Category Archives: pasta

Pumpkin Lasagna with a Halter Ranch Côtes de Paso

pumpkin lasagna with a Halter Ranch Cotes de Paso for #winePW 5

Culinary Camilla photo

Not only did Camilla do a great job hosting the “Fall Fruit and Wine Pairings” for #winePW 5, she came up with a great recipe and pairing for it! I wouldn’t have thought to make a lasagna with pumpkin, but that’s my bad because it sounds and looks great! Then she pairs that Pumpkin Lasagna with a Halter Ranch Côtes de Paso, yum! Here’s a link to the recipe and pairing details on Culinary Adventures with Camilla.

I’ve enjoyed a few different wines from Halter Ranch in Paso Robles, including the Syrah I paired with grilled tuna for the #winePW 4. I’ve got to try their Côtes de Paso blend! I love a Rhone style blend, and in addition to the traditional Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre, it has a good bit of Tannat, too. Interesting blend!

Be sure to check out all the other tasty #winePW 5 pairings with fall fruit and wine pairings! Rounded up here. 

Sauvignon Blanc Paired with Pesto

A Taft Street Sauvignon Blanc paired with pesto

A classic: Sauvignon Blanc paired with pesto.

What makes it a classic? Here’s how the 2012 Taft Street Sauvignon Blanc worked with the pesto I made for the August Wine Pairing Weekend.

I get grassiness and grapefruit on the nose of the wine. I take a sip, and get peach, cherry blossoms, and mineral undertones. I eat a couple bites of the linguine, getting the garlic bite and saltiness in the pesto along with the freshness of the basil and acidity from the tomatoes. A lot happening on the palate. More wine. The crispness of the Sauvignon Blanc refreshes, cleansing the palate to be ready for another burst of flavor from the pesto. The makings of a classic pairing!

Ready to try this classic pairing for yourself? Typically on this site I link over to where you can find recipe details. But my pesto recipe is so simple (yet so good) that I’ll go ahead and re-share it right here:

Taft Street Sauvignon Blanc paired with pesto for #winePW 3Cooking Chat’s Basil Pesto Ingredients
2 cups fresh basil leaves, rinsed and tightly packed
4 cloves garlic
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup Pecorino or Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp pine nuts

The Method: Have a food processor at the ready. Rinse the basil and pluck the good leaves from the plant, add to a measuring cup. I use up all the basil I’ve gotten. If I wind up with more than two cups basil, I scale the recipe accordingly and have more pesto on hand. If you have extra basil and a school age child on hand, enlist them in the process of calculating the recipe proportions, keep those math skills sharp over the summer! Put the basil into the food processor, and give it a quick whir to begin chopping the basil and make room for the other ingredients.

Next, add the garlic, and hit that food processor button again to get the cloves chopped up with the basil.

Add the remaining in ingredients, and then puree to get everything well combined. Open the food processor, scrape the sides to get bits of garlic and basil that haven’t been incorporated, then give the processor a final whir. Presto, you have tasty pesto! If you’re going to be eating within the next hour or so, just leave the pesto out. If you’re making in advance, refrigerate, but take out an hour before serving to bring the pesto to room temperature. Serve over hot pasta.

Wine Pairing: Well, we already covered Sauvignon Blanc being a classic to pair with pesto.  Want to go in a different direction? I’ve also had luck pairing Prosecco with pesto, and Picpoul with pesto is also very good, if you want to try a lesser known wine with your pesto.

a classic pairing: Sauvignon Blanc with basil pesto

Farfalle and Pesto Paired with Prosecco

Prosecco makes a nice partner for classic basil pestoLooking for a wine pairing for pesto? Sauvignon Blanc is a classic pairing, as I wrote about in my post for #winePW 3 (click through for the recipe as well as wine pairing details), but a number of other wines can work well with it, too. Having made a big batch of pesto last weekend, I’ve had a chance to do some experiment.

One nice option is sparkling wine. Too many people think of sparking wines only for celebrations, when in fact it’s a great wine with many foods. I had picked up a bottle of Ca’Furlan Prosecco Cuvee Extra Dry from Pairings Wine & Food recently, and figured that would be good to try when we had farfalle bowtie pasta tossed with leftover pesto.  The Pairings tasting description for the Prosecco, “Honeysuckle bouquet with a hint of sweetness; fresh and minerally fruit with nice bubbles...” gives you the idea that this could work well with pesto. It cleanses the palate, in similar fashion to the sauv blanc, getting you ready to enjoy the next flavorful bite of the pasta.

Like many Proseccos, this is a nice affordable choice in the bubbly category–it can be had for around $10. Grab a bottle for your next batch of pesto!

During our #winePW chat Saturday, Jeff from foodwineclick and Jen from Vino Travels had a number of good ideas about Italian wines to try with pesto. They were talking still whites, so I’d forgotten to mention that I’d had this Italian bubble just a few days before! I’ll have to pick up on their suggestions next time I make a batch of pesto.

Orzo Salad with a Trebbiano d’Abruzzo

Orzo Salad paired nicely with a Trebbiano for Wine Pairing Weekend 2.

photo courtesy of Vino Travels.

Italian wine tends to be very food-friendly, so it’s great having Jen from Vino Travels: An Italian Wine Blog participating in our Wine Pairing Weekend events.  For the July #winePW event “Refreshing Summer Wine Pairings”, Jen paired orzo salad with the the 2012 I Lauri Lume Trebbiano d’Abruzzo. Sounds like a great match to me! The salad had a variety of veggies along with some tasty Pecorino cheese from Tuscany.  Trebbiano is of the many wonderful Italian white grape varietals. Jen reports that:

“On the nose this trebbiano had lots of citrus and minerality to it with a hint of petroleum. It was dry with some grassy notes on the palate. Throughout it had refreshing acidity creating a nice crisp wine.

Get all the details on Jen’s pairing, including more background on the wine, over in her #winePW 2 post. Keep an eye on all her Italian wine posts on Vino Travels, and check out the other #winePW 2 pairings via this roundup post.

2012 I Lauri Lume Trebbiano d'Abruzzo

 

A Sauvignon Blanc for Pasta with Chicken and Goat Cheese

pasta with goat cheese and chicken, pairs well with Sauvignon Blanc

This wine pairing started with a bottle of 2011 Castoro Cellars Sauvignon Blanc, which the folks from SIP Certified had sent for me to come up with a food pairing. I came up with this Pasta with Chicken and Goat Cheese, based on sauv blanc’s affinity for both chicken and goat cheese. The dish also features lemon, capers, and basil, flavors to consider with the wine pairing. I noted I didn’t have a Sauvignon Blanc pairing on the site yet, so I grabbed this one from the Cooking Chat archives!

I got a bit of hibiscus on the nose of the wine, and a fresh and lively taste. I detected kiwi, lemon and a touch of pepper. This picked up the lemon, herbs and onion in the dish nicely. I’d say we got this pairing done right, if I do say so myself! According to the Castoro website, this is their first year producing Sauv Blanc, and I’d say the did quite well.   There’s a bit of Gewurztraminer blended in, which gave I’d say gave it just a touch of spice. A good value at around $15. Castoro Cellars currently has the 2013 vintage of their Sauvignon Blanc out; I’d imagine that would work well, as would other crisp sauv blancs you like.

Full disclosure: I received a complimentary bottle of the wine from SIP to sample. The opinions and recipes here are entirely my own!

Castoro Cellars Sauvignon Blanc. #wine