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Marimar's Christmas Feast

Acquire Rosaleda Rosé

Serves 10-12

For the terrine:
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup whole milk
4 eggs, beaten
1 pound baked ham, trimmed of fat and chopped
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh herb leaves, such as sage, marjoram and thyme, or more to taste
3 tablespoons amontillado or another flavorful Spanish sherry
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper, or to taste
3/4 teaspooon fresh lemon juice

For the tomato sauce:
1/3 cup fresh parsley leaves
1-1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cut up
1-1/2 tablespoons tomato paste
1-1/2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, or to taste
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste

As a garnish:
1 small bundle fresh chives (about 24)
20-24 cherry tomatoes, stemmed

To prepare the terrine: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a small saucepan, melt butter; add flour and cook over medium heat for about 1 minute. Add milk and continue cooking, whisking constantly, until sauce thickens or comes to a boil. Cook for 1 minute and remove from heat. Set aside.

In a large bowl, mix eggs with ham, herbs, sherry, pepper and lemon juice. Add white sauce and blend well. Taste for seasoning; salt may not be necessary. Butter a 5-cup rectangular mold and a piece of parchment or waxed paper cut to fit the bottom. Pour mixture into mold and place it inside a larger pan filled with boiling water at least 1/2 inch up the sides of the mold. Bake in the 350-degree oven for 30 minutes; remove from water and bake for another 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Let cool.

To prepare the tomato sauce: Shortly before serving, finely mince parsley in a blender or food processor. Add remaining ingredients and purée. Taste for seasoning.

To assemble the dish: Unmold terrine onto a board and cut it into 10-12 slices. Spoon some sauce on each dish, and place a slice of terrine on top. Arrange 3 chives and 2 tomatoes next to each slice of terrine. Serve at room temperature

Recipe from:
The Catalan Country Kitchen, page 46
by Marimar Torres


Acquire La Masía Pinot Noir

Serves 6

Start preparation 3 hours ahead, by soaking dried fruits in water.

6 dried figs (about 3 oz)
18 dried apricots (about 3 oz)
12 pitted prunes (about 3 oz)
Six 3- to 4-ounce slices of beef tenderloin, each about 1/2-inch thick, cut from the center of the loin
1 tablespoon crushed green peppercorns
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup full-bodied brandy
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups veal or beef stock

Place figs, apricots, and prunes in a saucepan and cover with boiling water. Let them soak for 2 or 3 hours.

Meanwhile, cut away fat from sides of beef steaks and tie double string around each piece to give it a round shape. Cover both sides of the steaks with peppercorns and sprinkle them with 1 teaspoon salt. Let them sit, unrefrigerated, for an hour.

Remove fruits from soaking water and cut them into ¼-inch slices. Over medium-high heat reduce liquid in saucepan to 1/3 cup.

In a skillet large enough to hold all of the steaks, heat butter and, over medium-high heat, sauté them for 1 minute on each side. Add brandy and flambé. Set steaks aside on a serving platter, remove strings, and keep warm. Add fruits, reduced liquid in saucepan, creamand veal or beef stock to the skillet. Increase heat and reduce sauce by one third, or to desired consistency. Add remaining ½ teaspoon salt or to taste. Pour sauce with fruits over steaks and serve immediately.

Recipe from:
The Catalan Country Kitchen, page 91
by Marimar Torres

Acquire Cristina Pinot Noir

Serves 10-12

1/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut up in small pieces
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon zest
4 eggs, at room temperature
2 tablespoons + 1/2 teaspoon finest-quality Spanish brandy
1/2 tablespoon Cream Sherry
2/3 cup flour
1-1/2 cups whole almonds, finely ground

As a garnish:
About 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar

Cream butter and sugar together in a small food processor or mixer, until light and creamy in texture; it will take a few minutes. Add lemon zest and eggs; beat until smooth. Stir in the brandy and sherry, add flour and mix just until blended. Transfer to a bowl and fold in the almonds with a whisk or spatula.

Butter an 8- or 9-inch springform pan and pour batter into it. Place in the oven and set temperature at 350 degrees F. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the center springs back when pressed lightly with your finger and a cake tester comes out clean (it should feel like sponge cake). Let stand for 10 minutes; remove torte from mold and cool on a rack. When completely cooled, sprinkle top of the cake with finely sifted confectioner’s sugar.

This torte can be prepared ahead of time, and will last for at least a week, if kept in a tin. If you make it ahead of time, sprinkle sugar on top at the last minute.

Recipe from:
The Spanish Table, page 228
by Marimar Torres