Thursday Thirst Quencher: Barefoot Moscato Wine

1 04 2010

In honor of the holiday weekend it seems befitting to showcase one of Are You Being’s favorite new wines from Barefoot, which is sure to be a happy addition to your Sunday supper.

The new Moscato is sweet, combining a fruity aroma with the juicy flavors of ripened peaches and apricots.  There are subtle hints of lemon and orange that adds a crisp edge to the wine.  For added sweetness I like adding some fresh raspberries or strawberries.

Though my Sunday spread will be a honey baked ham and potato salad, which will be complimented by the wine’s lush flavor, the wine also pairs well with mild cheeses, fresh fruits and spicy Asian dishes.  And if you have a sweet tooth, you can continue sipping this Barefoot Moscato throughout desert.

For more pairing options, check out recipes from Barefoot by clicking here.

Disclaimer: Samples were received in exchange for editorial coverage.

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National Potato Chip Day

11 03 2010

As part of my day job, I’m always flipping through magazines to stay abreast of what’s hot in the media.  This week, while reading the March issue of Better Homes & Gardens, I was alerted to the fact that this Sunday, March 14, is National Potato Chip Day.  Who knew?  I often participate in awareness campaigns, including walks/fundraisers for breast and prostate cancer, but finally this is an awareness day that requires little from me other than sitting on the couch, popping in a DVD and shoveling in a bag of Doritos (though Doritos aren’t technically potato chips).  What could be easier or more fun?

So, this got me to thinking: What are my favorite potato chips?  One mentioned in Better Homes & Gardens is Golden Flake, a staple of southern snack foods.  Being from Mississippi, I’m all too familiar with this brand.  I can remember visiting my father, who is a parts manager for GM, and always finding a few of the large tin canisters – like the ones filled with popcorn that are so popular during the holidays – around the office. These aren’t for the dieter though.  I recall them being a little greasier than your average crisp, with a heavy sprinkling of salt.  Delicious none the less.

If you prefer a healthier option, let me introduce you to my all-time favorite chips – Popchips.  I first saw these chips about a year ago and immediately started telling everyone about them.  Why the excitement?

For starters, these chips aren’t fried or baked.  Just like the name implies, they are popped.  Using the same technology found in popcorn, the creators replaced the corn inside the kernel with potato, so when the kernel explodes, it creates this perfectly round, delicious chip that is a healthy alternative to regular potato chips.  In fact, each serving has 120 calories, with 35 calories from fat.  Not bad.

The chips look a lot like a mini rice cake, but they are packed with flavor.  You can choose from seven flavors including Original, Barbeque, Sour Cream & Onion, Cheddar, Sea Salt & Vinegar, Parmesan Garlic, and my favorite, Salt & Pepper.  They are a little more than a regular bag of chips, but well worth it.

What do you think?  Are you going to try Popchips?  Add a comment and let us know your favorite chips.





The Mixer: Drinks of the Day – A Toast to Elvis

8 01 2010

In honor of Elvis’s would-be 75th  birthday today, here are three cocktail recipes from Three-O Vodka that will get you “all shook up.”

For a more complete celebration, try pairing your cocktails with some of Presley’s favorite foods, including fried peanut butter & banana sandwiches, sweet potatoes, cheeseburgers and burnt bacon.  To learn how to make The King’s favorite sandwich, click here to see the recipe from Paula Deen.

Jailhouse on the Rocks

Drink Recipe Ingredients:
2 oz. Three-O Mango Vodka
4 oz. Iced Tea

Drink Recipe Preparation:
Mix in a glass filled with ice and garnish with lemon wedge

Blue Suede Shooters

Drink Recipe Ingredients:
1 ½ oz. Three-O Cherry Vodka
¼ oz. black raspberry liqueur
¼ Blue Curacao

Drink Recipe Preparation:
Shake with ice and strain into a shot glass

All Shook Up

Drink Recipe Ingredients:
3 oz. Three-O Grape Vodka
½ oz. Blue Curacao
½ oz. grenadine
Splash club soda

Drink Recipe Preparation:
Shake first 3 ingredients with ice and strain into a martini glass. Splash club soda and garnish with an orange wedge.

Drink recipes and images provided by Three-O Vodka.

Three-O Vodka Family of Flavors

Disclaimer: No products were exchanged for the above review.





The Mixer – Drink of the Day: Woodford Candy Cane

23 12 2009

Christmas is only two days away, but you can warm your heart and satisfy your sweet tooth tonight with this delicious concoction that uses Woodford Reserve Bourbon.

Woodford Candy Cane Hot Chocolate

Continuing with our holiday drink series, the Woodford Candy Cane Hot Chocolate recipe is as follows:

Drink Recipe Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ oz Woodford Reserve
  • ½ oz peppermint schnapps
  • 4 oz hot chocolate

Drink Recipe Preparation:

  • Combine ingredients in mug and stir.
  • Garnish with whipped cream and a candy cane.




