1 lemon - 125ml sparkling wine (the Arniston Bay Brut Sparkling Wine is ideal) - 250ml cream, lightly whipped - 1 punnet of cherries, washed, retaining stalks - Sugar - Icing sugar

Method - Crush the biscuits and combine with butter. - Press into base of a 20cm, loose-bottomed cake pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. - Refrigerate. - Sprinkle gelatine over water and set aside to form a thick cake. - In a mixing bowl, beat cheese and castor sugar together. Add rind, juice and sparkling wine and beat again. - Place gelatine in microwave on medium for 1 minute. Pouring from a height, add to cheese mixture and then stir through the cream. - Pour into biscuit base, cover and refrigerate for three hours. - Just before serving, stone a handful of cherries. - Place in food processor with 60ml sugar, 100ml warm water and 15ml honey. Process till you have a chunky sauce. - Use remaining cherries to decorate the top of the cheesecake. - Drizzle over the cooled sauce and sift over some icing sugar and serve.

Source: The Times

How to plan for a beach picnic

Picnics are wonderful, but can be even better with the sun warming your face and ocean sounds in the background. Here’s some tips on how to make it a day to remember.

1) Choose a scenic and wind-resistant venue for your outdoor meal. Try a place between two rock faces or farther from the water than you’d usually like to sit.

2) Although beach parties are generally informal, you may send invitations a week or two in advance so guests can plan ahead.

3)  Plan a menu based on the amount of people and the load you can carry. Ask friends to bring certain items to lighten your responsibilities.

4)  Outfit yourself with the necessary equipment. A picnic basket filled with plates, utensils (don’t forget the bottle/can opener and corkscrew), cups, plastic containers and napkins is recommended. Pack trash bags to carry away any disposables.

5)  Pack your food. Place the heavier items on the bottom and lighter ones on the top.

6)  Remember to bring a hat and/or an umbrella to shade your perishables and your face from the hot sun. Also pack plenty of ice, which you’ll need to keep your food chilled in the sun.

7) Toss in a blanket and/or folding chairs for your sitting and dining comfort.

8)  Bring torches or lanterns for nighttime picnics, or in case your daytime adventure carries on into the night.

9) The wine. A chilled Arniston Bay The Coast  Rosé will pair well with most of the picnic dishes and will also be a refreshing drink.

Source:  eHow.com

Planning a Beach Picnic

Picnics are fantastic, but can be even better with the sun warming your face and ocean sounds in the background. With a little planning and preparation you can ensure that your picnic runs smoothly and that everyone enjoys the event. Here are a few tips and guidelines to remember.

  • Line the bottom of your picnic basket with a towel or plastic to catch any spillage along the way.
  • Bring your towel, swimsuit, sunscreen, insect repellent and extra clothing layers, along with your beach toys: flying disc, badminton set, snorkeling gear, surfboards, squirt guns, portable radio and so on.
  • Picnic backpacks are good replacements for picnic baskets and, generally, great for lugging anything around.
  • Remember wine: The Arnsiton Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay is the perfect picnic wine.
  • Choose a scenic and wind-resistant venue for your outdoor meal. Try a place between two rock faces or farther from the water than you’d usually like to sit.
  • Although beach parties are generally informal, you may send invitations a week or two in advance so guests can plan ahead.
  • Plan a menu based on the amount of people and the load you can carry. Ask friends to bring certain items to lighten your responsibilities.
  • Outfit yourself with the necessary equipment. A picnic basket filled with plates, utensils (don’t forget the bottle/can opener and corkscrew), cups, plastic containers and napkins is recommended. Pack trash bags to carry away any disposables.
  • Pack your food. Place the heavier items on the bottom and lighter ones on the top.
  • Remember to bring a hat and/or an umbrella to shade your perishables and your face from the hot sun. Also pack plenty of ice, which you’ll need to keep your food chilled in the sun.
  • Toss in a blanket and/or folding chairs for your sitting and dining comfort.
  • Bring torches or lanterns for nighttime picnics, or in case your daytime adventure carries on into the night.

Wind is your worst enemy on a beach picnic, so pay special attention to your choice of location and pick the least windy spot. You don’t want to fight with your blanket and keep sand out of your potato salad all day. If it’s too windy and cold and you’re already at the beach, make the most of a not-so-perfect situation: Look for a picnic table and reliable shelter.

Source: meals.com

Fondue Wine Cheese Sauce recipe

Want to invite guests for dinner and you don’t know what to serve?

Fondue is a great idea. It’s something out of the ordinary, yet it can be very entraining and delicious.

Wine makes for a lovely addition to the classic fondue – it provides a sweet tang that balances against the roundness of the cheeses deliciously.

Ingredients:

½ cup dry white wine- Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay ½ cup grated mozzarella cheese ½ cup grated cheddar cheese 1 teaspoon flour Pinch garlic salt Pinch white pepper

Directions:

1) Heat wine in a fondue pot over high; when near boiling, add remaining ingredients and whisk vigorously to combine. When melted, keep warm over low heat. Serve as desired.

For more Fondue tips and recipes visit fonduerecipes.org

Guidelines to make food and wine matching a breeze

When paring wine and food, the main rules are firstly to enjoy yourself and secondly, the food and wine must both taste great on its own. If you remember this and follow these guideline food and wine matching will be a breeze.

There are no rules The first and most important rule. There are no rules that work for every situation and every person so relax and don’t waste your time worrying about breaking them.

As long as you and your guests are having fun then your food and wine matching has been a success, regardless of what the traditional rules would have us believe.

The food and wine must both taste great on their own This is the second rule which and can be seen as the rule of thumb for wine matching. You can’t expect for a juicy steak to improve the taste of a bad wine. The same goes for the food, if it’s not going to taste any good on its own, it is very unlikely that your wine match, no matter how delicious, is going to make the food taste better.

Match wine with people first Just as some people always have and always will hate anchovies, some people just don’t enjoy certain styles of wine, regardless of the quality of the vino. Sometimes this may be based on a bad experience with a poor quality example, and if the person in question did actually try a decent Sauvignon Blanc they may find that they love it. But forcing people to try new things may do more harm than good.

Respect that everyone’s palate is different. Think about your guests and their wine preferences first and think about the food matching second.

Weight is important Lighter, more delicately flavoured food generally works best with lighter style wines. Heavy tannic reds tend to be best with more robust meaty dishes but of course there will always be times when a light wine could team marvellously with a heavy rich dish

Wine and food can contrast one another Contrast is something that we personally love to play with. Using a light acidic wine like a Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc to cut through the oiliness of fried fish and chips is always a winner. Unless of course you’re with someone who hates acidic wine (see rule ii).

