red wine

Beef Neck And Vegetables Soup

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Beef Neck And Vegetables Soup

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Beef Neck – probably the most underrated cut of beef overall. Simmered for soup or braised in red wine sauce, the texture and taste of this cut is only surpassed by beef shank. On top of that, since few people use it, it is the cheapest of all beef cuts, pound for pound. I hope it stays under-appreciated by most folks for much longer, so I can buy it often and in large quantities without breaking the bank 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Soup  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for more  Beef  on  ChefsOpinion
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Beef Neck And Vegetables Soup

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Beef Neck And Vegetables Soup

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Beef Neck And Vegetables Soup

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Beef Neck And Vegetables Soup

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Bella’s Portion

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chops

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If  you never tried  Panzanella, chances are that a dish using stale bread is on the bottom of your “must try this” list.
After all, nowadays stale bread is usually used either for bread pudding, bread dumplings, or, most likely of all – thrown into the garbage bin.
Now, I have to admit that most bread you can buy is best thrown away after a few days, since it was nothing special to begin with. But if you are a fan of really good bread, it would pain you to throw away some of it just because it has survived a few more days than usual and has become a bit stale. If this happens in my kitchen, I usually slice the bread thick and grill it, which will revive it beautifully and will give a loaf at least another 4 days of good use.
Or, surprise surprise – I’ll make  Panzanella.
The first written recipe for  Panzanella dates to the 15th century. Originally, stale bread was soaked in water, onions added, then dressed with olive oil, salt and vinegar. This eventually morphed into the modern  Panzanella through the addition of cucumbers and, later-on, tomatoes.
Later still, lettuce, olives, mozzarella, white wine, capers, anchovies, celery, carrots, red wine, red onion, cucumber, tuna, parsley, boiled eggs, mint, bell peppers, lemon juice, and garlic were sometimes added, although traditionalists still prefer the simple version of soaked bread, onions, olive oil, salt, tomatoes and sometimes fresh basil.
If I prepare  Panzanella as a main dish, I usually add boiled eggs, anchovy fillets, capers, garlic paste, roasted marinated peppers and lots of chives and fresh basil and oregano. I don’t soak my Panzanella  in water but rather in a generous amount of dressing of good olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. I let the salad sit for at least 30 minutes before I dig into it, by which time the dressing has been soaked up by the bread. Usually, I over-eat on this stuff because once I start, I can’t stop until it’s all gone 😦 🙂
However, since I had grilled pork chops with this one, I kept it simple and used only bread, onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, basil and dressing. What a wonderful meal this was…….
So, I hope that next time you have some good, rustic bread which has seen better days, you will give this delicious dish a try 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

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Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Polpi In Umido – Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes



Octopus  is one of my favorite seafood. Unfortunately, fresh octopus is not usually available around here. I sometimes order it online, but for the spur of the moment, I usually fall back to canned octopus. I have tried many different brands over the years and my favorite is the Vigo brand in garlic/olive oil. I usually prepare a salad by mixing it with peppers, herbs, potatoes and vinaigrette. Once in a while I mix it in a mixed seafood stew. However, for the dish at hand it was the perfect taste and texture. I even added the garlic oil from the can since it has a strong taste of the sea. A quick, easy and very affordable seafood recipe. If you are not a fan of octopus, replace it with shrimp, just simmer the shrimp and sauce for less time in order to keep the shrimp succulent and moist.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !


Click here for more about Octopus

Polpi In Umido - Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes

Polpi In Umido – Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes

Polpi In Umido - Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes

Polpi In Umido – Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes



Preparation :

saute finely diced onions and garlic paste in olive oil

saute finely diced onions and garlic paste in olive oil

when onions are translucent add tomatopaste, saute another minute

when onions are translucent add tomato paste, saute another minute

deglaze with red wine, add octopus with it's canned oil, kosher salt and cayenne pepper, simmer fr three minutes, check/adjust seasoning

deglaze with red wine, add octopus with its canned oil, finely chopped tomatoes, kosher salt and cayenne pepper, simmer for three more minutes, check/adjust seasoning

meanwhile, cook bucatini al dente, strain, mix with olive oil

meanwhile, cook bucatini al dente, strain, add some olive oil

plate bucatoni, top with octopus ragout, sprinkle with italian parsley and basil leaves

plate bucatini, top with octopus ragout, sprinkle with italian parsley and basil leaves

Polpi In Umido - Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes

Polpi In Umido – Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes

Polpi In Umido - Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes

Polpi In Umido – Italian Style Octopus Stewed In Wine And Tomatoes



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Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction



Botton mushrooms don’t have much taste by themself, but if you simmer them in red wine, they soak up all the richness from the wine and take on a whole new personality 🙂

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !


