To pair with: 2011 Lafite Réserve Spéciale Bordeaux
60% Sémillon, 40% Sauvignon Blanc
The arepa is a Venezuelan staple. You may be accustomed to seeing bigger arepas that are filled with meat, cheese, chicken, or sweet plantain. However, the arepa can be more versatile. A fun, elegant, and refreshing way to enjoy an arepa is to pair it with a crisp Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc Bordeaux blend. The sweetness of the arepa helps to maintain the citrus and herbal notes of the wine – making it an ideal pairing. The following is a great recipe to serve at a cocktail party or as a dinner appetizer.
Ingredients for the arepa:
- 1 cup of pre-cooked white corn flour for arepas (preferably P.A.N. brand)
- 1 1/4 cup of water at warm room temperature
- 3/4 tsp. of salt
Ingredients for the tartare:
- 1 pound of fresh tuna, sushi grade, cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 1 avocado, peeled, seeded and chopped in 1/4-inch dice
- Juice of 1 orange
- 1tbsp. scallions, chopped
- Lemon zest of 1 lemon
- 1 tsp. ají amarillo paste or 1 ají amarillo, blanched, seeded, deveined and chopped
- 1 1/2 tbsp. soy sauce
- 2 tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped
- Salt & pepper to taste if needed
Procedure for the arepas:
- In a deep bowl, add the water and little by little start adding the flour, salt and using your fingers, start mixing everything slowly. Make sure to keep a steady circular motion while mixing everything together without allowing it to crumble up. Keep mixing until you have a homogeneous mix that doesn’t stick to your hands.
- With your hands divide the dough into equal ball portions and start giving them the flat “arepa” shape.
- Place the “arepas” on a pan or flat non-stick skillet at medium temperature and cook for approximately 5 minutes on each side.
- After they’re golden on each side remove them from the heat, set aside to serve with the tartare.
Procedure for the tartare:
- In a large bowl, add orange juice, lemon zest, soy sauce, ají amarillo and combine well.
- Then add the tuna, scallions, cilantro and mix well.
- Carefully mix the avocado into the tuna mixture and combine.
- Season to taste if needed and serve immediately on top of each “arepa”. Garnish with more cilantro and serve.