Pairings | Stew
Few things cheer at this time of year. In the UK it's cold, grey and damp Time to head for the kitchen and knock up a rich beef stew or casserole and leave it simmering for hours.
If you're inspired to cook Brazilian with the Olympics kicking off this weekend try this classic fish stew from Thiago Castanho and Luciana Bianchi's Brazilian Food.
Quite an adventurous pairing this week which you might have thought on paper wouldn’t come off. A hot, spicy pork and peanut stew and a glass of Ben Glaetzer’s bold, ripe 2010 Heartland Dolcetto & Lagrein from South Australia's Langhorne Creek.
I’m aware that there’s a Francophile bias to this site but there are recipes where I automatically turn to the New World. The spicy lamb dish I picked up the other night from my local restaurant and takeaway Culinaria is one of them - a hottish tagine-style dish of spiced lamb, aubergines, chickpeas & merguez sausage which was almost on the verge of being a curry.
Of all the great food and wine pairings I experienced in Rioja last week this was the most unexpected.
I went to a great little bistro the other day in St-Rémy-de-Provence called - appropriately enough - Bistro Découverte. It’s run by a very talented young sommelier I used to know in London called Claude Douard who worked for Marco Pierre White and Joel Rebuchon.
You’d expect a Southern Rhône red to go with wild boar but in fact it was the chestnut polenta that made the match with this former Côtes du Rhône ‘cru’ so successful
Despite the sun it's been unseasonably cold recently so here's a light lunch to enjoy with a couple of friends that has a touch of spring about it but still includes a warming stew.
A robust Spanish fish stew from Stevie Parle's fabulous new Dock Kitchen Cookbook. Stevie is one of the best -travelled and most original chefs in London with a well-honed magpie tendency of picking up ingredients and techniques from every country he visits. He also writes a weekly column in the Daily Telegraph.
I made this simple, classic French one-pot meal down in the Languedoc in April last year - proof that a stew hits the spot at what can still be a chilly time of year.
Today is International Grenache Day, a celebration of a grape which is (often anonymously) responsible for some of the most generous and appealing reds in the wine world.
Despite the emphasis that winemakers place on the different crus or terroirs of Chablis three factors seem to me to influence a food match more than any other for most of the Chablis you’ll taste - the age of the wine, the vintage and the degree of oak influence, if any.
Last week our local tapas bar, Ocean, held a Brazilian evening with a talented local Bristol singer Frances Butt who is really into Latin music. (So much so that she has issued an album called The Girl from Wolverhampton - where she grew up though obviously not where her soul lies . . .)
I first had this wonderful vegetable stew - a northern Spanish equivalent of a spring vegetable minestrone - in a restaurant in Pamplona and dreamed about it for several years before managing to recreate it.
It’s hard to avoid the obvious on St Paddy’s Day. Guinness, Bailey’s and Irish whiskey are the usual suspects but if none of these appeals here are the sort of wines that will work with classic Irish fare.
Last night we opened a bottle of 2005 Nugan Estate McLaren Parish Vineyard Shiraz - a typically big lush Aussie red at a hefty 15% ABV.
A robust, winey stew from Rebecca Seal's mouthwatering new book, The Islands of Greece which immediately makes you want to jump on a plane and fly off there. Top tip about cooking rabbit too.
Few people now throw up their hands in horror at the idea of matching red wine with fish. But how many realise just how often you can pair the two?
It’s tough to say what the best wine matches for lamb are - it’s served so many different ways and there are so many wines (mainly red) that work but here are my five favourites.
I always think it’s misleading to describe pork as a ‘white meat’. Strictly that's accurate, I suppose, but ‘whiteness’ somehow seems to suggest lack of flavour.
Malbec is getting so popular it may have become one of your favourite reds but what are the best kind of dishes to eat with it?
It’s true that lamb is one of the most wine-friendly of meats, as at home with red Bordeaux and Rioja as it is with the fruitier wines of the new world. But if you’re looking for a spot-on match it’s worth thinking just how - and for how long - you’re going to cook it.
White rioja is tricky when it comes to wine matching as it comes in such contrasting styles. There are the crisp fresh unoaked white riojas which behave much like a sauvignon blanc and much richer barrel-fermented ones which can tackle more intensely-flavoured fish and meat dishes
Salt cod, a popular Good Friday dish in parts of the Mediterranean, is cooked many different ways which suggest different wine pairings.
Like any other red South Africa's Pinotage comes in different styles - some lighter and fruitier than others. When you're matching it with food you take a cue from the sort of ingredients and dishes that go with its two ancestors - Pinot Noir and Cinsault.
I’m a huge fan of Nigel Slater’s. I buy the Observer every week just to read his recipes. Yes, I know I could read them online (as you can here) but you don’t get the luscious Jonathan Lovekin photographs. Not that you need them. Slater’s prose is so evocative you can taste the recipe as you read.
Although there are obviously differences between the two types of beer, dark stouts and porters tend to match similar types of food. Here are my top matches ...
Shiraz, like every other wine, varies in style depending on its price, age and region of origin but you can be pretty sure when it comes to matching Australian shiraz we’re talking about a full-bodied red.
If you’re going to or hosting a Burns’ Night dinner tonight and want to create a bit of a stir, crack open a bottle of Westmalle Dubbel, a classic Belgian Trappist ale that is still made by monks at the monastery of Westmalle. You could of course drink a Scottish beer - there are plenty of good ones - but haggis to my mind needs a bit of roundness, sweetness and strength, qualities you find more often in Belgian than British beers.
The idea of matching a soup with a full-bodied south-western French red wine might seem bizarre but it proved a surprisingly good pairing.
You may not be familiar with Carmenère but it's a delicious red at this chilly time of year.
Last week we were down at our house in Languedoc mainly cooking from home* and raiding the cellar for wines we thought needed drinking up - at least that was our excuse!