Pairing: Seafood and sauvignon blanc make a perfect summer dinner
Our Wine of the Week, Quivira Vineyards 2017 Fig Tree Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc ($24), is a winner, year after year, vintage after vintage. The wine is always refreshing, with stellar acidity and an engaging floral quality that makes you want to nuzzle your nose down into the glass.
I’ve always found notes of white grapefruit, nuances of jalapeño and freshly mown grass kissed by morning dew in the wine. There’s a bit of orange blossom in there, too, and a fillip of rambutan, a tart-sweet tropical fruit.
It’s a perfect summer quaffer, delicious with zucchini, green beans, radishes, avocado and poblano. Add some mozzarella or feta cheese and the match will soar.
The wine is also excellent with cabbage, especially really good locally grown cabbage, such as the delightfully shaped conical cabbage from Ma & Pa’s Garden. Enjoy it with a tart coleslaw, with grilled cabbage drizzled with lime juice, or with a bed a lightly sautéed cabbage topped with oven-roasted pork tenderloin and a classic gremolata of lemon zest, garlic, and Italian parsley.
Seafood is a great partner, too, and the inspiration for today’s recipe. Shrimp tacos are so popular these days and are very simple to make at home. Top them with a bright cabbage salsa and you have a summer feast for very little effort.
Shrimp & Avocado Tacos with Cabbage Salsa
Makes 2 servings, easily doubled
— Cabbage Salsa (recipe follows)
12-16 large shrimp, preferably wild caught Gulf shrimp, rinsed, shelled, and deveined
— Juice of 1 lime
— Kosher salt
8 corn tortillas
1 firm-ripe avocado, pitted and cut into thin lengthwise slices
1 lime, cut in wedges
2 radishes, cut in wedges
First, make the salsa and set it aside or, if making it more than an hour before serving it, put it into the refrigerator.
Put the shrimp into a medium bowl, add the lime juice, season with salt, and toss gently. Let rest about 15 minutes.
Set a medium heavy sauté pan or skillet over high heat. Set a second skillet or stovetop grill over medium-high heat.
When both pans are hot, you’ll need to work quickly. Put the tortillas, one on top of another, on the second skillet or grill. Turn them over and over, reversing positions, several times, until they are very hot, very soft, and not at all crispy.
While you do this, put the shrimp and any juices into the first pan, cook for 2 minutes, and use tongs to turn them over. Cook for 2 minutes more.
Put four tortillas — two stacks of two — on individual plates. Divide the avocado between them and top it with the shrimp. Top with cabbage salsa, garnish with lime wedges and radishes, and enjoy right away.
Makes about 2 cups
1 ½ cups very thinly sliced white/green cabbage
4 scallions, white and pale green parts only, cut into very thin rounds
3 small radishes, very thinly sliced
1 small serrano, minced
— Juice of 1 lime, plus more as needed.
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
— Kosher salt
— Black pepper in a mill
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
In a medium bowl, toss together the cabbage, scallions, radishes, and serrano. Add the lime juice and olive oil, toss gently, and season with salt and pepper. Add the cilantro, toss again, taste, and correct for salt and acid.
Cover and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. Toss, taste and correct the seasoning immediately before using.
Michele Anna Jordan is the author of 24 books to date, including “San Francisco Seafood.” Email her at email@example.com.