Nothing To Wine About!

Wine rating systemWine comes in many white and red varieties including but not limited to – Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling,  Pinot Noir, Syrah, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon and is used as both a food accompaniment (enhancer) or as a flavor agent in stocks or braising. Wine has been used throughout history in various religious celebrations as well as family gatherings to bring people closer together to enjoy life and culture. Being a Private Chef I’m a lover of all wine and how it enhances the taste and flavor of food. Below are some tips on how to explore both red and white wine in your cooking techniques.

Red Wine Cooking Tip: Using red wine is a fantastic way to add depth and richness to your sauces. Start by reducing the wine to cook out the alcohol flavor. Then add other ingredients such as garlic, onions and some type of stock. Let flavors infuse by allowing to simmer for about 30 mintues. Serve over any dish to add your unique flavor profile.

White Wine Cooking Tip: Use white wine to create a fantastic butter sauce. By using the same wine you are going to serve with dinner you can add a second note of flavor by adding a splash of that same wine to your sauce, risotto, or sautéed seafood.

Health Benefits: Red wine in particular is packed full of polyphernols which have antioxidant characteristics and if consumed in moderate amounts are directly associated with decrease in cardiovascular death (heart attack) by 30-50%. Red wine also contains resveratrol which is found in the grape skins and seeds and increases the HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) and prevents the LDL (bad cholesterol) from forming – meaning it can help reduce blood clots or blood vessel damage caused from fat deposits . Wine has been said to reduce the risk or help with the following conditions: Cardiovascular Disease, Blood Clots, Plaque formation in the arteries, Lung Cancer (in men), and Alzhimer’s Diseases. So why not join the vine vine and enjoy a small glass of wine daily its nothing to WHINE about. Cheers to your health!

 

wine benefits

Image: Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

 

The Love of Tomatoes!

Tips for TomatosTomato’s can be eaten in a variety of different ways including raw, cooked, stewed, fried, juiced, or as a sauce. Although tomatoes are classified as a fruit when using them in a culinary fashion they are considered a vegetable because of their savory flavor. One of my favorite private chef tips is to use tomatoes in both there raw and cooked form because the texture, flavor and overall taste is so unique in both preparations.

Cooking Raw Tomato Tip: Add a little salt to your raw tomatoes and they will become much brighter and plump in flavor. Try a piece of Wassa complex carb hard bread, Tomato and light Cheese for a healthy breakfast start to your day.

Cooking Cooked Tomato Tips: Roasting tomatoes in the oven gives them a rich and full flavor.  Try roasting some vine tomatoes in the oven with olive oil and salt for about 45 minutes, peal the skin off once complete and blend to create delicious sauces, dips or spreads to accompany your meals!

Health Benefits: The tomato is excellent for your health and is often praised for benefiting your heart as well as many key organs because it contains one of the most powerful natural antioxidants called lycopene. Lycopene is not naturally found in the body but has the ability to flush out free radicals that build up and cause cellular breakdown and cancer. No other fruit or vegetable has as high a concentration of this powerful antioxidant as the tomato and studies show that eating specifically cooked tomatoes (more lycopene in cooked than raw) can help prevent numerous types of cancer, heart disease, and even neurodegenerative disease. Just 1 cup (or in our case pint glass!) of powerful has 59 calories, 29% of your daily vitamin c, 17% of your daily vitamin a, lycopene, calcium and iron making it a great low fat snack or condiment. Tomatoes have been said to help with or reduce the risk of Prostate cancer, Heart, Breast Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Colon Cancer, Reduce Blood Pressure, Rectal Cancer, Stomach Cancer, Mouth Cancer, Neck cancer, and Neurodegenerative diseases.

Mixed Tomatoes Images