cheese pairing


Fish parmesan (foreground), and French green beans with almonds

Fish parmesan (foreground), and French green beans with almonds

The fish and the vegetables can be good for 3 meals (or 2-3 people).  The fish is definitely plenty enough for 3 meals; but it could be a stretch for the vegetables on the third meal.

Lighting a couple of tea light candles is recommended to counteract all that garlicky aroma!

French green beans

  • 6 oz fresh French green beans
  • 1 oz almonds, slivered and toasted
  • 1 T freeze-dried minced garlic
  • 1 T Kikkoman low-sodium soy sauce
  • a dash of salt
  • a dash of pepper
  • 1 t olive oil

Boil enough water in medium heat to fully cover the green beans.

Put the green beans in boiling water for 40 seconds, or less depending on how crunch you want your green beans.

After 40 seconds, drain the hot water from the beans while the saucepan remains under cold running water.  Turn off the tap once the water in the pan is as cold as the running water.  If your running water is not as cold as water that has been put in the fridge, put some ice on the water.  Let stand for a minute.  Drain.  Put the beans in a spinner to dry them.  The drier, the better.

On a non-stick pan, toast the slivers of almonds in medium heat.  Set aside when done.

Put 1 teaspoon olive oil on the pan.

Once the oil is hot enough for sauteing, put the minced garlic.  Saute until golden brown.  If you have fresh garlic available, sliver the garlic instead of mincing for a more crunchy, garlicky taste.

Put the French beans with the garlic.  Toss for about 30 seconds, then, mix in the toasted almonds.

Season with the soy sauce, salt and ground pepper.  Saute for about 5 minutes.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

French green beans with toasted almonds and golden brown garlic

French green beans with toasted almonds and golden brown garlic

Fish Parmesan

  • 2 pieces orange roughy fillets, about 12 oz total
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 T Italian seasoning herbs
  • 1/2 cup ground Parmesan cheese
  • 1 t olive oil
  • salt, ground pepper, garlic powder (for sprinkling on the fish fillet)
  • additional olive oil to grease the baking tray

Pre-heat the oven to 425F.

Sprinkle the thawed fish fillets with salt, pepper and garlic powder.

Mix well the olive oil with the panko bread crumbs.  Add the Parmesan cheese and the Italian seasoning herbs.

Roll the fish fillets on the crumbs-cheese mix until they are liberally covered.

Grease the baking tray with some olive oil or oil spray.

Sprinkle some crumbs-cheese mix exactly where you will place the fillets.  Lay the fillets on the baking tray.  If you still have crumbs-cheese mix left, just sprinkle it over the fillets

Bake for 10 minutes at 425F.  Bake an additional 10 minutes at 375F.

Orange roughy fillet with Italian-seasoned panko bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese

Orange roughy fillet with Italian-seasoned panko bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese

Citrus-Tea Vodka

Put ice cube in a big-bowled wine glass, like a Pinot Noir or Merlot glass.

Pour the vodka over the ice cubes.  Swirl vigorously for about 15-30 seconds.

Pour Izze Clementine; then, the Tea and Lemonade.  Either swirl or stir.

Fizzy clementine and tea vodka

Fizzy clementine and tea vodka

chicken 'n Brie wrap, carrots, and a glass of Criminally Insane Elf...AND JACK BAUER!

On the eve of the Spring Term: chicken 'n Brie wrap, carrots, and a coupla glasses of Criminally Bad Elf...AND JACK BAUER!

This is one of those Dinner(what-food’re-left-in-the-fridge).  For example, some arugula/lettuce, pickled cucumber/dill, sliced olives, capers, and/or red onions would definitely be welcome additions in this wrap.

Dressing

Whisk everything together with  a fork.  Add vinegar to reach desired consistency and taste.

Filling

  • 2 chicken breast halves, fillet
  • 1/2 t butter
  • 4 thin slices of Brie de Nangis

Melt the butter and swirl on skillet so that the skillet is just coated with butter and there isn’t any pool of butter left.

Place the chicken breast fillets on the skillet and cook .

When the chicken is almost done, place the tortillas on top of the chicken to warm the tortillas and to keep the chicken from getting too dried. Flip the tortillas as necessary.  Don’t remove the skillet from the turned-off stove when you’re done just yet.

Spread a teaspoon of the mayo mixture on the center of the tortilla.

