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Wednesday, June 29, 2016


This was a Jo Day and thoughts were of the upcoming Mothers Day - the flowers arrived, making my thoughts focus on my daughter and her daughters. If I could not be with them,  I would turn to food - not any food, but a"favorite food" (and wine). As luck would have it, I  happened to have all the ingredients.


The entree: Chicken Francaise. The chicken breasts were pounded thin and coated with a mixture of flour, ground pepper and herbs de provence. The breasts were browned in evoo and a teaspoon of butter.  Meanwhile I simmered chicken stock,white wine and lemon juice.  When the breasts were browned I added the sauce to the pan of breasts and simmered on a very low heat.

The sides:  Risotto.The risotto was cooked according to package direction. I used  boxed chicken stock for the liquid and added an ample portion of pressed garlic.  A cup of grated parmesan cheese was added as the risotto was finishing.

Peas:  Added for color! I merely splashed them with chicken broth and heated in the microwave.

The wine: Rombauer Chardonnay: A tad pricey for a daily dinner, but it was pre Mother's Day,  so why not! And although my spouse's preference is  red wine,  if it is good chardonnay he will share mine. 



Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Toasting our good fortune and a Donum story

It was a celebration! We closed on a winter home on this day in late May and decided to celebrate. A perfect excuse to open a prized wine from a visit to wine country in October 2014. At a party at the Donum Estate, Sonoma County,CA, Mike guessed the weight of a pumpkin, the exact weight, I might add and won the bottle of wine!
With  puff pastry and a round of Brie on hand,  and a warm evening, we settled on the deck, popped the cork and enjoyed!  

The brie - same as always: thaw and roll out the pastry, spread the pasty with honey dijon, place the round of brie and fold the pastry on top. Glaze with egg white and bake according to package directions.

The wine: A 2012 Pinot Noir, "1870."The name is derived from a stage coach stop - the ruins and cornerstone remain on the estate.

To say we enjoyed the bottle is an extreme understatement!  I did email Maggie, the Hospitality Manager at Donum Estates, and she was quick to respond. She was happy to hear we enjoyed the wine and was still amazed that Mike had guessed the exact weight of the pumpkin!

Mike and Maggie

Thursday, June 2, 2016


Baked Haddock and Veggie Medley

Dipping Oil with fresh basil and herbs 
A Chardonnay

The Haddock was frozen but I was just looking for some fish that was not salmon.  Although I am sold on the health benefits of salmon, one just needs some variety.

Entree: Baked Haddock. The haddock fillets were defrosted in cold water, rinsed and then dried with a paper towel before dipping in half & half. The Haddock was then coated with a mixture of cracker crumbs, grated parmesan cheese,, thyme, crushed garlic and ground black.  The fillets were drizzled with butter and baked on the top rack of the oven at 500 degrees for 15 minutes.
Side:Veggie Medley. The broccoli, red bell pepper, zucs,  shallots and a sprig of thyme were sautéed in evoo for two minutes and  splashed with chicken broth before simmering on low heat for five minutes.
The Wine: Donum 2014 Chardonnay.  Yes, a white from Donum and very nice!