It seems to be increasingly popular to have food and wine pairings on your menu. I've tried these pairings before and they never really worked for me. So, I tend to ignore the advise and just order whatever I would normally want.

Well, Food & Wine magazine's February issue has 50 recipes they pair with wine, beer, and cocktails. Even without the pairings, many of the recipes sound great, so I thought I would try the pairings with it.
Some Shocking news; the food and beer pairing was amazing! I really felt the beer enhanced the flavor of the dish. F&D magazine really knows what they are talking about :-)

What I chose to make was a pork tenderloin and a salad (the salad had no alcoholic pairings).

Pork Tenderloin Smothered in Onion and Mustard
Pairing suggestions:
Wine: Gew├╝rztraminer
Cocktail: Shandy 
Beer: German Ale - Hofbrauhaus original

2 12oz pork tenderloins, cut into 2" lengths and pounded 1" thick
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tsp all-purpose flour, plus a bit extra
2 Tbs unsalted butter
2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, very thinly sliced
1 Tbs grainy mustard
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 Tbs fresh, chopped dill
Buttered noodles for serving

  • Season the pork with salt and pepper and dust with flour.
  • In a medium, deep skillet, melt the butter in the olive oil.
  • Add the pork and cook over high heat, turning once, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes.
  • Transfer the pork to a plate.
  • Add the onion to the skillet, cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 10 minutes.
  • Stir in the mustard and the 1 teaspoon of flour and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
  • Nestle the pork in the onion sauce.
  • Cover and simmer over moderate heat until the pork is cooked through, about 8 minutes.
  • Transfer the pork to plates.
  • Stir the chopped dill into the sauce and spoon over the pork.
  • Serve with buttered noodles. Suggestion of course. I usually just have it alone or with a side of cooked carrots.
Serve over buttered noodles.

Bibb-and-Radish Salad with Buttermilk Dressing
3 large heads of bibb lettuce, leaves torn (serving for 8 people)

8 radishes, thinly sliced

1/3 cup snipped chives

2 Tbs mayonnaise

1/3 cup buttermilk

2 Tbs red wine vinegar

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and fresh ground pepper

  • In a large bowl, toss the lettuce with the radishes and chives
  • In a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the buttermilk and vinegar
  • Gradually whisk in the olive oil
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste
  • Just before serving, drizzle dressing over salad and toss well
Surprisingly, both of these dishes take about the same time to make (about 30 min each). So I made the salad and my husband made the pork and we were done around the same time.

One tip my husband taught me was how to preserve the dill and the chives.

  • Take the bunch and and hold it together tightly by the stems.
  • Put it in a brown paper lunch bag, upside down (stems facing up). Keep a hold of the bunch.
  • With your other hand, grab the paper bag around the stems and rubber band them together.
  • Take a knife and gently poke holes around the bottom of the bag.
  • Store in the refrigerator.

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