Wine is an excellent ingredient that brings out miraculous tastes, aromas and color in cooking. If you love to experiment with different ingredients and drinks, you might consider including different wine varieties in your creations. Mix fine French wines with numerous spices, herbs and nuts to invent a new dish. This could be a big culinary adventure for chefs and connoisseurs.
Choosing an Ideal Wine for Cooking
Depending on your personal requirements and tastes, you can easily prepare meats, vegetables, gravies, sauces, stew soups and stocks using red and white wine. It doesn’t matter what wine you choose. Selection of alcoholic liquors for cooking is determined by the kind of taste you prefer.
For example, fortified wines and rice wines are used for cooking Asian dishes whereas grape wines are perfect for European dishes. You may also choose seasonal wines from Italy and France for cooking regional specialties.
Rice wine is extracted from fermented rich starch. Rice stalk gets converted into sugar and alcoholic liquor, which is included in Japanese, Chinese and Thai cuisine. This beverage adds a tangy acidic flavor to marinades, sauces, seafood and beef. Seasoned chefs use Mirin (sweet wines), Sake (dry wines), Huangjiu and Shaoxing for cooking Asian dishes.
Dry White Wines
Dry white wine has a light flavor. It is processed from fermentation of dried grapes. Consequently all the sugar is used up during anaerobic fermentation. This provides a buttery and bubbly texture to the beverage. Some of the best white wines that are used for cooking include Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.
Dry white wines are used for cooking white pasta sauce, seafood, pork, poultry and veal. It is added on top, while serving the dish. Chefs allow the wine to simmer with piping hot dishes. This enhances the flavor of food and pleases the taste buds of your guests.
If you’re experimenting with wines for the first time, you should opt for easy options like Sauvignon Blanc, which is used in instant recipes. If you want a mild acidic or tangerine taste, you can use Chardonnay or fortified substitutes like port, sherry and vermouth. Use crisp dry liquors like Muscadets for preparing bouillabaisse, soups and seafood.
Full Bodied Red Wines
Full bodied red wines tastes heavy and takes a longer time to digest. Red wines used for cooking include Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Barola. The dominating flavors of full-bodied red wine complements the taste of tomato sauces, stews, red meat, root vegetables, broths and gravies.
Chefs may include red wines like Merlot in red meat, younger substitutes like Shiraz or Syrah in sauces and earthly red Grenache in root vegetable preparations or soup stocks. Doesn’t use a cheap-quality red wine for cooking because as your dish cools down, the additional salts present in red wine gets transferred it. Consequently, the food assumes an overly sweet or acidic flavor that ruins its texture, smell and taste altogether.
Fortified wines like Vermouth, Port, Sherry, Madeira and Marsala have different flavors and aromas since a plethora of brandies, spices and seasonings are added to them after distillation. Hence, they’re used in all kinds of preparations. However, chefs must note that sweet fortified wines work well in case of desserts.
Things To Consider
Don’t purchase commercially produced cooking wines because they’re of poor quality and add an inferior taste to your dish.
Anthony Roberts, the writer, is also a chef. He loves adding wine in when cooking dishes. He also gives tips and ideas on how to make dishes tastes even better with the right kind of wine. He has featured wines such as chardonnay, pinot gris, and promised land moscato