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DaVinci Chianti

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Part Two Feast of the Seven Fishes with DaVinci Wine

Italian Sausage and Shrimp Stew for Feast of the Seven Fishes // Karista's Kitchen and DaVinci Wine

The Feast of the Seven Fishes is a delicious Italian tradition where seven delectable fish dishes are served for Christmas Eve dinner.

This year DaVinci Wine asked me to create seven festive and delightful fish dishes for their Feast of the Seven Fishes. This is the part of my job I absolutely love – especially when it involves fish and DaVinci wine.

The first five dishes we paired with DaVinci Pinot Grigio. You’ll find them HERE along with the first Feast of the Seven Fishes post HERE.

In this second post, I’m highlighting the last two fish recipes that we’ve paired with DaVinci Chianti. As well as one of the seven fish dishes that I believe pairs beautifully with both the DaVinci Pinot Grigio and DaVinci Chianti.

When I visited Italy with DaVinci Wine in 2013, I dined on the most decadent food but also the most decadent seafood dishes. One particular starter that struck me as simple but so lovely in flavor was a crostini with homemade ricotta topped with a single anchovy. I call it Bruno’s Crostini – named after our gracious lunch host and DaVinci grower, Bruno Rossetti.

Smoked Salmon Crostini with Herbed Ricotta for Feast of the Seven Fishes // Karista's Kitchen and DaVinci Wine

Although I prepare this starter often, I love using smoked salmon with ricotta cheese. Going a step further, I added fresh chopped herbs to the ricotta for a little more “bite” to the recipe. Salmon pairs extremely well with DaVinci Pinot Grigio, so I included this lovely starter in the first post.

However, I adore pairing both salmon and smoked salmon with DaVinci Chianti as well. Because DaVinci Chianti is well balanced with jammy flavors of ripe plums, cherries and red fruit, it beautifully compliments the smoked salmon and herbed ricotta crostini – making it another lovely wine pairing for this gorgeous starter.

Italian Sausage and Shrimp Stew for Feast of the Seven Fishes // Karista's Kitchen and DaVinci Wine

Another recipe from our Feast of the Seven Fishes is an impressive dish everyone will enjoy. An Italian Sausage and Shrimp stew that warms the soul and delights the taste buds. This is an intensely flavored dish, filled with aromatics, fresh herbs that bring earthiness to the recipe, tangy tomatoes and spicy Italian sausage combined with fresh shrimp and clams.   Sounds like a winning combination to me! Although I use the DaVinci Pinot Grigio in the stew, I think this stew is best served with DaVinci Chianti.

The last fish dish in this series, is the gorgeous Spaghetti alle Vongole (Spaghetti with Red Clam Sauce). Just the name of this dish sounds enticing.

Spaghetti Vongole for Feast of the Seven Fishes // Karista's Kitchen and DaVinci Wine

The Vongole sauce is distinctive and lush, prepared with fresh ingredients and a cup of DaVinci Chianti to round out flavors. It’s a hearty sauce that beautifully envelops the pasta and compliments the steamed clams – garnished with fresh grated Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh Italian parsley.

Creating a festive and exquisite Christmas Eve celebration is as simple as these seven fish dishes. Feast of the Seven Fishes paired with DaVinci Wine will delight your guests and bring delicious merry making to your holiday celebration.

Wishing you warm and Delicious Holidays!

Loads of Love,

Karista

 

 

Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Pork Salad Sassy Side dishes

Chianti at Home for the Holidays with Southern Style Barbecue

DaVinci Chianti at Home for the Holidays // Karista's Kitchen Southern Style Barbecue

There are a few things I’m terribly traditional about.  A birthday dinner of choice on one’s actual birthday, ghost shaped pancakes on Halloween morning, pan seared beef tenderloin medallions with a Madeira wine sauce on Valentine’s Day and a Southern style barbecue around the holidays.