Wine and food can complement each other Sometimes finding flavour similarities can result in a harmonious food and wine matching experience. The earthiness of mushrooms in a mushroom risotto can work a treat with a funky earthy Pinot Noir. A fresh, Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon to compliment classic roast lamb with mint sauce can also be a flavour explosion.

Trust your own instincts. Like most things in life, if it feels like it’s a bit dodgy and it isn’t going to work then you’re probably on the right track.

It isn’t the end of the world if the food and wine are more at the divorce end of the relationship spectrum as long as you follow rule number three, you’ll be able to enjoy each on their own. A judicious sip of palate cleansing water in between mouthfuls can make all the difference.

Source: mylifemynews

Back to the basics: An old trusted chicken recipe

When you don’t what know dish to serve, it is sometimes better to go back to the basics.

Old trusted chicken recipes are sometimes overlooked. This simple and easy to prepare chicken and sweet potato recipe is an excellent meal for friends or family. This easy dish will enable you to join guests in the pre-meal conversations as the preparations are not too time consuming.

Ingredients

  • 2 small sweet potatoes (about 500g), peeled and cut into thin wedges
  • 1 red onion, cut into wedges
  • 12 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 1.5 – 1.8 kg chicken, cut into 10 pieces

Directions

Heat oven to 200º C. In a large roasting pan, toss the potatoes, onion, thyme, oil, 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper.

Season the chicken with 1⁄2 teaspoon salt and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper and nestle it, skin-side up, among the potatoes and onions.

Roast until the chicken is cooked through and the potatoes are tender, 40 to 50 minutes.

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc Semillon will be the perfect match with this trusted dish.

Source: realsimple.com

Beef Stir-fry – Part of the global village’s cuisine

Food styles from different corners of the world have become worldwide dishes. Pizza, curries and stir fries are common in many counties and each region add a little of its own cuisine to these dishes.

Stir-frying is a fast Asian cooking method which allows vegetables and meat to retain both texture and flavour. This quick and easy beef stir-fry recipe originates in China, and is an appetising dish best served with rice.

Ingredients:

500g sirloin steak 5 tsp dark soy sauce 1 tsp dry sherry 1/2 tsp sugar 1 tsp Maizena mixed into a tbsp of water 200g fresh rice noodles or a packet of dried rice noodles packet of baby sweet corn 2 garlic cloves 1 tbsp Chinese black bean sauce 2 tbsp oyster sauce 5 tablespoons oil for stir frying, or as needed

Method:

  1. Cut the flank steak or sirloin steak across the grain into thin strips about half a centimeter thick.
  2. In a large flat dish add the dark soy sauce, rice wine, sugar, sesame oil, and cornstarch. Marinate the steak in the mixture for 15 minutes.
  3. While the steak is marinating, prepare the vegetables.
  4. Finely chop the garlic cloves, coarsely chop the sweet corn and cut the cooked noodles into three centimeter strips.
  5. Heat the wok and add two tablespoons oil. When the oil is hot, add the beef. Lay flat and allow the steak to brown slightly.
  6. Stir in the black bean sauce and stir-fry the beef until it is browned and nearly cooked through. Remove from the wok.
  7. Clean the wok and add two more tablespoons oil. Once the oil is hot, add the garlic and stir-fry until aromatic.
  8. Add the rice noodles and stir fry until browned.
  9. Remove the noodles from the direct heat of the wok by pushing them up to the sides.
  10. Add one tablespoon oil. When the oil is hot, add the baby corn and stir-fry briefly.
  11. Mix with the noodles, stir in the oyster sauce and add the beef back into the wok.
  12. Combine everything together and serve hot.

Recommended wine: The versatile Arniston Bay Rosé will pair well with this global dish.

Source:justeasyrecipes.co.za

Tips on finding value-for-money wine while dining out

These days, anyone who goes out to eat — and certainly anyone who orders wine at a restaurant — are looking for value. Here are some tips that will help you find value in wine at restaurants. Obviously, there are many exceptions to every one of these suggestions, but if we were going to give some overall advice geared to the moment, this would be it.

1.  Do not order the second cheapest wine on list.

Restaurateurs know that the customers do not want to be perceived as cheap by ordering the cheapest wine on the list. So they opt for the second cheapest one. The least expensive wine is actually a pretty good deal at many restaurants.

2. Avoid wine by the glass.

The restaurant owners like to make enough on a single glass to pay for the whole bottle. This is great for them but not so good for you. And it wouldn’t be so bad except that so many wines by the glass are poured from bottles that have been open for too long and mistreated after opening.

3. Avoid the “when in doubt go for Sauvignon Blanc” theory

It seems that when in doubt, South Africans generally opt for Sauvignon Blanc.  Restaurateurs know this and add a little to the price of these wines. In many cases there is much better Chenin Blanc, blends or even Chardonnays on the list.

4. Do not ignore house wines

Many restaurateurs take pride in their house wines and this can be your best bet.

5. BYOB – Corkage

More restaurants than ever, eager for business, are relaxing their rules on BYOB and lowering corkage fees. Check around for restaurants that allow you to bring your own wine. And if there is a restaurant you know well, ask if you could bring your own wine and pay corkage. Remember that the point here isn’t just to save money, but to have wines that the restaurant doesn’t offer or that you might otherwise postpone opening.

6. Have it your way

You must enjoy the night. No wine, at any price, is a good value if you don’t enjoy it. Don’t be shy.  If you think the red wine is too warm, ask for an ice bucket. If you want the waiters to stop pouring so much into your glass, tell them — nicely, of course. We are all in this economic mess together and everyone understands — or should understand — that a night out these days needs to be relaxing and personal.

Sure, there are many other ways to find value on a list, but we have tried to focus here on simple stuff and things we actually do ourselves. Just remember that, in good times and bad, wine always tastes better when it’s a good deal.

Do you have any tips or suggestions you’d like to share?

Arniston Bay has a wide range of wines which will suit any wine lover’s palate. Source: WSJ

An easy Chicken Tomato Stir Fry in no-time

Just five ingredients (not counting cornstarch, olive oil, and seasonings) make this delicious, fresh, and simple stir-fry. If asparagus is out of season, use frozen asparagus or substitute green beans or a sliced green bell pepper. Serve it over hot cooked rice.

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch asparagus, cut into 3cm lengths
  • 300ml cherry tomatoes

Preparation:

In small bowl, combine chicken broth, cornstarch, salt, pepper, and thyme; mix and set aside. Prepare all ingredients.

