Wine Sauce Adds Pizzazz To Portobellos

Diana Helfand
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Wednesday - March 23, 2011
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How would you like to ferment and make bottles of wine from your own barrel with labels that you can customize any way you want?

Greg and Lindsay Minarik, owners of Oeno Winemaking, create individual wine barrels for their customers. Each barrel yields 28-31 bottles, which include labels with your own name and any other customized information you want to add.

According to Greg, several people frequently join together to order a wine barrel.

Greg and Lindsay have extensive winemaking experience and offer more than 50 varieties of red, white, premium and specialty wines such as Vidal Ice Wine and Premium Port. There are even fruit wines such as Blackberry Merlot, Kiwi Melon Pinot Grigio and Seville Orange Sangria. Several of their wines have won international awards.

The winemaking process takes a few weeks, and customers are always welcome to visit to see how their wine is progressing.

Prices per bottle are surprisingly reasonable. Greg and Lindsay will assist you in your choice of wine, allow wine sampling, and let you mix your own special barrel in their spacious Kailua store and wine-processing room. They even will host a bottling party for your next special occasion.

The ice wine I sampled was absolutely exquisite. Greg and Lindsay offer a unique and fun product that can be enjoyed alone, with that special someone or with a group of friends or family.

It is a pleasure to dedicate this column to a couple who can add to the pleasures of everyday life.

The Egyptian pharaohs prohibited the general population from eating mushrooms as they were considered to be food of the gods. Romans believed that fresh mushrooms gave strength, and they were included in the diets of their soldiers.

In the United States, one of the most popular types of common mushroom is the portobello - larger, with a darker color and stronger taste, it is reminiscent of wild mushrooms in flavor.

Mushrooms are high in potassium and riboflavin. They are believed to have a number of medicinal properties such as being laxative, antibiotic and cholesterol lowering.


* 8 portobello mushrooms
* extra-virgin olive oil, to brush mushrooms
* flour, for dredging
* canola oil (enough to coat bottom of pan)
* 1 cup white wine
* 1 cup chicken broth (low-sodium, no msg)
* 2 1/2 cups tomato sauce
* 1/3 cup freshly grated low- or nonfat Parmesan cheese
* 1/4 teaspoon basil
* 1/4 teaspoon oregano
* salt and pepper, to taste

Remove stems from portobellos. Brush with olive oil and bake in pre-heated 400 degree oven for 10 minutes. Set aside.

In a hot pan, add canola oil and heat. Dredge portobellos in flour, shake excess flour from mushrooms and cook on each side for 1 minute; remove from pan.

Add chicken stock to the pan, followed by the white wine, tomato sauce, cheese and herbs.

Bring mixture to a boil, stirring vigorously until the cheese melts entirely and the sauce is a consistent thickness, reduced slightly.

To serve: Place mushrooms on plate and pour sauce over the top. Garnish with chopped parsley and some grated Parmesan cheese.

Makes four servings.

Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary a

(Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program.)

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