The Mixer: Drink of the Week – The Harvey Wallbanger Cocktail

6 11 2009

It’s Friday, and if your week was anything like mine, that means it’s time for a drink.  But not just any drink.

As the art of blending spirits grows in popularity, it remains important to honor the classic cocktails that paved the way for modern mixology.  On November 8, we celebrate the Harvey Wallbanger cocktail, which was created by Los Angeles bartender, Duke Antone, in the 1950s.

The Harvey Wallbanger Cocktail feat. Ketel One Vodka

The Harvey Wallbanger Cocktail featuring Ketel One Vodka

As legend has it, Duke created the drink in honor of a clumsy local surfer, Harvey, who would often walk into walls after a drink or two.  The cocktail reached its heyday in the 1970s when it became the era’s essential brunch cocktail.

The classic Harvey Wallbanger recipe is as follows.

Harvey Wallbanger Ingredients:

  • 1 ounce Ketel One vodka
  • 1/2 ounce Galliano
  • 4 ounces Fresh Orange Juice
  • Orange Slice for garnish

Preparation:

  1. Fill a highball glass with ice.
  2. Pour 1 ounce Ketel One vodka and 4 ounces of fresh orange juice into the glass.
  3. Stir until chilled.
  4. Once settled, using a bar spoon, float the Galliano on top.
  5. Garnish with an orange slice.

If the Harvey Wallbanger isn’t quite what you have in mind, checkout these other drinks.

What other spirits and liquor do you enjoy?  Share your favorite drink recipes with our readers.





Quench Your Thirst: Brown Ale 101

7 08 2009

Intent on debunking the myth that hot weather begets light beer, Newcastle Brown Ale offers up Brown Ale 101: While the palates of dark beer lovers don’t change in the summer, restaurants, bars and backyard BBQers forego year-round appreciation of the brown ale for its thin, clear-ale counterparts.

Some myth-busting brown ale factoids for summer beer drinkers:

  • Color: Golden-brown in color, Newcastle is not one but two beers, combining English Pale and Dark Caramel malt in a recipe perfected by Colonel Jim Porter in 1927.
  • emperature: Unlike lagers/pilsners, ales are best enjoyed cool, rather than cold. The ideal temperature for Newcastle Brown Ale is 38F to 42F degrees. Your average refrigerator is between 35F and 38F degrees
  • Calories: Darker beers don’t equal more summer calories. Newcastle Brown Ale weighs in at 140 calories per 12 oz. serving.
  • Food: The robust flavor of brown ales, like Newcastle Brown Ale, allows them to pair well with red meat, fish and chicken – three cornerstones of summer grilling.
  • Smoothness: Bottled with less CO2 than its competitors makes it a smoother option.
Newcastle Brown Ale

Newcastle Brown Ale





Summer Recipe: Grilled Pizza

5 08 2009

Summer is a time to relax by the pool, not spend hours in the kitchen cooking and cleaning.  In the recipe below, Chef Bobby Flay combines two of my favorite things; grilling and pizza.  For more summer grilling ideas, visit www.FoodNetwork.com.

Recipe by Chef Bobby Flay (Show: Boy Meets Grill; Episode: Firehouse Grill)

Grilled Pizza by Chef Bobby Flay

Grilled Pizza by Chef Bobby Flay

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound Italian hot sausage
  • 1 large red onion, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 2 large yellow pepper, cored, seeded and quartered
  • 2 large red pepper, cored, seeded and quartered
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 recipe favorite pizza dough, rolled into 4 (6-inch) rounds
  • 1/2 pound grated fontina cheese
  • 1 cup sheep’s milk ricotta
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
  • Basil Vinaigrette, recipe follows

Directions

Preheat a grill.

Grill the sausage on both sides until golden brown and cooked through, about 10 minutes per side. Brush onions and peppers with the oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the onions and peppers until soft, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove the sausage from the grill and slice into 1/4-inch thick slices. Remove the onions, separate into rings, and roughly chop. Remove the peppers and slice into 1/8-inch thick slices.

Heat grill to high. Brush dough with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and grill for 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown. Turn over and grill for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the grill and place on a flat surface.

Divide the fontina cheese among the 4 pizza rounds. Divide the sausage, onions and peppers over the cheese. Place the pizza on the grill, close the cover and grill until the cheese has melted, about 3 to 4 minutes. To finish in the oven, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Place the pizza on sheet pans and bake until the cheese has melted, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Mix together the ricotta, extra-virgin olive oil, and oregano in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Remove the pizzas from the oven and drizzle with Basil Vinaigrette. Top with dollops of the ricotta cheese mixture and let rest for 5 minutes. Slice and serve.

Basil Vinaigrette

Basil Vinaigrette

Basil Vinaigrette:

  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, to taste.

Photo Source: http://www.FoodNetwork.com, http://www.channel4.com/food