Heat olive oil in large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add chicken; stir-fry until chicken is almost cooked, about 4 minutes. Remove to plate.

Add onion to skillet; stir-fry until crisp-tender, about 3-4 minutes. Add asparagus; stir-fry for 2-3 minutes until bright green.

Stir chicken broth mixture and add to skillet; bring to a boil. Return chicken to skillet. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked and asparagus is crisp-tender. Add cherry tomatoes; stir-fry 1 minute until hot. Serve over hot cooked rice.

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc Semillon will be the perfect wine with this dish.

Source: busycooks.about.com

Funky Chicken Salad

My busy lifestyle is taking its toll as quick-just-heat-up dinners and take-away lunches is becoming to norm. But luckily I stumbled upon this easy, healthy and quick salad which is the perfect meal to get the balanced lifestyle (diet) back on track, and allow me a few more minutes to relax and kick my feet up.

I treated myself to a lovely glass of Arniston Bay Chardonnay to complete this great meal.

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 teaspoons  salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from 2 to 3 limes)
  • 1 tablespoon white wine or rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 4 scallions (white and light green parts), thinly sliced
  • 2 Granny Smith apples (peeled, if desired), diced
  • 1/3 cup roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil

Directions

  1. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Pound it to an even thinness. Place the chicken in a large saucepan and add enough water to cover by 1 cm. Add 3 teaspoons of the salt and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook until no trace of pink remains, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a bowl of ice water for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the lime juice, vinegar, and sugar, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Add the scallions and apples and toss.
  3. Drain the chicken and pat it dry. Dice the chicken and add it to the apple mixture along with the peanuts, mint, basil, and the remaining salt and pepper. Toss and divide among individual plates.

Source: realsimple.com

Make a delicious and easy red wine sauce

Red wine sauce is a delicious recipe to incorporate into your repertoire that will impress friends, family and dates. If you make it properly, it will seem as if you’ve spent a great deal of time and energy preparing a wonderful meal–when, in reality, creating the sauce can be done rather quickly and without too much difficulty. You don’t have to be an expert in the kitchen to master a tasty red wine sauce.

Ingredients

Salt

Pepper

Thyme leaves

Butter

Mustard (Dijon)

Balsamic vinegar

Chicken stock (beef, vegetable or lamb will also work)

Shallots

Red Wine (Arniston Bay has a wide range of red wines)

Instructions

1.  Saute whatever meat you’ll be pairing with your red wine sauce, but do not throw out the juices that remain in the saute pan when you’re done. You can use this sauce with chicken, beef, lamb, venison or other meats.

2. Remove the meat from the pan and reduce heat to a low temperature. Now, pour in minced shallots. Two are usually enough, though this is something you can experiment with to your suit your taste. Shallots can burn, so don’t forget to stir often. Keep this up until the shallots become transparent.

3. Crank your burner up to high heat and add 1/2 cup each of stock and red wine. Allow the mixture to reach a strong boil.

4. Reduce the sauce down by about 50 percent by allowing it to boil awhile.

5. Bring the heat down to medium or medium-low. Pour in 1 tbsp. of balsamic vinegar. Add 1 tsp. Dijon mustard. At this point, it’s all about consistency. Continue cooking until your sauce has reached the level of thickness you prefer.

6. Turn off the heat and add 3 tbsp. of butter. You may find it easier to stir in the butter if you’ve divided it into small pieces, rather than dropping in entire pats. You can also melt the butter ahead of time in the microwave, if you so choose.

7. Finish it off by adding pepper, salt and about 1 tsp. of finely chopped thyme leaves.

8.Sauce your meat and serve right away.

Source: ehow.com

Wine makes every meal an occasion

Andre Simon famously said ‘Wine makes every meal an occasion, every table more elegant, every day more civilized’. But how do we pair wine and food?

Here are a few simple rules and guidelines

Rule 1- Red Wine with Red Meat, White Wine With White

Perhaps surprisingly, the old saying “red wine with red meat, white wine with white meat,” works quite well as a general principle. A powerful, tannic red wine would simply overwhelm delicate white fish, for instance, while a light, ethereal white like a fresh Viognier would seem mighty wimpy alongside a joint of rare roast beef.

Rule 2- Don’t Sweat the Exceptions

Yes, there are exceptions to the “Red with Red” rule, but they’re tasty exceptions. Although roast chicken counts as a “white meat,” for instance, it goes very well indeed with a fruity red. So do salmon and fresh tuna, shattering the notion that you should never serve red wine with fish.

Rule 3 – The Rule of Complements: Match Likes with Likes

Newer in principle than the ancient “red with red,” this one makes intuitive sense: Look for a wine with flavour and aroma characteristics that evoke the trademark flavours of your entree. A slightly sweet, rich seafood like lobster or crab makes a wonderful marriage with a slightly sweet, rich white wine like a big California Chardonnay. Add a sprig of rosemary to your pan-grilled steak and watch it wake up with the herbal qualities of a Napa Cabernet Sauvignon or Bordeaux.

Rule 4 – The Rule of Contrasts: Opposites Attract

This is a little more tricky, as it takes the intuitive nature of Rule III and turns it on its head. It can lead to some lovely surprises, though, as when you match a tart, lean white like a White Bordeaux or Loire Sauvignon Blanc against a rich, oily fish like bluefish or mackerel. Don’t be afraid to experiment!

The Bottom Line – Drink What you Like!

Remember always that all these rules are advisory. There’s nothing more impolite than the wine “snob” who insists that only his answers are right. Try the standard rules first, but if you decide that you want a Chardonnay with your steak, it’s certainly your privilege, and you shouldn’t be ashamed to exercise it.

If you want a versatile wine which pair well with a wide array of dishes, The Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé will be the perfect wine.

Source: wineloverspage.com

Rosé wines – Versatile and Food-Friendly

Rosé wines are usually perceived as perfect spring and summer wines. Served chilled it can be a refreshing accompaniment to a variety of warm weather fare. But Rosé wines also top the charts for food-friendly versatility, which makes it a perfect all year drink. . So, if you are opting for “surf ‘n turf” rest assured that a rosé can handle both the seafood and the steak in one fell sip.

It’s also a great picnic wine, as it tends to have both a lighter body and more delicate flavors on the palate, presenting a great wine partner for a ham, chicken or roast beef sandwich, along with a fruit, potato or egg salad and can even handle a variety of chips and dips. Rosés are also the perfect guest for a backyard barbecue, tackling hamburgers, hot dogs and even French fries and ketchup with ease.

