To think we have made our way this far through 2021 already! How time flies. Many of us are well into holiday planning mode, now that we’ve long said our final goodbye to summer. It’s time to gather your dearest loved ones, and indulge in great food and even better wine. Follow along for some WineCollective holiday party wine pairings.
Pinot Noir Wine Pairing: Spicy-ish Honey Mustard
(Yield: 3x 500mL jars)
Although this is not a main dish or focal point during a cocktail party, this is a must-make at the beginning of the holiday season. It is great to pull out for a sandwich bar for a midday get together, amazing as dip for savoury meats, or on a charcuterie board.
This honey mustard pairs great with Pinot Noir thanks in part to the sweetness from the honey. Pinot Noir is also great with charcuterie and the many possible mustard-pairings you create.
- 1 c. Mustard Seed
- 1 c. Beer (stout or a heavier wheat beer)
- 1 c. Mustard powder
- 1 ¾ c. water
- ¾ c. White vinegar
- ¾ c. Apple cider vinegar
- 4 tsp flour
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp turmeric
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp paprika
- ¾ c. Honey
Getting it done:
The night before you make the mustard, combine the mustard seeds and the beer in a bowl. Let them soak overnight. The next morning strain the seeds, use a mesh strainer as the seeds are quite fine, make sure to capture the excess beer into a measuring cup – you should have about 1/4 cup of excess beer.
Blend the seeds into a paste using a full size blender or hand blender, whatever is accessible or easiest for you.
Next is the easy part! Throw everything in a pot — except the honey. Place the pot on the stove over medium heat and allow it to come to a boil while you whisk everything together. Turn it down to low and set a timer for between 7 and 10 minutes. If you like really spicy mustard, you can turn it off at 7 and if you like it a little milder turn it off at 10 minutes.
Once the stove is off, you can whisk in the honey. Allow the mustard to cool for about 30 minutes in the pot before transferring into jars. Make sure that your jars have been cleaned thoroughly prior to use. In the fridge, this mustard should keep for up to 6 months, but we’re sure you’ll eat it all before then!
Merlot Wine Pairing: Pistachio Mustard Crusted Lamb Pops
Lamb is lovely to serve over the holidays, as it has a unique flavour that pairs so nicely with holiday spices, nuts, and aromas. It is also a dish that warms you up and can be served both as a great main or in this case an awesome appetizer! In this recipe we use our homemade mustard. If you are not that adventurous, or just don’t have the time, any grainy or spicy mustard will do!
Merlot is a wonderful match for this mustard crusted lamb dish. Its inherent sweetness works well with the umami of the lamb and the spiciness of the mustard. A match made in dinner heaven!
- 1 rack of lamb
- ¼ c. Pistachio (finely chopped)
- 4 tbsp Mustard (homemade mustard or any spicy mustard will do)
- 1 tbsp Olive Oil
- Salt & Pepper for seasoning
Putting it together:
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Prepare the rack of lamb by patting it dry with a piece of paper towel. Once it is dry it can be rubbed down with the olive oil and seasoned with the salt and pepper.
In a bowl place the finely chopped pistachios with the mustard. Mix together to form a paste. This paste can be spooned and spread around the meaty end of the rack of lamb. Make sure to spread the paste across the whole rack evenly, but try not to make the layer too thick. A thick layer might fall off during the cooking process.
Place the rack in a shallow baking tray lined with parchment, leaving uncovered while in the oven. Cook for 25 minutes for a medium rare rack. Once the desired cook is reached, remove from the oven and cover with a foil top for about 5 minutes to naturally finish the cooking.
To serve, slice the rack between each rib and display on a plate as you see fit. Serve with a small bowl or ramiken of mustard!
Sauvignon Blanc Wine Pairing: Pomegranate & Pine Nut rolled Goat’s Cheese
To round out your holiday party, offering a soft cheese with a crisp fruity kick is always a nice touch. This holiday season we have the fresh flavour of pomegranate with a little crunch from pine nuts to create this festive cocktail party pairing dish.
Share this delicious Goat Cheese on your charcuterie or as a light hors d’oeuvre, with a nicely chilled bottle of Sauvignon Blanc. The acidity from both the cheese and wine are a wonderful match and Sauvignon Blanc is an adaptable wine that will suit the added pomegranate and pine nuts.
- ¼ c. Frozen pomegranate seeds
- ¼ c. Pine Nuts
- ⅛ tsp black pepper
- ⅛ tsp cinnamon
- Goat’s Cheese Log (long)
Putting it together:
Remove the goat’s cheese log from the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes before working with it. It should be soft and malleable.
In a food processor using the stainless steel blade, pulse together the frozen pomegranate seeds and pine nuts until they are almost a powder. Add the pepper and cinnamon, pulsing a few more times to mix in.
Lay a piece of saran wrap flat on the counter, then pour the pomegranate and pine nut mixture on it. Spread it out (try and keep the edges of the saran clean of mixture, at least 1”), about the width of the goat’s cheese log and as far up the saran as you have mixture for.
Lay the goat’s cheese along the edge of mixture on the saran, width wise, as you have spread it out to fit. Pull the saran up over the goat’s cheese and start to roll it along the mixture. Since the goat’s cheese has been sitting at room temperature it will be malleable, so feel free to gently push along the saran as you are rolling to ensure the mixture attaches to the cheese. Display the cheese on any serving tray and serve with a cracker of your choice.
Share the Pair(ings)
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