Barbecue might seem a little out of place during the holidays, but at my house it’s a yearly tradition.  Mostly because my family loves barbecue and could dine on it year round.  The cooler holiday months also seem like the perfect time to capture a bit of summer whimsy within these festive dishes.

Chianti at Home for the Holidays with Southern Style Barbecue // Karista's Kitchen

Succulent and bursting with flavor, I pair a Southern style pulled pork with my DaVinci Chianti BBQ Sauce.  A slightly sweet and tangy sauce laced with my favorite Chianti wine.  With aromas of ripe plum and cherry accented by peppery notes, DaVinci Chianti is a medium bodied and well balanced wine; blending beautifully into a most lush and silky sauce.  It’s so delicious, my family will wrangle for the last drop of sauce.  You just might be tempted to lick your plate!

Chianti at Home for the Holidays with Southern Style Barbecue // Karista's Kitchen

Although I like a traditional coleslaw, for this meal I serve an elevated slaw of Apple, Fennel and Napa Cabbage, which is lightly tossed in a sweet dressing.  Along with the Southern style pulled pork, lush Chianti barbecue sauce and Apple Fennel Slaw, I also serve a delicious dish of homemade Baked Beans to round out the meal. After all, it’s not a barbecue without the beans.

To celebrate our holiday barbecue, the table is set with holiday china while the music of the season fills the room. Our guests are seated, the Chianti is poured and our Southern style barbecue is served.

Chianti at Home for the Holidays with Southern Style Barbecue // Karista's Kitchen

It’s a festive occasion that feels special, and yet, warm and inviting with the enticing scent of earthy and rich flavors filling the house.  I love to hear the clink of glasses filled with the deep ruby colored DaVinci Chianti which pairs so perfectly with this holiday meal.

When the dishes are empty and the last of the Chianti has been poured, it’s almost difficult to leave the table, lingering over conversation and a celebration of all that is most precious to us.

Chianti at Home for the Holidays with Southern Style Barbecue // Karista's Kitchen

This is a festive meal to serve for any holiday celebration. The recipes can be doubled to accommodate a large crowd and are fairly fuss free to prepare.  The baked beans can be prepped a day or two in advance and slider rolls or large barbecue buns can be served with the pulled pork, making for a lovely casual dining atmosphere or a sit down dinner.

Cheers! to a most delicious and happy holiday season.

Bon Appetito!

Karista 

Southern Style Pulled Pork with Chianti Barbecue Sauce

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

4-5lbs boneless pork shoulder, halved

Salt

¼ cup dark brown sugar

1 teaspoon onion powder

½ teaspoon garlic powder

½  teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon ground allspice

½ cup apple cider vinegar

Slow cooker

Directions

Pre-heat a slow cooker on high.

Mix together the brown sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper and allspice.

Season the two pork shoulder pieces with salt and then brown on all sides.  Transfer the pork pieces to the slow cooker and season with the brown sugar mixture. Making sure to cover both pieces of pork.  Pour the apple cider vinegar over the pork pieces, cover with the lid and turn the heat to low.  Cook on low for about 7-8 hours or until the pork pieces are fork tender.

Tip: When using a slow cooker to prepare a pork shoulder or beef chuck, it isn’t necessary to have a lot of liquid as the slow cooker allows these cuts of meat to cook in their own juices.

Once the pork shoulder is done, shred with two forks and keep moist with juices from the slow cooker.

Option: If you’d like, add a ¼ – ½ cup of the Chianti BBQ sauce to the pulled pork and serve with additional sauce on the side.

Serve with barbecue buns or slider buns, Apple Fennel Slaw and Homemade Baked Beans. And don’t forget the Chianti!

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Chianti Barbecue Sauce

Serves 6

Ingredients

2 cups organic ketchup

1 cup DaVinci Chianti wine

3 teaspoons dry English mustard

¼ cup dark brown sugar

¼ cup unsulphured molasses

3 tablespoons Worcestershire

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Directions

In a medium sauce pan over medium low heat stir together the ketchup, wine, mustard, brown sugar, molasses and Worcestershire. Bring it to a simmer, turn the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for about 10 minutes.  Take the sauce off the heat and stir in the balsamic vinegar.

