Saturday, September 9, 2017

Rustic and Red #WinePW

Gwendolyn of Wine Predator is hosting our Wine Pairing Weekend this month.  Gwendolyn invited us to explore the world of Portuguese wines and cuisine. You can find that post here along with information on how to join us for chat on twitter today and how to join us in future months.

I don't know too much about Portugal. I think perhaps Christopher Columbus was Portuguese.  Emeril Lagasse's mother was from Portugal and they are famous for Port wine, which I don't really care for too much.

I didn't even know that they had any other wines than Port so I wasn't really too interested until I read the invitation post.  Gwen was sent to Portugal for work and fell in love with the culture, cuisine and, most especially, the wine.  She found that the reason we haven't heard of Portuguese wines up until now is because they were drinking it all themselves.  Evidently, Portuguese winemakers are hoarders LOL.

Shortly after the invitation I was in Costco when, lo and behold, I spied this bottle of wine from Portugal.  It scored a 91 with Wine Enthusiast.  It was reasonably priced. It was a red blend. It was the only bottle from Portugal that was not a Port in the store. All very good reasons to buy it.

Now that I had the wine, I just needed the food.  I began researching Portuguese recipes and learned that Portugal is in the Mediterranean and this is reflected in their cooking.  No wonder Gwen loved the food.  Who doesn't love Mediterranean cuisine?!  It is the best.

I found this recipe for a Kale and White Bean Stew from Food and Wine.  Providence, once again, was smiling upon me.  I had all the ingredients on hand except for the sausage but then, it was Meatless Monday, so I just omitted it.  I also used a combination of baby kale and baby spinach because I had a little of each left in my refrigerator. 

This recipe also fit into the FMD eating plan for Phase 1 and Phase 3. Phase 1 would require the deletion of the olive oil in step 1. You can soften the onion in a little water with similar results.

I reduced the recipe to only serve two instead of four but then was kicking myself because it was so delicious I would have loved leftovers the next day for lunch. Fortunately, this stew takes only about 10 minutes from start to finish if using baby kale as I did.  It would take a few minutes longer using mature kale as you would want to simmer it until tender.

You know what I loved almost as much as this easy, peasy and delicious recipe?  The wine!!  It was dry with a touch of oak.  Fruity and smooth, it paired nicely with the dinner but I also enjoyed it after dinner, by itself.

Thanks so much Gwen for choosing this area.  I had fun exploring the foods and wine and will definitely be keeping my eyes open for more bottles from Portugal.

Rustic White Bean Stew
adapted from Food & Wine

1 T. olive oil
1/2 sweet onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
5 oz. baby kale, baby spinach or a mixture of both
1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes
salt and pepper to taste
1 (15 oz) can Great Northern Beans

Heat the olive oil in a pot over med high heat.  Add the onions and cook until softened and fragrant.  Add the garlic and greens, cook until wilted, two to three minutes.  Add the tomatoes with the juices and season with salt and pepper.  Cook for a few minutes until some of the liquid evaporates.  Add the beans, heat through and serve. Print Recipe

Let's see what the others are sharing

There is so much more to PORTUGAL than PORT Wine!

Discover our stories about Portugal this Saturday, September 9th when, by 8am PST, the Wine Pairing Weekend crew will publish posts about Portuguese wine and then head to twitter to share our choices and tell the stories behind them (hashtag = #WinePW).
Food and travel are always a part of the chat, so join us for all the doors that Portuguese wine can open. And we'd love to have participation from people who live in Portugal too!
This month, the Wine Pairing Weekend crew includes:

  • From Camilla Mann of Culinary Adventures with Camilla: "Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato with a Vinho Verde"
  • From Jill Barth of L'Occasion: "The Plurality of Portuguese Wine"
  • From Lori Budd of Dracaena Wine : "Portugal's Political History Effects It's Culinary and Wine Culture"
  • From David Crowley of Cooking Chat: "Best Portuguese Kale Soup"
  • From Nicole Ruiz Hudson of Somm's Table: "Cooking to the Wine: Passagem Douro Reserva with Spiced Wine Braised Octopus"
  • From Lauren Walsh of The Swirling Dervish: "Talego - A Taste of Portugal in Paris."
  • From Wendy Klik of A Day on the Farm: "Rustic and Red"
  • From Sue and Gwen at Wine Predator: "Portugal: Wine, Castles, Cobbles, Coastline, Cuisine

    1. What a great, week-night idea. Easy and delicious! And you've also found the perfect wine to accompany it. All I have to do now, is shop. Thanks, Wendy!

    2. We had the opportunity to visit Portugal last September. The food and wine of Portugal are wonderful. Your stew looks super! Will be giving it a try!

    3. meal sounds fantastic and couldn't agree more with the price value worth picking up bottles!

    4. I hardly ever go to Costco. Now you have me wondering how many bottles of wine I'm missing! ;) Your dish looks superb, too. Thanks for sharing.

      1. Well, not being blessed to live in California, Costco is a pretty great place to find international wines.

    5. This stew looks delicious! Definitely going to try this as soon as the weather gets cooler.

    6. This meal is going to the very top of my list. I love the fresh, healthy ingredients and I think it could be modified (maybe?) to include sausage for those that want it, but omitted for those that don't. I'm seeing a prevalence of kale in the dishes this month; it must flourish in Portugal...along with those gorgeous grapes!

      Well done, Wendy. Thank you!

      1. Yes, the original did call for sausage (spanish chorizo) but I think any smoked sausage would work perfectly.


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