Wangaratta Chronicle - North East Regional Extra - - FRONT PAGE - with ANITA

THE slow cooker and I

have be­come closer this year than we ever have be­fore. The cheap ap­pli­ance has al­ways made the oc­ca­sional ap­pear­ance on the kitchen bench, but this year it’s ce­mented its place there, cook­ing up a storm of dodgy cuts and do­ing it with aplomb. We’ve done all kinds of brisket, bones and back straps from just about ev­ery kind of beast, and with not much more than time, a splash of wine and a bay leaf, they’ve been trans­formed into some­thing worth writ­ing home about.

I had to take back ev­ery­thing I said

about use­less, sin­gle pur­pose ap­pli­ances af­ter tast­ing last night’s beef ribs, en­joyed with a glass of Buller Wines Caber­net Mer­lot. The fruit for the wine was sourced from se­lec­tion of vine­yards in the King Val­ley re­gion.

It has deeply opaque

ruby red colour with just the slight­est pur­ple hue. There’s a pleas­antly savoury, spicy aroma over some berry and plum fruiti­ness and the flavour con­tin­ues the savoury theme, with some rasp­berry, more plum and zesty pep­per.

Its earth­i­ness

makes it food friendly and it was ideal with the sticky ribs which are sweet, juicy and unc­tu­ous. A tip from this slow chef is to chill the dish overnight so you can re­move the ex­cess fat from the sur­face, be­fore re­heat­ing and serv­ing. And have at least two bot­tles on hand of ev­ery­thing you like to drink. Avail­able from lo­cal out­lets or visit the cel­lar door in Ruther­glen, where you have lunch next door at Ripe. Price ap­prox: $23

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