Saturday, October 22, 2011

Red Red Wine....

Make me forget!!!  No, but seriously.

Make me some fucking amazing food.

As a lover of all things alcoholic (I'm looking at you St. Ides), cooking with booze really appeals to me.  So this past week I made not one but TWO dishes featuring my favorite colored vino, red wine.

Both dishes were delicious, however there was a clear front runner.

Sausage and Lentils with a Garlicky Wine Sauce.  SO GOOD!  I literally licked my plate.  (I know TMI, but seriously- it's plate licking good.)

The other was a beautiful Red Wine Spaghetti.  The spaghetti is cooked in a mixture of water and wine which imparts a beautiful burgundy hue to the pasta, as well as a very unique taste.  This dish was good and I probably will make it again, but only if I ever happen to have leftover wine.  Seriously though, this thing took a whole 750ml bottle which = no remnants to drink.

Anyway, I'll let you be the judge on the alcohol vs. delicious food dilemma.

P.S.  Scroll to the end for a festive surprise.

Not the most beautiful girl at the dance, but boy is she tasty.  (Hmmm.  I may need to rethink my metaphors.)

Lentils and Sausage  (Adapted from Nigella Lawson)
Serves 4


  • 1 tbsp bacon grease  (you can sub. olive oil)
  • 1 yellow onion, small diced
  • 8-10 ounces French lentils ( you can sub. green/brown)
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken stock (aprox.)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 4 Hot Italian sausages
  • 1/3 cup dry red wine
  • 1/4 cup water
  • kosher salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a large pot heat up your bacon grease.  Add the diced onions and sprinkle with salt and cook until softened.  
  2. Next add the lentils, bay leaf, and enough chicken stock to cover the lentils.  Bring to a boil and then let simmer until tender and most or all of the liquid is absorbed.  Remove bay leaf.  Set aside and keep warm.
  3. In a large pan heat up 1 tbsp olive oil.  When hot add the crushed garlic and cook about a minute until fragrant.  Add the sausages and brown on all sides.
  4. Carefully add the water and wine.  Reduce heat and cover pan.  Let simmer for about 15-20 minutes until sausages are cooked through.
  5. Remove sausages from pan and place in pot with lentils.  Mash garlic cloves in the liquid and pour over the sausage and lentils.  Mix until sauce is incorporated; salt and pepper to taste.  Serve hot with remaining wine.

Wine waster/Great taster

Red Wine Spaghetti  (Slightly adapted from here.)
Serves 4-6


  • 1 750ml bottle dry red wine (I used 2-buck-chuck shiraz)
  • 16 ounces whole wheat spaghetti
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a large pot pour all but 1/4 cup of the wine.  Add about 2-3 cups of water to have a sufficient amount of boiling liquid.  Bring liquid to a boil and generously salt.  (Be careful this step can cause boil over).  
  2. Add the pasta and cook until just before al dente.  Strain and reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid.
  3. In a deep pan heat up the olive oil.  Add the garlic and red pepper; cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add the remaining wine and reserved cooking liquid; bring to a simmer.
  4. Place the pasta in the pan and slowly stir until liquid is absorbed.  Toss with the parmesan, sprinkle with black pepper, and serve.

As promised:

UB40 performing Neil Diamond's "Red Red Wine."  Enjoy.

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