Monthly Archives: September 2014

My Wine Story

Villa Antinori in Tuscany, Italy

Villa Antinori in Tuscany, Italy

 

Food and Wine Pairing with Friends

Food and Wine Pairing with Friends

Sideways was a painfully funny movie in 2004, that piqued my curiosity for wine. Believe it or not, it wasn’t until then, that I decided to do some exploring, and ordered wine with dinner and pairing it with the food.  This process took a while, but, little by little, I would acquaint myself with the various grape varieties. It didn’t take long for my palate to fall in love with this magical juice and enjoy every aspect of wine tasting.  Of course, I was still in the learning stages because, I had no knowledge of the wine making process, and how it went from the vineyard into the wine glasses.

In August 2008, my hubby and I took a Mediterranean cruise to celebrate our wedding anniversary, and met the most wonderful people. Some of them, I have kept in touch with, and became very good friends. Tonia, in particular caught my attention, because I was intrigued the way she was pairing all her meals with a wine. At that time, I was still considered a novice, and was “thirsty” to learn more about the art of wine tasting. I realize, she was pairing a different wine with each course, including dessert. At that point, I was eager to discover more about this interesting experience.

As I continued to learn about food, people, and cultures, I became fascinated with the world of wines.  It prompted me to attend the United States Sommelier Association, at the Cordon Bleu in my town, in 2009. I studied under the guidance of the wine master, Rick Garced, and learned about the wine making process. I tasted delicious wines from the most famous regions around the word.  I also learned how to pair food and wine harmoniously.

I met the most amazing and kind-hearted fellow sommelier(s), and instantly made a connection with some of them.  We had tons of fun in class and studied together for the test. Oh, how I dread that word, because it flares up my anxiety. I remember not sleeping the night before because I was too nervous, but with all the studying and the support of my classmates, I passed the blind tasting and the written test with flying colors. It was a big deal for me and for all of us, after spending hours studying and sipping wine together.  After earning our certificate of achievements, we would organize wine gatherings at our houses, and enjoy some luscious wine and food pairings. There was always a theme, and each person would bring a wine from a particular country/region and a dish to pair with it. Since then, we have attended a few more masterclasses together and continue to gain knowledge in wine tasting.

It’s been nearly 14 years that I have been sipping and savoring on red wine, but my passion for white wine has evolved over time. I am fortunate to have visited some of the most renowned wine regions like Napa Valley and Sonoma in California, and Long Island, New York. Most recently, my dream came to reality when I visited Tuscany, Italy, one of the most famous regions in the world. There are so many more regions and wines to explore, but one of the best ways to learn, is to drink wine, write notes, take pictures of the labels, and document them.  I also learned how the terroir has a major effect on the wine. The root of the word is terre, which means land/soil in French.  Today, I will share with you the art of wine tasting.

You will be using your sense of  sight for the appearance, smell for the nose,  and taste using your palate.  First, place a white paper or cloth on a table, pour about an ounce of wine in a clear glass, tilt a little and look at it. Make sure it’s sound.  Next, you need to swirl it to bring out all the fragrances, then smell it, sniff it so you can get a whiff of the aromas.  Please keep in mind, wine tasting is subjective and there is no right or wrong in my opinion. I may smell black pepper while someone else detects licorice.

Lastly, the best part, it’s time to taste. Take a sip and swirl it around your mouth, keep it there, you will be doing an inhaling motion with your mouth slightly open, repeat at least one more time, then swallow. At this point, you will determine all the flavor profiles in the wine, this can take some time for the more complex wines, as they are layered with various flavors.  By tasting the wine, you will find out the acidity level, the sugar content, the tannins, the length, the alcohol level. When all these are in perfect harmony, it is said to be a well-balanced wine.

As you swirl the wine, you will notice the dripping on the inside of the glass, commonly referred to, as legs or tears. The slower the legs, the higher the alcohol content.  You will also learn about the length of the wine. That is determined by how long after you swallowed the wine, the flavors remain in your mouth. The more lingering the length, the better the quality of the wine. A low-quality wine is known to have a short finish, meaning, as soon as you swallow it, the taste disappears from your mouth.

I’ve recently attended the acclaimed James Suckling’s Wine Tasting events: Great Wines of Italy and Great Wines of the Andes in Miami. I tasted some of the most delightful and highly rated wines.

