Holiday Pairing Perfection
Festive flavors and seasonal sips
(Family Features) The holidays are the perfect time to gather with friends and family to celebrate the season.
Take the stress out of hosting by shopping at a store like ALDI for your holiday must-haves, including everything from food and wine to holiday decor and even gifts for nearly anyone on your list, helping you to save time and money.
Toast to the holidays with an impressive appetizer spread, paired with award-winning wines, with recipes like Cranberry Shrimp Ceviche Cups paired with the creamy and tropical taste of William Wright Chardonnay. Or whip up quick and easy Party Poppers made with dates, Brie cheese and bacon to mesh with the fruit, vanilla and spicy fall notes of Peaks & Tides Cabernet Sauvignon.
Blue Cheese and Walnut Mousse provides a savory finish when matched with La Rue Côtes de Provence Rosé and its hints of lavender, rosemary and thyme. Finally, add a little something sweet to your spread by pairing the refreshingly ripe Landshut Riesling with a festive Gingerbread Trifle.
Find more holiday recipes and shopping solutions at ALDI.us .
Blue Cheese and Walnut Mousse
Recipe courtesy of Chef Scott, ALDI Test Kitchen
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Yield: 10 servings
- 2 tablespoons Simply Nature 100% Pure Avocado Oil
- 3 large yellow onions, sliced
- 5 ounces Happy Farms Preferred Blue Cheese Crumbles
- 8 ounces Happy Farms Cream Cheese
- Stonemill Ground Black Pepper, to taste
- 1 cup Friendly Farms Heavy Whipping Cream
- 8 ounces Southern Grove Chopped Walnuts, divided
- 5 cucumbers, thinly sliced
- In large pan, heat oil and saute onions until brown and caramelized.
- In food processor, combine blue cheese crumbles and cream cheese. Process until smooth. Season with pepper, to taste.
- In medium bowl, using hand mixer, whisk cream until soft peaks form. Fold in cheese mixture and 4 ounces chopped walnuts.
- Top cucumber slices with mousse, caramelized onions and remaining chopped walnuts. Finish by grinding black pepper over top for garnish.
- Pair each serving with glass of La Rue Cotes de Provence Rosé.
Tip: Mousse can also be served as a dip with baguette slices.
Recipe courtesy of the ALDI Test Kitchen
Prep time: 20 minutes
Yield: 12 servings
- 1 package (3.4 ounces) Baker’s Corner Vanilla Pudding
- 1 3/4 cups Specially Selected Premium Eggnog
- 1/2 teaspoon Stonemill Pumpkin Pie Spice
- 7 ounces Café Bistro Soft Gingerbread, crumbled, divided
- 1 1/4 cups Friendly Farms Whipped Topping, divided
- 1 cup Berryhill Apple Butter, divided
- 2 teaspoons Stonemill Ground Cinnamon
- Whisk vanilla pudding mix and eggnog. Add pumpkin pie spice and beat 2 minutes. Chill in refrigerator 10 minutes.
- In large glass bowl, layer one-third of gingerbread cookies, one-third of pudding, one-third of whipped topping and 1/2 cup apple butter; repeat two more times.
- The third layer will end with whipped topping. Garnish with cinnamon.
- Chill in refrigerator 2 hours.
- Pair each serving with glass of Landshut Riesling.
Recipe courtesy of Chef Alyssa, ALDI Test Kitchen
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Yield: 36 poppers
- 8 ounces Southern Grove Pitted Dates
- 4 ounces Specially Selected Brie Cheese Round
- 6 ounces Southern Grove Slivered Almonds
- 1 1/2 pounds Specially Selected Thick Sliced Hickory Bacon
- 2 teaspoons Stonemill Ground Black Pepper
- Heat oven to 375° F.
- Cut dates in half, lengthwise.
- Cut brie into bite-size pieces, about the size of peanuts.
- Place one piece of Brie and four almond pieces on each open date half. Place other half on top.
- Quarter bacon slices, wrap tightly around stuffed dates and secure with toothpicks. Sprinkle with pepper.
- Line baking sheet with foil and place wrapped dates on top. Bake 15 minutes, or until bacon is crispy. Serve warm.
- Pair each serving with glass of Peaks & Tides Cabernet Sauvignon.
