Photos MAY BE temporarily down due to photobucket probems!! SORRY

Friday, March 29, 2013

Duplin Burgundy

 This is a different Muscadine wine  I don't usually like wine made from this type of grape. HOWEVER We all enjoyed this one. It is nice as a dessert wine in our thinking.

I have found that this is hard to find in the stores!

Beringer Chardonnay

 We really enjoyed this. Normally we go for a real oak-type blend. This one was different--It does have the oak, but this describes it well: it "expresses bright green apple ad pear flavors balanced with vanilla oak notes." NICE.

Cheesecake a Sour Cream cheesecake

 I will get a picture of it out of the pan later. The above is a picture of it with the sour cream topping. Below is how it looks while cooling in the oven after removing the pan of water it sat in. below--

getting ready to spread the topping:

 Below is what it looks like as it is nearing the end of the baking cycle. You want the top to all puff up.

It will settle back down as it cools .in the oven (Note it looks darker than it actually is since I was taking the picture in the oven:  below is a picture of it in the water bath but I do not like it cooked in the bath  

 When we cut it I will try to remember to take another picture and add it. This is my favorite Cheesecake and it is different because it uses both  3 cups of sour cream and 2 packages of cream cheese all in the batter itself. VERY CREAMY--it comes out best in an 8 inch spring form pan

Best if cooked a day ahead.

For the Filling have at room temp:

1 cup sugar
3 eggs
2  packages of  8 ounce cream cheese
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups sour cream

For the crust:
graham cracker crust (if desired )

1 and 1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 Tab sugar
3 Tab melted butter

1 and 1/2 cups sour cream
2 tab sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla

First take a 9 inch springform pan (I actually prefer an 8 inch one because it comes out creamier in the 8 inch pan and taller--however I couldn't find my 8 inch pan) .  Preheat oven to 350 if making a crust (I omit since I am gluten free). To make the crust combine the crumbs and the 2 tab of sugar. Then mix in the melted butter very well. Press evenly in the bottom of the pan. Bake 5 minutes and then cool.

While crust is cooling---In a large bowl cream the sugar and the cream cheese together mixing well. Add the eggs one at a time, 3 cups of sour cream and the vanilla, blending well.  Pour into the pan on top of the  cooled crust.  Bake one hour or until middle of cake rises a bit and the top browns slightly (see photo--best if not quite so cooked)--using the 8 inch pan means you will have to cook it longer.  When the cake is done then Shut off oven and leave cake in oven with the door open for one hour. If you use an 8 inch pan it takes longer than this--so you will need to watch it. Perhaps 15 minutes additional or longer.

After doing the above remove cake from oven. Preheat oven to 425. Mix a cup to a cup and a half of sour cream, with 2 tab sugar and 1/2 teas vanilla. Spread over the top of cake and cook 5 minutes. Let cool and then refrigerate 5-6 hours or over night.

note if you try the water bath: Wrap bottom half of pan in foil. Pour in filling; place in a roasting pan. Pour in boiling water to come halfway up side of springform. Bake at 325 until just set in center, about 1 1/2 hours. Remove pan from water; let --1 hour in the oven with the door open.
NOTE: This time I tried the water bath that is described  BUT I do not like it this way as  I wrapped the pan with 2 layers of foil as pictured and placed it in an inch of hot water (boiling) and I set the oven to 325 and cooked it for 1 and 1/2 hours or a bit longer--I had to keep watching it. It is supposed to make it creamier and with less cracking on the top, but it didn't come out creamier this way--it was grainy and drier!! May be I need to cook it less in the water but I do not think I will use the water bath again!

Zinfandel XYZIN

 We have not liked Zinfandel in the past , but we have always tried the sweeter ones. We love this Red Zin!! It is mellow and smooth and dry.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

fried rice recipe /easy

  The link below includes a good fried rice recipe. .  I  changed it some so go there for the original

Fried Rice                                                                                             

3 cups cooked white rice 
3 tbs sesame oil
1 cup froze peas 
fresh shredded carrots (about 1 cup) I used the kind that is slivered
1 small onion, chopped
2 tsp minced garlic
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/4 cup soy sauce
I added ginger
Chinese five spice

      On medium high heat, heat the oil in a large skillet or wok.  Add the peas/carrots mix, onion and garlic. Stir fry until tender. Sprinkle lightly with some ground ginger and Chinese five spice. Lower the heat to medium low and push the mixture off to one side, then pour your eggs on the other side of skillet and stir fry until scrambled. Now add the rice and soy sauce and blend all together well. Stir fry until thoroughly heated!   **You could really play around with this rice too! Try adding some diced ham, or green onion or you could fry up some tofu with this.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Tres Picos Borsao Garnacha

So love this wine.

 Just as it is described: "The grapes for this exceptional wine were harvested from old vine Garnacha vineyards that cling to rugged terrain on the slopes of the famous Moncayo mountain. Low yields of less than two tons per acre produce a rich deeply colore and aromatic wine with concentrated flavors of blackberries, strawberries and nuances of leather, vanilla and plums." Produce of Spain

Friday, March 1, 2013

Spaghetti sauce with added Gluten free meatballs

We enjoyed this tonight and I found some fresh GLUTEN FREE MEATBALLS at my local store--that made me happy  . I added a 2 links of mild Italian sausage as well. It has been ages since I have had a sauce with meat!
Makes about 7 cups.

1/2 a stick of celery chopped finely
onion--a tablespoon or two chopped fine
1 Tab olive oil or more if needed
7 cloves of garlic sliced
6 ounces of tomato paste
1 (28 ounce can) of crushed tomatoes (fire roasted kind are best)
2 (28 ounce cans each) of tomato puree   
1/2 teaspoon of fresh ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon of  salt
2 teaspoons of dried basil
1 teaspoon of sugar and a bit of agave nectar

Saute the celery and onion in olive oil  for a few minutes until they start to be tender. Add the garlic  cloves and let those get tender. Be careful not to burn! Add the tomato paste and let it heat up for a minute or 2 with the garlic mixture. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer on a low setting for 3 hours. You can add whatever meat you desire --I cooked the meatballs and sausage separately in the oven , drained off the fat and added them to the sauce and let them simmer in the sauce. (with the Italian sausage after cooking it in the oven I also simmered it in water for a couple of minutes to get rid of a bit more fat).

Rodney Strong Pinot Noir 2011

We really enjoyed this wine!!