Get Cozy: A Winter Picnic
Add some fun to your winter evenings with these simple yet sophisticated riffs on classic comfort foods
FIG & GOAT CHEESE PANCETTA CRISPSAdapted from Bon Appétit
Makes 12 crisps
- 12 thin slices of pancetta
- 12 generous tsp. soft fresh goat cheese
- 1 jar of fig jam or spread
- 12 small baby arugula leaves
- 6 small fresh figs, sliced
- Fresh thyme leaves
DIRECTIONSPreheat oven to 400 degrees. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper and place pancetta in a single layer on the paper. Bake until crisp and nicely browned, 12–15 minutes. Transfer pancetta crisps to paper towels and let cool for 15 minutes. Arrange crisps on a serving platter and top each with 1 tsp. goat cheese, a small dollop of fig spread, 1 arugula leaf, and fig slices. Sprinkle with thyme and serve.
RUSTIC PIGS IN A BLANKET
Makes approximately 32 rolls
- 1 17.3 oz. box frozen puff pastry (2 sheets)
- 2 12 oz. packages artisanal sausages
- 1–2 tbsp. water
- 1 egg
Defrost puff pastry according to package directions. Preheat oven to 425 degrees and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Beat egg in a small bowl with a fork and set aside. Cut each sausage into 1-inch sections and set aside. On a floured surface, unfold first sheet of pastry dough. Use a rolling pin to roll it out into a 10-by-14-inch rectangle and trim the edges to make them straight. Cut into 2-by-3-inch strips and repeat with the second sheet of pastry. Place one piece of sausage in the middle of each strip. Dampen edges of pastry with water and bring edges together around the sausage. Press pastry gently to seal and turn roll over so smooth side is up. Repeat with remaining sausage and pastry and set rolls about 2 inches apart on baking sheet. Gently pierce each roll twice with the tip of a knife to create venting holes. Brush tops with beaten egg. Bake for about 15 minutes until puffed and golden. Cool slightly and serve warm.
If you have any leftover pastry strips, brush with butter, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, and bake on a separate baking sheet for 5–10 minutes or until crispy.
SAVORY TOMATO SOUP
Adapted from Ellie Krieger
Makes 4–6 servings
- 1 tbsp. butter or extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ c. onion, chopped
- ½ c. potato, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 28 oz. can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp. tomato paste
- 2 c. vegetable broth or chicken broth
- ½ c. whole milk, almond milk, or oat milk
- 2 tsp. honey, agave, or sugar, to taste
- ½ tsp. sea salt or to taste
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
Heat butter or oil in a large heavy soup pot over medium heat. Add onion and potato and cook for 4–5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened and translucent. Add garlic, tomatoes, tomato paste, and broth, and stir well. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in milk, honey, salt, and pepper, and remove pan from heat. Cool slightly and puree until smooth with a hand-held stick blender, food processor, or blender. To serve, heat soup gently and pour into bowls.
- 1 1 lb. loaf of French or Italian bread
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened or 8 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley
- 1 tsp. sea salt, or to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Slice the bread into ½-inch slices and arrange on the paper. Mix butter or olive oil, garlic, parsley, and salt in a small bowl and spread mixture on slices. Bake for 10–15 minutes, watching carefully, until golden but not burned. Remove from oven and cool for a few minutes.
POPCORN THREE WAYS
Each recipe makes enough seasoning for approximately 16–20 cups of popcorn
Zesty Pickle Popcorn
INGREDIENTS: 1 tbsp. each salt and coriander seeds; 1 tsp. dried dill; ½ tsp. each dill seed, mustard seeds, garlic powder, onion powder, and citric acid
DIRECTIONS: In a spice grinder, grind all ingredients to a fine powder. Sprinkle over popcorn, toss gently, and serve.
Spicy Buffalo Ranch Popcorn
INGREDIENTS: 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted; 4 tbsp. ranch seasoning mix; 4 tbsp. buffalo wing or hot pepper sauce; salt to taste
DIRECTIONS: In a small bowl, mix butter, ranch seasoning, and buffalo wing sauce to taste. Pour over popcorn, toss gently, and serve.
Savory Italian Popcorn
INGREDIENTS: 3–4 tbsp. top-quality extra-virgin olive oil; ½ c. grated fresh Parmesan cheese; 1 tbsp. salt; 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
DIRECTIONS: In a small bowl, mix Parmesan cheese, salt, and Italian seasoning to taste. Sprinkle over popcorn, toss gently, and serve.
PAIR LIKE A PRO
Leslee Miller, Certified Sommelier of Amusée shares her favorite pairings.
WITH FIG & GOAT CHEESE PANCETTA CRISPS | Birichino ‘Saint Georges Old Vines’ Zinfandel
Here’s the thing about Zin: it loves figs and pancetta! This old-vine sip is remarkably fresh, with black cherry, anise, and sage. Its zing leaves the palate refreshed and bright!
WITH PIGS IN A BLANKET | Domaine de la Damase Grenache
Boysenberry, blueberry, blackberry, and a touch of pepper keep this wine perfectly in line with the smoky bits of sausage you’ll enjoy snuggled between those pastry layers.
WITH TOMATO SOUP | Castello di Volpaia Chianti
Sangiovese and a cozy tomato soup, yum! Dried cherry, spice, and light shades of smoke make for the perfect accoutrements to all things Italian, tomatoes, and savory.
Styling by Lara Miklasevics