Cranberry Shrimp Ceviche Cups
Recipe courtesy of Chef Kates, ALDI Test Kitchen
Prep time: 20 minutes, plus 1 hour chill time
Cook time: 3 minutes
Yield: 16 ceviche cups
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Stonemill Iodized Salt, divided
- 16 ounces Specially Selected Black Tiger Shrimp, thawed
- 1 cup Southern Grove Dried Cranberries
- 1/2 red onion, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley
- 1/2 jalapeno, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 teaspoon Stonemill Crushed Red Pepper or Ground Black Pepper
- 1 teaspoon Stonemill Oregano
- 13 ounces Simply Nature Organic Tortilla Chips, for garnish
- 2 limes, cut into wedges, for garnish
- fresh cranberries, for garnish (optional)
- Bring medium pot of water to boil. Season with 1 teaspoon salt. Add shrimp and cook 3 minutes. Immediately plunge cooked shrimp into ice water bath. Peel shrimp and place in flat dish.
- In food processor, combine dried cranberries, red onion, parsley and jalapeno. Pulse until finely chopped. Add cranberry mixture to shrimp.
- Add lemon juice, lime juice, remaining salt, pepper and oregano. Stir to combine thoroughly. Refrigerate 1 hour.
- To assemble: Spoon ceviche (about 4-5 shrimp each) into small clear cups or glasses. Garnish with tortilla chips, lime wedges and fresh cranberries, if desired.
- Pair each serving with glass of William Wright Chardonnay.
Go Beyond Pecan Pie this Holiday Season
(Family Features) When deciding which dishes to serve this year at holiday gatherings, consider going beyond traditional recipes and use beloved seasonal ingredients in new ways.
For example, while pecan pie is top of mind for many dessert-makers, it’s also a perfect time to make new dishes with an ingredient like pecans, also known as The Original Supernut. Naturally sweet and nutritious, the pecan lends itself to nearly endless holiday menu inspiration.
It hasn’t been an easy year for the pecan industry, but you can support American pecan growers and #PledgePecans – that’s a promise to add one more pecan-friendly recipe beyond the pie to your table this holiday.
To pledge, visit Americanpecan.com/PledgePecans and click on seasonal recipes or watch the Pecan-A-Thon, an entertainment variety show spotlighting the growers behind the Supernut and showcasing ways pecans can be enjoyed this holiday season.
Pecan-Crusted Prime Rib with Horseradish Cream Sauce
Horseradish Cream Sauce (optional):
- 1 cup low-fat sour cream
- 1/4 cup horseradish, grated
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1/2 lemon, juice and zest only
- 2 tablespoons fresh chives, finely sliced
- kosher salt, to taste
- fresh black pepper, to taste
- 1 boneless prime rib roast (8-10 pounds)
- 1 tablespoon, plus 1/4 teaspoon, kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons fresh black pepper, plus additional for pecan topping
- 1 cup raw pecan pieces
- 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
- 3 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
- 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 8 garlic cloves, divided
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard, divided
- To make Horseradish Cream Sauce: In small bowl, combine sour cream, horseradish, mustard, lemon juice and zest, and fresh chives; add salt and pepper, to taste. Sauce can be prepared 1 day ahead of time and refrigerated.
- Season prime rib with 1 tablespoon salt and pepper; let sit at room temperature 1 hour.
- To make pecan topping: Heat oven to 325° F. In food processor, process pecans, rosemary, thyme, breadcrumbs, butter, 2 cloves garlic, 1 tablespoon mustard, remaining salt and pepper until combined. Set aside.
- Cut small slits in fatty side of prime rib; stuff with remaining garlic. Rub remaining mustard over top of prime rib and apply pecan topping, making sure to press firm.
- Transfer prime rib to roasting pan. Place rib roast in lower-third of oven, insert digital probe thermometer in middle and loosely cover top of prime rib with foil so pecans don’t burn. Cook 1 1/2 hours, remove foil and continue cooking until internal temperature reaches 120° F.
- Allow prime rib to rest covered 30 minutes so juices can redistribute. Serve with Horseradish Cream Sauce, if desired.
Pecan Apple Stuffing
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1 pound mild Italian sausage
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or pecan oil
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 3 celery stalks, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 12 ounces herb-seasoned cubed stuffing
- 2 cups tart apples, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups pecan halves
- 1 cup chicken broth, plus additional (optional)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Heat oven to 350° F. Grease large casserole dish or 9-by-13-inch pan with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- In large skillet, brown sausage, breaking into crumbles. Drain on paper towels. Discard excess grease.
- In same pan over medium heat, add olive oil. Saute onions, celery and garlic 2-3 minutes, or until starting to soften and fragrant.