The Arniston Pinotage Rosé is a great wine and will pair well with a wide array of dishes , all year round.

Source: wine.about.com

Wine and cheese pairing – Follow the guidelines and your instincts

Wine and cheese have enormous ranges of aromas and flavours, some bold and others subtle. The fun thing about pairing wine and cheese is that they can work together to bring subtle flavours to the forefront, thereby opening up an entirely new world of aroma and taste. By focusing on the elements of wine and cheese that work together, the ones that provide each other the right balance, you’ll find ways to open up these heady doors. When pairing wine and cheese:

  • Match the body.
  • Pair the complexity.
  • Balance the primary flavours.

When wine and cheese are balanced, they both finish well. That is, you won’t detect any bitterness, or too much saltiness, or those strange off tastes at the end.

Follow your instincts. Everyone’s palate registers flavours with different intensities, enabling them to recognize certain flavours but not others. That’s the best argument there is for following your own instincts, because no matter what anyone else says, if you detect flavours that please you, you will like what you eat.

Read more…

The perfect treat for Father’s Day

Father’s Day is the perfect opportunity to spoil dad and treat him to a fantastic meal. This also makes buying the gift easier as the perfect wine pairing with this meal will be the perfect gift.

Father’s Day Recipe: Beef Pot Roast

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 15kg boneless chuck roast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced
  • 2 cups good-quality beef stock
  • 3 tablespoons canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 bay leaf

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 180° C.
  2. Heat the olive oil in oven over medium-high heat. Season the boneless chuck with the salt and pepper and sear on all sides until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove the beef and set aside.
  3. Place the onion and garlic in oven and cook, stirring, until brown and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the stock, scraping the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to loosen any brown bits, then add the tomatoes and bay leaf.
  4. Return the beef to the pot, cover tightly, and transfer to oven until the beef is fork-tender, 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
  5. Remove the beef to a cutting board and cover it loosely with foil. Transfer the pot to a burner over moderately high heat and bring the liquid to a boil. Remove from heat.
  6. Slice the beef and spoon extra cooking liquid on top.

Recommended Wine: The Arniston Bay Cabernet Sauvignon will be the perfect wine to complete this Father’s Day meal.

Source: realsimple.com

Wine may help to shed a few pounds…but beware

A recent study found that consuming a glass of red wine before dinner may help shed a few pounds by increasing a woman’s sense of fullness.

But some dieticians indicate that wine may also hurt a weight loss program because the wine reduces the ‘focus on appropriate eating’. In other words, after a little too much wine, the bag of potato chips may become irresistible.

Read more on winemag.com

Variety is the spice of life

South Africans are spoilt for choice when it comes to a diverse wine variety. Yet, many consumers are resistant to change and avoid steering away from their tried-and-trusted to experience something new.

The other day at a dinner party one of my guests insisted that he only drinks Sauvignon Blanc and none of the other white wine varietals. This rigidness is typical of many South African wine consumers – and many simply opt for a crisp Sauvignon Bland when in doubt.  

But South Africa has another very versatile cultivar, namely Chenin Blanc.

According to the John Platter Wine guide, this white cultivar accounts for 19% of SA vineyard area.

American wine columnist, Edward Deitch, wrote: “Chenin Blanc is to South Africa what Chardonnay is to California”.  He added that “there is no better source for good, inexpensive Chenin Blanc than South Africa.”

So the Americans perceive SA to make great (value for money) Chenin Blancs, yet South African wine consumers are still stuck in their rigid white wine preferences. Also, with tough times ahead economically, consumers will probably tend to be more conservative and stick with what they know.

My simple suggestion to South African consumers is to try something new every once in a while. There is an abundance of great Chenin Blancs, Rosé wine and other unusual blends on the market, so why not give it a try.

The famous quote goes “Life is too short for bad wine”.  I would like to amend it slightly: Life is too short to only drink one kind of wine.

Arniston Bay has a wide range of wines which will suit every wine lover’s palate. To view this amazing range visit our website

Chicken and Pepper Stew With Olives

This robust dish is perfect on a chilly day, with briny olives and golden raisins lending salty-sweet flavours to the tender chicken and sauce. It also freezes well, so make a big batch and save the leftovers for a night you don’t feel like cooking.

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon paprika, preferably smoked
  • salt and black pepper
  • 16 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 2.5kg), halved
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 red bell peppers, sliced
  • 3 green bell peppers, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups pitted olives
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 2 cups long-grain white rice
Directions
  1. In a large bowl, combine the flour, paprika, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper. Add the chicken and toss to coat.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. In batches, brown the chicken, turning, 6 to 8 minutes; transfer to a plate as it browns and add more oil as necessary.
  3. Add the bell peppers, garlic, ½ cup of the broth, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper to the pot. Cook, stirring and scraping up any browned bits, until the peppers begin to soften, 4 to 6 minutes.
  4. Add the olives, raisins, and the remaining 1½ cups of broth and bring to a boil. Nestle the chicken in the vegetables and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes. Uncover and simmer until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is slightly thickened, 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Twenty minutes before the stew is done, cook the rice according to the package directions. Serve with the stew

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc Semillon will pair very well with this dish.

Source: realsimple.com

Hot Italian Sausage and Tomato Pasta

This delicious Pasta recipe is  easy to make and guaranteed to be a mouth-watering treat for dinner guests.

Recipe: Hot Italian Sausage and Tomato Pasta

Ingredients: 1 pound (1/2 kg) dry fettuccine 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 medium red onion, sliced 1 clove garlic, smashed 4 hot Italian sausages, casings removed 1 pint red or yellow cherry tomatoes 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoon black pepper 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn 1 cup rocket, torn 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Preparation: Cook the fettuccine according to the package directions. Drain and set aside. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until the onion softens, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sausage and cook about 5 minutes, using a wooden spoon to crumble it. Add the tomatoes and cook until the skins burst, about 8 minutes. Stir in the vinegar, salt, and pepper. Add the cooked fettuccine, basil, and rocket and toss gently to combine. Serve in bowls and top with the Parmesan.

Tip: Vegetarians can omit the sausage. Try adding 3/4 cup Feta cheese to the pasta and greens.

Recommended wine: The versatile Arnsiton Bay Pinotage Rose will be the perfect wine with this dish .

From: realsimple.com

Picking the right wine for any occasion

For some people the indecisiveness when choosing the wine for an event is sometimes unbearable.  Picking the right wine for any occasion is easier than you think. Just be logical and think a bit about the dynamics of the event and the people that will attend.