In December 2016, I decided to pursue my studies further, and attended the world-renowned WSET: Wine, Spirit, Education Trust. The class was taught under the supervision of the James Beard award-winning wine and food writer, Lyn Farmer. I am proud to hold a second level sommelier certificate.  I hope you have enjoyed my wine story and my photos. For more photos, please check out my Instagram page: Foodieandwinelover.

This year, I will be working diligently on my cookbook that will include a treasury of my recipes, global cuisines and cultures, and food and wine pairing suggestions. I am also planning a trip to Cartagena, Colombia. Stay tuned!

Cheers to a fabulous 2018!

wintasting4

 

 

 

sommeliergina

 

The Colosseum, Rome

The Colosseum, Rome

IMG_3640

Wine tash from Italy - June 2017

Wine stash from Italy – June 2017

Tuscany, Italy - June 2017

Tuscany, Italy – June 2017

Castiglion del Bosco in Montalcino

Castiglion del Bosco in Montalcino

James Suckling and Yours Truly

James Suckling and Yours Truly

Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting

Fattoria Di Montemaggio

Fattoria Di Montemaggio

Happy Sipping!!!

Gina Martino Zarcadoolas, Foodiewinelover
My Food, Wine & Travel Lifestyles
World renowned – WSET (Wine, Spirit, Education, Trust)
Level-2 Certified Wine Connoisseur.
Culinary Aficionado & Lover of Global Cuisines & Travels
Future Cookbook Author
Photos by Gina Martino Zarcadoolas for Foodiewinelover

 

 

 

Trinidad Stewed Chicken

Carnival

The main reason I wanted to start this blog, is to share with you my passion for cooking and savoring  ethnic foods during my travels around the world. I have visited many places, including various islands in the Caribbean, the US Virgin Islands, Mexico, Costa Rica, many countries in Europe, Turkey and the USA where I now live with my beautiful family. I’ve been inspired by a variety of cuisines, and fascinated the way food plays a major role in the different cultures. I haven’t had the chance to visit beautiful Trinidad,  a nation consisting primarily of two Caribbean islands just off the northeastern coast of Venezuela. However, I’m very fortunate to have some wonderful friends from that country. It is known for its rich cuisine and famous for its colorful and festive Carnival.  My dear friend Shamin is from there and she loves entertaining. She occasionally serves this delicious Stewed Chicken, which is always a big hit at her gatherings. I’ ve asked her for the recipe for this traditional dish, and she was gracious to provide me with the list of  ingredients and the method of cooking.  I’ve made it on several occasions for my family and everyone loves it. This dish may take a little practice but once you get the hang of it, it can become part of your meal rotations. I took the time to measure all the ingredients and kitchen-test them. I would love to share this very special recipe with you today.

FoodieWineLover 027

FoodieWineLover 040

FoodieWineLover 028

FoodieWineLover 036

FoodieWineLover 041

FoodieWineLover 047

FoodieWineLover 053

 

Serves 4

Degree of difficulty: Easy – Medium
This recipe will take a minimum of an hour not counting the time for marinating.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 lbs chicken thighs, skinless, bone-in
  • 1 and 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped *
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 3 + 2 tbsp. olive oil (5 total)
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

 PREPARATION:

1) In a large bowl, season the chicken with salt and pepper and set aside. In a food processor, add the cilantro, garlic,  thyme, soy sauce, 3 tbsp olive oil, vinegar ( salt and pepper, optional)  Pulse but do not liquefy, you should see bits and pieces of the ingredients.  Pour over the chicken and add chopped onions. Give it a good stir and marinate in the fridge for a minimum of 4 hours. If you have the time, I recommend marinating it overnight to infuse all the flavors.

2) On medium heat, In a large frying pan, heat 2 tbsp. olive oil, add the sugar and spread it around. As soon as it starts to bubble, lower the heat and stir in the ketchup, be careful, it will splatter a little.  (This will be a quick process, if you wait too long, the sugar will get dark and the results will be unpleasant.

3) Drain the chicken well and place them in a single layer on the pan, raise the heat to medium high and let them brown for about 3 minutes on one side, until they have a nice golden color. Turn them and brown other side for another 2-3 minutes.

