This is an easy to execute, but completely dinner party worthy dish :Crab-stuffed Flatfish
1 pound cleaned and skinned flounder or other flatfish filets
1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat
2 egg whites, beaten to soft peaks
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
2 tablespoons sweet butter
½ cup dry white wine
Salt and fresh ground pepper
According to Seafood Watch, Pacific flatfish such as sole, flounder and halibut are a “Good Alternative” to those from the Atlantic, where historical overfishing has reduced many populations.
Cut the fish into eight strips, about 1 inch wide. Gently mix together the crabmeat, ½ of the egg whites, all the bread crumbs, and ½ teaspoon of salt and pepper. Lay the fish strips down skinned side up. Divide crabmeat mixture evenly between the eight strips of fish. Spread crabmeat to evenly cover about 3 inches of each strip. Place a bit of whipped egg white on the “empty” part of the flounder. Beginning with the end with the crabmeat, roll up each strip towards the egg white, and stand roll up so that the crab is on top. Place each roll in a lightly greased baking dish. Divide butter into eight pieces and place on piece on top of each flounder roll. Pour the wine into the baking dish, surrounding the rolls. Bake at 375° for about 25 minutes, or until fish is cooked through and crab is lightly browned.
Do you have plans for this beautiful weekend? If you are in the Santa Cruz area, remember that this Saturday is the Santa Cruz Mountains Winegrowers Association Passport Day. You can find a full list of the wineries participating by clicking here. There are lots of local favorites pouring, including us at our Watsonville wine tasting bar!
These passport days, which happen four times a year, are a great way to meet and celebrate local vintners and growers of the Santa Cruz Mountain area, some of which are too small to have tasting rooms of their own regularly open to the public. The region, which includes the three counties of Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and San Mateo, was first recognized as an official American Viticultural Area (or AVA ) in 1981 — though grapes have been grown and great wine has been made here for much longer than that — and it was one of the first AVAs to be defined by it’s elevation and topography rather than strictly geographical lines or borders. This is because the grapes grown at these heights are very different than the same varietals grown at lower elevation. The AVA basically follows the fog line along the coast — the lowest points are 800 feet in the east and 400 feet in the west and the highest ridgetops are at 3000+ elevation, with most of the area at about 2,000 feet. The combination of fog, mountainous terrain, thin soil, often cooler temperatures, and different sun exposures makes for unique growing conditions and lots of microclimates. The region is known primarily for Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, but other varietals, especially Merlot and Zinfandel thrive here as well. The Santa Cruz mountains are home to some of the oldest and most acclaimed wineries in California.
Passports are $45 online or can be purchased at any participating winery. They entitle you to one visit to each winery but are good for 2 years from the date of purchase, so that gives you 8 chances to get to every winery!
We have some really amazing, mostly locally grown and produced, Santa Cruz and Monterey County wines at our wine tasting bar this summer. Our wine tastings are every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from 12:00 pm to 4:30 pm — you can taste 3 wines for $6 or sit and enjoy a glass. And if you buy a bottle to take home, tasting fee is waived. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon, and explore some great wines. To give you a peek at what is waiting for you in Watsonville, each week we are going to feature a wine from our tasting bar on the blog.This week, it’s the Ventana Sauvignon Blanc.
The Ventana Vineyards are in Monterey County’s Salinas Valley. Ventana is part of the Arroyo Seco sub-region, one of nine distinct vineyard areas in the valley. The maritime climate here means that nights are cool and the vineyards are often shrouded in fog until mid-morning the next day. This weather is perfect for creating natural acidity in Sauvignon Blanc grapes and leading the fruit profile towards greater minerality, herbaceousness, and more citrus aspects than the same grapes grown in warmer regions.
The Ventana Sauvignon Blanc is made and aged in stainless-steel tanks. It’s a medium bodied wine that nearly explodes with pineapple, citrus, and fresh-cut grass aromas. It’s got a crisp clean acidity, and a long finish. Come try it yourself this weekend!
Do you ever read Save The Date? It’s a fun wedding blog from Glamour Magazine, filled with lots of celebrity wedding news, wedding fashion trends, hairstyle ideas for your big day, and helpful tips. Like a recent post from Brides Magazine about 5 Things You Never Knew You Needed on Your Wedding Day. You can read the full article here, but the tips include remembering to order lunch for you and your bridal party while you are getting ready, having some alone time, and making sure that there is a game plan for the toasts, so that they don’t run on forever, or get inappropriate. What tips would you give to wedding planning couples?