During my workout this morning, the class instructor announced that she had some (a bottle) of champagne the night before. While I admired her for being so honest with us, it also made me realize that the indulgences of the holidays really do get to all of us (even those who teach fitness classes for a living rather than peddling wine, like me).
I love food. I love looking at pictures of it, dreaming about making the most complex of dishes, planning the menus, pairing the wines, and even going to the grocery store. While the food magazines and websites will tell us that this is the time of year to pull out all the stops, it’s not. They are wrong.
This is the time of year to slow it down. Pick simple, comforting, and beautiful dishes that are easy to execute, because we all know that at the same time we are wrapping gifts, wrangling sugar/gift crazed children, and zipping between holiday parties.
Here is a round up of things that caught my eye to make between now and 2016:
Renee Erickson’s Sauteed Dates (via Food 52, even though Renee’s a hometown here)
Baked Camembert with Pepper Jelly: just throw a little wheel in a cast iron, bake it, add some hot pepper jam (this one is amazing) on it towards the end and serve with baguette…so easy!
my picks for appetizer wines: Klipsun Optu White and Ciel du Cheval Red Wine
Smitten Kitchen’s Baked Orzo with Eggplant
Ina Garten’s Steak with Bernaise (amazing with Quintessence Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon)
Harissa Stew for something hearty yet not so rich
my picks for impressive dinner time wines: Fidelitas Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon and Optu Red Mountain
Finally, I cannot bake to save my life by these Ambrosia Macaroons are soooo easy (my 2-year old pretty much made them), were fan favorites at the Holiday Party, and are exceptional with Late Harvest Semillon.