I recently attended a fabulous blogger event hosted by InStyle Magazine, which featured all sorts of venders: SkinnyGirl, Sears, DSW, and Elizabeth Arden. One of my favorites, being the lush that I am, was Flight Song (c/o). They served up a crisp, flavorful Pinot Grigio with -get this- 20% less calories than the average bouteille du vin. Diet wine with no compromise on flavor? Yes, please.
Brancott Estates Flight Song's Pinot Grigio & Sauvingon Blanc grapes are selected and harvest earlier than usual to craft full-flavored wine that is naturally lighter in sugar, alcohol, and thereby 20% lighter in calories. The Sauvignon Blanc boasts lemongrass and tomato aromas with a pink grapefruit-like taste, while the Pinot Grigio's sweet, fruity aromatics and delicious apple-like acidity make it a great pairing for delicate yet spicy dishes. It's perfect with spicy seafood, to be exact, so I was inspired by two of my favorite restaurant dishes: 1) The Shrimp Orzo at Kefi, and 2) Due's Guazzetto Toscana appetizer.
The Shrimp Orzo from Kefi is truly a guilty pleasure- grilled shrimp, a bright tomato sauce, creamy feta cheese, and orzo. Due's dish, on the other hand, is quite similar- with rosemary tomato sauce instead of lemon and mint, and cannelini beans in place of orzo. To keep with the Flight Song's theme of 20% lighter- I chose to combine the two: the shrimp and sauce from Kefi, and the cannelini beans from Due. It went perfectly with the Pinot Grigio creating a wine and meal pairing that tasted indulgent, but was quite the opposite.
What You'll Need:
- 2 lbs peeled, deveined shrimp
- 1 can Cannellini beans (about 15 oz.)
- 4 gloves of garlic, smashed
- 1/4 cup of sundried tomatoes (rehydrated in water and diced)
- 1 lemon, juiced and zested
- 2 large shallots, finely chopped
- 8 oz. baby spinach
- 3 plum tomatoes
- 2 cups tomato sauce (storebought or homemade)
- 1 cup of feta cheese, crumbled
- 4 whole scallions, chopped
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 tbsp of chopped mint
- 1/2 tbsp of chopped oregano
- Exra Virgin Olive Oil
Preheat the oven to 400F, and roast the tomatoes with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper until wilted and slightly charred. Remove from oven and crush with a fork.
Meanwhile in a large pot, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over high heat and add the garlic and shallots. Sauté for 1 minute until fragrant and softened. Add the scallions and sear the shrimp, (in batches, if necessary) until cooked through. Remove and set aside.
Deglaze the pan with water then add in crushed tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Cook for 2-3 minutes until it cooks down slightly and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the spinach, and toss until it wilts. Then add 1-2-3/4 of the feta, the shrimp, cannelini beans, lemon juice and zest, and herbs. Top with more feta cheese to serve.
Hint: We used "Bulgarian Feta," soley based on the fact that it was much cheaper. It is also creamier and has a texture more like goat cheese (versus the crumbly texture of Greek feta.) There is a slight difference in flavor as well, so use what you're comfortable with!
As for the Sauvignon Blanc- I'm saving that for "Friendsgiving:" A Thanksgiving-themed potluck dinner with the girls. I'm in charge of dessert, so stay tuned for that recipe!