Friday, November 30, 2018

The Start of Holiday Food & Spirits

It’s the start of the holiday season and I’ve been receiving some interesting spirits to enjoy during your celebrations.

Eggnog Vodka? Worth a try…
I was a bit leery when I heard about Eggnog Vodka from Three Olives, but I agreed to give it a try.
As expected, it did nothing for me as a straight shot. I decided to bring it down to my clubhouse, where the bartender, Lionel, played around with it a bit.

Lionel loves creative challenges when it comes to spirits. His first thought was a hot chocolate, with a bit of half and half and a shot of Three Olives Eggnog Vodka. It was quite delicious, but the big hit was this:

Eggnog Vodka Martini:
2 ounces Three Olives Eggnog Vodka
½ ounce amaretto
½ ounce Whipped cream vodka
Splash of half & half
Sprinkle of nutmeg

Pour ingredients into a mixing gup filled with ice.
Strain into a martini glass.

For another twist on Eggnog… shout out to Sugarland’s Distilling Company, who sent me another bottle of their Eggnog Sippin’ Cream this year. If your looking for a ready-made shot, this is it. Strong stuff, but very tasty.

A red for all occasions…                                                                                  
In general, I prefer white wine, but one red that I usually go for is Sangiovese so I was happy to give Luna Vineyards 2015 a try. I was not disappointed. It’s fruity and rich, not too sweet and not dry.

A must for your holiday bar…
The biggest hit at my gatherings this month was Jack Daniels Winter Jack Tennessee Cider. Give it a try over ice, slightly warmed, with some seltzer, or in coffee. No matter how you like it, you’ll love this apple filled whiskey.

I strongly suggest you buy at least two bottles while it’s in season.  

Chocolate Banana Buckwheat Bread you’ll love…
I’m still playing around with my box of Pereg Naturals products. This month I decided to see what I can put together with the Buckwheat Flour.

I was surprised how well it baked. The Chocolate Banana Buckwheat Bread went quickly around here. I didn’t even have time to freeze some for later. You can find my recipe here.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Fun and Tasty Treats for Halloween Month

Halloween isn’t the only thing fun this month. I got to try some new products, that included a kitchen creation.

Black Box Spirits…
I’ve had mixed feelings about Black Box wines. I thought a few were good, but when my local bar replaced their pinot grigio with Black Box, I switched to another blend.

I can’t say anything bad about the Black Box whiskey, vodka, and tequila. They were all fantastic, and so easy to put out at a party. I especially had my doubts about the whiskey (whiskey in a box?), but it had nice vanilla notes and blended well in the cocktails we made.

Speaking of Wine…
Just the Wine  is for people like me who are sensitive to sulfites, a compound used in food to prevent browning (think about all those bright vegetables on the salad bar).

Sulfites are most known for being in red wine, though they are there to a lesser extent in white wines. It’s sulfites that are responsible for “red wine headaches” in people who are sensitive to them. I tend to avoid red wine because of sulfites, yet I was able to finish a glass by adding three drops of Just the Wine. (It does not alter the taste in any way.)

You can purchase Just the Wine at Amazon.

Sweet Potato Toast? Yes, please…
For the record, I am way over the cauliflower craze. It would probably be more accurate to say I was never into it at all.

Don’t get me wrong, I love cauliflower – as a vegetable on my plate, next to the rice, pasta, or potatoes. It’s not rice, pasta, or potatoes just because you change the shape.

Anyway, when Caulipower offered to send me some samples, I had to warn them in advance where I stand. Their Turkey Pepperoni Pizza wasn’t bad, if you like your crust to taste like cauliflower, not crust. They did send something else that I had no reservations about – Sweet Potatotoasts.

I am a sweet potato fan so the idea of such a convenient packet in my freezer was a winner to me. I popped a couple in my toaster and then sprinkled them with cinnamon for a meal finisher. Another time, I layered a couple with some margarine and through them in the microwave for a couple of minutes.

Sweet Potatotoasts is definitely something I’d recommend buying, just remember that they are raw and frozen, so turn your toaster on the highest setting, or cook accordingly in the microwave.

And, this month’s creation…
I took a break from trying out Pereg products to do something completely out of the ordinary: make a dish with Edward & Sons Organic Young Jackfruit. I decided to go with a recipe that mimics pulled pork, using the jackfruit. I told a few friends I was bringing it to a pot luck and they were skeptical. Well, it was a big hit. In fact, one person didn’t even realize it was jackfruit and not pork!

I’m sure I don’t have to tell you how much healthier it is, not to mention fat free. You can find the recipe for Pulled Jackfruit on my Pinterest page. You can purchase the Edward & Sons Jackfruit at Amazon.