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Jan 5, 2016
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WINE WITH…Pork and Spinach Stir-Fry

‘Tis the season for leftovers and for quick and simple meals. After all the economic, alcoholic and caloric excesses of the holiday season, what we want to eat right now is food that is uncomplicated and nourishing. We yearn for fare that is soothing--but not necessarily boring! A big chunk of leftover pork roast seems a good place to begin. Substitute leftover roast chicken or turkey if desired.

Pork and Spinach Stir Fry

Serves 2-4

For the sauce:
2 teaspoons minced ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon fish sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 cup chicken stock

8 ounces rice noodles
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons canola or other neutral vegetable oil
2 cups cooked pork roast cut in small (about ½-1 inch) pieces
About 10 ounces (2 or 3 big handfuls) baby spinach
½ cup sliced scallions
Lime wedges

Whisk together all the ingredients for the sauce and set aside.

Prepare the rice noodles according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a wok or cast iron skillet cook the sliced onion in the oil until it has softened. Stir in the pork and cook for a couple of minutes; then pour in the sauce. Add the spinach a handful at a time, stirring each handful until it has cooked down just enough to add more. Stir in the sauce and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until the sauce has thickened somewhat. Toss in the drained noodles and dish up immediately, sprinkling the scallions over the top of each serving. Garnish each plate with a lime wedge.

* * *

White wines fared better than reds with this dish, and the best matches included wines with some residual sugar or at least ripe fruit that gave the impression of sweetness. The soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil and minced ginger all benefited from wines that, while fresh and balanced, tasted somewhat sweet. Happily, wines with that flavor profile can be fairly inexpensive, so they will work as well with your budget as with your taste buds.

Questions or comments? Contact us at Talkofthevine@gmail.com

Selection

Approx. Price

Comments

Concha y Toro “Casillero del Diablo,” Casablanca Valley (Chile) Devil’s Collection White “Reserva” 2013

(Imported by Excelsior Wine & Spirits)

$15

A blend of Gewurztraminer, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc, this is a zesty white with citrus and green berry notes enhanced by a seductive hint of sugar. That last note, probably coming from the Gewurztraminer, made the wine an especially good match for this dish.

Estación, Colchagua Valley (Chile) Chardonnay 2014

(Imported by American Estates Wine)

$11

Showing no oak to get in the way of its vivacious tropical fruit flavors, this wine is easy to enjoy. There is nothing complicated about it, just plenty of ripe, succulent fruit flavor.

Fairview, Darling (South Africa) Chenin Blanc 2015

(Imported by Vineyard Brands)

$15

Tasting of ripe pears and other autumn fruits, this is a beautifully balanced Chenin Blanc coming from the country that fast has become the go to source for this variety. It easily outperforms its price tag.

Dr. L. Mosel (Germany) Riesling 2014

(Imported by Loosen Bros. USA)

$13

Not as sweet as many Mosel Rieslings, this wine still tastes succulent. Its peach and golden apple flavors married nicely with the stir-fry, while its crisp acidity kept everything in clear focus.

Lucio, Provincia di Pavia (Italy) Moscato NV

(Imported by Prestige Wine Group)

$12

We don’t usually think of Moscato as a food wine, but this well-balanced rendition worked wonderfully with this dish. The hint of effervescence provided a satisfying lift, and the unabashedly sweet flavors married perfectly with the sauce.