DRINK RECOMMENDATIONS FROM STAR LIQUOR, 1209 WILLIAMSON
Grilled Balsamic Rosemary Carrots
Adapted from www.simplyrecipes.com.
Try other combinations of spices/herbs—they all taste amazing!
- 1 lb. carrots
- 4 Tbs. butter, melted
- 1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
Directions: Heat grill to a medium flame. Wash your carrots and trim fronds (if they are still attached) to 1-2 inches. This will provide you with a built-in handle to eat with later. Melt the butter on stovetop over medium-low heat. Once melted, remove from heat and whisk in the vinegar and rosemary. Arrange carrots on the grill or in a grill basket and brush carrots with the herbed vinegar butter. Grill for approximately 20 minutes (depending on the size of your carrot). Halfway through, turn the carrots and apply additional butter mixture. Pour remaining sauce over the carrots and serve!
Star Recommends: Bourillon Dorleans Vouvray Sec
Frédéric Bourillon produces Vouvray of enormous charm and complexity. The dry Vouvray is crisp and clean with a perfect balance. Many dry Vouvrays are acidic and aggressive but, due to low yields, Frédéric obtains a richness and concentration that balances well with the acidity.
Lemon Basil Shortbread Cookies
From Asparagus to Zucchini: A Guide to Farm-Fresh Seasonal Produce Third Edition. Published by the Madison Area CSA Coalition.
- 3 c. flour
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2/3 c. butter, softened
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 Tbs. chopped fresh lemon (or lime) basil
- 1 Tbs. finely grated or minced lemon or lime peel (use only the yellow or green portion of the peel.)
- 1 c. finely chopped walnuts
Directions: Heat oven to 350ºF. Mix flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Mix butter, sugar, vanilla, basil and lemon or lime peel in a separate bowl and beat with an electric mixer until well combined. With mixer set on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture. The mixture will be crumbly. Stir in the walnuts. Pour mixture into an ungreased 9-by-13 inch or similar-sized pan. Press mixture in, and ensure even thickness. Bake until the edges begin to turn light brown, about 20 minutes—do not overbake. Using a sharp knife, slice shortbread into two-inch squares while hot. Let cool 10 minutes, then carefully transfer pieces to a plate or cooling rack. Makes 24-30 cookies.
Star Recommends: White Winter Sweet Mead
Mead is a honey wine that has origins dating back more than 8,000 years. White Winter Mead is made in Iron River using mostly local honey to ferment into this sweet delight. The flavors in this bottle will match very well with the citrusy, herbal cookies.
Jicama-Melon Fruit Salad
Adapted from www.allrecipes.com.
- 2 c. jicama, cut into thin slivers
- 2 c. honeydew melon (or another favorite), cubed
- 3 Tbs. fresh lime juice
- 3 Tbs. chopped fresh mint, plus a few sprigs for garnish
- 1 tsp. lime zest
- 2 tsp. honey
Directions: Toss all of the ingredients listed above in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Garnish with a few sprigs of mint and enjoy! Serves 6 as a side dish.
Star Recommends: Hopler Guttenberg Gruner Veltliner
This Austrian white is lightly sweet and will pair remarkably with the flavors in this salad. There are flavors of apples and apricots as well as a great acidity that makes this wine more refreshing than sweet. If you have not yet discovered gruner veltliner this is a good spot to jump on the bandwagon.
A Big Tomato Sandwich
From Local Flavors by Deborah Madison. Available in the Co-op’s book section!
“Crusty, strong-textured ciabatta is the ideal bread. The holes drink in the juice, but the bread is strong enough that it won’t fall apart. These big stuffed breads look great, taste great, and are invariably messy to eat. Tomatoes of choice are Brandywines, Striped Germans, Carmello and Costoluto Genovese.” –Deborah Madison
- 1 large (1 lb.) loaf ciabatta
- Herb Vinaigrette (see below)
- 2 or more big ripe, juicy tomatoes
- 1 large yellow or red bell pepper, roasted, peeled and quartered
- 4 oz. fresh mozzarella, goat or other favorite cheese, sliced
- sea salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 c. basil leaves
- 1 Tbs. chopped marjoram
- 1 Tbs. chopped parsley
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 1/3 c. extra virgin olive oil
- 4 Tbs. aged red wine vinegar
- sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Directions: Slice the top third off the loaf of bread and set it aside. Pull out the inside. (You can use it to make bread crumbs.) Make the herb vinaigrette. Finely chop the herbs with the garlic, then add the olive oil. Add the vinegar and 1/4 tsp salt and season with pepper. Taste and adjust the seasonings if needed. Paint the inside of the bread with some of the dressing, then make layers of sliced tomatoes, pepper and cheese. Bathe each layer with the dressing and season with salt and pepper. Add the top, press down, then cut into quarters or sixths. This packs well if wrapped tightly. Serves 4-6.
Star Recommends: Taurino Notarpanaro Rosso
Made with Malvasia Nero from Puglia this is a deep dark red wine. It has a wonderful combination of dark fruit and soft tannins that make it a great pairing for this yummy sandwich. You will be able to imagine yourself having lunch on the coast somewhere in southern Italy.
From 100 Days of Real Food: www.100daysofrealfood.com.
