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Raise your wine glass to the New Year! January Newsletter 2023

Cheers to the New Year!

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I am so excited about our featured wine this month! Our splashing Sangria will absolutely splash your taste buds with a tart to sweet mouthwatering party in your mouth. With this wine we wanted to create a fun cocktail with plenty of citrus flavor that does not over power but lingers with a strong enough bite that would smooth out with a sweet finish. This wine is for those who want a full flavored traditional sangria with sharp fruity notes. Can be served chilled or at room temperature, for when the Texas weather can’t decide what it wants to do. Bottles are on the shelf and we have it available for tasting! Stop on by to give it a try and let us know what you think.

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Did you know???? Sangria is on of the most popular wines in Europe. Originating from Spain hence the Spanish word for blood is “Sangre”. Recognizing sangria is easily done by it’s color. Sangria is a beautiful rich red color and delightful to drink when concocted with the right ingredients in the correct proportioned amounts.

Sangria is one of the most appetizing “cocktails” that has every existed. If you love wine and cocktails it would be wrong if you have never tried sangria in your lifetime, especially ours at Rusty Hook Winery. Alex really out did himself in the creation of this exquisite beverage. Cheri also suggests at a spritzer to it for an extra bit of deliciousness. Sangria is best served as a brunch cocktail. Below are just a few brunch meal ideas to pair with our Splashing Sangria.


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Stuffed Mushrooms


  • Cooking spray, for pan
  • 1 1/2 lb. baby mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 c. breadcrumbs
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for topping
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley, plus more for garnish
  • 1 tbsp. freshly chopped thyme
  1. Step 1Preheat oven to 400°. Grease a baking sheet with cooking spray. Remove stems from mushrooms and roughly chop stems. Place mushroom caps on baking sheet. 
  2. Step 2In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add chopped mushrooms stems and cook until most of the moisture is out, 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute then add breadcrumbs and let toast slightly, 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.  
  3. Step 3In a large bowl mix together mushroom stem mixture, Parmesan, cream cheese, parsley, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper.  Fill mushroom caps with filling and sprinkle with more Parmesan.  
  4. Step 4Bake until mushrooms are soft and the tops are golden, 20 minutes. 
  5. Step 5Garnish with parsley to serve. 

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Humus and Pita Chips


  • 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained, or 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda (if you’re using canned chickpeas)
  • ¼ cup lemon juice (from 1 ½ to 2 lemons), more to taste
  • 1 medium-to-large clove garlic, roughly chopped
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, to taste
  • ½ cup tahini
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons ice water, more as needed
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Any of the following garnishes:  drizzle of olive oil or zhoug sauce, sprinkle of ground sumac or paprika, chopped fresh parsley
  1. Place the chickpeas in a medium saucepan and add the baking soda. Cover the chickpeas by several inches of water, then bring the mixture to a boil over high heat. Continue boiling, reducing heat if necessary to prevent overflow, for about 20 minutes, or until the chickpeas look bloated, their skins are falling off, and they’re quite soft. In a fine-mesh strainer, drain the chickpeas and run cool water over them for about 30 seconds. Set aside (no need to peel the chickpeas for this recipe!).
  2. Meanwhile, in a food processor or high-powered blender, combine the lemon juice, garlic and salt. Process until the garlic is very finely chopped, then let the mixture rest so the garlic flavor can mellow, ideally 10 minutes or longer.
  3. Add the tahini to the food processor and blend until the mixture is thick and creamy, stopping to scrape down any tahini stuck to the sides and bottom of the processor as necessary.
  4. While running the food processor, drizzle in 2 tablespoons ice water. Scrape down the food processor, and blend until the mixture is ultra smooth, pale and creamy. (If your tahini was extra-thick to begin with, you might need to add 1 to 2 tablespoons more ice water.)
  5. Add the cumin and the drained, over-cooked chickpeas to the food processor. While blending, drizzle in the olive oil. Blend until the mixture is super smooth, scraping down the sides of the processor as necessary, about 2 minutes. Add more ice water by the tablespoon if necessary to achieve a super creamy texture.
  6. Taste, and adjust as necessary—I almost always add another ¼ teaspoon salt for more overall flavor and another tablespoon of lemon juice for extra zing.
  7. Scrape the hummus into a serving bowl or platter, and use a spoon to create nice swooshes on top. Top with garnishes of your choice, and serve. Leftover hummus keeps well in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 1 week.

Stuffed Jalapeno Peppers


  • 12 large jalapeno peppers
  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese grated
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 slices bacon cooked and crumbled, divided


Prep oven and pan:

  • Move the oven rack to the middle position and preheat to 400 degrees F.
  • Line a standard size cookie sheet with foil. Lightly grease the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

Prep Jalapeno’s :

  • Slice the jalapeños peppers in half lengthwise. Clear the peppers of seeds and the white membranes.

Make Filling:

  • Add cream cheese, cheddar, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and all but 2 Tablespoons of the crumbled bacon to a medium bowl (reserve 2 Tablespoons of crumbled bacon for the topping). Use a handheld mixer to beat the mixture until creamy and combined, about 1 minute.

Assemble Jalapeno’s:

  • Use a spoon to fill each jalapeño with the cream cheese mixture, and place them on the prepared cookie sheet.
  • Sprinkle the reserved bacon over the poppers.


  • Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the poppers are bubbly.


  • Let the jalapeño poppers cool for 3 minutes, and then serve.

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Sweet and Sour Meatballs


  • ▢1/2 cup Brown Sugar loosely packed
  • ▢1/2 cup Rice Vinegar
  • ▢1/4 cup Ketchup
  • ▢1 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • ▢2 1/4 cups Pineapple Juice
  • ▢1 tbsp Cornstarch
  • ▢25 All-Purpose Meatballs (frozen is fine)
  • ▢2 Bell peppers chopped (optional)
  • ▢1 cup Drained Small Pineapple Chunks
  • ▢2 tbsp Sliced Green Onions for garnish
  • ▢Rice for serving


  • Add brown sugar, vinegar, ketchup, soy sauce, and 2 cups of pineapple juice to a large skillet over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil.
  • In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and the remaining ¼ cup pineapple juice together, whisking to get out all the lumps. Whisk into your skillet and add Meatballs and chopped peppers. Bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 8-10 minutes until the sauce has thickened and the meatballs are heated through.
  • Stir in pineapple chunks. Serve warm over rice.


Chicken Empanadas



  1. Preheat oven to 375° F.
  2. In a large skillet heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and peppers and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cilantro and stir until fragrant, about one minute.
  3. Add chicken, along with water, chicken bouillon, tomato paste, onion powder, garlic powder and salt. Bring liquid to a simmer, stirring often. Allow to cook until liquid has evaporated, but mixture is not dry, about 5-8 minutes.
  4. Working with one prepared dough at a time add a heaping ⅓ cup of filling onto one side of the dough. If using homemade dough or pie crust, roll dough out very thin and cut into 6-7” disks.
  5. Wet a pastry brush with egg wash (1 beaten egg plus 1 tablespoon water) and dampen the inside ¼ inch edge of the filled dough. Fold the dough in half. Using a fork, firmly press the edges together. Repeat this process with remaining dough and filling and arrange on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  6. Brush each empanada with egg wash. Bake for 35 min or until golden brown.
  7. Freezer Instructions: Allow empanadas to completely cool. Add to a freezer bag in a single layer. Seal, removing as much air as possible. Store in the freezer for up to 6 months. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400°F and bake empanadas on a lined baking sheet for 20 minutes.
  8. Note: Filling can be made ahead and stored for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Empanada filling can also be frozen and stored in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

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