- In large bowl, mix sausage, onion mixture, stuffing cubes, apples and pecans.
- Add broth and stir to combine. If stuffing mixture remains dry, add additional broth as desired. Season with salt and pepper; stir to combine.
- Transfer stuffing to prepared baking dish. Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake 15 minutes.
Source: American Pecan Council
Fast, Flavorful and Festive Holiday Dishes
(Family Features) From office potlucks and cocktail parties to family dinners and beyond, the mealtime celebrations during the holidays are endless. Whether you're serving as a host or bringing your signature dish to a get-together, these tips can help you own the holiday season without breaking a sweat:
- Stick with fewer, easy-to-find, high-quality ingredients.
- Look for products that help you cut down on time but don't skimp on flavor, like Smithfield Marinated Fresh Pork, which is pre-seasoned and comes in a variety of cuts and flavors.
- Sprinkle and decorate finished dishes with fresh, seasonal herbs for a festive touch.
To help get you inspired in the kitchen, try this recipe for Fresh Pork and Kalamata Flatbreads for a savory appetizer made with less than 10 ingredients, or Fresh Pork with Sweet Balsamic-Red Wine Reduction for a decadent main course you can have ready in just 30 minutes.
For more quick and easy holiday recipe ideas, visit SmithfieldRealFlavorRealFast.com.
Fresh Pork with Sweet Balsamic-Red Wine Reduction
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
- 1 Smithfield Applewood Smoked Bacon Marinated Fresh Pork Loin Filet
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
- 1/3 cup dry red wine
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
- Cut pork loin filet into 3/4-to-1-inch thick chops.
- In large, nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat 1/2 tablespoon olive oil.
- Cook half the pork chops 4-5 minutes on each side until internal temperature reaches 150° F. Remove pork chops from skillet and place on rimmed serving platter; cover to keep warm. Repeat with remaining olive oil and pork chops.
- In same skillet, combine wine, vinegar and sugar. Bring to boil over medium-high heat; cook 3-5 minutes until slightly thickened, or until liquid is reduced to 1/4 cup.
- Serve pork chops drizzled with wine reduction and sprinkled with rosemary.
Fresh Pork and Kalamata Flatbreads
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 35 minutes
- 1 Smithfield Roasted Garlic & Cracked Black Pepper Marinated Fresh Pork Tenderloin
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 can (13.8 ounces) refrigerated pizza crust dough
- 3/4 cup sliced sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil
- 1/2 cup sliced Kalamata olives, drained
- 1 teaspoon crushed dried rosemary
- Cut pork tenderloin into 3/4-inch cubes.
- Heat oven to 400° F. In large skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Stir-fry pork 8-10 minutes, or until well browned.
- Unroll pizza dough and press onto greased sheet pan, about 18-by-13 inches; cut into six rectangles.
- Drain tomatoes, reserving oil. Brush tops of flatbreads with sun-dried tomato oil, reserving about 1 tablespoon. Top with pork, drained tomatoes, olives and rosemary, pressing into dough lightly with fingertips.
- Bake 18-21 minutes until edges are golden brown.
- Remove from oven. Drizzle remaining sun-dried tomato olive oil evenly over flatbreads; let stand on baking sheet 2 minutes before serving.
Put a Twist on Tradition this Holiday Season
(Family Features) ’Tis the season to dust off the decorations, dig out your family cookbook and celebrate everything that makes the holidays special. While it’s certainly a time to honor longstanding traditions, there’s also room to start something new and put your personal touch on the festivities.
When planning your holiday menu, for example, shake it up with a few simple swaps to impress your guests no matter the meal occasion. For an appetizer, try a Pork and Ricotta Crostini for a flavorful upgrade to the typical cheese platter. Come dinnertime, replace the annual pot roast with a savory and seasonal Apple and Herb-Roasted Pork Shoulder featuring high-quality Farmer John California Natural Fresh Pork, which is made from 100 percent fresh pork and with no artificial ingredients.
For more recipe inspiration and ideas to shake up the season, visit FarmerJohn.com.
Apple and Herb-Roasted Pork Shoulder
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
Total time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
- 1 Farmer John Boneless Pork Shoulder Butt Roast
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- garlic powder, to taste
- 1 pound potatoes, cut into 2-inch chunks
- 2 firm apples, cut into six pieces
- 4 thyme sprigs
- 6 sage leaves
- 1 cup chicken broth
- Heat oven to 500° F.
