Blood Orange, Beet, and Fennel Salad
Adapted from www.bonappetit.com
A fresh, flavorful salad to brighten up a winter day.

  • 2 medium red beets, tops trimmed, washed (allow to stay slightly wet)
  • 2 medium gold beets, tops trimmed, washed (allow to stay slightly wet)
  • 3 blood oranges
  • 1 navel orange
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice, fresh
  • 1 Tbs. lime juice, fresh
  • 1/2 small fennel bulb, very thinly sliced on a mandoline
  • 1/4 red onion, very thinly sliced on a mandolin (about 1/3 cup)
  • olive oil for drizzling (if you have it on hand, pumpkin seed oil is delightful instead of olive oil)
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, loosely packed

Directions: Preheat oven to 400˚F. Wrap the beets individually in aluminum foil. Place on a rimmed baking sheet and roast until tender when pierced with a knife, about 1 hour. Allow to cool.

Using a sharp paring knife, remove the peel and white pith from the blood oranges and navel orange and discard. Over a medium bowl, slice between the membranes of two of the blood oranges to remove the segments and place in the bowl. Squeeze the juice from the membranes into the bowl, and discard the membranes. Slice the remaining blood orange and navel orange crosswise into thin rounds and add them to the bowl. Stir in the lemon and lime juices.

Peel the beets and slice into thin rounds. Arrange on a serving platter, then top with the citrus mixture, including the juice. Layer the fennel and onion on top, then drizzle generously with oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and allow to rest for 5 minutes to let the flavors develop. Serve garnished with cilantro. Makes 6 servings.

Star Recommends: Huarpe Lancatay Bonarda
Wine of intense ruby color with flavors of red fruit. This is an elegant and well-balanced wine with sweet and soft tannins.


Curried Carrots with Butter
Adapted from www.dinneralovestory.com
It doesn’t get any easier than this!

  • 4 carrots, peeled or scrubbed, cut into 1/4 inch rounds
  • 2 tsp. curry powder
  • 1 Tbs. butter
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • salt

Directions: Place the carrots in a saucepan and cover with 1/2 cup of water. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer. Stir in the curry powder, butter, honey, and a good pinch of salt. Cover and simmer for 10-12 minutes, until tender. Serve. Makes 4 servings.

Star Recommends: Errazuriz Carmenere
A lively, deep red color with cherry edges distinguishes the Carmenere Single Vineyard. This wine beautifully displays the classic characteristics of the variety. The bouquet exhibits spice, black pepper and roasted red pepper intertwined with aromas of dry figs, sweet ripe cherries and blackberry fruit. The long barrel aging adds rich notes of vanilla and coffee.


Root Ribbons with Sage
Adapted from The Herbal Kitchen by Jerry Traunfeld
Burdock, sweet potatoes, turnips, or other root vegetables would be good substitutes for the ones listed below. Avoid beets though, as they would turn your dish scarlet.

  • 1/2 lb. carrots (washed and peeled)
  • 1/2 lb. parsnips (washed and peeled)
  • 1/2 lb. rutabaga (washed and peeled)
  • 1/2 lb. salsify (washed and peeled)
  • 3 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped sage
  • 1 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • 1 Tbs. maple syrup
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice

Directions: With a vegetable peeler, peel the carrots, parsnips, rutabagas, and salsify from the tops to the roots into ribbons. Turn the roots after each strip is peeled, leaving you with small cores. (Reserve the cores for another use, like making stock.) In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter with the sage. Stir for a minute until the sage is well-coated in butter, then add the ribbons. Toss until they begin to wilt, then add the salt, black pepper, maple syrup, lemon juice, and 3/4 cup of water. Cook over medium heat, tossing them occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated and the ribbons are tender, about 10 minutes. Serve hot. Makes 6 servings.

Star Recommends: Cono Sur Organic Sauvignon Blanc
This straw yellow colored Sauvignon Blanc opens with wet stone and mild ripe Anjou pear bouquet with a hint of green pepper. On the palate, this wine is medium bodied, slightly acidic, and mouthwatering. The flavor profile is a slightly tart lime with notes of integrated minerality.