The first thing about selecting the wine is to relax and to realize that this is a live or death decision. The wine choosing process is supposed to be fun and part of the enjoyment of the event.

The second thing that you must take into account is the dynamics of the social event or when and how will the wine be enjoyed. Is it for a dinner and the wine will probably be discussed? Or is it a party or an informal gathering where the bottle will only be one of a few that will be opened by the guests? In the latter case it would we unwise to buy expensive, rare or unique wines.

Dinner with snobbish business partners (or your boss) will call for a different wine budget than a casual evening with friend or family.

What do you do when you are “Stuck in the middle”? This is where you cannot decide which wine, because the guests are diverse or you do not know their wine preferences.

The trend is your friend so go for the most popular choices within your budget. In a South African context I will go for Cabernet Sauvignon (maybe Merlot) for red wine and Sauvignon Blanc for white wine.

Just remember to relax and make a decision because indecisiveness creates unnecessary stress.

The Arnsiton Bay Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot is a great wine and is sure to delight at any occasion.

Source: modbee

Funky yet healthy dish for Mother’s Day

 

Mother’s Day menu are usually associated with a breakfast in bed or maybe a sweet treat for dessert. But a breakfast in bed can be an administrative nightmare and a disaster waiting to happen especially with the kids running around the bed. 

So this year, what about a funky yet healthy dish which will be the perfect meal for mom? 

Recipe: Salmon with Potato salad   Ingredients 

  • 500g  new potatoes (about 10) ·        
  • Salt and black pepper 
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 4 180 g skinless salmon fillets 
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish 
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 scallions, sliced 
  • 1/2 small bunch watercress, thick stems removed (about 2 cups) 

 

Directions 

Place the potatoes in a medium saucepan. Add enough cold water to cover and bring to a boil. 

Add 1 teaspoon salt, reduce heat, and simmer until tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Drain and run under cold water to cool. Cut into quarters. 

Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. 

Season the salmon with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Cook until opaque throughout, 4 to 5 minutes per side. 

In a large bowl, combine the horseradish, vinegar, scallions, remaining 3 tablespoons oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. 

Add the potatoes and watercress to the dressing and toss to combine. Serve the salad with the salmon. 

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay will be a perfect match with this meal. 

Source: realsimple.com

Choosing a picnic wine

Picnics are all about the food, company, and of course, the perfect wine to pair with all of that.

Picnic fare is all about the variety, ease, and “travel ability”. The food has to survive the time it takes to get to the picnic area, handle not being too cold for a long period of time (unless you want to lug around a cooler) and not be too messy. These tend to be foods that are lighter: the cold fried chicken, veggie trays, lunch meats, and fruit. Crisp, delicious white wines are a must in these situations. You can buy those freezer sleeves that can slide over bottles to keep them cool so you don’t have to worry about carrying too much ice with you. I think Sauvignon Blanc and crisp wines like it are a good choice. Chenin Blanc, Pinot Gris, and Semillon  are among my favorite varietals too. They are bright, acidic, and loaded with crisp citrus fruit and minerality. Lighter white wines like this make the food come to life while refreshing your palate.

The Arnsiton Bay Sauvignon Blanc / Semillon is a perfect beach picnic wine.

Rosé wines are so versatile that they are a must-pack with your picnics. They are served chilled, just like white wines, so slide a freezer sleeve over this wine, too. It’s also acidic, but the red wine it’s made from offers a little more melon/strawberry/red fruit qualities that pair well with many food types.

The Arniston Bay Pinotage  Rosé is a great versatile wine for your picnic basket.

Source: wine.lovetoknow.com

Perfectly paired wines for Easter

The traditional dinners that many people prepare for their Easter holiday meal consist of either roasted lamb or baked ham. The tradition of roast lamb actually dates back to biblical times, to a meal that was commonly referred to as the “sacrificial lamb,” while the baked ham is an American tradition that began more out of necessity than for any other reason.

Prior to refrigeration, hogs were slaughtered in the fall and what wasn’t eaten immediately was cured and smoked to last through the springtime. These two main courses are on the opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to pairing wines.

The perfect pairing for a Smoked Ham (or gammon) will depend on the sauce or preparation method. But in general the saltiness of the pork will probably lend itself to fruitier wines like the Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay . This wine has pineapple and melon flavours on the nose with a full fresh and crispy finish.

Roasted lamb offers a much wider variety of wine from which one can choose, including Bordeaux style , Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and  Malbec to name a few. I think the Arniston Bay Cabernet Merlot will go perfect with a roasted lamb.

Read more on : www.bradenton.com

Picnic tips: Simplicity is the key to a good picnic menu

Simplicity is the key to a good picnic menu. It doesn’t pay to be too ambitious or to assume that recipes which work well at home will be just as good in the open air.

Delicate flavours can be lost eating al fresco. Fresh gutsy flavours make the meal more exciting.

Remember that people seem to have larger appetites outdoors!

Simple fare , but lots of it, is better than anything too rich.

Provide picnic food which is easy to eat too – especially if you’re reclining on a blanket on the ground! Finger food is best or something which just requires a fork.

Pack simple food but not too many choices – you don’t want to be constantly passing things round. A picnic should be a relaxed affair with an easy to recognise, wholesome, menu.

If time is at a premium you can take advantage of the vast range of ready-prepared foodstuffs available in the supermarkets and local delicatessens.

They can certainly help you create a quick picnic. You can put together an entire meal just from their selections of pies, terrines, cooked meats and antipasta.

Add a bag of pre-washed salad, some pre-cut crudités, and a nice crusty loaf of bread and there you have it.

South Africa  (and Arnsiton Bay )is renowned for lovely weather, beautiful scenery and great wines. These aspects collaborate to make picnic a part of life and enjoy the great outdoors.

Source: the-picnic-site.com

Pairing wine and vegetables

Wine and food pairing has many dimensions and in some instances it can be very confusing but it can also be very rewarding.

Pairing wines with vegetable-focused dishes – including vegan and vegetarian foods – is easy, but it’s also a way to flex your creative muscles. Honestly, choosing wines for these dishes can result in some of the most exquisite pairings if we understand a few basic principles:

1. Powerful flavours in food and richness call for powerful wines.

2. Lighter food flavours require lighter wines.

3. Spicy, salty, or smoky flavours in food welcome lighter, fruity reds, and off-dry to semi-sweet whites.

4. You can pair food with wine by creating complementary pairings, where the food tastes like the wine (pasta with fresh herbs, olive oil, and olives paired with fresh, herbaceous Sauvignon Blanc). Or you can go the other direction with contrasting pairings, the food and the wine have opposite flavours and textures (an earthy mushroom risotto, for instance with a fruit-driven Pinot Noir).

