Cooking with wine corks

1,389
13
Joined Jul 24, 2001
In another thread Saucy Cajun mentioned something about cooking with wine corks, refering to a Greek recipe.

To Anneke and Cape Chef sounded very familiar.
Would you want to talk about this?

Cape Chef said that it's more than common to cook with corks.

Any examples?

Thanks :)
 
4,508
32
Joined Jul 31, 2000
Athenaues,

Although I have no direct litature in my home about cooking with corks, it is a practice that has been used for quite sometime in the mederterrian in regards to cooking octapus. as well, corks have been added to stews which are made with toughter cuts of meat to help tenderize the stew meat. perhaps my statment of useing corks in cooking is a little to much, I did mean that it is done in a number of cases, and is still practiced today, you can find cork in many octapus recipes. Also "more than you think" as I stated was meant also to people who had never heard of such a practice.

Thanks for pointing that out
cc
 
1,389
13
Joined Jul 24, 2001
Sorry for insisting but I have been thinking about this.

If you use wine corks maybe the tanines that help the meat to tenderize are not of the corks but of the wine!!!

Well, I haven't heard of using corks in preparing octopus but a glass of wine is highly recommended ;) I mean in greek recipes we never use water to cook octopus but wine!

What do you think about that?

Oh useless to say that in stews all the greek recipes have a glass of wine!!
 
1,389
13
Joined Jul 24, 2001
So it's the tanines of the cork and not of the wine.
This was my question.
I see.
Thanks cc :)
 
3,853
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Joined May 26, 2001
Okay, so corks have tannin (well, of course -- they're from the bark of cork oak trees, after all). But what is it about tannin that produces the tenderizing effect? What's the chemical reaction (in layperson's terms, please)? It's got to be different from the reaction to the acid and alcohol in wine, no? Or is it?

This has gotten really, really fascinating!
 
467
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Joined Jan 11, 2002
As I said in the other "cork" thread, in Italy a cork (an old one, not moistened with wine) is commonly added in the water where octopus is boiled to tenderize the meat and I usually do it, although I didn't know the exact reason. It's an old housewives' trick and, as far as I know, it's used exclusively for cooking octopus.

Pongi
 
4,508
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Joined Jul 31, 2000
I'm not a chemist, but i'll take a shot at it.

Since tannins are of a phenolic compound, they have the ability to break down the protiens in the octapus, hence tenderizing it :)
 

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