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Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction

Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction

mise en place

mise en place

porcini powder

porcini powder

saute diced onions and garlic paste with mushrooms in butter. Meanwhile, cook fusili col buco

saute diced onions and garlic paste with mushrooms in butter. Meanwhile, cook fusili col buco

add red wine, porcini powder, sea salt and scallions, let simmer until redwine thickens into light sauce. To serve, sprinkle with more scallions and top with a dollop of greek yogurt

add red wine, porcini powder, sea salt, hot sauce, grey poupon and scallions, let simmer until redwine thickens into light sauce. To serve, sprinkle with more scallions and top with a dollop of greek yogurt

Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction

Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction

 

Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction

Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction

Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction

Fusili Col Bucco With Mushrooms In Red Wine / Dijon Reduction



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Easy Does it # 10 – Onion, Pear And Red Wine Marmalade

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Dear  Friend’s,
Although most of my followers are culinary professionals, there is also a large segment of followers who are just starting to enjoy cooking on a slightly higher than basic level. I have therefore decided to publish, under the moniker “Easy Does It“,  from time to time some very basic recipe variations of dishes which otherwise might seem complicated to some folks. I will break them down to the easiest, most simple instructions, so that those of you who are intimidated by elaborate recipes will be able to prepare these dishes properly, adjusted to your taste and liking, right from the get-go.
Enjoy :-)
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This  savory marmalade is the perfect condiment to meats and vegetables. I also use it as a sandwich component when I make meat sandwiches. It is super easy to make and holds in the fridge for a good amount of  time.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

Onion, Red Wine And Pear Marmelade

Onion, Red Wine And Pear Marmalade

saute garlic paste in its oil

saute garlic paste in its oil

add onions, saute until translucent

add onions, saute until translucent

add peeled, sliced pears

add peeled, sliced pears

add red wine, small amount of kosher salt and cayenne pepper

add red wine, small amount of kosher salt and cayenne pepper

after most of the wine has evaporated, check /adjust seasoning

after most of the wine has evaporated, check /adjust seasoning

Onion, Red Wine And Pear Marmelade

Onion, Red Wine And Pear Marmalade


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Chickenbreast & Zitoni Tagliati In Spicy Red Wine & Mascarpone Cream

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Sitting outside in the fresh air the whole evening and most of the night, having good conversations, listening to good music, drinking good wine and just having a great time for many hours has usually different results. Some folks get tipsy, some get tired, some get overly excited about the topics of the night. However, my friends and I usually can agree to one thing around the time midnight strikes: Time to eat ! And no matter how many times my buddies find their way to the fridge and the bar to get more drinks, somehow they always forget where I keep the raw food and the pots and pans.
So, as usual, friday night we all decided we had to have a substantial midnight snack.
Also, as usual, everybody decided that the only one “qualified and sober enough” to do the job of feeding us all would be me 🙂
Here is the crowd pleaser we wolfed down last night:
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Chickenbreast & Zitoni Tagliati In Spicy Red Wine & Mascarpone Cream

Chickenbreast & Zitoni Tagliati In Spicy Red Wine & Mascarpone Cream

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Ingredients :

Chicken breast,   cut into large “chunks”
Zitoni tagliati,  cooked  al dente, some cooking liquid reserved
Broccoli florettes,   blanched
Onions,   sliced  (lots of them)
Tomatoes,   sliced
Scallions,   finely sliced
Pecorino romano,   finely grated
Mascarpone,
Red wine,   (use the one you are drinking)
Butter,
Kosher salt,
Sriracha,   (lots of it)
Roasted garlic paste,  (lots of it)

Method :

Saute chicken in butter until 160 F, remove , set aside (The carry-over heat and re-heating will take it to a safe 165F). Saute onions and garlic until onions are golden and garlic is fragrant. At this point your butter will have turned into  “buurre noisette”, light brown with a nutty flavor. Add red wine and let reduce by half. Add chicken with its juices, vegetables, pasta and seasoning, saute until heated through. Add mascarpone and pecorino romano. Mix until a creamy sauce develops. If the sauce is too thin, add more cheese, If too thick, add some of the reserved cooking liquid and / or red wine. To serve, sprinkle with more pecorino and the sliced scallions.

Bon Appetit !  Life is Good !

