Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Grape expectations

They're fabulous to snack on, but grapes can take center state in a meal, too.

Seared Shrimp with Grape Citrus Rum Sauce
Serves 4

12 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons grapeseed or vegetable oil
1 cup red seedless California grapes, sliced
1 tablespoon slivered lemon zest
1 tablespoon slivered lime zest
1 each jalapeño pepper, sliced into slivers
1 teaspoon slivered ginger
3 tablespoons dark rum
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
Pat the shrimp dry and season with the salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large, nonstick skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat. Sear the shrimp in the hot oil until they are bright pink and curling, about 2 minutes. Stir in the grapes, lemon zest, lime zest, jalapeño, and ginger. Pour on the rum and light, being careful to keep your hands and face away from any flame. Simmer 1 minute. Stir in the brown sugar, lemon juice, and lime juice and simmer until the sauce is slightly syrupy and the shrimp are just cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes.

San Joaquin Sangria

1 bottle (750 ml) full-bodied, dry red wine
2 cups red or black seedless California grapes
1 orange, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 nectarine or peach, cut into thin wedges
2 tablespoons honey
1 cup soda water (optional)
8 small clusters of green grapes

Combine all the ingredients except the soda water and the grape clusters in a pitcher. Stir well. Refrigerate for 2 to 24 hours to allow the flavors to meld. Add soda water if desired and serve with or without the fruit pieces, in glasses garnished with small clusters of grapes.
Serves 4.
Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories 292; Protein 1.94 g; Carbohydrate 43 g; Fat .94 g; 3% Calories from Fat; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 13 mg; Potassium 590 mg; Fiber 2.7 g.

Fresh Grape Trail Mix

1 cup green, red, and/or black seedless California grapes
4 ounces jack or cheddar cheese, diced
1/2 cup chocolate or carob chips
1/2 cup almonds, peanuts, or sunflower seeds

Combine the ingredients in resealable bags. Keep chilled until ready to serve.

Serves 4.
Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories 341; Protein 11.7 g; Carbohydrate 24 g; Fat 24 g; 60% Calories from Fat; Cholesterol 25 mg; Sodium 155 mg; Potassium 173.5 mg; Fiber 3.8 g.

Arrange shrimp on a serving platter or on individual dishes, spoon on the grape sauce and serve.

Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories 129; Protein 4.7 g; Carbohydrate 16 g; Fat 3 g; 19% Calories from Fat; Cholesterol 32 mg; Sodium 181 mg; Potassium 166 mg; Fiber .91 g.

Spicy Carrot Slaw with Grapes

1/3 cup orange juice concentrate, undiluted
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1 small green chile, seeded and minced (use a jalapeño, Serrano, or habanero if you like it really hot)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large peeled carrots, shredded
2 cups green, red, and/or black seedless California grapes, halved
1/2 medium jicama, peeled and julienned (1 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro
1/2 cup salted peanuts, coarsely chopped

In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice concentrate, lime juice, chile, and salt. In a separate serving bowl, combine the carrots, grapes, jicama, cilantro, and peanuts. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to blend. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.
Serves 8.
Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories 136; Protein 3.4 g; Carbohydrate 18.5 g; Fat 6 g; 37% Calories from Fat; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 219 mg; Potassium 296 mg; Fiber 3.3 g.
Courtesy: California Table Grape Commission