cooking with alcohol

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by at your service, Feb 14, 2002.

  1. at your service

    at your service

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    I have heard that when cooking with alcohol.....if you cook or bake it for at least twenty minutes the actual alcohol content is cooked out leaving behind only the flavor. Is this true?

    ~~Tamara~~
     
  2. athenaeus

    athenaeus

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    At home cook
    I am expecting some answers from the Food pros.

    From my experience, alcohol "disappears" indeed and it leaves a flavor.

    My question is, does the alcohol leaves a flavor or it helps the main ingredient to enrich its original flavour?

    Is my question clear or I have had too much wine ? :)
     
  3. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    As an aside, not all alcohol evaporates when added to a liquid such as stock. The mixture is called an azeotrope as described in the current issue of FINE COOKING magazine.

    But yes, an alcoholic beverage added to food will, indeed, flavor it. Hence the action of flambe. Try adding 1 - 2 tsps whiskey to 3 qts of chicken stock, you'll taste the difference. Adding more than 2 tsps ruins it.
     
  4. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    Whiskey to chicken stock? I have never heard of that before.

    As for cooking with alcohol when you deglaze a saute pan you do burn off the alcohol.
     
  5. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Nicko, that's deglazing vs flavoring a liquid.
     
  6. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    Your right Kokpuffs, I also found this chart on the net:
    PREPARATION METHOD---------------------------------------Alcohol Retained

    No heat application, immediate consumption -------------100%

    No heat application, overnight storage-----------------------70%

    Alcohol ingredient added to boiling liquid,------------------85%
    and removed from heat

    Flamed ---------------------------------------------------------------75%

    Baked, approximately 25 minutes, alcohol ingredient--45%
    on surface of mixture (not stirred in)

    Baked/simmered, alcohol ingredient stirred into mixture
    15 minutes-----------------------------------------------------------------40%
    30 minutes-----------------------------------------------------------------35%
    1 hour------------------------------------------------------------------------25%
    1.5 hours--------------------------------------------------------------------20%
    2 hours-----------------------------------------------------------------------10%
    2.5 hours---------------------------------------------------------------------5%


    source: Minnesota Nutrition Council Newsletter
     
  7. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Yes, whiskey added to stock...mind expanding, aren't I!!!!!!!!!:bounce: :bounce: :eek: :bounce: :bounce:
     
  8. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    That is really interesting, did you come up with that yourself Kokopuffs, and if so what prompted you to try adding whiskey?

    Can you describe the flavor a bit? It really isn't going to impart any acidity to the stock, is intended more to round out the flavor. For some reason I just can't imagine it rounding out the flavor.

    It is interesting, I will give it a try next time. Are you adding it right at the end?
     
  9. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Nicko:

    Either the usage of whiskey was pure inspiration or from Raymond Oliver's book entitled LA CUISINE. Whiskey tends to round out the flavor IMHO when used sparingly. Longer simmering mellows any "harshness". As to acidity, dunno'.
     
  10. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    Thanks, I will try it.
     
  11. pete

    pete Moderator Staff Member

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    Kokopuffs, when you add alcohol (ie. wine, bourbon, etc) and deglaze a pan you still add flavor to the liquid that you then add next. So deglazing is a way of adding flavor to a liquid, it also helps to pull up all those caramelized bits stuck to the bottom of the pan, helping them to also flavor the liquid and to keep them from burning.

    As for flambeeing, as Nicko pointed out, only part of the alcohol gets burned off. Liquids will only flambe when their alcohol content reaches a certain point. As the alcohol burns it becomes more diluted until it gets to a point where the alcohol content can't support a flame

    As an example, the bourbon sauce that I make: I caramelize veg in a pan. I then deglaze with bourbon and flame it to burn off the alcohol, leaving just the rich caramel and oak tones to the bourbon. I then add my demi and seasonings. Reduce that, add cream, reduce again. Then, just before straining I add a bit of raw bourbon to give the sauce just a hint of that raw alcohol bite.
     
  12. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Thanks for the clarification. Yes, alcohol does flavor in general.

    I plan to braise rabbit in Guinness beer. But please don't tell Homer Simpsom about it.
     
  13. billyg60

    billyg60

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    Now that sounds good to me. 2 of my favorite things rabbit and Guiness beer.

    During the summer I take pork tenderloins and marinate overnight in a Bourbon, honey, Maple syrup marinade and roll them in choped Pecans then roast in the oven. I then deglaze the pan with the marinade and make a sauce out of it and drizzle over the sliced pork loin and Garlic/dill mashed potatoes.


    Yummmmmmyyyyyy.

    Billy
     
  14. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Hey BillyG:

    Reading your recipe told me that you're southerner. I have relatives who own property in Brunswick and St. Simons Island. Good eating down that way!
     
  15. athenaeus

    athenaeus

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    I have read this thread many times.

    I always fail to succed in what you call deglazing
    The alcohol evaporates too soon and the sauce gets very dark...
    Why? Because I do that in high temperature?
    I have tried Pete'sbourbon sauce and it was a catastrophy...

    When I make meat in casserole, first I saute it for 5 min and then I add a glass of wine and I reduce the heat and let it boil with it's liquid.
     
  16. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    I love cooking with alcohol, at home that is. My favourites are Single Malt Scotch or a full bodied red. Sometimes I sip on a beer but I never ever do cognac. :D

    Kuan
     
  17. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    May I recommend tasting, in a properly warmed (not heated) brandy snifter, some high quality armangnac or even calvados? Just about 5 - 10 cc's in the glass will do, enough to savour a highly delicate aroma. What a truly exquisite experience.
     
  18. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    To deglaze:

    1. Reduce the heat (or flame) to the vessel.
    2. Squeeze some lemon into the fond (pan drippings). Swirl.
    2. Add enough wine to cover the bottom of the pan. Reduce
    SLIGHTLY.
    3. To the reduction add some stock or creme. Reduce to a
    desireable thickness.
    4. Feed me.

    -T
     
  19. athenaeus

    athenaeus

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    Thanks for the tips kokopuffs.

    It always so easy to read the recipes ! You think that you can prepare everything.
    In tip number 4 you forgot " Shut up and feed me"


    :D
     
  20. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Tip Number 5:

    Shut up, bring me a beer, and go change the channel on the tv!