BRIGHTEN UP WINTER WITH PLACE IN THE SUN MERLOT
Place in the Sun is a brand of bright, juicy and smooth wines, accredited by Fairtrade. The cellar pays a premium for the Devon Valley, Stellenbosch grapes it selects for the range. The farm workers tending the vines and picking the grapes decide by committee how to use that money in a way that enhances not only their lives, but also the wellbeing of their families.
To date, funds have been used for educational, health, recreational and nutritional programmes. The community boasts the very first university graduate within South Africa’s Fairtrade community.
Alvercia Juries, who studied at the University of the Western Cape and is the daughter of farm workers, is now a specialist nurse. Both her sister and another child of farm workers are studying at a local business college, with the premiums paying their tuition.
Colder weather calls for hearty, warming food. Pour yourself a glass of this deliciously smooth Place in the Sun Merlot with succulent red berry and plum flavours as you prepare this simple, tasty butternut dish. It’s so filling you won’t even miss the meat and its sweet, savoury and earthy notes pair seamlessly with the wine.
The wine can be purchased from www.fairtrade.org.za as well most liquor stores and sells for around R58.
BUTTERNUT, SPINACH, FETA AND OLIVE COUSCOUS
- 1 small butternut, peeled and cubed into bite-sized chunks
- Handful of fresh mint and 4/5 sprigs of oregano (or 1 to 2 teaspoons each of both herbs, dried)
- 1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
- 2 cups baby spinach, cleaned but not excessively rinsed
- 1 scant cup of feta, coarsely crumbled
- 1/2 cup of pitted black olives
- Handful of toasted pine nuts (optional)
- Glug of balsamic reduction (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 200°C.
- Place the butternut pieces in an oven-proof dish, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with the fresh/dried herbs, chilli flakes and salt to taste. Roast until tender (approximately 30 minutes).
- When done, remove from the oven, add the spinach leaves and toss with the vegetables so the leaves start to wilt but not cook through.
- Add the feta and olives and ensure all components of the dish are evenly distributed.
- If dry, add a light drizzle of olive oil. If using, lightly drizzle the balsamic reduction and sprinkle with pine nuts.
- Serve on a bed of couscous prepared according to the pack instructions.
- Pour Place in the Sun Merlot for all your guests.
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