4) Pour the marinade over the chicken, bring to a quick boil, reduce the heat to LOW,  cover and simmer for a minimum of 30 minutes. You can check it halfway through, the sauce should be simmering nicely.  When the time is up, check and make sure chicken is thoroughly COOKED, if not, allow an extra 5- 10 minutes. Serve over white or brown rice.  

My grown son Peter-John is usually my taste tester, and his reaction was, “Oh my goodness! screaming from the top of his lungs,” this sauce is so good!” This happened to be the best one I ever made because I marinated it overnight.

*Traditionally, Culantro is used in this dish, but since Cilantro is more readily available, it makes for a nice substitution. It is fun to have a variety of dishes in your repertoire, and interesting to savor  international cuisines from all parts of the world.  I hope you will get creative and try this exotic and delicious dish.  Wishing you Bon Appetit from Gina’s Kitchen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Filet Mignon with a Sherry Cream Sauce

If you are celebrating a special occasion and want to make a nice impression, this is the dish. I recommend to do this on the weekend since it is time-consuming, but worth every effort. First, start with the sauce and set aside.  Decide what side/starch you’re making and start prepping, next, sauté the mushrooms. Lastly, prepare the meat.

FiletMignonandmore 001

FiletMignonandmore 005

FiletMignonandmore 006

FiletMignonandmore 010

FiletMignonandmore 014

FiletMignonandmore 017

FiletMignonandmore 019

Serves: 4
Degree of difficulty: Medium – Difficult
(It’s time-consuming but easy-to-follow.  Allow a minimum of 1. 1/2 hours from start to finish)

I will start with the method of cooking for the meat first, since it is the featured dish. Otherwise, follow my directions in the introduction to make things easier in the kitchen.

Filet Mignon

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2. 1/2 lbs pre-cut Filet Mignon, 4 pieces*
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

PREPARATION:

1) Season the meat with salt & pepper and let it sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

2) Meanwhile, in a large pan, (that can withstand the oven temperature) over medium-high heat, heat oil, sear the meat, 3 minutes on one side, then 2 minutes on the other side. There will be a nice sizzling sound, and the meat will get a nice brownish color as pictured.

3) Finish cooking in the oven for 15 minutes, for a  medium-rare to medium temperature based on your oven.  Remove, cover with foil and let it sit for 5 minutes to retain the juices.

Sherry in a Cream Sauce

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Sherry
  • 1 cup low sodium beef stock (or broth)
  • 1/2 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp. salted butter (unsalted if on low-sodium diet)
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. corn starch, 3 tsp. water, optional

PREPARATION:

1) In a large pan, over medium high heat,  heat the oil and the butter, then sweat the shallots for about 2 minutes.

2) Deglaze with the sherry and lower the heat,  about 1 minute.

3) Add the stock, bring to a boil and simmer for about 1 minute.

4) Whisk in the cream, let it reduce on low heat for about 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir occasionally.

To obtain a thicker sauce, dilute the corn starch in the water and
pour in the sauce. Stir and simmer an extra 2 minutes, and set aside. It will thicken upon sitting while you’re busy preparing the other dishes. Before serving, just warm it up on very low heat and stir. 

Sautéed Mushrooms

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb portabella or cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. salted butter

PREPARATION:

1) In a medium size pan, over medium-high heat, heat oil and butter, add the mushrooms and sauté them for about 10 minutes while stirring occasionally.

I also served a salad, and potatoes as a side dish, not featured.

*You can substitute the Filet with a Sirloin cut, to make it a more affordable dish. Just be sure not to overcook it, as it can get tough.

I suggest you cook and clean as you go along, otherwise, the kitchen will be a big mess. You will have to do some juggling, but in the end, you and your family will be very happy with the amazing results. Now it’s time to plate the Filet Mignon.

Swirl some Sherry Cream Sauce on the bottom of the plate, place the Filet on top, drizzle more sauce, then garnish with mushrooms and parsley. Bon Appetit!

Wine pairing suggestions for this dish:  Valpolicella, Amarone, Chianti Classico, Primitivo or a California Zin

I hope you have enjoyed reading this post and will find the time to make this exquisite dish.  Always live life to the fullest, and celebrate with good food and wine. Happy Cooking from Gina’s Kitchen!

