Happy Birthday Chow Bella and Holiday Recipes

Though the 3rd anniversary of Chow Bella was January 1st, I haven't had a chance to blog about it between New Year's celebration and my birthday. So, we'll count this as my 2nd anniversary post. And, appropriately enough, this is also the 200th post on Chow Bella, so two milestones are accomplished.

I have a lot of info to relay in terms of foods my family and I prepared for our festivities. On Christmas eve, my parents and I had a nice dinner at home with a roasted turkey breast, roasted sweet and white potatoes, and green beans with maple pecans. For our wine we had Castle Finn Rhubarb wine, which is a light blush wine that paired well with everything we served.

My dog, hanging out under the table in the kitchen as we cooked.


For the family Christmas party, my mom and I made a roasted vegetable dip and cowboy caviar (basically black eyed pea salsa). While both were good, I'm going to continue perfect the recipe before I post it here.

The biggest recipe success had to have been our contribution to a New Year's party. I found a simple and delicious puff pastry recipe from Pepperidge Farms. Because I followed the recipe exactly, I will just post the link here instead of repeating it. Below are the pictures of the final product. They tasted like glorified grilled cheese sandwiches with toasty, buttery bread and a soft, warm blue cheese center studded with sweet-tart sun-dried tomatoes and crunchy walnuts. The party we brought these treats to was a wine tasting, so our wine of choice was a 2009 Cupcake Chardonnay. I had heard great things about this particular wine and I have been wanting to try it. From the descriptions of it, I thought it would be crisp enough to cut through the creaminess of the gorgonzola, but still buttery enough to pair with the puff pastry. The Cupcake chardonnay received mixed reviews from the party goers. It personally was not my favorite wine, and to tell you the truth I seldom drink chardonnay because it doesn't typically pair well with the foods I prepare; sauvignon blanc seems to work best. The funny thing is, Don Luciano chardonnay from La Mancha, Spain is one of my favorites. It costs only about $4.00/bottle. It just goes to show you that good wine doesn't have to cost a lot, it just depends on your personal tastes.

Please stay tuned for more recipe posts because I am still working on a back-log of recipes and photos. I hope I catch up one of these days!