The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas


January 4, 2014

COOKING WITH SIMON: A new year with a new start

PALESTINE — It comes around so quickly and with it comes new food finds and new creations. 2013 was a year of great events at Sabor a Pasion and with 2014 at my door, there are many great changes coming our way.

It's been ten years since I came to Texas and a small town called Palestine, and in that time I’ve seen many restaurants come and go. I have also talked at many schools and local community events to help promote food, travel, healthy eating, and what it's like to be an international chef. Of course, the most popular question everyone wants to know, “Why are you in Palestine?”

But why is not important, it’s more important that I stayed and continue to grow with each passing year.

At Sabor, I try to bring something new each year whether it be cooking classes, the ballroom for weddings, the wood-fired pizza oven, the Tuscan dinning table, and best of all the vineyard.

This year, of course, will be no exception. We have plans to expand the bed & breakfast with two romantic sunrise cabins overlooking a vista of new varietal red grapes.  And there will be the grand opening of Restaurant Aubergine with seating for up to 40 people and a new kitchen dining table that seats six.

The menu and atmosphere will be reminiscent of an Italian osteria, which means the food will be fresh, local, seasonally inspired with simple flair and amazing flavor. Osteria’s are not about Italian food, but rather an atmosphere of rustic elegance with handmade food, fresh sustainable ingredients, a gracious host and a comfortable ambience.

Another important part of an Osteria is the wine. Soon, we may have our own wine to serve – aging in the barrels, as we speak – but letting you bring your own wine means you can enjoy the wine you like the most, without the high prices that typically come with restaurant wine lists.

Also this year, the grapevines will be four years old so the growth will be stronger and the fruit more bountiful. Similarly, is the growth and strength of Sabor a Pasion, as we rebrand the property with the name Sabor a Pasion Estate & Vineyard. The weddings, special events, catering, bed & breakfast and winery will remain Sabor a Pasion, while Restaurant Aubergine will serve as the property’s restaurant.

But I couldn’t have done any of this without the help of the community. Your support has taken me this far and fueled this passion for flavor – Sabor a Pasion.

Thanks for a great ten years. Dream it, live it, eat it. Make your passion for life happen. Have a Happy New Year and make 2014 a year to remember.

Text Only
  • Seafood Timbale COOKING WITH SIMON: Master classes

    You might have seen the article announcing the cooking class that I held last week.
    We’re holding a series of classes we’re calling Master Classes. They’re designed to give you the fundamental information and techniques needed for various areas of cooking.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • SIMON Chocolate Cake COOKING WITH SIMON: Entertain with easy chicken entree

    Easter and Mother’s Day are right around the corner and that means family gatherings.
    And when it comes to serving a crowd you’re better off picking a recipe that is easy, yet full of flavor.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stuffed chicken breast COOKING WITH SIMON: Entertain with easy chicken entree

    Easter and Mother’s Day are right around the corner and that means family gatherings.
    And when it comes to serving a crowd you’re better off picking a recipe that is easy, yet full of flavor.

    April 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • black bean salad COOKING WITH SIMON: Black Bean Salad

    One of the great things about spring is the beginning of fresh salads, but not just the leafy kind, instead the ones filled with varieties of beans and peas.

    March 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mayonnaise COOKING WITH SIMON: Which came first? The yolk or the white

    If you do a lot of baking or dessert making, like I do, you might have a large amount of egg yolks on your hands. There are many recipes, like my New Zealand Pavlova, that call for the egg whites, but not the yolks.

    March 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • seeds COOKING WITH SIMON: Planting seeds for the future and the plate

    My workload just got a lot easier and more interesting. Why? Because soon I won’t have to shop for produce and I get to start creating some fun new dishes that incorporate all of the wonderful vegetables and herbs that will be growing in my garden.

    March 8, 2014 2 Photos

  • Mardi Gras 1 COOKING WITH SIMON: Mardi Gras time in Palestine

    The good times were definitely rolling down Palestine Main Street last Saturday and the food sure was too. It was a great weekend with parades, floats, parties, Cajun recipes, zydeco music and plenty of Palestine area wine.

    March 1, 2014 4 Photos

  • eggplant sandwich COOKING WITH SIMON: Feeding the steak eaters and the vegetarians

    Texans are known as meat eaters and enjoy they’re big juicy steaks. But sometimes it’s nice to eat a meal that is just vegetables and follow the new Meatless Monday trend. Chefs always need to have some good vegetarian dishes in they’re repertoire because vegetarians and vegans don’t want to just eat salads and pasta.

    February 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hibiscus Champagne Cocktail COOKING WITH SIMON: Don’t forget the Valentine’s Day flowers

    Happy Valentine’s weekend! Well, at least for those of you who remembered it was Valentine’s and at the very least bought a card. Otherwise you may be spending the weekend in the doghouse.

    February 15, 2014 3 Photos

  • mushroom potato soup COOKING WITH SIMON: Keeping warm with healthy, hearty soups

    The groundhog saw his shadow so it looks like we are in for a few more weeks of winter. I am hoping he might be wrong because some trees are already starting to bud and I am ready to get busy cutting back the grapevines, planting vegetables and doing the spring pruning.

    February 9, 2014 1 Photo