Saturday, July 11, 2015

An American Feast for #WinePW

"In July Americans celebrate Independence Day while the French celebrate Bastille Day. Please join us for July's Wine Pairing Weekend on Saturday, July 11, lead by Michelle Williams of Rockin Red Blog, as we explore great food and wine pairings from the United States and France. Get creative and make your favorite all American food and wine meal, your favorite all French food and wine meal, one of each or a combination of both! With these two regions the sky is the limit!"


As you can see from the quote above, Michelle is hosting our Wine Pairing Weekend this month and she chose a fantastic theme!  I am American through and through.  I have never been to France but I hope to one day.  My sister went to Paris and fell in love with the city and the people.  She dreams of the day she can go back.  I have never been to Europe, it is on my bucket list but here's the thing...there are places right here in my own Country that I have not been.  I still have to see the Grand Canyon, the Redwood Forests, Mt. Rushmore, Copper Mountains, all of the northern east coast....and the list goes on and on and on.

Not only am I an American I am a Midwesterner, born and raised, and here I plan to stay until the day I die.  So I thought I would celebrate this Wine Pairing Weekend with a meal that celebrates the Midwest area of our Country.  But not the wine, the wine is coming from our West Coast and the great state of California.  Because while the Midwest creates some great food....we are the heartland and farm country...we don't create great wines.  Oh, there are those that try and some of the white wines are actually pretty tasty and our ice wines are down right the best dessert wine you will find but our reds???  Well, let's just say that they cannot compete with California reds. Of course, this is just my humble opinion and I am sure that there are those out there that would be happy to come to the defense of wines from the Midwest.  As for me, I'll stick with our beers....we know how to make some kick butt beers!



I had our friend's Kim and Kurt over for dinner and Kurt is about as Midwest as they come. He is a pure meat and potatoes guy and has been known to turn down invitations for dinner at our house because "she puts onions and nuts in her food".  So for this meal there were no nuts but there were onions sauteed up with mushrooms for on top of our big, juicy, grilled steaks. Kurt could choose to forego that pleasure if he wished.  The steaks are homegrown right here at Kurt's best childhood friend's house. I made potato planks with potatoes from Idaho and served salad and grilled asparagus with bounty from my local, organic CSA.  For dessert we had homemade strawberry ice cream made with Michigan strawberries from my daughter, Amy's, garden.  This is the epitome of an American meal!



I served it all up with an Estancia Cabernet Sauvignon from the Paso Robles region of California.  I enjoy the Central Coastal wines from California.  The Estancia is robust and hearty with a heavy feel to it without the heavy price tag  that is sometimes found on wines from the Napa Valley region.  It paired perfectly with the steak dinners and we all enjoyed it immensely.  Except for Kurt....he had a Michigan beer LOL.  Estancia is one of our go to wines when we want to hang out with friends on a casual evening.  We know it will be good, we know it will be enjoyed and it is reasonably priced so we can have several bottles on hand.



I am sharing with you today my recipe for Potato Planks.  These are a wonderful and easy side dish to accompany any grilled foods you are enjoying this summer.  I use the same method for Sweet Potatoes and they turn out lovely as well.

Grilled Potato Planks

1 Large Russet Potato for each 2 people
1 T. Olive oil for each 2 potatoes
Salt and Pepper to taste

Scrub the russet potatoes well and slice, lengthwise into 1/2" slices.  Place in a bowl and toss with the olive oil and seasonings. Lay the planks on a grill over med high heat and cook for 10-15 minutes, the bottom will be browned and the top will be turning opaque.  Flip the planks over and cook for another 5-10 minutes, until second side is browned and a fork inserts easily into the plank.  Print Recipe

Let's see how the rest celebrated!




Please join us this morning at 10 am CST on Twitter for a fun and lively discussion on our American and French food and wine pairings at #WinePW. Also, join us Saturday, August 15 as we explore Portugal, a land of delicious food and outstanding wines!

17 comments:

  1. Fantastic food! Richard used to love grilled onions on his steak! I would leave them off too Kurt. Although I am not opposed to onions and nuts in my food LOL. You have to visit the Grand Canyon sometime Wendy! Absolutely blew my mind. And we have been to Mt. Rushmore when my boys were younger. I agree with you there is so much right here in America to see.

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    1. It is definitely on my bucket list Paula.

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  2. So thrilled to see your go to wine is from Paso Robles! We do have some amazing wines!!! I agree your meal was VERY American!

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    1. My brother lives in Santa Margarita Lori, just north of SLO. We love hitting all the wineries in the area.

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  3. Really wonderful meal and the wine I have never tried that wine but it sounds delicious.

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    1. Estancia is a good, solid wine. You can rest assured that it will be enjoyed when you open it.

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  4. Great article! I love your patriotism. My husband is a midwesterner as well; Wisconsin. There are definitely some good wines coming out of the midwest but must be ordered direct from the wineries. Estacia is always a solid choice!

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    1. Are you finding good reds as well as whites Michelle? I would love the names of the wineries that have decent reds in the midwest.

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  5. Great article! I love your patriotism. My husband is a midwesterner as well; Wisconsin. There are definitely some good wines coming out of the midwest but must be ordered direct from the wineries. Estacia is always a solid choice!

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  6. Great post and way to embrace our country and your home. It reminds me very much so of growing up in Montana and the pride we had from the food from our gardens and farms. We are so fortunate to have so many great food and wine choices at our fingertips.

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  7. What a great story, love all the friends and family connections! Your dinner and wine sound amazing too. Cheers!

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    1. Thanks Nancy, I am very blessed with wonderful family and friends.

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  8. I enjoyed your post Wendy...Consider adding Yosemite to your US bucket list! I spent summers in Michigan when I was a kid growing up in Chicago...I'll have to give you potato planks a try. I know I'd love them!

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    1. Yes, Martin, Yosemite is certainly on my list.

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  9. A perfect American meal to celebrate the 4th!

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