Monday, May 12, 2008

El Pair-o del Spano Dinner-o

For those of you who know me, you might recognize that language from a story…. El washo el car-o. Hahaha.

Over the weekend Mr. Lush and I attended a Spanish pairing dinner. It was actually very good and informative. I learned how to make the easiest, most decadent appetizer… I had these wonderful stuffed dates at Modesto. They were wrapped in bacon and that’s about all I knew at the time. They were salty, sweet, fruity….really, very good. Low and behold, I needed a Spanish appetizer for the party- entering from stage left was stuffed dates.
Pit dates. Stuff a smidge of bleu cheese in date. Wrap 1/3 slice bacon around date, secure with toothpick. Cook however you feel like. They can piggy back with another dish in the oven, they can be grilled, or pan-grilled. Just cook until bacon is as done as you like it. Viola. Instant fun, easy, delicious dessert.
As far as the wine, we were a bit in the air with this, but eventually chose cava as the winner. (other contenders were 2 Riojas, a Temparinillo / Garnacha blend and an Albarino)
Another fun thing we tried was trying 2 different Riojas with the sauces. We had a 1998 Gran Reserva Rioja and a 2004 Rioja. Very different wines. We determined the best pairing with the 1998 was a steak topped with a Cabrales Brandy sauce. (cabrales is Spanish bleu cheese) However, the 2004 tasted best with a chimichurri sauce, which was very zesty and had a bit of cilantro in it. 2 very different sauces.
Then, we ended the evening with Flan. I found a fabulous recipe titled “The Perfect Flan”. I shared it with another guest who had never made flan before. They made it and it was fabulous- really very wonderful. I'm excited because my good friend LucyinStLou loves flan and wants there to be more Flan-friendly occasions in life. I actually think finding a great flan recipie might make the Sparkling Occasions list??
We then tried 2 sherries and 3 cognacs. I’ll be honest - I don’t exactly remember which was best with the flan. I think although it wasn't my favorite cognac, the Markow VSOP was the best with the flan. I know, what kind of lush am I? A very happy lush, who had a great meal with good friends and also managed to learn a little something.

Not too shabby, right???


LucyinStLou said...

Flan+sparkling=happy Lucy. We'll have to create some sort of a combined flan and sparkling event in the very near future.

WineLush said...

Perhaps we can have flan at the chard / bubbly pairing??

Claire said...

Wow! I just told Lucy that I'm craving flan, & I popped over here & voila! Flan!

That still doesn't help me with my craving....

WineLush said...

Really, the recipie turned out quite good. Texture was great. We do need more reason to have flan. I'd like to try it with sauternes or Tokaji.