Recipes to pair with 2006 Reininger Merlot
Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Cherry Sauce
February is Heart Health Month, and what better way to celebrate than with an antioxidant-rich sauce. The deep flavors of the Bing cherry and pomegranate reduction, along with the smoky, aromatic spice rub, pair nicely with the Reininger Merlot. This sauce is also great with grilled lamb chops.
¾ teaspoon ground cumin
¾ teaspoon ground coriander
¾ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
1 shallots, diced
1 pork tenderloin (about 1 pound)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup plain pomegranate juice (such as POM Wonderful)
¾ teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water
2/3 cup dried Bing cherries
1-2 teaspoons Balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Instant read meat thermometer
Stir together the cumin, coriander, pepper, cinnamon and salt in a shallow bowl. Pat tenderloins dry and dredge in the spice mixture until evenly coated.
Heat olive oil in heavy nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Reduce heat to medium and and sear pork until meat is browned on all sides (about 3 minutes per side.)
Transfer Pork to an oven proof casserole and roast in 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes, until meat temperature reaches 145 degrees. Leave about 1 tablespoon grease in pan.
Saute shallots in skillet for about 2 minutes. Add Pomegranate juice to skillet and boil over medium-high heat until reduced to about 2/3 cup, about three minutes. Stir together cornstarch and water and whisk into juice. Add Bing cherries to sauce and reduce further.
Remove sauce from heat and add Balsamic vinegar, then swirl in butter until incorporated. Season with salt. Slice pork and serve with sauce.
New Potatoes with Balsamic-Shallot Butter
Wine, Food & Friends, by Karen MacNeil
A great side-dish for the Pork Tenderloin. The balsamic butter is brown, sweet and rich tasting. Best of all, you can make the sauce ahead of time, chill, then toss with the cooked potatoes just before serving.
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
2 ½ tablespoons butter, softened
1 ½ tablespoons chopped shallots
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
¼ teaspoon salt, divided
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
Bring the vinegar to boil in a small saucepan; reduce heat and simmer until reduced to 1 tablespoon (about 5 minutes). Place in a medium bowl and cool completely. Add butter, shallots, thyme and 1/8 teaspoon salt, and black pepper; stir well to combine.
Place potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until Tender. Drain. Cut potatoes in half; place in a large bow. And sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon salt. Add butter mixture and parsley. Gently toss to coat then Serve immediately.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts
1 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 garlic cloves, finely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 – 1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Combine the Brussels sprouts, olive oil, garlic, salt/pepper in a large mixing bowl and toss to coat. Spread the Brussels sprouts on an oiled, rimmed baking sheet. Roast sprouts, stirring occasionally, until tender and lightly charred, 17-20 minutes.
Remove from oven, transfer to a serving bowl, and coat with vinegar. Serve immediately.
Double Chocolate Pudding
A few years ago, Food & Wine Magazine included this recipe in a piece called “30 Best Fast Recipes Ever” … (it) has everything one could ask for in a chocolate pudding-an intense flavor and a silky texture that’s still firm enough to stand a spoon in.”
I recommend using a dark chocolate bars– 71/72 % cocoa – but semi-sweet is fine too. Just be sure and use top quality cocoa powder and chocolate. It’s a dense, chocolate purists delight!
2 ¼ cups whole milk
½ cup sugar
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 large egg
2 large egg yolks
6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate (use bars), finely chopped**
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Lightly whipped cream, and a few fresh raspberries for garnish
In a medium saucepan, combine 2 cups of the milk with ¼ cup of the sugar and the salt and bring to a boil over moderate heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk the cornstarch with the unsweetened cocoa powder and the remaining ¼ cup of sugar until blended. Add the remaining ¼ cup of milk and whisk until smooth. Whisk this mixture into the hot milk in the saucepan and bring to a boil over moderate heat, whisking constantly. Reduce the heat to moderately low and simmer, whisking constantly until the pudding is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 2 minutes.
In a medium bowl, whisk the whole egg with the egg yolks. Gradually whisk about 1 cup of the hot cocoa pudding into the eggs until thoroughly incorporated, the scrape the pudding back into the saucepan. Cook the pudding over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until it just comes to boil, about 2 minutes.
Pour the pudding into a medium heat-proof bowl. Add the chopped chocolate, butter and vanilla and whisk until fully incorporated and smooth. Transfer the pudding to six 6-ounce ramekins and refrigerate until chilled. Serve with lightly whipped cream and a raspberry garnish.
Make ahead: The pudding can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 4 days.
** Use Bar Chocolate (not chips – too waxy.)