Because I like to use this sauce in my Homemade Baked Beans recipe, I usually double the recipe. It’s a travesty when I run out of sauce!   However, feel free to use a barbecue sauce of your choice in the Homemade Baked Beans recipe.

Serve the Chianti Barbecue Sauce with Southern Style Pulled Pork, Apple Fennel Slaw and Homemade Baked Beans. The sauce can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to one week. 

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Apple Fennel Slaw

Serves 6 -8

Ingredients

One medium fennel bulb, thinly sliced or shredded and fronds saved

1 head of Napa cabbage, thinly sliced or shredded

2 cups shredded apples, or thinly sliced apples and spritzed with a little lemon juice

1 cup mayonnaise

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup sugar

Dash of hot sauce, optional

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Whisk together the mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar and sugar until well combined.  Season to taste with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.  Set aside until ready to serve.

Gently toss together the fennel, cabbage and apples.  Chop the fennel fronds and toss them on top of the slaw.

Dress the slaw with half the dressing, using more if needed, just before serving.

Serve with Southern style pulled pork and baked beans. 

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Homemade Baked Beans

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

4 ounces bacon, diced

1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

3 15ounce cans navy beans, drained

1/2 cup Chianti Barbecue Sauce, or a barbecue sauce of your choice

1 small onion, finely diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon Worcestershire

¼ cup molasses

¼ cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Medium to large baking dish

Directions

Heat the oven to 350F.

Heat a large skillet and cook the diced bacon.  Transfer the bacon with a slotted spoon to a dish and set aside.  Add a little olive oil if needed and sauté the onion.  When the onion is golden and soft, add the garlic and sauté another minute longer.  Add the bacon back into the skillet and stir in the beans.

Stir in the one cup of barbecue sauce, Worcestershire, molasses, brown sugar and balsamic vinegar.

Pour the beans into a baking dish and bake for about 30-45 minutes or until the beans are hot and bubbly.

DaVinci Wine Recipes Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Pork

Apricot and Sage Stuffed Pork Loin Roast and DaVinci Chianti

 

Apricot and Sage Stuffed Pork Loin // Karista's Kitchen

This is a lovely and simple dish filled with sweet and savory flavors of the Tuscan countryside.  Herbs are abundant in Tuscany; fields of rosemary and sage, thyme and lavender dance about the hillsides creating the most fragrant Tuscan breezes.

This succulent pork loin roast is stuffed with fresh sage, dried apricots and a hint of garlic and then roasted to moist and exquisite perfection.  Serve this tasty dish with my Arugula and White Bean Salad and pair with my favorite DaVinci Chianti.

We wouldn’t want to forget dessert… How about a Lavender Panna Cotta with Dark Chocolate to finish the meal?

For additional DaVinci Chianti recipes click HERE.

Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,

Karista

Apricot and Sage Stuffed Pork Loin Roast and DaVinci Chianti

Serving Size: 4-6

Apricot and Sage Stuffed Pork Loin Roast and DaVinci Chianti

Ingredients

  • 2-3lb pork loin roast
  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • 1 ½ cups white wine (DaVinci Pinot Grigio) If you don’t cook with wine use chicken broth with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar.
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chopped fresh sage, plus more for garnish
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 450F.
  • In a small sauce pan warm one cup of wine and soak the apricots for about 15 minutes.
  • Remove the apricots from the wine (reserve the wine) and coarsely chop them. Add them to a bowl and then toss with the sage and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and a splash of oil to bind the ingredients.
  • With a long blade knife cut into the vertical center of the pork loin roast, making a nice size hole for the stuffing. Pierce all the way through to the other side.
  • Stuff the apricot sage mixture into the pork, spreading as evenly as you can. This takes a little bit of fiddling but it’s fairly easy.
  • Place the stuffed pork loin roast in a small baking dish or small roasting pan. Pour the reserved wine over the pork. Rub a little oil on the pork and season with salt and pepper.
  • Put the pork loin in the oven and roast for 10 minutes. Then turn down the heat to 350F and roast for another 30 minutes or until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 145F.
  • Remove the pork loin from the oven and let it rest for about 5-10 minutes. While it’s resting, take the pan juices and pour them into a sauce pan.
  • Heat the juices over medium heat and add the butter. If needed, add additional chicken broth to the pan. Whisk until the butter is nicely incorporated and the pan sauce is heated through. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • To serve: Slice the pork loin roast and lay the slices on a platter. Pour some of the pan sauce over the pork slices and garnish with additional chopped fresh sage.
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    Here’s a not so great picture of me stuffing a pork loin.  Hope this visual is helpful!

    Stuffing the pork loin roast

    Karista's Kitchen Salad Seafood

    Seared Ahi Tuna Tacos with DaVinci Chianti

    Seared Ahi Tuna Tacos with Radish and Cucmber Salad and DaVinci Chianti

    By choosing to click and read this blog post, you confirm you are of legal drinking age in the country where this site is accessed.

    “DaVinci wine is created in a magical place.  Tuscany; a treat for the eyes as well as the palate.  The air smells of sweet, sun ripened grapes and fresh herbs –  all muddled with the earthy scent of mineral rich soil”.

    These were the first words I wrote the day I arrived at the Casale Leonardo da Vinci Villa in Vinci, Italy last fall.

    Never have I been so enamored with a landscape; and enchanted by the people who inhabit it.

    Seared Ahi Tuna Tacos with Radish and Cucumber Salad and DaVinci Chianti

    On a warm summer day last August, 2013, my daughter and I had loaded the last of our belongings into the car.  I walked back down the little gravel path and stood in the entry doorway, giving my home once last glance – then closing and locking it one last time.  We were moving to Oregon.  Bittersweet.  Trying to hold back the tears as we looked back at the house we had called home for 12 years.  My daughter, being a brave soul, reassured her Mom that it would be ok. “We aren’t moving that far away” she said.  I smiled.

    Then I said, “this is the beginning of a new adventure”.

    And it was.

    Just as we crossed the Washington Oregon border my phone rang.  Thankfully, my teenage daughter was driving so I answered the call.   A lovely lady announced to me that I had been selected the 2013 Culinary Arts DaVinci Wine Storyteller.  I remember asking the lovely lady to repeat what she had said.  The only words that would escape my lips was “really?” “I never win anything!” And then of course, thanking her profusely for delivering the most fantastic news.

    This time I really was in tears.  So excited, so honored to have been selected to represent the culinary arts for DaVinci Wine Storyteller Experience 2013.

    DaVinci Chianti with Radish Cucumber Salad 4

    Radish Cucumber Greens with Spicy Crema and DaVinci Chianti

    It was a grand adventure.  Looking back and reading my second journal entry I recall the swells of emotion. “The beauty of Tuscany mirrors the beauty of its people and its food”. “A culture rich with history and laced with passion. A passion that transcends all boundaries and flows effortlessly onto the family table”.

    The 2014 Storyteller Experience is under way and DaVinci Wine is once again looking for the best storytellers in culinary arts, photography, writing, fine arts and more.  Bloggers and creative storytellers of all kinds can now apply.   Grab a pen, warm up the typing fingers, “Like” the DaVinci Facebook page and go fill out the application.  The deadline is May 31, 2014.   Twelve finalists will be chosen and then voted on by DaVinci Wine Facebook fans to ultimately select the final four winners.

    I’m excited just thinking about it! If you’d like to apply, click HERE.  Be sure to check out the winners from years past by clicking HERE!