- Season pork shoulder roast with salt, pepper and garlic powder, to taste.
- Lay potatoes and apples in bottom of roasting pan. Top with thyme and sage.
- Place seasoned pork shoulder in roasting pan on top of thyme and sage.
- Pour chicken broth into roasting pan. Roast 10-15 minutes until skin is browned.
- Reduce heat to 300° F and continue to roast, basting liquid over pork every 30 minutes for about 2 hours until internal temperature reaches 155° F.
- Remove pork shoulder roast and let cool 15 minutes before slicing.
- Serve with roasted potatoes and apples.
Pork and Ricotta Crostini
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 36 minutes
Total time: 51 minutes
- 1 Farmer John Pork Tenderloin
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon, Italian seasoning blend, divided
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder, divided
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 long baguette, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
- balsamic glaze
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Heat oven to 425° F. Rub all sides of pork tenderloin with olive oil and place on rack in shallow roasting pan. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, salt and pepper evenly over tenderloin.
- Roast 25-30 minutes per pound until internal temperature reaches 150° F. Remove pork tenderloin from oven and let stand 5-10 minutes. Cut into thin slices.
- In small bowl, mix together ricotta cheese, remaining Italian herb mix, remaining garlic powder and onion powder until well combined. Set aside.
- Place baguette slices on large baking sheet and bake 2-4 minutes per side while pork tenderloin is standing.
- To assemble, spread about 1 tablespoon ricotta cheese mixture on one side of each baguette slice; top with thin slices of pork. Garnish with drizzle of balsamic glaze and parsley.
Source: Farmer John
Make Memories with Holiday Meals
(Family Features) Holiday meals are all about creating memories with loved ones at the family table. One way to make those special moments truly stand out is to fill your table with delicious recipes and the perfect wine pairings to help make the meal unforgettable.
Begin the dining experience with a perfect light bite like scallops to tease the taste buds. Try pairing this starter with a versatile option from an established producer like Louis Jadot Mâcon-Villages (SRP: $14.99) – which shows floral, apple and citrus aromas and flavors – to help bring out the distinct flavor profile. Choosing wines from an established producer is one way to help ensure you will select crowd-pleasing wines. For example, Jadot – one of the most trusted names in Burgundy – offers consistency and quality at an affordable price point.
“The scallops and truffles complement the wine’s crisp, bright and refreshing fruit finish beautifully,” said Allison Fasano, resident chef at Urbani Truffles. “The light citrus notes awaken the flavors of the scallops. The beurre blanc is buttery, and the earthiness of the truffles throughout makes for a perfect match with the wine.”
A hearty main course like Beef Tenderloin with Truffles alongside Louis Jadot Beaujolais-Villages (SRP: $13.99) – a crisp, fruit-forward, juicy wine with expressive aromas and flavors of ripe red berries – can help fulfill guests’ desires for a savory meal.
Find more affordable, versatile wines to pair with holiday recipes at Facebook.com/LoveJadot.
Beef Tenderloin with Truffles
(Filetto Di Manzo con Tartufo)
Recipe courtesy of Allison Fasano, Urbani Truffles resident chef
- 1 center-cut beef tenderloin, about 3 pounds
- freshly ground black pepper
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch (optional)
- 1/2 ounce Urbani Black Truffles
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 carrot, diced
- 1 stalk celery, diced
- 1 white onion, diced
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 sage leaves
- 2 tablespoons Urbani Truffle Butter
- 2 cups dry wine, divided
- 2 shallots
- 1 cup beef stock
- Heat oven to 350° F. Season beef on all sides with salt and pepper.
- Heat skillet or pan to high with olive oil; add beef and sear all sides, about 3-4 minutes on each side, until brown and crust forms.
- Remove beef from pan and let rest. Add cornstarch, truffles, garlic, carrot, celery, onion, rosemary, bay leaves and sage leaves to skillet and lower heat to medium-low. Allow to cook 10-15 minutes, or until vegetables are soft. Add beef back to skillet.
- Deglaze skillet with 1 cup wine, scraping up brown bits from bottom of pan.
- Place skillet in oven to allow beef to finish cooking at desired temperature.
- While tenderloin is roasting, in saucepan over medium heat, melt truffle butter. Add shallots and saute until softened and lightly golden, 8-10 minutes. Add remaining wine and simmer until almost completely reduced. Add stock and simmer until it reduces and thickens slightly, about 10 minutes. Remove sauce from heat and season with salt and pepper.
Source: Kobrand Importers