Lay a slice of cheese on the mayo spread.   Then, a fillet of chicken. Spread more mayo on top of the chicken, then, another slice of cheese, and some more mayo.  Roll the tortilla to make your wrap.  Place the wraps on the still-warm skillet (heat has already been turned OFF).

Have a sides of carrot sticks with the leftover mayo mixture.

Wrap:  2 10-inch wheat tortilla

Beer: Criminally Bad Elf

Runny St. Marcellin straight from the oven.

Runny St. Marcellin, straight from the oven.

A pot of St. Marcellin cheese is just what the doctor ordered for a laaaazy winter-day repast.

I was too impatient to wait for it to get to room temperature, so I popped it directly from the vegetable crisper to the oven.  St. Marcellin is good warm and super runny or just as it is and runny-ish.  I got the best of all possible worlds: I had the stuff left from the wrappers cold from the fridge with just my index finger (be one with one’s food, I say!); warm with just my index fingers (it was dripping too much from the crackers and I didn’t have any baguette), and room temperature with some crackers.

That's a crock of cheese!

That's a crock of cheese!

The last glass in the bottle of Merlot I opened a week ago went very well indeed with this wicked crock pot.

Baked, herbed chevre d'Argental, and ol' plain one on top of apple pie.  Warm, melty goodness.

Baked, herbed chevre d'Argental, and ol' plain one on top of apple pie.

7 grains of minced, freeze-dried garlic (approximately 1/2 of a clove)
a pinch of dried rosemary
olive oil
a wedge of chevre d’Argental, about 2 inches at its widest part

Insert the minced garlic into the cheese using fork tines to push them in one at a time.  Drizzle the cheese with olive oil; then, rub the oil all over it.  Coat the cheese with the dried rosemary.

Pre-heat the oven to 400F.  Bake for 5 minutes.

Bonus: At the same time, warm a slice of apple pie with a wedge of chevre d’Argental on top.

Baked crottin de Chavignol; plain, and the other drizzled with Murray's stock Spanish olive oil and pounded Planter's unsalted almonds.  The saltiness/sourishnesh of this little "dropping" balanced out the "steely" taste of the 2007 Lodi Voignier.

Baked crottin de Chavignol; plain, and the other drizzled with Murray's stock Spanish olive oil, and topped with dried basil, and pounded Planter's unsalted almonds. The saltiness/sourishness of this little "dropping" balanced out the "steely" taste of the 2007 Lodi Voignier. Eat while warm.

The crottin de Chavignol has barely discernible stink before baking and has none after.  It has a subtle saltiness, and is sourish.  This piece here was just starting to get moldy.  There were only a couple of small specks of greenish-bluish molds.

Since I didn’t have greens, I had a side of this French goat cheese naked, and the other half drizzled with Spanish olive oil, and topped with a pinch of dried basil and coarsely pounded unsalted almonds.

Best of all, it made the 2007 Cali Voignier, which already is a good white with a crisp, apple, subtle smell to begin with, taste less steely and less acidic.

Fromager d’Affinois, with crackers and some fruit is the dream breakfast.  No fuss.  No muss.  Extra dose of calcium.

Nothing can be simpler to prepare than this bloomy, French cheese.   Enjoy spread on crackers or bread, or – if you are like me – solo.

If you did not manage to finish everything during breakfast, have it with chocolates for after dinner.

A glass (or two) of Buck’s Fizz is all that’s needed to take this breakfast of champions to the next level.

Even the rind tastes great; so, nothing is wasted with a wedge of Fromage d'Affinois. Go ahead, let nothing come between you and this burst of creamy mildness.

Even the rind tastes great; so, nothing is wasted with a wedge of Fromage d'Affinois. Go ahead, let nothing come between you and this burst of creamy mildness.


Buck’s Fizz = half sparkler, half oj

My non-alcoholic version = 1 sugar-free Red Bull/Bawls + equal part oj.  Bawls has the fizz, but RB has the “wine-bite taste”

The year starts on an awesome note.

For breakfast, I had gorgonzola mascarpone torta that I drizzled with honey and topped with a handful of Planter’s toasted, unsalted almonds “coarsely battered” with the bottom of THAT  – I’m not quite  into spicy, bold reds – 2004 Red Lava Syrah Reserve, which, thanks to Bawls, I finally finished!

I used about 100 grams of the cheese so I’d have leftover for whole day grazing.  Some Z sea salt and oil crackers and a handful of grapes nicely rounded out my start-of-the-year team.

cheese-plate-gorgonzola-mascarpone-torta

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