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Welcome to Wine With Food!

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About memandyedit0083

HI! I am Mandy and I was born in Devon, England. I grew up, learning to cook with my mother who, now in her 80s, likes to try out new recipes and find new and interesting dishes to eat! I remember perusing her Margeurite Patten ‘Cookery in Color’ cook book and The Reader’s Digest Cookery Year, admiring the pictures and wanting to re-create the food. Luckily, I had  willing parents who would try my culinary creations. My father introduced me to wine and we would always have wine on a Sunday with supper, often salad and Riesling.

However, my dream job was to be a beauty therapist (after the number one choice of fighter pilot). So I went to college and qualified as a therapist and set my heart on working onboard cruise ships.

As soon as I was able to, I got on a plane to Florida and preceded to travel the world, both on cruise ships and independently. I visited many, many countries and one of my favourite pastimes was to go out to eat with friends, trying the local cuisine. On board ships, we generally ate the same food as the passengers and I was introduced to new and exciting flavors, with Italian nights, Norwegian nights and many other themes. Cruise ships were highly competitive with their food, employing the best chefs. They also had extensive wine lists as well as fine wines available in the gift shops at tax free prices, so snuggling up with a movie and a bottle of Chateauneuf Du Pape was just a normal day!

Another passion has been trying coffee around the world, as I visited countries such as Costa Rica, Guatemala and Jamaica!

Much time spent in Greece, meant a whole education in Mediterranean food, hanging out in kitchens, with people who have a national pride in their food and happy to answer the thousands of questions that I had about techniques and recipes! I also had an amazing experience in Italy, staying on a volcanic island where the world’s best capers are produced and the most amazing tomatoes are grown.

I decided on a more settled life, so moved to Nantucket Massachusetts to work. I hit gold, living in a billionaires paradise, with many gourmet restaurants all located in one small town!! Nantucket also had some excellent wine stores with knowledgeable people running them, giving advice on wine to match the food that I was cooking! Eventually, I met my husband there and we would often attend cookery classes with the wonderful chefs of Nantucket and  wine classes with highly qualified wine experts. I even attended a tequila class with a tequila connoisseur, but apart from Margaritas, really don’t drink it!

After the crash of 2008, life ground to a halt in Nantucket and we made the decision to move to England. I then qualified as a lecturer teaching beauty therapy. While teaching, I have been gaining my wine qualifications and the past several years keeping a diary of culinary and wine experiences sharing recipes and wine matches. I still explore cuisine from around the world, recreating dishes that I tried in countries around the world, from the former USSR through to China, Japan, Vietnam and Malaysia!!

I have now left teaching and am working in the wine industry. My husband and I are residing in a cosy cottage in the Berkshire countryside.

I enjoy the whole experience of  good food paired with a wine that completely enhances the food as well as the food enhancing the flavor of the wine!!! So with nearly every recipe I record, I try to match the wine with it for a sublime experience!!!

I share it so that you can enjoy too!!

We are not chefs by any means, just home cooks and wine lovers. We share recipes that we know are easy to make and have been tested in  our home kitchen.

Durif Shiraz BBQ Wine? We

With peppery lightly spicy upper notes, this wine had a heavy chocolate base. It was sold as a BBQ wine, but felt way too heavy for mid summer temperatures! I see this happening in winter with slow cooked beef cheeks or mole.

This is the kind of red wine, where the snow should be several feet deep outside and a roaring fire inside, kind of wine. Cosy, full bodied, comforting and reassuring.

Fish! Cod With Curry Sauce and Seared Shallots

Having always lived near the coast, I am a great lover of fish. Especially when fresh out of the ocean. It’s the one thing I could survive on, so I would definitely take a fishing rod to a desert island along with my shucking knife and a net!!

As I am in the UK at the moment, I make the most of fish from the local waters such as cod and sea bream. Both work well with different types of curry, be it Indian, Caribbean or African.

This particular dish is one that I saw on a TV cookery show and really wanted to make, but it was a heavy dish to start with and I wanted a lighter version. Also it contained a couple of ingredients that are hard to find unless you order online – which gets expensive with shipping and delays being able to cook .

So a few adjustments later and a little ingredient researching brought together a lighter but you will find still very tasty dish, as the mild but bold spices really are what make the flavor, rather than fat or exotic base ingredients.

I promise you, this easy especially if you have a hand blender.

I hope that you will give this recipe a whirl, as when I presented it to my husband, he was enthralled and couldn’t wait to have it again.

WINE NOTE: We stayed with the wine suggested by the expert on the show, which is Gewurztraminer, an aromatic wine that holds it own against most bold, buttery Indian flavors, with its own spicy flavors.

