A good wine is even better with food that enhances and complements. Napa-based cookbook author and food and wine writer Jill Silverman Hough couldn’t agree more: She created simple, mouthwatering recipes to pair with specific wines in her books “100 Perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy With Wines You Love” (Wiley, 2010) and “100 Perfect Pairings: Main Dishes to Enjoy With Wines You Love” (Wiley, 2011). Read more
Viognier stands up to rich food pairings
For food writer and culinary instructor Jill Silverman Hough, cooking is a means to an end.
“I like to eat well,” she said. “And I had great role models in my grandmother and my mom, (who) was a stay-at-home mom who was really great in the kitchen.” Read more
In winter, we crave heavier, more intense foods: soups, stews, roasts, and braises. We asked Napa author Jill Silverman, who wrote 100 Perfect Pairings: Main Dishes, for wine suggestions.
Classic: Roast chicken and Chardonnay.
Alternative: Try Viognier or Pinot Noir. Read more
Napa author, chef Jill Silverman Hough with main-dish ideas on what to eat and drink this fall
Last year, Napa food writer, recipe developer and culinary instructor Jill Silverman Hough came out with her first book on food-and-wine pairing, “100 Perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy with Wines You Love.”
With the book, chock-a-block with recipes and menu ideas, her goal was to simplify the whole wine and food pairing process, trying to make home chefs feel as though they didn’t have to search for one perfect bottle every time they cooked, but instead could just hone in on a particular variety, experiment and learn as they go.
“I always start off by saying that food and wine pairing is not important,” Hough said. “Being healthy, that’s important, raising your kids well, that’s important. There are a lot of things in life that are important, but food and wine pairing isn’t one of them. Rather, it’s an enhancement. It’s a place to play and explore.” Read more
Last year, I reviewed Jill Silverman Hough’s 100 perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy with Wines You Love. And a year and a half later, I still turn to the book for ideas. So I was eager to check out Hough’s latest book, 100 Perfect Pairings: Main Dishes to Enjoy with Wines You Love ($16.95, Wiley).
For a book about pairing wine and food, I was surprised to find my favorite feature wasn’t the recipes. Oh, I loved the recipes. Hough has a way of making even my least favorite dishes (lamb, mushrooms) sound irresistible (Chanterelle and Gruyere Bread Pudding and Honey-Orange Lamb Chops).
And I especially liked the introductions to each wine, and how the descriptions hit the nail square on the head as to why I find myself drawn to specific grapes.
But my favorite part about 100 Perfect Pairings is how the book is organized. When I know I’m going to enjoy wine with a meal, I like to start with the wine and then plan my meal accordingly, rather than trying to find a wine to fit the food. Read more
Local authors fill cookbook shelves
Napa is becoming almost as famous for its food as its wine, but it has another distinction, too: Probably more cookbook authors per capita than any comparable place in the United States.
A number of our local authors have recently released interesting cookbooks. Here’s a look at some. Read more
Pairing wine with food need not be intimidating
With the holidays fast approaching, it’s time for many hosts to confront a dilemma: how to pair dishes with wine?
For many, the answer comes at local wine shops, where salespeople pull bottles off the shelves after listening to descriptions of meals. Some shops even hold holiday tastings, where folks can try different wines with bites of ham or turkey.
Jill Silverman Hough, author of “100 Perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy with Wines You Love” (Wiley, $16.95), has a different take. She’s created 100 recipes to pair with 12 types of wines. With her easy wine-pairing tips, you’ll pick a wine with confidence—and tailor your dish to match it. Read more
Turning wine pairings around — Jill Hough offers ‘100 Perfect Pairings’
Reams have been written about pairing wine with food, almost always starting with the food. Yet certain dishes have traditionally developed in European wine regions to go with the local wine: Beef Burgundy for that wine, or pizza with rich local red wine in Naples.
Local author, food writer, recipe developer and culinary instructor Jill Silverman Hough takes exactly that approach in her book, “100 Perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy with Wines You Love.”
“Food and wine pairing are often presented as intimidating and mystical,” she said. “It is appealing but can be daunting.”
Unlike those who start with rules or food, she starts with the wines — six white varieties and five red plus rosé — and after discussing the wines and what typically pairs well with then, she offers half a dozen or so recipes for each. Read more
Wine and food pairing advice from an expert
It used to be so easy. Chicken went with white wine and red meat with red. Now you don’t just serve vino. You have to pair the darn stuff.
Relax, says food and wine expert Jill Hough. It’s true that chic chefs and sommeliers put a lot of thought into how the blackberry aroma of the zinfandel complements the smoky essence of the whatever, but when it comes to cooking at home, says Hough, “My philosophy is, don’t worry about it.”
“This is something people can work themselves into a tizzy about,” she says. “Your friends are not coming over for food and wine pairings. They’re coming for you. That said, it’s a fun arena to play in.”
And play she does. Hough, who writes occasionally for Bon Appetit and Cooking Light magazines, and whose “Quick Cuisine” column ran in the Oakland Tribune for many years, has a new book out, “100 Perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy with Wines You Love” (Wiley, 188 pp, $16.95). Read more
“You are holding in your hands possibly the first-ever food and wine pairing book decidedly not written for food and wine geeks,” writes Jill Silverman Hough in the opening line of “100 Perfect Pairings.”
It’s true. The Napa culinary instructor’s first cookbook is a fail-proof pairing guide for even the newest of newbies. Small-plates recipes (such as chicken sandwichettes with raisin jam and pickled onions, pictured) are organized into chapters by wine type—so you just pick a recipe, make it, and pour a glass of the corresponding wine. If you crave more detail, there are fine-tuning and nuance notes in each chapter. Plus, Hough generally recommends only easy-to-find wines. We asked her to share her best tips. Read more
The Way Gestalt Tastes
Eating well sure has gotten complicated, hasn’t it? That’s why this week’s small step toward sustainability is to just sit back and enjoy some real food and wine in all its glorious gestalt. Read on for a chance to win a lovely new book that will make it very easy to do so. Read more
Exploring the various flavor options when it comes to pairing food with wine can be quite the adventure for diners, drinkers, or cooks new to the task. And sometimes it isn’t necessarily a fun adventure. But “100 Perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy with Wines You Love” by Jill Silverman Hough ($16.95, Wiley) aims to take some of the unknown out of the great adventure. Read more
Wine Pairing Guides
Sometimes good things come in small packages and that is certainly the case with 100 Perfect Pairings by Jill Siverman Hough. Hough has worked with wineries for years, creating recipes. She approaches recipes like I do, from a food rather than a wine perspective. But she certainly knows her wine. What I love about this book is the recipes. They are not the tedious “steak and Cabernet” variety, but small plates. While she acknowledges that steak and Cab is a classic pairing, her recipes to go with Cab include things like Rosemary Walnuts, Charred Eggplant Spread with Whole Wheat Pita Toasts and Sharp Cheddar and Bresaola Melt. Even her steak and Cab recipe has a twist–it’s Steak, Porcini and Parmesan Risotto. Read more
Some people take their food and wine pairings very seriously. Others liken it to an evil conspiracy to make wine more complicated than it needs to be. Napa food writer, recipe developer and culinary instructor Jill Silverman Hough falls somewhere in between. Read more