One of the keys to enjoying a great wine and food match is to consider the cooking method you apply to a dish.

The Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc is a great wine with a herbal grassy character, ideal for herb orientated dishes.

Source: winetimes.co.za

Serving wine at room temperature

Wine serving rules and traditions were developed centuries ago,  before air conditioning and central heating was part of our daily lives. This implies that serving wine at room temperature is probably the Western European room temperature of centuries ago.

The rooms in those were cold which means that serving wine at 17°C -20 °C is probably the right temperature for red wines. I suggest that on warm days you can put red wine in the fridge for while just to bring temperature down a bit.

White wine has more personal temperature preferences. Some people say that adding ice to white wine is an absolute no-no while others say an ice cold glass of white wine is the perfect drink.  My opinion is go for what works for you , just as long as you enjoy your glass of wine.

The Arniston Bay Shiraz/ Merlot  is a great red wine to be enjoyed at room temperature. This  blend is generous and complex with aromas of black cherries and plums.

Beach picnics- Food for the soul

 

Beach picnics are the ideal way to relax, unwind and to take in some soul food. But ironically choosing the right food can be stressful as you want food that fuels you up without weighing you down.

The perfect seaside meal is made up of foods that can last in the cooler all day.  

Here are some tips: Make sturdy foods that are great served chilled: Spicy Cold Chicken can stand up to the sand and the heat of waterside picnics.

To round out the meal, buy:  

  • 2 l of  lemonade
  • Guacamole and tortilla chips
  • Pre-sliced watermelon
  • Spiced Cold Chicken– Recipe to follow

 

Spiced Cold Chicken Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 1.8 kg chicken , cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

 

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 200° C.
  2. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and place in a large roasting pan.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the paprika, sugar, mustard, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and the olive oil. Rub evenly over the chicken and roast until cooked through, 45 minutes. Serve hot, at room temperature, or chilled.

 

Recommended wine:

From the peaceful tranquil surroundings of Arniston comes a range of fresh uncomplicated and easy drinking wines. Capture a moment of stillness in the midst of the madness, sit back and unwind with a glass of Arniston Bay.

Source: realsimple.com

Join us for a glass of wine

Join us for a glass of wine at the DF Malan Food and Wine festival in Bellville.

Click here for more info.

Funky chicken and grape salad

Salads can sometimes be so dull and predictable and can make a meal seem boring. Here is great and interesting salad which is sure to impress your guests and is definitely not boring.

Ingredients

  • 1 small head of lettuce, torn into pieces 
  • 4 stalks celery, sliced on the diagonal
  • 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups green grapes, halved
  • 90g blue cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 – 1.5kg  rotisserie chicken, meat thickly sliced

Directions

1.  In a large bowl, combine the lettuce, celery, onion, grapes, and 

blue cheese.

2.  In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, vinegar, oil, ½ 

teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper.

3.  Divide the salad and chicken among plates. Serve with the vinaigrette.

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé will complement this dish. This is a beautifully aromatic Pinotage Rosé. The palate is youthful and vibrant showing a beautiful fusion of fresh red berry fruits.

Source: realsimple.com

Roasted Chicken without the clean-up hassles

 

Cooking can be loads of fun but this can be spoiled by the massive cleaning up session after the meal. If you don’t like cleaning up, try a One-Pot Recipe.This One-Pot Roasted Chicken Recipe is a lovely meal with no cleaning up headaches making life easier for the modern woman.

Ingredients 

  • 1 lemon
  • 3 cups grape tomatoes
  • 1 head garlic, cloves separated
  • 1 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved
  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1.2-1.4 kg chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 small loaf country bread, warmed (optional)

  

Directions 

  1. Heat oven to 220° C. Using a vegetable peeler, remove strips of zest from the lemon. (Reserve the lemon.)
  2. In a large roasting pan, toss the tomatoes, garlic, olives, thyme, and lemon zest with 1 tablespoon of the oil.
  3. Nestle the chicken, skin-side up, among the vegetables and drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of oil. Season the chicken and vegetables with ¾ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Roast until the chicken is cooked through, 35 to 40 minutes.
  4. Remove the chicken from the hot roasting pan. Squeeze the juice from the lemon into the roasting pan and add the wine. Gently stir, scraping up any bits stuck to the pan. Serve the chicken and vegetables with the pan juices and bread (if using).

Tip: Frozen chicken can be roasted without defrosting. Add 50 percent more cooking time. 

Recommended Wine: 

The Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc Semillon  will complement this dish. This wine has a powerful perfumed nose of sweet fruit with green pepper and grassiness. The palate is concentrated with a herbal grassy character and thick-textured fruit. A powerful wine of real personality. 

Source: www.realsimple.com

Add a sparkle to the Valentine’s dessert

When romantic Valentine’s dinners draw to a close the last thing to order/serve is the dessert.

Some sceptics believe that when the pudding is served the wine is  ‘not welcome’ anymore as rigid old pairing rules suggest that desserts do not pair well with wine.

This is not the case as many red wines are deemed to be the perfect partner for darker chocolate based puddings.

A great suggestion for the cherry on top for the Valentines dessert is a Chocolate Fudge Cheesecake served with a Sparkling Rosé.

The Arniston Bay Sparkling Rosé will add that extra sparkle to the Chocolate Fudge Cheesecake and to your Valentines dinner.

Chicken and noodle salad with chili dressing

Chicken salads are easy meal options, especially in summer. Here’s a simple recipe which is delicious when shared with friends and served with Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay.

Ingredients

  • -250g  rice noodles or angel hair pasta
  • -1 tablespoon olive oil
  • -4 180g  boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • -1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • -1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • -1 tablespoon sugar
  • -1 jalapeno (preferably red), seeded and thinly sliced
  • -1 bunch watercress (about 3 cups)
  • -1 seedless cucumber, cut into ½ cm-thick half-moons
  • -2 scallions, sliced

Directions

  1. - Cook the noodles according to the package directions. Drain and rinse under cold water.
  2. - Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook until browned and cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes per side.
  3. - In a small bowl, combine the lime juice, sesame oil, sugar, and jalapeño.
  4. - Slice the chicken. Divide the noodles, chicken, watercress, cucumber, and scallions among plates. Drizzle with the dressing.

Recommended Wine:

The Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay  will superbly  complement this meal.

