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Thanks!

Recipe 1

How can wine enhance enjoyment of food?  Food, Wine and Friends.  Can there be a better formula for an entertainment?  No one element is as good in isolation (Fiona Beckett).

I love to cook for wine and with wine using simple recipes where I could use spices and ingredients that I already have in my garden, cup board and freezer.  I need to improvise easy, healthy and tasty lunches and dinners for the Halbrendt crew:  winemaker – John, tasting room girl – Nikki and my growing boy, vineyard and yard helper – JD.

And how do I keep myself busy: vineyard work that include designing grape pest and disease spray program, pruning, canopy management to weed pulling; winery assistant  (from on – call duty to do juice and wine  analyses to glass ware and floor washer.  And I did not even mention my garden yet… and of course I find time to walk and chat with my friends.   Its fun living here in the country with lots of things to do that keep my heart pumping and I just love being busy and happy!

No I did not forget the recipe (that is the main reason why I am writing this post) that I found from Fiona Bickett’s cook book.  It is called Beef Burgundy that I modified and called it Beef or Venison Casserole with Cab Franc:

Ingredients: 2 lb chunked beef or venison steak, 2 tb olive oil, 4 oz bacon (or pancetta), 2 large chopped garlic, 3 chopped onions, 11/2 tb flour, 2 cups Cabernet Franc (red wine), a bouquet garni (sprigs of thyme, parsley stalks, bay leaf), 4 oz chopped mushroom, 2 tb chopped parsley, salt and pepper to taste.

  • Heat 1 tb olive oil in a sauce pan and fry bacon  then removed to a flameproof casserole
  • Brown the chunked venison in the fat that remains in the pan (removed some of the fat as needed) and add to the bacon
  • Add remaining oil, saute the onions until soft, add the garlic, stir the flour, add the Cabernet Franc wine and bring to a boil
  • Pour over the venison, add bouquet garni and bring back to a boil
  • Turn down the heat and simmer for 2-21/2 hours until the meat is just tender, add sauted mushroom and cook for another 15 minutes. (Note: I sometimes used the crockpot after prepping the ingredients listed above, set at low for 4-6 hours making sure not to overcooked the meat)
  • Season the casserole to taste with salt and pepper, sprinkle over chopped parsley. Serve it with mashed or boiled potatoes or white or brown rice.
  • Enjoy this Casserole with a glass of Cabernet Franc!

 

 

Summer is almost over, the grapes are ripening and expecting to do our first harvest of Cayuga White in the first or second week end of September.

We have been busy. We bottled the first batch of wine.  Thanks to the big help of the Halbrendts crew – Nikki and JD together with our friends – Tim and Sharon Baker.  We made it and we ironed out some of the bottling bugs.