CigarZin Pairing Winning Recipes

In October, Mitch announced the winner of our first ever CigarZin Recipe Challenge, which was Jayne Desimio’s Yippie Kai-yay! Chicken Bowl.  By popular demand, we have posted her winning recipe below as well as runners -up Kevin Newman and Lisa Cunningham.  Please give these recipes a try and tell how they were or feel free to share some of your favorite CigarZin recipes in the comments below.  Bon Appetit!

Winner: Jayne Desimio

Yippie Kai-yay! Chicken Bowl

Pepper Chicken:

Use whole chicken with skin on, roasting method

  • 2 tablespoons garlic
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne
  • 2 tablespoons thyme
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons cracked black and pink (if available) peppercorns

Grind all spices together lightly. Truss the chicken and place it in a deep roasting pan with a foil tent. Cover bird in Butter, then rub with spice mix. Cook at 375 degrees for about 1.5-2 hours depending on the weight. Once the chicken has finished cooking, de-bone and break down meat into med dice/shreds. Set aside.

Chicken Bowl:

  • 6 large sweet potatoes, medium dice
  • 1/2 cup almonds, chopped & blanched
  • Butter, as needed
  • 3oz queso blanco, fine shred
  • 3oz panela, fine shred Avocado, quartered
  • Sour cream
  • Blue tortilla chips

Par boil sweet potatoes for approx. 15 minutes in salted water. Once potatoes reach desired softness, add to buttered sauté pan over medium heat to continue cooking. Just before the potatoes are finished, add the cooked chicken, another spoonful of butter, and almonds. Cook cov- ered for 5 minutes.

Plating for service: In a large bowl layer: 5oz chicken/potato, 1oz cheese blend, 5oz chicken/potato. Top with large handful of blue tortilla chips hand crunched, dollop of sour cream and quarter of avocado. Enjoy!


Runner Up:  Kevin Newman

Lamb Porterhouse with CigarZin Cherry Reduction


  • 4 Lamb Porterhouse Cuts (approximately 12-16 oz each)
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp cracked Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Tarragon
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 medium white or yellow onion (sliced and halved)
  • 1 Cup Cigar Zin
  • 1/2 lb halved and pitted Bing cherries
  • 1/2 Cup Water
  • 1 tsp Minor’s Beef Base
  • 2 tbsp roux (1/2 flour, 1/2 butter)

Start with the sauce. In a medium sized sautee pan, melt the butter and once simmering add the sliced onion. Once onions become transparent and just start to brown add the wine to deglaze the pan. Allow to cook off for about 1 minute and add the cherries. Simmer on a medium heat for about 4 minutes. Add the Water and Beef Base and allow to simmer for additional 4 minutes. Lastly, add the roux, and allow to simmer until dissolved. Reduce temperature to a low simmer and allow sauce to further reduce while the Lamb cooks.

Pre-heat your grill to 375 degrees. Next add the seasonings to the Porterhouse as a dry rub. Once applied, put on the hot part of the grill for 4 minutes on each side to attain a medium rare temperature. Remove from the grill and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

Plate, add the desired amount of sauce and enjoy. Don’t forget to pour yourself a glass of the Cigar Zin to enjoy with your Porterhouse!


3rd: Lisa Cunningham

Portobello Rockefeller


  • 12 Portobello Caps (3″ diameter, stems and black gills removed)
  • 1 Tbl Olive Oil
  • 2 bags prewashed spinach
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 Tbl Pernod
  • 1 ounce Parmesan Cheese shaved
  • 1 can smoked oysters
  • Salt and Pepper

Sautee shallot in olive oil in a large heavy bottomed pot. Deglaze pan with Pernod. Add spinach and cook til all wilted. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Fill Mushroom caps with spinach and place on grill. Top each shroom with cheese. Cook until heated through and cheese melts. Place oysters in a microwave safe dish and nuke for a few seconds just to plump. Top each mushroom with a smoked oyster and serve.

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