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Issue Date: September 2005 Issue

Chef to Chef

Our trip to Oregon quickly turned into a Taste of Oregon as we began pairing award-winning wines with award-winning foods. IT was a feast of bistro meals filled with just-harvested ingredients from local farmers, the world's best blue cheese handcrafted from single-estate milk and rich, dark chocolate paired with Cherry Hill Pinot Noir.

Enjoy the recipes from our new Oregon friends, along with our own local tips from Heinen's Chef Jacki Novotny.

Dundee Bistro Mushroom Cappuccino

Jason Smith is co-owner and chef of this exciting restaurant in Dundee, Oregon. The bistro specializes in local cuisine and the menu is as fresh and fabulous as the region. We suggest pairing an Oregon Pinot Noir with this “cappuccino” Jason uses as an appetizer.

Soup ingredients: 2 pound shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced 1/4 cup olive oil 1 yellow onion, chopped 1 leek, white and light-green part, chopped 1 stalk celery, chopped 1/4 cup all-purpose flour 6 cups vegetable broth

1/2 cup heavy cream

Generous dash truffle oil

Small amount of dried mushrooms, ground into powder

Salt and freshly ground pepper

For the soup: heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, leek, celery and sliced shiitake mushrooms. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is translucent, 6-8 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, to make a blonde roux, 5 minutes.

Add the broth to the pot gradually, whisking well to work out any lumps. Bring the soup to a simmer and cook until flavorful and thickened, about 45 minutes. Stir frequently and skim as needed.

Puree the soup with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Return to pot and add 1/4 cup cream. Correct seasoning with salt and pepper, and keep warm.

For the truffle foam: Whip remaining 1/4 cup of whipped cream until stiff peaks form. Add a touch of salt and a generous dash of truffle oil.

For the mushroom powder: Grind any type of dried mushroom into a powder and put into a shaker.

For the assembly: Fill an espresso cup with the hot soup, top with the truffle whipped cream and sprinkle with a shake of the dried mushroom powder. Serves 12.

Chef Jacki’s tips: Shiitakes are known for their soft, delicate mushroom flavor. If you prefer a meatier flavor, try substituting Baby Bellas or, when available, Maitakes (Hen of the Woods) for a rich, woodsy taste.

Umbricelli with Oregonzola and Toasted Walnuts

David Gremmels, co-owner and cheesemaker at Oregon’s Rogue Creamery, shared his very favorite pasta recipe. We’re using the creamery’s incredible Oregonzola cheese in this version. Match this with the Castello Di Corbara – Lago Di Corbara (see Vin Hunter, p 12) and invite your best friend over.

16 oz. package Umbricelli or corkscrew pasta

2/3 cup half and half or light cream

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 oz. crumbled Oregonzola cheese (reserve 1 oz. for garnish)

10 oz. package frozen petite peas, thawed

3/4 cup toasted and coarsely chopped walnuts

fresh parsley, rough-chopped for garnish

Cook pasta in boiling salted water to al dente per package directions. Meanwhile, in 1-quart saucepan, bring half and half and salt to simmer over medium heat. Stir in the 3 oz. crumbled Oregonzola; heat thoroughly.

Place thawed peas in a colander and drain the pasta over peas. In large bowl, toss pasta mixture with blue cheese sauce and walnuts. Turn onto serving platter and top with remaining crumbled Oregonzola and parsley. Makes 4 main-dish servings.

Chef Jacki’s tips: For a different twist, try using orecchiette (little ears) or penne pasta. Both are great at holding sauces. I like DeCecco pastas, which are available at Heinen’s. They’re made using bronze dyes, giving their pasta a coarse “sauce-absorbing” texture. For another variation, try fresh asparagus cut on the bias and cooked along with the cream sauce. Toss with diced pancetta as well.

Dark Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Sauce and Whipped Cream

“This cake is for serious chocolate lovers,” Jan Sweeney of Oregon’s Cherry Hill Winery told us, and it has been a family favorite for years. Pour Cherry Hill Papillon Estate Pinot Noir 2003 for a perfect pairing.

5 tablespoons sweet butter

1 pound best-quality dark sweet chocolate

4 eggs

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon flour

2 cups heavy cream

1 tablespoon powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

12 oz. pureed strained fresh or frozen raspberries

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut a round of parchment to fit an 8-inch cake pan. Butter and flour pan and place parchment on bottom.

Melt together butter and chocolate, stirring constantly over very low heat to prevent scorching. Set aside. In a double boiler, place the eggs and 1 tablespoon sugar, constantly stirring with a whisk over simmering water, until sugar is dissolved and mixture is barely warm.

Remove from heat and beat at highest speed of an electric mixer for 8 minutes. Carefully fold in flour, then gently fold in chocolate mixture. Pour into cake pan and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven to cool. Place in freezer, still in the pan, for 8 hours or more.

On serving day, remove cake from freezer, let rest 20 minutes, remove from pan and place on serving plate. Whip the cream with powdered sugar and vanilla until stiff. Serve slices of cake with whipped cream and raspberry sauce drizzled on top.

Serves at least 8.

Chef Jacki’s tips: This is a wonderful make-ahead dessert. I like to use Callebaut Chocolate (available at Heinen’s) when baking. It’s a superior baking chocolate with a sweet, yet strong Belgian chocolate flavor.

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