Cognac ...

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by bughut, Jun 20, 2013.

  1. bughut

    bughut

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    Birthdays and Christmas, my family and friends know what to buy me, but apart from drinking it and making sauces and pates, how do i use it?

    I love Cognac, but dont know how to make the best of it in recipes. I would appreciate some help.
     
  2. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    If you mean what I think you might mean -- getting cognac "underneath" other flavors -- for instance in a braise, the best way to do it is to use the spirits as a deglaze.  Flame the alcohol off the booze before scraping the fond up avoid an accidental flare up.  Intentional flambe, fun.  Unintentional, less so.     

    Any chance you be more specific about what you're trying to do?

    I don't know about Bonny Scotland, but here in the US there are some budget VSOP and XO cognacs which are marginal for drinking but excellent for cooking.  Save the Hennesy for a glass by the fire. 

    Some rums will give you a similarly smooth flavor profile; and so will some fortified wines like Madeira, Marsala and Sherry.         

    BDL
     
  3. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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    Have you ever tried using it to "cure" the holiday fruitcake(s)?

    We are port or rum (fruitcake) people but I imagine with the right combo of fruit, cognac would be very nice.

    mimi

    now you have gone and done it bug.

    this has made me crave fruitcake.

    will have to dig for some in the netherworld of my chest freezer.

    /img/vbsmilies/smilies/licklips.gif

    m.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2013
  4. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    A pan roasted steak is a God-given opportunity to use cognac in a de-glaze pan reduction. 

    Fondly,

    BDL
     
  5. durangojo

    durangojo

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    yes to, steak au poivre...yes to steak au poivre for breakfast and crepes Suzette too! :)

    joey
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2013
  6. petalsandcoco

    petalsandcoco

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    Then maybe with  the addition of thick cream and crushed peppercorns, lemon juice  and 1 tbsp of Marsala & salt.
     
  7. chrisbelgium

    chrisbelgium

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    Bughut, I notice you reside in France, maybe you speak some French? May I suggest a google search using "cuisiner à base de cognac" as a searchstring? I just did, it's endless.

    Of course, it's your money, but I would never use one of the cognacs you pictured in hot recipes. Using Otard, Hennessy, Courvoisier...etc.  or using a cheap cognac or good brandy, makes no difference at all when cooked. Any Auchan supermarket in France has several cheap ones, I'm sure there's one in your region too?

    Cognac is very often used to "flamber" (setting fire with alcohol). It can be anything like -indeed as already mentioned- steak au poivre flambé, coquilles St.-Jacques (fry, flamber, white wine, cream), starting a coq au vin before the red wine is added, you name it.  Setting fire is often followed by adding an amount of (many times white) wine after the flames are out, and many times followed by adding cream for making a cream sauce. It's important in hot dishes to always burn off alcohol in cognac completely or the dish will taste of alcohol and nothing else.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2013
  8. bughut

    bughut

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    Thank you all for your comments.
    Bdl- I wasn't sure what I was asking for n I guess hoping I'd be hit with inspiration. After your second post I did realise, its the total "oomph" , the depth, the essence that I want to retain. To make the cognac special in the recipe, because it is special. I want, somehow, to have a cognac recipe, rather than a recipe a brandy would do for.

    So I guess what I should have asked for, was how can I make a good cognac shine in a recipe? It is special and I want something to show it off at its best.
    The only thing I've come up with so far is a zabaglione, but my lot wouldn't like that.

    De glazing is the tops Chris, I agree, but again, a brandy wd do fine for my lot

    Maybe I shd just try cooking with MY cognac for ME

    Doing some personal Hennessy research as we speak : )
     
  9. bughut

    bughut

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    I checked out the web site you mentioned Chris and your opinion is mirrored in its recipes... Thank you for the tip.

    In all my years as a chef, I have never made an authentic French onion soup n now I can't wait. : ) nor can I wait to try shrimp in an entirely new way

    Cheers pal
     
  10. olmoelisa

    olmoelisa

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    Try adding 2 tablespoons of cognac to a stew or a goulash, just a minute before it's done.

    A wonderful jelly recipe: prepare a jelly with 2 parts of orange juice, 1 part of cognac and the needed jelly powder.

    Fill a mold with raisins and pine nuts and pour the jelly (when it's still liquid) on it.

    Put in the fridge 2-3 hours and serve with whipped Cream.
     
  11. chrisbelgium

    chrisbelgium

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    Since you're in France often, allow me to draw your attention to the cooking series on FR3 television each saturday at 16.55 called "Les Carnets de Julie", starring the very, very, very very charming Parisienne Julie Andrieu. Each saturday she visits a different small region in France and looks for specific dishes from that region. Many of them are totally unknown, even to Julie Andrieu. A real must for cooking enthousiasts but also for people who are interested in the smallest French regions. Last week it was the Marseille region, tomorrow it's the Ardèche!!!

    It's a bit early on saterdays for me to watch, so I record Les Carnets. There's also a repetition on wednesdays very late at night.

    Here's the link from France3 telling more about Les Carnets de Julie... and there's a lot of videos;http://www.france3.fr/emissions/les-carnets-de-julie
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2013
  12. bughut

    bughut

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    One thing coming through loud and clear to me is that i am being introduced in this thread to a cuisine that I've never been interested in before as a chef. Cognac and my new life in France is obviously the catalyst. Cordon bleu still holds no interest for me, but the provincial, rustic style is becoming a passion. My thanks to all who have helped in the transition so far.

    BDL- I would never have considered Cognac as a deglaze before. always wine up till now....Chris mentions not using a good cognac with heat. what do you think?  I guess i'm not looking for the flavour of the cognac underneath, but shining, like the star it is.

    Thanks again for the recommendation. "When French women cook" is wonderful

    Durangojo -  love your retro slant. Maybe we should have a 70's dinner later in the year for my brother-in-laws 60th. I reckon that'd go down a treat

    Olmoelisa - thats some random jelly recipe. Thanks for the input

    Flip - put that cake back where you found it girl...You're right though

    Chris - Thank you big style for all your help. I'm clicking into your link next to see if i can get FR3 online streamed, cos we dont have TV down there. Just recently online but its pretty iffy out in the sticks. btw Mobile phone reception in the village is by the pylon next to the phone box, or in the cemetery by the big stone altar. :\

    Petals - Im trying to be good...cream is Baaad...Well maybe a wee bit eh? : )

    BTW the whole Cognac thing started a few years ago when OH started working offshore in Dubai and now west Africa... One night when we were out for dinner and I said how amazing my Cognac was, it must've stuck a chord n every time he came through duty free on his way home from work,he saw it as a challenge to buy me a n even better Cognac than the last time and everyone else got on the bandwagon. I guess when you absolutely know what someone likes, it makes birthdays n Christmas's a doddle eh? 
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2013
  13. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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    HIC*

    Too late bugs...

    /img/vbsmilies/smilies/rollsmile.gif

    mimi