This masterfully blended white wine  has fresh and lovely bright lime and herb aromas. It features a creamy richness on the palate but the dominant feature is citrusy freshness along with a bit of spice.

Source: Real Simple

Smoked salmon salad

While salads are perennially popular, in the scorching summer months they are the ideal choice for meals.

Not only is the cool crispness appreciated on a hot day but also the fact that the kitchen and the cook can stay cool as very little cooking is required for the salad.

This smoked salmon salad with rye recipe  is a perfect summer salad and great for a picnic or lunch dish.

The mayonnaise binds all the ingredients together, and it can be eaten with a fork or piled on to the bread and eaten as an open sandwich. This smoked salmon salad is quite thick with mayonnaise, making it suitable to pile on to sliced ryebread or crispbread. I like to use hot-smoked salmon but you can also use cold-smoked salmon.

 Serves 4.

 Ingredients

· 350g hot smoked salmon, flaked

. 1 punnet baby plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise

· 1/2 cup mayonnaise

· 1 tbsp mild mustard

· 1 tbsp fresh lemon or lime juice

· 1 cup baby butter leaves

· 1 cup curly endive, roughly chopped (spinach can be an alternative)

· 1/2 bunch chives, chopped

· 2 hardboiled eggs, chopped

.  freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

Combine the salad leaves and tomatoes, then fold through the smoked salmon.

Mix the mayonnaise with the mustard, lemon juice and pepper. Fold the mayonnaise through the salad.

Sprinkle the chopped egg and chives over the top of the salad.

Accompany the salad with some rye bread.

Recommended wine

The Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé  will complement this dish. This is an uncomplicated easy drinking Rosé filled with sweet red berry and strawberry aromas.

Source: themercury.com

Add an impressive touch to a party- The Pink Lady cocktail

Entertaining guests? Why not try serving cocktails as they are  fun to prepare and will add an impressive touch to any party.

Here is a classic cocktail and great idea for a festive season drink

Recipe: The Pink Lady cocktail

Ingredients

Fresh berries

750 ml bottle Arniston Bay Sparkling  Brut

3 tots cherry liqueur (25 to 30 ml each)

Strips of lemon peel

Fresh mint

Directions

Place berries in a sparkling wine flute and fill three quarters of the way with sparkling wine. Add half a tot of cherry liqueur and finish with a long strip of lemon peel and a sprig of mint.

Source: food24.com

Christmas Recipe- Honey roast gammon

Roast gammon has become part and parcel of many Christmas lunches. It seems that the general recipes for this dish have not changed too much in the past few decades.  They say  the probable reason for this is people tend not to experiment with new dishes at big family gatherings because the ‘chef’ can’t afford to go wrong.

I do not know if this is true but here is a tried  and tested roast gammon recipe which will delight your Christmas guests.  

Recipe Honey Roast Gammon

 

Ingredients

  • 1.8kg – gammon joint
  • 1 onion
  • 20 cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10 peppercorns
  • 40g – soft brown sugar
  • Grated rind and juice of 1 large orange
  • 2 tbsp runny honey
  • 2 tbsp wholegrain mustard

Method

Soak the gammon joint in a bowl or cold water for at least three hours. Drain and place the gammon in a large saucepan. Stud the onion with the cloves and add to the pan with the bay leaves and peppercorns. Cover with water, bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 1 hour.

  1. Heat the oven to Gas Mark 6 – 200C – 400F. Drain the gammon, remove the skin and most of the fat. Score the remaining fat into diamonds, stud with the remaining cloves and place in a roasting tin. Mix together the ingredients for the glaze, and spoon over the gammon. Bake for 45 minutes, basting 3-4 times during the cooking time. It can be served hot or cold but should be left to stand before slicing.

Recommended wine: The Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé will pair well with this dish, and because of the versatility of this wine, it will probably pair well with the other meats on the Christmas plate.

Source: bbc.co.uk

Stir up your Christmas – The wine pudding guide

For a great way to enjoy the festive season before making your New Year’s resolutions about getting into shape and losing the Christmas kilos, try some of these delicious puddings made with wine. These delicious recipes will ensure an unforgettable traditional Christmas meal as it’s all about indulgent decadence

 It’s important to remember that not only is wine the key ingredient in these recipes, but you also have to pair your puddings with the right wine. A good rule of thumb is to ensure that the wine is sweeter than the dessert it will be accompanying. If you have a tart pudding, try an acidic wine to bring out the flavour.

It isn’t an easy task matching wine and desserts as the desserts have a diverse variety of flavours. Here’s a simple guide:

  • Custard – pair with a sparkling wine or MCC
  • Fruity – pair with a Sauvignon Blanc
  • Cream based tart or pie – pair with a spicy red like a Pinotage

Tip: Balance is key Acidity and sugar levels must be balanced in both the food and wine. If not balanced, the very sweet dessert will make the wine seem more tannic, less sweet and more acidic. Work with the aromas and flavours of the wine to get a good match for pairing desserts.

If you aren’t into pairing puddings and wines, here are some recipes that have wine in them so the job is done for you!

Fruit and wine: Fresh fruit simmered in wine

Ingredients:

  • Fresh fruit (pitted cherries, sliced strawberries, blueberries etc)
  • Red wine – try: Kumkani Pinotage
  • cinnamon sticks and cloves in cheesecloth sack
  • sugar to taste

Method: In a large pot, cover the fruit with the wine. Bring to the boil, the reduce heat to low simmer. Add the spices. Continues to simmer until fruit becomes slightly tender. Remove spices and serve warm or refrigerate overnight, then remove spices and serve cold. Sprinkle sugar on top to sweeten and taste for something decorative add sugar syrup to the plate and serve with wafer biscuit.

Blanched Almonds

Ingredients:

  • Finely ground almonds
  • powdered ginger spice
  • sugar
  • salt to taste
  • pastry dough
  • oil
  • honey
  • a slightly sweet white wine – try: Arniston Bay Reserve Chenin Blanc

Method: Mix almonds with sugar, ginger, and a little salt – this should be a sweet, slightly spicy blend. Roll out the pastry dough. cut out circles of dough, placing filling in the middle, and folding into a half-circle make sure the edges of the pastries are securely sealed.

Fry the pastries in hot oil until lightly browned; remove from oil and let drain.

In a pot, bring the honey to a soft boil, and then reduce heat. Skim off the residue as it rises. Add just enough wine to make a thick sauce. Thoroughly coat the pastries in the wine sauce, and then place on a baking sheet. Bake in a hot oven for several minutes. The pastries may be basted with additional sauce during baking or immediately afterward.

Serve with a dollop of cream.