Veal Bolognese over Pappardelle

The traditional Bolognese sauce originated in Bologna, the capital of Emilia-Romagnia,  a famous region in northern Italy, north of  Florence.  It is commonly called Ragu Bolognese. There are different versions,  just like you will find different versions of  tomato sauce and pizza.  The Bolognese is always a meat-based sauce, usually veal, with some carrots, onions and tomato sauce. Milk or cream can also be added to give it a more authentic feel. Today, I will share with you my version of the Bolognese sauce.  It is quick, easy, delicious and you can double up the recipe to feed a large crowd.

Ingredients

foodsausageandpeppers+ 126

Browning the pancetta

Sweating the veggies

Browning the veal

Cooked Pasta

Voila! Dinner is ready

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 – 1/2 lbs ground veal
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 chopped tomato (Pomi) or any other brand,  about 26 oz
  • 1 strained tomato (Pomi) or any other brand,  about 26 oz
  • 1/2 cup water and more pasta water, if needed
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 4 – 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1/4 lb pancetta, chopped
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Flat leave parsley, chopped, to garnish
  • Grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (Parmesan cheese)
  • 1 lb. Pappardelle pasta

Degree of difficulty:  Easy
Serves 4  (hungry) people as a main meal
This recipe takes a minimum of  45 minutes to an hour to prepare, but you can extend the cooking  up to 2 hours if you have the time. You will need to add water occasionally, and stir constantly to reduce the sauce. The flavors will be more infused and you will get a richer sauce.  However, this recipe is a quicker version for today’s busy lives , and the best part of it, your loved ones will not know the difference.

PREPARATION:

1)  On medium-high heat, in a 6-8 quart stock pan, heat oil, brown pancetta, 2-3 minutes, remove and set aside.

2)  There will be some oil left in the pot, add the onions, carrots and garlic  and sweat for about 2-3 minutes.

3)  Add veal, brown for about 5 minutes by stirring occasionally, then add tomato paste,  continue to brown until you get a nice caramelization.

4)  Add strained and chopped tomatoes, pancetta, 1/2 cup water, salt & pepper, oregano. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes on low heat. Stir occasionally to avoid the sauce from sticking to the bottom of the pot.  If you feel like the sauce is too thick, add some pasta water. Remember, this is a meat sauce and it is supposed to be thick and not watery, therefore, use your judgement.

5)  On another burner, get the water boiling for your pappardelle or whatever pasta you’re using, cook according to package directions.

6)  Drain pasta, (save some water if you need it for the sauce) and pour it over the meat sauce. Make sure all the pasta is nicely coated and serve immediately. If you let it sit, the pasta will absorb all the sauce and it will become dry. Have the grated Parmigiano Reggiano at the table for individual use. If you don’t feel comfortable serving it this way, place pasta in bowls and pour sauce over each one. Sprinkle chopped  parsley to garnish it and give it your personal touch.

I paired this Bolognese with a delicious Rosso di Montalcino that went together magically.  You certainly can use a nice Chianti instead, and it doesn’t have to be expensive. I promise you, your loved ones will thank you for this amazing dish. They will think you spend the entire day in the kitchen to create this delectable and hearty meal.  With winter around the corner for some of you, this meat sauce will keep you warm and your belly satisfied.  I hope you will try this recipe and have fun with it.

Disclosure, I don’t get paid to advertise products on here,  I use whatever brand I have in my pantry at the time of cooking. I like to change it up anyway and experiment. That’s what makes cooking fun and interesting (at least for me).   Use whatever brand you prefer, be daring and have confidence.  If you view cooking as a chore, it will be boring and uninteresting, but if you cook with passion, you will enjoy every step, and your meal will always be a success. I must admit, I enjoy getting compliments from my family because  it encourages me to cook more for them. I’m not perfect and I’ve made a few mistakes in the kitchen, but I learned from them.  The only way you’re gonna learn and create your signature dish is by experimenting.  There is always room for improvement and I welcome feedback. I hope you have enjoyed today’s blog, and will give my recipe a try soon.

