Here are the October Wine of the Month Recipes! For October 2023, our wine of the month has been the Frey Organic Sangiovese. At the beginning of the month, we sent out some pairing suggestions to compliment this wine’s flavor profile. Then, mid-month, our graphic designer Nicole and our social media coordinator Molly (me) got together to throw a dinner party to celebrate Sangiovese on the Mendocino Coast at Nicole’s home.
At the dinner, we played with two October Wine of the Month recipes, celebrating the pairing with the Sangiovese. We decided to feature a cheese fondue, made with Frey’s Sauvignon Blanc, served in a Kabocha squash that Nicole picked up from the Fort Bragg Farmer’s Market. Nicole also made an amazing spread of organic vegetables for dipping from Big Mesa Farms! She also got some really delicious gluten-free breads to go with the meal from the Mendocino Baking Company! I made a caramelized summer squash dish featuring the Sangiovese too. All of the dishes were absolutely delicious, and we look forward to seeing more dinner posts as this soirée becomes a regular wine of the month fête!
Here are the recipes for the Fondue and Caramelized Summer Squash!
A mixture of several cups of your favorite melty cheeses (we used a mixture of Gruyere and Fontina)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup dry white wine such as the Frey Organic Sauvignon Blanc, Frey Plenty Sauvignon Blanc, or the Frey Biodynamic Sauvignon Blanc
1 clove garlic minced
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon Courvoisier Cognac
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
A large kabocha (or acorn) squash baked until semi-firm
Assorted fondue dippers:
Fresh chopped cucumbers and radishes from Big Mesa Farms
Lightly steamed carrots, cauliflower florets, and broccolini from Big Mesa Farms
Pickled Chanterelle mushrooms, wild foraged from our guest, Billy Sprague
Sliced firm apples and grapes for the table from the garden
Cubed gluten-free sourdough bread from the Mendocino Baking Company
Prepare your squash for serving the fondue next. We recommend baking the squash whole for around 12-15 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. You want your squash to be soft enough to eat, but not too soft, because it will be serving the fondue cheeses. When you have achieved your desired tenderness, remove the squash from the oven, and let it cool for a few minutes so that you can handle it easily. Cut out the top of the squash and scoop out all the seeds. You can put it back in your warmed oven while you finish preparing the rest of the meal.
Then, prepare your dippers next, chopping and steaming as needed to get everything ready. We got all of our organic fondue dipper ingredients from Big Mesa Farms here in Mendocino County.
Cube your bread of choice. For this dinner, we chose the delicious breads from the Mendocino Baking Company. Like Frey Wine, they are gluten-free and worked perfectly for our fondue needs!
In a pot, combine the ingredients for the fondue over low heat, slowly stirring as the mixture starts to melt for 5-10 minutes. When the mixture is to your desired meltiness, you can pour it into the squash for serving.
2 cloves of garlic finely minced
1 red onion diced
2 medium summer squash (or zucchini)
1 tsp maple syrup
Small splash of Sangiovese at the end of cooking
Optional toppings include toasted pine nuts, chopped herbs, and a squeeze of lemon
Wash the zucchini and cut it into coins a 1/4” thick.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add onions, add garlic, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly until golden brown.
Add your squash slices (we used a yellow crookneck, but any summer squash would work well) and sauté 3-5 minutes, stirring regularly.
Stir in the salt and maple syrup, and continue to cook uncovered, about 10-12 minutes, flipping the zucchini slices regularly.
Once the zucchinis are golden and tender, increase the heat to high and sauté until they just start to stick to the pan. Add a splash of the Frey Organic Sangiovese and allow the wine to color the squash for the last few minutes of cooking. As you see the squashes becoming nicely caramelized on both sides, remove from heat, and serve on a platter.
We loved the October Wine of the Month recipes, and we're very much looking forward to experimenting with flavors for future wine pairing meals. Tune in next month when we create more local, seasonal, and organic meals paired with the Frey Wine of the Month for November! You can watch a short video of our meal on our YouTube channel. You can also check out Big Mesa Farms and Mendocino Baking Company if you're a Mendo local looking to recreate these recipes at home. Cheers to uncorking the organic, and sharing wonderful food with friends!
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