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Old 07-15-2014, 10:57 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CraigC View Post
Red wine adds a depth of flavor and hardiness to make a tomato sauce taste much better. White wine adds great acidity and brightness to a dish, taking it over the top. Of course this is just my opinion.
Nice summation.
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Old 07-16-2014, 12:03 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by taxlady View Post
Nice summation.
I think that about says it all. We all now the complete answer. Next?
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Old 07-16-2014, 11:17 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by manilak1d View Post
I have an Italian friend who grew up in Italy that never puts red wine or any wine in his sauces.

I've watched famous chefs make tomato sauce but didn't use red wine.

I must be missing something from this depth of flavor you guys are mentioning. If you like that wine taste in your food, then your free to do that.
I use red wine in many dishes where marinara is the base sauce.
The wine is always added at the deglazing stage and most is cooked off. Evaporated.
No one would ever know there was wine in these dishes.

I bet I could fool Addie.
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Old 07-16-2014, 11:22 AM   #54
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Alcohol does a great job of deglazing.
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Old 07-16-2014, 11:30 AM   #55
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Alcohol (in general) also helps in that there are flavors that are alcohol soluble. It can open up flavors/aromas that wouldn't be there otherwise.

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Food also benefits from alcohol's second remarkable quality: It bonds with both fat and water molecules. In this way, alcohol bridges the gap between our aroma receptors (which respond only to molecules that can be dissolved in fat) and food (which consists primarily of water). This is crucial, because most of the great "flavor" in food comes from aromas in the nose rather than tastes in the mouth. (Notice that you can't fully "taste" your food when you have a stuffy nose.)

Alcohol's ability to bond with both fat and water is well illustrated by a marinade or brine. In this case, the flavor compounds in aromatics like garlic, herbs, or other seasonings dissolve only in fat (i.e., they are fat-soluble). Alcohol helps carry those compounds into the meat that's soaking in the marinade. At the same time, alcohol also carries any water-soluble flavor compounds into the meat's cells. (Water-soluble flavors include sweet, sour, salty, and bitter.) The result of alcohol's efforts? More flavor and aroma in the marinated food. And it doesn't take much: Adding even a tablespoon of neutral-tasting vodka to a marinade or brine noticeably improves the flavor penetration of the marinade.

The same principle is at work when you baste a piece of meat with wine, beer, or spirits during cooking. Of course, the liquid helps moisten the meat's surface, but the alcohol also carries flavor compounds into the meat, improving its taste.
Here is a pretty comprehensive article on alcohol use when cooking.
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Old 07-16-2014, 11:31 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by Roll_Bones View Post
I use red wine in many dishes where marinara is the base sauce.
The wine is always added at the deglazing stage and most is cooked off. Evaporated.
No one would ever know there was wine in these dishes.

I bet I could fool Addie.
You probably could. I don't mind alcohol in food, as long as I can't taste the alcohol. I have had many dishes with wine in them.
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Old 07-16-2014, 11:38 AM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TATTRAT View Post
Alcohol (in general) also helps in that there are flavors that are alcohol soluble. It can open up flavors/aromas that wouldn't be there otherwise.



Here is a pretty comprehensive article on alcohol use when cooking.
Great info. Thanks.

I always wondered why someone would add oil to a marinade. I guess it's to help dissolve those fat soluble flavours.
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Old 07-16-2014, 01:04 PM   #58
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[QUOTE=Roll_Bones;1375285
The wine is always added at the deglazing stage and most is cooked off. Evaporated.
[/QUOTE]Actually, most is not cooked off or evaporated. Do a Google search on "alcohol cookoff chart" to see. You will be very surprised.
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Old 07-16-2014, 04:07 PM   #59
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Everything. Sometimes I even put it in whatever I am cooking, too!
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Old 07-17-2014, 11:07 PM   #60
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...I must be missing something from this depth of flavor you guys are mentioning. If you like that wine taste in your food, then your free to do that.
Again, it's not the "wine taste" that is desirable, it's the food qualities that are enhanced by adding wine to the dish while it is cooking.

If you are dubious, the next time you make a pot of sauce do a little experiment. Part way through the simmer, take some of the sauce out of the main pot and put it into a different vessel. Add a bit of wine to the sauce, then continue to simmer the two sauces side by side. When they are done put some on plain noodles on one side of your plate, the second sauce on plain noodles on the other side of your plate. Then taste and compare. From then on you know whether the choice to add or not add wine to food appeals to you. After all, your cooking doesn't need to make my taste buds happy. Cook the way it makes YOU happy.
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