Always value good friends, good conversations, good food,  and good wine 🙂

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Braised Beef Ribs In Red Wine

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Braised  beef ribs in red wine with potato gnocchi and vegetables in curry cream ” >
I have prepared beef ribs in many different ways over the years, but , in my humble opinion, this preparation stands high above the rest. Just make sure you don’t skimp on the wine , both the quality and the quantity you use. Use lots of onion and garlic as well and stay away from thickening the sauce with flour ! Just press all the vegetables which you cook in the sauce through a fine mesh sieve, it’s the only thickener the sauce will need. The texture and flavor are just so much better this way. >
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Braised Beef Ribs In Red Wine

Braised Beef Ribs In Red Wine

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Ingredient’s:

Beef ribs,
Merlot,   (or red wine of your choice)
Tomatoes,   chopped
Celery,   diced
Onions, diced
Red pepper,   diced
Garlic,   paste
Scallion,   finely sliced
Peanut oil,
Kosher salt,

Method :

Season ribs with salt and pepper. Saute ribs in oil until evenly browned on both sides. Remove, set aside. Saute carrots and onions until caramelized. Add garlic and saute until fragrant. Add back ribs. Add celery, tomatoes and wine. Simmer until ribs are very tender but not falling apart. Remove ribs, hold warm. Strain sauce through a fine mesh sieve, then pressing all the vegetables through with a bench scraper. Return sauce to simmer until it has the desired texture. Adjust seasoning if necessary. Return ribs to sauce to re-heat. To serve, place ribs on serving dish, nape generously with sauce and sprinkle with scallions. Serve with potato gnocchi and curried cauliflower/carrots. . >

Curry Cream Recipe

Potato Gnocchi Recipe > > > >

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good ! > >
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Happy Bastille Day France ! (Coq au Vin )

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Let’s celebrate the day with a classic  ” Coq Au Vin “.
But first :

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” Bastille Day is the name given in English-speaking countries to the French National Day, which is celebrated on the 14th of July each year. In France, it is formally called La Fête Nationale (The National Celebration) and commonly Le quatorze juillet (the fourteenth of July). It commemorates the 1790 Fête de la Fédération, held on the first anniversary of the storming of the Bastille on 14 July 1789; the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille fortress-prison was seen as a symbol of the uprising of the modern nation, and of the reconciliation of all the French inside the constitutional monarchy which preceded the First Republic, during the French Revolution. Festivities and official ceremonies are held all over France. The oldest and largest regular military parade in Europe is held on the morning of 14 July, on the Champs-Élysées avenue in Paris in front of the President of the Republic, French officials and foreign guests.”
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To help you celebrate at home (or just to have a great meal because it is saturday
or whatever day     🙂 ,
here is one of my old standby’s for a hearty meal.  And just because there is a lot
of wine in the marinade and sauce does not mean you should not make the meal
even better with another bottle of grat red wine.
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                                                          Photo Credit: Hans D. Susser

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Marinade :

Chicken 1200 gr , 8 cut, Bone in
Bay Leaves                                    5 ea
Thyme Sprig                                 2 ea
Rosemary Sprig                           1 ea
Cloves                                            5 ea
Mirepoix                                       1 lb
Garlic chopped                            5 Gloves
Burgundy Red                              1 ½ qt

Preperation:

Olive Oil                                       2 oz
Tomato Paste                              2 oz
Sweet  Paprika Powder             1 oz
AP Flour                                       3 oz
Salt & Black Pepper                   to Taste

For the Garnish :

Butter                                             1 oz
Bacon                                             3 oz
Button Mushrooms                     5 oz
Silver Onions, parboiled           3 oz
Parsley, chopped                         1 oz
Salt & Black Pepper                     to Taste
Heart shaped toasted bread wedges

Method :

In a stainless steel container combine the chicken and the marinade
ingredients for 24 hours.
Remove the chicken, pat dry and season liberally with salt and freshly
ground black pepper.
In a heavy cast iron pan, sauté the chicken in the olive oil until mahagony brown.
Remove the chicken, add flour and sauté until dark brown roux forms.
Return the chicken together with the stock, mirepoix , cloves, bay leaves, herbs and cover.
Place in a 300* oven until chicken is tender, approx. 30-40 minutes.
Remove chicken and strain the sauce in a saucepan. If necessary,
simmer and reduce the sauce until it reaches the desired consistency.

Garnish:

Render the bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon , add the butter, mushroom and onion and sauté for one minute. Add parsley, salt and pepper to taste.

To serve :

Place the chicken on a platter, cover with sauce , garnish with mushroom and onion and top with toast’s.
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” Osso Buco “

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Poor people who go through life saying :  Food?  Yeah , whatever.  😦

Tonight’s dinner , another few ounces sticking to my rib’s.
” Osso Buco ” , this one made with beef shanks instead of veal shanks.

 Bon Appetit ! Life is Good !
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