Din­ing out...

A great way to warm up on a cold evening…

Ski & Snow - - Race Update - Words by: Traceylee Ste­wart , Bayview Chateau Ton­gariro Szechuan scented Veni­son short loin, red onion tarte tatin and with a Caber­net plum jus.

Win­ter brings a heartier approach to food than the any other sea­son and even more so when teamed with alpine sports. Gone is the guilt approach to food that oc­curs when we adorn biki­nis and board­ies. Head­ing off a ski field from a full days rid­ing or ski­ing be it on a blue bird day or one of the days that make you won­der what would pos­sess you to ven­ture out in such Antarc­tic con­di­tions, ap­petites are usu­ally noth­ing short of rav­en­ous. If the queues had been long all day then chances are that lunch was no more than a snack bar to get the max­i­mum value out of a day on the moun­tain. Choos­ing a meal from a menu is usu­ally un­con­sciously done by a din­ers feel. We no longer eat food for fuel. Din­ing has be­come an ex­pe­ri­ence. “What do feel like tonight…”? Tired and just plain hun­gry? Dishes with sub­stance, quan­tity and qual­ity are paramount on menus around the Cen­tral Plateau. No room here for light sum­mer sal­ads and Sauvi­gnon Blanc. The very thought of it makes you shiver. Alpine menu’s that writ­ten to cater for the keen skier and snow­board­ers are filled with fare that fin­ishes a per­fect day of re­cre­ation. Après food is all about warm­ing, whole­some and earthy flavours. Apart from a per­fect day on the moun­tain the most pos­i­tive thing about win­ter is the food. Long slow braises, deep and rich flavours al­lied with deep, spicy warm­ing red wine. Port and cheese, per­fect win­ter part­ners. Days where choco­late is not a sin. Meals that re­mind you of how life doesn’t have to be all rush and bother. Com­fort, great com­pany and con­ver­sa­tion, hearty cui­sine and gen­uine ser­vice. Meals that fea­ture on menus in alpine en­vi­ron­ments are gen­er­ally not cui­sine trend in­spired. Ful­fil­ment is what win­ter food is all about. Restau­rant and bars that are decked with cosy com­fort­able furniture, fire­places and staff who add to the warmth of the en­vi­ron­ment.

Mulled Wine Recipe – (com­pli­ments of Cardrona Ho­tel) This mulled wine is served at the Cardrona Ho­tel and is made from their se­cret recipe and is like no other, but it’s not a se­cret any­more! You will need the fol­low­ing in­gre­di­ents; • A bot­tle of hearty red wine • A stick of cin­na­mon • A few whole cloves • Half a cup of sugar • One cup of wa­ter • Lemon and orange slices Note that you don’t need to go over­board on the wine...an im­ported Shi­raz from the su­per­mar­ket will do nicely, as you are go­ing to change the taste of the wine con­sid­er­ably.

Place spices, cit­rus, wa­ter and sugar into a large saucepan. Bring to the boil, lower the heat and sim­mer for 5 min­utes. Stir to help dis­solve the sugar. Add the bot­tle of wine and bring back to just un­der the boil. It’s quite im­por­tant not to boil the brew...if it’s boiled, it’s spoiled! Just let the flavours fuse with­out over­cook­ing - 10 min­utes should do it.

Serve warm and en­joy.

Parme­san and gar­lic crusted Lamb rack, sage gnoc­chi and port red wine jus

Above: A Veg­e­tar­ian Dish that pleases even the car­ni­vore amongst us! Cumin spiced pump­kin and gar­banzo with roasted red pep­pers, Por­to­bello mush­rooms, wilted spinach and a sweet jerez coulis.

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