“Get ready to turn plain old zucchini into something fabulous!” –100 Days of Real Food
- 2 medium sized zucchinis
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 c. whole-wheat breadcrumbs
- 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
- olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
Directions: Thinly slice zucchini into 1/8” round pieces. Beat eggs in a shallow bowl. Using a small food processor (or a mortar and pestle) process the breadcrumbs, grated cheese, and a couple dashes of salt and pepper together until fine. Put the breadcrumb mixture in a shallow bowl. Pour a think layer of olive oil in the bottom of a medium to large sauté pan and turn the heat to medium. Let it heat up while you start preparing the zucchini. Make an assembly line in the following order: raw zucchini slices, beaten eggs, breadcrumbs, and an empty plate. With one hand (which will be your “wet” hand) coat a few of the zucchini slices with the egg and shake off the excess. Drop those pieces on top of the breadcrumb mixture and using your other “dry” hand coat with breadcrumbs. Shake off the excess breadcrumbs and transfer the coated zucchini to the clean plate. As soon as you have enough zucchini slices breaded to make a single layer across the bottom of your pan, slide them in the oil to start cooking. Meanwhile, start coating the next batch of zucchini, but check the stove after 2-3 minutes to see if the bottom of the zucchini is turning golden brown. Once they are brown flip them over and add more olive oil if necessary to keep the bottom of the breaded zucchini “wet.” Once both sides are golden brown transfer them to a paper towel lined plate and keep warm. Repeat process until all the zucchini are cooked. Arrange them on a serving platter, garnish with Parmesan cheese and enjoy! Makes 4-6 side servings.
Star Recommends: Paso a Paso Tempranillo
Offers up aromas of violets, exotic spice, and chalky black cherry. In the mouth, medium-bodied and very smooth with ripe, spicy, almost savory flavors of black cherry and plum accented by pretty spice and floral notes. Enough tannin for food, soft enough to enjoy on its own.
Chilled Melon Soup
Adapted from Jenny at www.nourishedkitchen.com.
“Take care to choose a fully ripe melon—almost too ripe. Not only will the melon be strikingly sweet without added honey or other sugars, but it will also contain more antioxidants than a less ripe melon.” –Jenny at the Nourished Kitchen
- 3 overripe orange-fleshed honeydew melon or cantaloupes
- 1/4 c. fresh lemon or lime juice
- 1/2 c. fresh blackberries
- 1/2 c. fresh raspberries
- crème fraiche, for garnish
Directions: Slice the melon in half and remove the seeds from the interior. Slice off the peel and cut the melon into large chunks. Put melon in a blender or food processor and purée until it has liquefied. Gently fold in the lemon or lime juice, until it is well combined with the melon puree. Chill the mixture in the freezer for 20-30 minutes. Once well chilled, remove and serve in individual bowls, garnished with fresh berries and crème fraiche.
Star Recommends: Alma Negra Sparkling Malbec Rose
We Americans see pink wine and most of us automatically think sweet. Moreover, we see pink sparkling wine and we know we are facing a cloying, syrupy drinking experience. We couldn’t be more wrong. This stunner from Argentina is both acidic and mineraly to balance out the wild fruit flavors on the front of this wine. The bubbles add an extra bit of zip to this bottle. Enjoy!
From Simply in Season by Mary Beth Lind and Cathleen Hockman-Wert. Copyright 2005 by Herald Press, Scottdale, PA 15683.
“A delicious late summer meatless grill—or make it under the broiler. You might need a knife and fork to eat these hearty sandwiches.”
- 2 Tbs. oil
- 2 tsp. wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1 large eggplant
- 8 thin slices cheese
- 2 tomatoes, thinly sliced
- 4 large pieces roasted red sweet peppers
- 8-16 leaves fresh basil
- 4 crusty rolls or 8 thin slices sturdy bread
Directions: Whisk the oil, vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Cut the eggplant crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices to make 12-16 slices total. Brush with the oil mixture. Place on grill over medium-high heat. Close lid and cook, turning and brushing occasionally with remaining oil mixture, until tender, about 5-10 minutes. Remove from grill. (NOTE: The eggplant slices may be cooked under the broiler or sautéed in a frypan until tender, 4-5 minutes per side.) Place a slice of cheese on 2 eggplant slices; top with another eggplant slice. Top with 2 tomatoes slices and/or a piece of roasted red sweet pepper, then 2-4 basil leaves. Top with third eggplant slice, then another slice of cheese. Top with fourth eggplant slice. Repeat to make 4 stacks, adding a grind of pepper at the end (optional). Place on grill. Close lid and cook for about 2 minutes, turning once.
Drizzle balsamic vinegar on the inside of the bread or brush the bread with olive oil, toast it on the grill and lightly rub a cut clove of garlic over the toasted surface. Add eggplant stacks and serve immediately. You can also allow the vegetable stacks to cool, wrap tightly and refrigerate several hours or overnight, allowing the flavors to blend. It’s great either way! Makes 4 servings.
Star Recommends: Waterbrook Melange Noir
Deep garnet color leads to inviting aromatics of blueberry, currant and cedar. Big, rich, ripe fruit develops throughout the palate. Structured tannins and balanced acidity supports lingering fruit on the well rounded finish. Could not be more perfect for grilled eggplant.
Summer Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes
From The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet by Nava Atlas.
“One of my favorite ways to use summer’s heavenly ripe tomatoes is to toss them, uncooked, with warm pasta.” –Nava Atlas
- 8-10 oz. rotini (pasta twists) or other short chunky shape
- 2 to 2 1/2 lbs. flavorful juicy tomatoes, diced
- 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil (or sunflower oil)
- juice of 1/2 lemon or lime
- 6-8 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced, or to taste
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Directions: Cook the pasta according to package directions and drain. Combine the pasta with the remaining ingredients, including the juices from the chopped tomatoes and toss well. Serve at once or let stand until room temperature before serving. Serves 4.
Star Recommends: Seghesio Barbera
An Italian varietal grown in California. This Barbera is big and ripe with cherry blossoms for a nose. You get the vanilla from the oak barrels as well as a nice acidity that makes this wine both balanced and versatile. A beautiful selection that pairs well with food and stands up to just about anything.