Ingredients

The Cod;

4 x 150g/ 5oz pieces cod  loin, skinned and pin boned

60g /2¼oz coarse Himalayan salt 

Spray oil

The Shallots;

vegetable oil, for deep-frying

2 banana shallots , finely sliced

2 tbsp self-rising flour

2 tsp chive  finely chopped

pinch Himalayan salt

For The curry Sauce;

50g/2oz low fat spread

1 tsp ground coriander

¾ tsp ground cumin 

1 tsp turneric 

¾ tsp  garam masala

50g/2oz garlic  paste

50g/2oz ginger paste 

2 tbsp honey 

1 tbsp miso paste

Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6

Grind the salt over the cod and leave to cure for 20 minutes. after 20 minutes, rinse the cod under cold water and pat dry with paper towel. Spray with cooking oil & place on a tray.

Toss the shallots in the flour. Heat a non-stick skillet on medium high heat and spray with the cooking oil. Saute the shallots until slightly blackened.

To make the curry sauce, heat the low fat spread in a skillet. Add the spices and cook for 1–2 minutes, or until fragrant. Add the garlic and ginger pastes and cook for another couple of minutes.

Add the honey, miso and 300ml/10fl oz of water, to the pan, and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down and simmer until the sauce thickens. Blend with a hand blender or food processor.

Put the fish in the oven for 5-6 minutes, until it is cooked through (but not overcooked to dry)

Ladle the curry sauce into 4 bowls and place the cod on the sauce. Sprinkle the shallots onto the fish.

Serve with rice.

Cilantro Dressing

Cilantro adds a fresh citrus type flavor to this dressing. Use it over your regular side salad or drizzle on carne asada tacos for an authentic taste.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

1/2 cup cilantro

1/4 cup oil

1 tablespoon lime juice

pinch of garlic powder

pinch of Mexican oregano

salt to taste

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend on low speed until almost smooth

Brunch!

Our favourite part of the week is lazy weekend brunch time! Brunch around the world can come with many different flavours, but the one thing I have learnt from world travel, is that most cultures like eggs for brunch!
I recommend getting the best quality eggs that you can from ethical farmers. You get richer yokes and better nutrition.

I have 2 of our favourite brunch recipes here. Trust me, there are many more, but one of these have been a regular for a while and is wonderful during asparagus season. It is also quite a fast one to prepare, as everything cooks at once. The other is a new favourite, from the awesome Paul Ainsworth, of which I will provide a link. It has wonderful chorizo combined with cannellini beans and parma ham!

WINE NOTE: Champagne or even better Nyetimber- a British sparkling wine, is the only alcohol we would usually have with brunch and only on a holiday!! Cava and wine for Mimosa is rather pleasant too!
However, with the gypsy egg recipe, there comes a wine match of Cotes Du Rhone. I think I would perhaps rather that in the evening, because if I opened red wine in the morning, my day would be pretty much over before it started!!

So without further ado, here are the recipes;

SOURDOUGH BREAD WITH GRILLED ASPARAGUS & POACHED EGG FOR TWO

2-4 slices of sourdough bread
Leaves from 3 tarragon sprigs
8-10 asparagus stalks trimmed
4 free range eggs
Garlic Oil spray
2 tsp butter
Red wine vinegar

Start boiling a pan of water with a good splash of red vinegar in it, then reduce to medium simmer
Spray the bread with garlic oil.
Spray the asparagus with olive oil
Place the bread & asparagus on a hot griddle pan and grill until the bread is nearly toasted and the asparagus is almost charred.
At this stage crack the eggs into the simmering water to poach
Place the slices of toasted sourdough on a plate ans sprinkle over the tarragon.
Place the asparagus on top of the bread and then add a teaspoon of butter.
Top the asparagus with the poached eggs then season with Himalayan salt & a little pepper.

Serve at once.

GYPSY EGGS

Click through the link to access this recipe;

https://www.bbc.com/food/recipes/cornish_gypsy_eggs_45609

CHEERS!! ENJOY!!

North African Food!!! Salmon on a bed of Moroccan Tomato Relish

North Africa! Silver, turquoise, white marble, with many other colors jut thrown on top!! I love north Africa and its cuisine does not disappoint! Colorful and aromatic describes it succinctly! The flavors in this salmon dish will hit the spot on a weekday night. Forget boring food, this is fast and easy and delivers flavor!! A promise of flavor is always what I give you!