Lightly Spiced Parsnip Soup
Adapted from www.janespice.com
Soup is the perfect dinner during the cold dark nights of Midwest winters. Enjoy this easy soup with some sautéed greens and bread.

  • 1 Tbs. sunflower oil
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 quart chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 lb. parsnips, peeled, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
  • salt & pepper
  • olive oil (optional, for drizzling)

Directions: Heat sunflower oil in a large saucepan. Stir in onion and celery, and sauté over high heat for 3-5 minutes, until softened. Add garlic, cumin, turmeric, and chili powder and sauté, stirring until fragrant, less than a minute. Pour the stock into the pot, then add the parsnips. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 15-20 minutes, until the parsnips are tender. In a blender, purée the soup in small batches until smooth. Return soup to pot and heat through. Serve with a drizzle of good olive oil in each bowl. Makes 4 servings.

Star Recommends: Tangent Pinot Gris
Bright and refreshing, this pinot gris is framed by crisp acidity and vibrant minerality. It has a surprisingly silky mouthfeel, with concentrated flavors of ripe apples and white peaches, and a very slight herbaceous note.


Blood Orange Galettes with Almond
Mascarpone Cream Filling
Adapted from www.thekitchn.com
Beautiful, rustic, individually-sized desserts.

  • 5 blood oranges, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 2 navel oranges, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 8 oz mascarpone cheese
  • 1/2 cup Demerara sugar, plus 1 tablespoon, divided
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 4 oz. butter, chilled and cubed
  • 1/2 cup ice water
  • 1 egg, beaten

Directions: Preheat oven to 400˚F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer, combine the mascarpone cheese, two tablespoons of the sugar, vanilla extract, and almond extract. Stir well until the mixture is a whipped consistency. Taste and add more sugar if you like. Prepare the galette dough. Place the flour, salt, and 3 tablespoons of sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add the cubed butter and pulse again until crumbly, then with the motor running, pour in the ice water. Check the consistency of the dough. If you squeeze a bit and it holds together, it’s ready. If it is still really crumbly, add more ice water, just a teaspoon at a time. Transfer the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and wrap it up and press into a ball.  Lightly flatten it into a disk, then place in the fridge for 20 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, cut the dough into 8 pieces. Roll each one into a 1/4-inch-thick circle and place on the baking sheets. Galettes are rustic, so don’t worry about imperfections. Spread a heaping tablespoon of mascarpone onto each circle, then top with the blood orange and orange slices, leaving an inch border at the edge of each galette. Roughly fold the edges of the dough in towards the center, leaving the middle of the galette exposed.

Brush the edges of the galettes with the beaten egg. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar, then bake for 35-40 minutes, until the crust is golden. Allow to cool on a wire rack. Makes 8 galettes.

Star Recommends: Waterbrook Riesling
A classic Washington Riesling with apricot and tangerine on the fragrant nose. The rich mouthfeel is lush with notes of vanilla, spice and Satsuma oranges. The finish is balanced and clean with hints of lingering residual sugar.


Sweet Potato and Parsnip Latkes
Courtesy of the National Cooperative Grocers Association
Try this twist on traditional latkes.

  • 2 cups sweet potatoes, peeled and shredded
  • 1 cup parsnip, peeled and shredded
  • 3 scallions, sliced
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup apple, peeled and minced

Directions: Wrap the shredded sweet potato and parsnip in a clean kitchen towel or paper towels, squeeze to remove excess liquid. Mix sweet potato and parsnip with scallions, eggs, flour, salt, and pepper. Heat large iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add enough vegetable oil to cover bottom of pan and up the sides at least 1/4-inch. When oil is hot, scoop up 1/4 cup of latke mixture into the pan, and slightly flatten. Repeat until the pan is full but not crowded. Brown on each side, 3-4 minutes. Set aside on a plate lined with paper towels. While the latkes are cooking, stir together the sour cream and minced apple. Serve the latkes warm topped with the apple sour cream. Makes 12 latkes.

Star Recommends: Nuevo Mundo Carmenere Organic
On the nose it has spicy notes, commonly related to this variety, which are nicely integrated with moderate oak. It has medium structure and velvety tannins making it very seductive and approachable.