Wine bread pudding (update on the classic bread pudding)

Ingredients:

  • Macaroons
  • sponge cake
  • 500ml white wine – try: Welmoed Heydens Courage White
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 teaspoons of sugar
  • 3 egg whites
  • ½ cup of chopped walnuts

Method: Place sponge cake into an ovenproof dish (½ full). Add a few macaroons; heat the wine in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Mix the cornstarch and sugar together and slowly add the wine. Beat the yolks of eggs and add to wine mixture. Cook for about 2 minutes. Pour over the cake and let cool. When its cool cover with the stiffly beaten egg whites and sprinkle with chopped nuts. Bake at 180ºC for 5 minutes until golden brown. Serve cold.

Wine prices: Welmoed Heydens Courage White – R38.99 per bottle Arniston Bay Reserve Chenin Blanc – R46.99 per bottle Kumkani Pinotage – R66.99 per bottle All wines available at Checkers.

Rosé wines: The versatile any season wine

In the past few years rosé wines has firmly established itself among wine lovers all over the world.

The UK and other European market saw steady increases in the demand for these beautiful salmon- or scarlet-coloured wines.

The reasons for this popularity increase are because these wines provide the refreshment aspects of white wines with some of the extra body and flavour from red wines.

Dry rosés are also deemed to be the world’s most food flexible wines which make it an any-season, any-occasion and any with any meal wine.

The Arniston Bay Pinotage Rosé with its youthful palate and beautiful fusion of fresh red berry fruits are an excellent wine with a wide array of dishes.

Source: forbes.com

The Cooksister loved our cellar door experience

Legendary South African food blogger, Jeanne Horak-Druiff recently visited the restaurant at our Cellar door, the Duck Pond, and was immensely impressed with the food and wine.

Jeanne’s blogsite (cooksister.com ) has won the coveted best SA food blog award four times in the past six years and she is deemed to be one of South Africa’s favourite food bloggers.

She loved the curried lamb potjie and the 1.5 litre eco-friendly wine pouches from Arniston Bay was also a hit.

Here is what she had to say about Arniston Bay on her blog site:

“While we were chatting about the wines (the 2009 Welmoed Chardonnay that we had with our meal was a perfect lunchtime wine), our lovely waitress mentioned in passing that they had started selling some Arniston Bay wines in a new eco-friendly 1.5 litre packaging and very kindly brought one to our table to show.  I love it!  From the ergonomically-designed grip with the thumb holes, to the fact that the vacuum pack just grows flatter and flatter as it empties and ends up totally flat and takes up far less space in landfills, to the handy 1.5 litre size.  I mean, who wants to drink 3 litres or 5 litres of the same wine (which is usually the case with vac packed wines)?”

Source: cooksister.com

Nina Timm – Food blogger/recipe of the month

We have chosen Nina Timm as our food blogger of the month because of her irresistible Grilled chicken, fig and rocket salad.

Nina is the editor of the immensely popular food blog , my-easy-cooking. Her recipes and writing style is are fantastic, making her  a worthy winner of this prize.

Recommended wine: The fresh and versatile Arniston Bay Chenin Blanc Chardonnay will complement the dish and will be perfect with this salad.

Here’s her amazing Grilled chicken, fig and rocket salad recipe:

Ingredients

4 chicken breasts juice of 1 lemon 1 tbsp brown sugar 1 tbsp dark soy fresh ice-berg lettuce fresh rocket 4 figs – quartered pine-nuts toasted a few anchovies 4 small onions – peeled and halved 3-4 small day old bread rolls chilli Oil salt/pepper

Directions

Slice the chicken breasts in thinner strips. In a plastic bag, mix the lemon juice, sugar and soy. Add all the chicken pieces and allow to marinade for at least 30 minutes.

Heat up your griddle pan and grill the chicken pieces very quickly on both sides. while doing that, you can add the onions and grill them too.  Season with salt and pepper and keep aside.

Slice the  bread rolls in thin slices and drizzle with  chilli oil. Roast in a hot oven until golden and crispy. To assemble the salad, lay the lettuce and rocket in the bottom of a beautiful salad platter and start building your salad with the various ingredients. Finish off with the toasted pine nuts

Source: my-easy-cooking.com

Beef up your salad

Some people see salads as a side-dish and not as the main course. But by adding some roast beef to a salad you can transform the ‘side-dish’ to a great meal.

The beautifully aromatic Arniston Bay  Pinotage Rosé will perfectly complement this meal.

Roast beef salad with goats cheese

  

Ingredients

 

  • -2 small heads lettuce, torn into pieces 
  • -350g sliced deli roast beef
  • -1 large  tomato, cut into wedges
  • -1/2 red onion, sliced
  • -120g  soft goat cheese, crumbled
  • -1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • -2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • -2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • -salt and black pepper

 

Directions

-Divide the lettuce, roast beef, tomato, onion, and goat cheese among bowls.

-In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, mustard, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Drizzle over the salad.

Sushi – Bait for the soul

The belly rules the mind is old Spanish proverb and I believe there is a lot of truth in this saying.

Exploring your own tastes and preferences is part and parcel of discovering interesting dishes.

Many people say that as a child their family’s menu consisted of two choices:  take it or leave it. Luckily as adults we have a choice.

Sushi is not everyone favourite and some people believe that it must be called bait and not food.

I disagree and love sushi. It is healthy, interesting and has an abundance of tastes. I have not mastered the art of making sushi as I’m still learning from some great online articles and clips.

Here’s a shortlist of some sushi variants:

Nigirizushi- The most typical is sticky rice flavoured with vinegar and topped with raw, or fresh, fish (sashimi). The rice is formed by hand in a clump and the fish or grilled egg is placed on top. Sometimes the fish or egg is secured by a strip of seaweed. Complimented by wasabi, also known as Japanese horseradish, most restaurants serve nigirizushi in pairs.

Makizushi – Rice wrapped in seaweed (nori) with vegetables or seafood make this a favourite.

Temakizushi – Literally this translates as sushi for your hand. Vegetables and fish are placed in a pocket of seaweed.

Inarizushi – Easy to eat, this rice flavoured with sweet rice wine is inserted in a pouch made of tofu.

Chirashizushi – This seasoned rice is served in a bowl with mushrooms, carrots, other vegetables, and strips of seaweed.

In general, sushi will pair well with dry white wines and The Arniston Bay Sauvignon Blanc is the perfect choice. This wine has a powerful, perfumed nose of sweet fruit with green pepper and grassiness.

Source: recipes.lovetoknow.com

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