Cheers and Happy Cooking from Gina’s Kitchen!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Experiencing Colossal Rome

My paternal great grandparents were originally from Teora, a small town in the province of Avellino, in the Campania region of southern Italy.   My great-grandpa, Anselmo Martino owned a  lovely property with a small vineyard on it.  He employed many people from the town,  they harvested the grapes in a festival atmosphere, singing and  dancing.  He was also a shoemaker.  It’s no wonder, I have such passion for shoes and wine.  The property has been sold since then to the Caprio family.  My dad had always wanted to visit Italy and begged me on several occasions to go along with him, but I wasn’t ready to take this long transatlantic flight from Miami. Then, In 2007, I realized my parents were getting older and it was time to take this adventurous trip to Bella Italia. I knew, once I committed to going, there was no turning back. I mentioned to them about planning a family trip to Italy, and they were ecstatic about it. We were 7 of us, hubby and me, our boys, 16 and 19 then,  my brother, my mom and dad. We were all ready to embark on this amazing travel adventure. Since it was our very first time visiting, I thought it would be a great idea to take a tour and have them plan everything. We enlisted in Perillo Tours, and were very pleased with the entire experience.  In February, we booked a multi-city Italian trip for an escapade of a lifetime  in June 2007. The anticipation was building during that time span and, we used every moment to plan for a perfect family vacation. As time got closer, we made sure all the travel arrangements were in place, did our last-minute shopping, made sure we packed walking shoes for the cobblestone streets,  summer clothes, outfits for the evenings and lots of toiletries.  I will never forget that day, on June 3rd, 2007, my parents and my brother met us at the house and we took a limo to the airport. We were chanting on the way and extremely excited about what was about to come. We landed in Rome early morning, got picked up at the airport, then dropped off to our hotel. The Grand Hotel Beverly Hills is  located right outside of the city center near the famous Villa Borghese and the elegant area of Via Veneto.

Photo courtesy, Grand Hotel Beverly Hills

Photo courtesy, Grand Hotel Beverly Hills

One of my favorite cities in the world is Rome because of my fascination with its ancient architectures, magnificent artwork  and rich history. I also love it for its breathtaking sightseeing,  scrumptious cuisine and delicious wines. The next day, we visited the Vatican and were amazed by its opulence and lavish gold accented decor. Afterwards, we took a tour of St. Peter’s Cathedral, and were astonished by its grandeur and splendid beauty. We bought some souvenirs and grabbed some lunch at Piazza Navona.

Lunch at Piazza Navona

It is not a trip to Italy unless you visit  the Trevi Fountain (Fontana di Trevi)  “A traditional legend holds if  visitors toss a coin into the fountain,  they are ensured a return to Rome. ”  We tossed some coins into one of the most beautiful Italian masterpiece fountain in the world in the hopes to return someday.  Hubby and I have been back twice since then, and my parents and the family once more. Magically, it works!

Europe2011 584

Trevi Fountain

Mom & Dad at the Trevi Fountain

Mom & Dad at the Trevi Fountain

Peter-John at the Trevi Fountain

Peter-John at the Trevi Fountain

The highlight of the trip was definitely the tour of the breathtaking Colosseum. It was a surreal experience that gave me the chills, and felt like I was living a part of history. It was a magical moment that I will cherish forever. We then took pictures with the gladiators and bought souvenirs to keep these memories alive. It was time to head back to the hotel and get ready for dinner.

Mom and Dad with the gladiators

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Family Photo at The Colosseum

We ate dinner at a nice Italian restaurant called Al Grappolo.   It was a fun evening with an abundance of delicious food, elegant wine and some good laughs. It is fair to say, I was the loudest and very giggly because I walked into the lady’s room and there was a man in there.  I was already feeling tipsy, I went back to the table and had everyone in the restaurant in stitches. The next day, we visited the Spanish Steps, (Piazza di Spagna)  a major landmark that attracts millions of people each year.  It is located near the old city centre and  consist of 138 steps. At the base of the Spanish Steps, there is a beautiful fountain and some quaint shops.

The Spanish Steps with Mom & Dad

The Spanish Steps with Mom & Dad

965

At the Spanish Steps with hubby, Peter

Facing the Steps is Via Dei Condotti, a very glitzy street filled with luxurious brand named stores such as Gucci, Prada, Louis Vuitton and so much more. Dad offered me a Gucci bag as a special gift for accompanying him on the trip,  it was very hard to resist. First, we stopped at a coffee shop, named Caffe Greco, beautifully decorated  but on the pricey side.  A cannoli set us back 8 euros but it was worth the splurge. We were rushing as mom and I could not wait to get to the Gucci store.