WINE NOTE: Cotes De Provence seems to really compliment this dish, with it dry but aromatic flavors meeting the cinnamon and mint. A stoney Vouvray may also match or a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. !

1/2 tsp salt
1/2tp fresh ground pepper
4 salmon fillets
1 3/4 cups chopped red onion (UK about 3-4 red onions)
4 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes(UK 725g)
2 tbsp orange juice
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp capers
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup copped fresh mint (UK half a pack)
3 tbsp chopped cilantro (fresh coriander)
Mint sprigs (optional)

Sprinkle 1/4 tp each of salt & pepper on the salmon
Spray a non stick skillet and heat on a medium high heat.
Cook the salmon approx 2 minutes each side until lightly browned.
Remove from the skillet and keep warm.

put the onion and ginger in the skillet and saute for 2 minutes. Add the remaining salt, tomato and next 6 ingredients and then cook for 6 minutes stirring occasionally.

Return the salmon to the skillet and nestle it ito the tomato mixture. Cook for 3 minuets until salmon is cooked medium rare.

Remove the salmon and stir in the chopped mint and cilantro.

Place the tomato mixture on each plate and place the salmon fillet on top.

Garnish with mint sprigs.







Beautiful Food From Brazil! Feijoada & Collard Greens

Those women from Brazil sure keep their figures and as a Gisele wannabee (Mrs Brady), this kind of food will help me achieve that kind of figure, with beautiful South American flavor.

This very easy dish uses smoky flavors of low fat sausage and garlic to create a comforting dish of food combined with collard greens. If you are in a country where you can’t find collard greens, use cavolo nero or kale, both of which are rich in nutrients and flavor.

This recipe makes 8 servings, so you may want to cut it down. We like leftovers for lunch so it was all good!!

WINE NOTE: Choose a moderately tannic, medium to full bodied Merlot from Brazil, but if not Chile produce some rather nice Merlot with smooth fruit and tannin followed by a chocolate finish.
Failing that, a full bodied Californian Zinfandel will meld nicely with this!

For the Feijoada;

1 TBS vegetable oil
1 2/3 cups/8oz/225g cubed ham
8oz/225g low fat smoked sausage cut into slices
4 cups of chopped onion (UK aprox 5 onions)
10 garlic cloves minced
3 cups (750ml) chicken broth
4 cans of black beans rinsed & drained
1/2 tsp black pepper fresh ground
1 bay leaf
4 cups of cooked rice

1/4 cup cilantro (fresh coriander)

Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium/high heat. aite the ham and sausage for 5 minutes, until browned. Reduce the heat to medium and add the garlic and onion. Saute for 10 minutes then add the chicken broth, black beans, peeper and bay leaf.

Reduce heat and simmer for 40 minutes stirring occasionally.

To serve, remove the by leaf the serve over rice with a sprinkle of cilantro.

COLLARD GREENS

3lbs collard greens
1 1/2 tbsp of butter or 1 stick.
1 Cup minced onions
3 Garlic cloves minced
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper

Remove the stems from the greens. Wash the leaves and pat dry.
Stack several leaves on top of each other and roll up, like a cigar. Repeat with remaining greens.
Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, saute until tend- about 3 minutes. Add greens, salt and pepper and saute until greens wilt. Serve next to the Feijoada.

CHEERS!!! ENJOY!!!!

Fast Food Thai Chicken

I am all about flavours and if I can achieve those flavours fast and keep it healthy then I am going to be very happy, when I am tired and just want my supper. It’s tempting to buy ready meals or get a takeout when short on time, but with a little organisation and a wok, you can prepare your food faster than it takes to order and pickup a takeout!

This kind of Thai food brings me less memories of Thailand and more of Thai restaurants in America! But I do love and crave that coconut curry taste!

WINE NOTE: Riesling or other aromatic wines pair well with Thai curry.

These quantities serve 2, simply double for 4

40g Red Thai curry paste
1/4 Chicken stock cube mixed with 75ml with hot water
200g stir fry vegetables
200g Chicken breast skinless, skinless, thinly sliced
Juice of 1/2 Lime with the other half cut into 2 wedges for serving (or use a couple of tsp bottled lime juice)
1/2 tsp Thai Fish Sauce
1 Chilli, Green or Red
1/2 can Reduced Fat Coconut Milk,

Heat a non stick wok and add the curry paste. Cook stirring for 1 minute, then stir in the coconut milk and stock
Bring to the boil and add the vegetables. Cook, stirring for 1 minute, then add the chicken. Cook, stirring for 7-8 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the veg is tender. Add a squeeze of lime and fish sauce, to taste.

Serve over rice or noodles