    The lovely folks from DaVinci Wine, who I adore, have asked me to share my Storyteller Experience and how I now create a little “Chianti at Home”.  Over the next few months, I will be pairing the DaVinci Chianti, Chianti Reserva and Pinot Grigio with recipes I serve at my family table.  Lush, enticing and mouthwatering recipes that pair perfectly with DaVinci Chianti here at Home.

    Chianti at Home with Seared Ahi Tuna Tacos and DaVinci Chianti

    The first of the “Chianti at Home” recipes is this flavorful and festive Seared Ahi Tuna Tacos.  Simply prepared and laced with fresh and spicy flavors of the season.  Although this is  technically a “seafood” taco, the delicate but firm and meaty texture of the Ahi tuna pairs beautifully with the DaVinci Chianti.

    The subtle fruit notes and smooth texture of the Chianti compliments the fresh and spicy flavors of the radish and cucumber greens and crema, as well as the firm and meaty texture of the seared Ahi tuna.  If you’re looking for a complimentary white wine to pair with the tacos, the DaVinci Wine Pinot Grigio also beautifully compliments this lovely dish..  Flavors that balance, entice the palate and compliment DaVinci Wines.

    Celebrate the Spring and Summer seasons by bringing a little Chianti to your Home!

    Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,

    Karista

    *This is a sponsored post by the lovely folks at DaVinci Wine

                                                                                                                                                         

    Seared Ahi Tuna Tacos with Radish Cucumber Greens and Spicy Crema

    Serves 4 (can easily be doubled for guests)

    Ingredients

    1 ½ lbs Ahi tuna fillets, sushi grade (remove the tuna from the frig 15 minutes prior to cooking. This will allow the skillet to stay hot and quickly sear the tuna)

    Salt and Fresh Cracked Black Pepper

    ½ teaspoon dried oregano

    ½ teaspoon ground cumin

    ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika

    2 tablespoons ghee/clarified butter (or another high heat oil)

    For the Greens and Spicy Crema

    2 medium radishes, thinly sliced

    1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced

    2 cups (or more if you’d like an extra side salad) mixed seasonal greens

    ½ crumbled Cotija cheese

    ¼ cup cilantro leaves (optional)

    ½ cup good quality mayonnaise

    2 tablespoons lime juice

    1 teaspoon sugar or any other natural alternative (not honey however, as honey is more of a flavoring rather than a sweetener)

    Dash of chipotle powder or Sriracha (both are delicious, however the chipotle powder gives a smoky flavor)

    2 limes, quartered

    Corn tortillas

    Directions

    In a small bowl mix together the dried oregano, ground cumin and paprika.  Season the tuna with salt and pepper and then rub the herb/spice mixture on both sides of the tuna fillets.

    Next, heat a large heavy bottom skillet over medium high heat.  (A cast iron skillet works well for this recipe)  Add a few tablespoons of ghee (clarified butter) or any other high heat oil. Once the oil is hot and shimmering, place one tuna fillet in the skillet and let it brown.  About two minutes on each side.  You want both sides golden brown with a pink center.

    Remove the tuna fillet and set it on a cutting board.  Repeat the process with the remaining tuna fillets.

    Once the tuna is done, slice against the grain so the tuna doesn’t fall apart.  Set aside and prepare the greens.

    Toss together the radishes, cucumber, mixed greens and cilantro leaves.  Season with a little salt and pepper and squeeze of lime juice.

    Whisk together the mayonnaise, lime juice, sugar and chipotle powder or Sriracha.

    Warm the tortillas in a steamer or wrap them in foil and warm them in the oven making sure they don’t dry out.  If you have a microwave, corn tortillas warm nicely in about 10 seconds in a microwave.

    To assemble:

    Place the radish and cucumber greens in the bottom of a tortilla and then top with a slice or two of Ahi tuna.  Drizzle with the spicy crema and garnish with cotija cheese.  Repeat the process and place the tacos on a large platter with the quartered limes to serve.

    Serve with your favorite homemade salsa, guacamole, tortilla chips – and DaVinci Chianti.