Europe2011 678

Shopping at Gucci

Of course, no afternoon would be completed without  a refreshing gelato or granita, shaved ice with flavored syrup, topped with whipped cream.

Europe2011 655

Gelato and Granita Time

One  night, we went to a Gala Party at the extravagant Palazzo Brancaccio,  had an amazing dinner and drank delicious wines to our heart’s content.  We were serenaded by an amazing orchestra and danced the night away.  It was a magical evening of fun celebrations with the family and new-found  friends we met on the tour.

Palazzo Brancaccio

Palazzo Brancaccio

Arriving  at the bay of Naples was another special moment that I will always cherish. The bus made a stop so we could shoot some family pictures overlooking  the magnificent view. We were having the time of our lives.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

On that trip, we also visited Pompeii, Sorrento, (ate dinner at the beautiful  restaurant La Tonnarella,) Capri,  Florence, Venice and Milan. That will be another blog all together. I feel so blessed to have had the opportunity  to take this once in a lifetime vacation with my amazing family. Please note, back then, I was not big on taking food pictures and the camera was barely adequate to take decent photos. The pictures featured here are from 2 separate trips. Thank you all for coming along with me on this amazing  travel adventure. There are a lot more details to this trip but it would take me too long to describe.

Update: Since this family trip, My husband and I visited Rome on other occasions, and most recently, in the summer of 2017. We explored Trastevere, a quaint neighborhood of Rome with multi-colored buildings and cobblestone streets. Many locals hang out in this charming area which is a walking distance from the City Centre. The restaurants are reasonable and they serve delicious and authentic food.

Gina Martino Zarcadoolas aka Foodiewinelover
My Food, Wine & Travel Lifestyles
Culinary Aficionado, WSET-Level 2 Wine Connoisseur
World Traveler – Lover of  Global Food Cultures & Traditions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bites, Bubbly & Blogs

Since I am still fairly new at blogging, I decided to have a little get together in my kitchen with a couple of fellow (beginner) bloggers. We brainstormed and exchanged notes and ideas to help each other out. Angela will be blogging about food and wine and Barbara will be blogging about her amazing photography skills. I learned a lot from Angela’s organizational skills and computer knowledge, and Barbara taught me how to give my photographs some character and make them pop.  Their sites will be up and running soon, and I could not be more excited for them. From what I am seeing, bloggers help one another and are very supportive of each other.  That in itself is a big inspiration and motivates me to bring out my creative side.

GinaAngBarb

Needless to say, we had fun in my “Gina’s Kitchen” with small bites and bubbly to celebrate our new ventures. Of course, we spent nearly two hours, on and off trying to get some great food shots. Thank goodness, Barbara was there to guide us and give us some useful tips in food photography. This takes practice, and one can only get better with time and lots of experience. I made a lovely lump crab meat salad “sans mayo” since Angela does not care for it. I know some of you are frowning but not all of us are created equal and that’s what makes life so interesting.

It is a very simple recipe that anyone can whip up in no time

  • 1 – 8 ounce jar lump crab meat
    you can also use imitation crab meat which works
  • 2 stalks of celery, sliced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 TBS olive oil

Degree of difficulty: Very easy
Serves 4-6

Preparation:

Lightly break up lump crab meat, if you are using imitation crab, you can shred it with your hands for a nice presentation. Combine all the ingredients at once and chilled for at least one hour. For added richness, you can add some mayonnaise and whatever spice you like.

lumpcrabmeat

I also served some delicious smoked salmon with sliced cucumbers. They were light and tasty but most of all, they paired beautifully with the bubbly.

foodblogging2014aug 137
Simple, yet sophisticated

foodblogging2014aug 133

Barbara brought some delicious hummus with veggies and Angela made a very healthy and scrumptious salad with field greens, avocados, corn, cherry tomatoes and sunflower sprouts.

foodblogging2014aug 138

It was a fun and productive day, especially in the company of two friends that I care for. I admire both for their lovely qualities and  generous hearts.

Stay tuned for more exciting blogs on food, wine and travels. Until next time, happy blogging from Gina’s Kitchen!

 

 

 

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: