This month, I had the pleasure of being asked by the lovely folks over at Tasteful Times to put together a special Valentine's Day recipe using a few of their top-notch products sold at their wine and gourmet foods shop.
Simply picking the ingredients was the first challenge. Their assortment of cured meats, mostly local, was a dream world for me. Not to mention their even wider selection of cheeses, snacks, baking mixes and, of course- wine!
After much deliberation (and salivation) I went with two cheeses and two cured meats to feature in my meal.
The first dish incorporated their Port Salut cheese and Smoking Goose Capocollo de Dorman. The mild milkiness of the Port Salut was the perfect mix with the peppery Capocollo, which I rolled and baked into flattened and pressed chicken breast. Here's how you can make it at home:
Spicy Chicken Roulade
What you need (to serve 2 people):
2 6 oz. chicken breast
4 pcs. Smoking Goose Capocollo de Dorman
2 oz. Port Salut cheese
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Take your chicken breast, and place it in between two pieces of saran wrap. Using the smooth side of a meat tenderizer (or a heavy frying pan) flatten the chicken until a little less than an inch thick. From there, spread a layer of the Port Salut and then a layer of the capocollo and roll the contents up into the chicken. I used a couple toothpicks to secure but you could also use some kitchen twine.
Next, brown each side of the rolled chicken in an oiled and well-heated frying pan that is oven safe. Once you get a good brown crisp on each side, pop the pan into the oven until the chicken has cooked through, around 20-25 minutes.
Roasted Beet & Jowl Bacon Salad
What you need:
1/4 lb. Smoking Goose Jowl Bacon
2 oz. Capriole Goat Cheese
1 large beet
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Once your oven is up to heat, place your beets (contained in a well oiled, oven safe dish and covered in foil) on the middle rack. Meanwhile, put your bacon in a pan and get to frying. Once you've cooked the jowl bacon, remove it from the pan and set on a paper towel then cover. When your beet is fork tender, peel the skin and slice into 1/2 inch rounds. You can get extra festive for Valentines Day by cutting them into hearts like I did. From there assemble your greens, crumbled goat cheese, beets and bacon on a plate and enjoy!
For an extra touch, discard all but 1/4 cut of the leftover fat oils, then a couple tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, a tablespoon of dijon and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil then whisk together for a warm vinaigrette dressing.
We paired both recipes with the one of our white wines from the Tasteful Times Wine Library, a wine club we've been a part of for over a year now and absolutely love. It has been a fantastic way for us to build up our collection and try wines we wouldn't normally pick.
If you are a local reader I hope you make a visit to Tasteful Times to check out their stuff. I assure you, you will be so happy you did! Also- thanks to everyone over at TT for letting me feature some of your delicious products! Salud!