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Old 12-13-2009, 09:09 AM   #1
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Sherry as a recipe ingredient

While we enjoy drinking wine, we don't drink fortified wines at all. Therefore, in buying a bottle of sherry, it's not going to be consumed other than in recipes. Typically, right now, I use a bit of wine to replace the sherry in any recipes that call for it. However, I realize that oftentimes, there is "some little something missing" and I'm sure it's because sherry adds a depth of flavor that wine doesn't.

My question is: as a general rule, when a savory recipe calls for sherry, unless otherwise noted, what kind are they talking about? I'm assuming dry... not sweet or extra dry or extra sweet (like cream).

Another question... in general, can you substitute another fortified wine for sherry? Like Madiera or Marsala? TIA!

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Old 12-13-2009, 09:29 AM   #2
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Dry sherry.

Sherry is a very good sub for rice wine in Chinese food recipes.

Each of the fortified wines has a different taste. As long as you are happy with that taste difference, you can substitute one for the other. Of course, veal marsala would then become veal madeira or sherry veal.
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Old 12-13-2009, 09:37 AM   #3
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Thanks, Andy. That's what I figured, but not being sure, I didn't want to go buy a bottle that wouldn't work in recipes and would be wasted as a drink. I wish I could find sherry in the mini-bar sizes, but while I'm told they make them, nobody seems to carry them.
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Old 12-13-2009, 09:47 AM   #4
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As a fortified wine, sherry will last forever in the liquor cabinet. Buy a bottle for $4 or $5 and use it when you need it.
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Old 12-13-2009, 12:54 PM   #5
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If you are a ginger fan, make a jar of ginger sherry. Cut a hand of ginger into 1 inch pieces, put them in a mason jar and cover with sherry. Let it sit for a week or more, then use it in stir fries.

My sister takes fresh mushrooms, sautees them with some butter and a little onion, then deglazes the pan with the ginger sherry.
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Old 12-13-2009, 01:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparrowgrass View Post
If you are a ginger fan, make a jar of ginger sherry. Cut a hand of ginger into 1 inch pieces, put them in a mason jar and cover with sherry. Let it sit for a week or more, then use it in stir fries.

My sister takes fresh mushrooms, sautees them with some butter and a little onion, then deglazes the pan with the ginger sherry.
I do this as a storage medium for the ginger, not just to make the ginger sherry.
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Old 12-13-2009, 02:52 PM   #7
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Oooh, that's a neat idea, thanks!

I finally broke down and bought real sherry.... and discovered I LIKE the stuff.
But then, I am partial to sweet wines....
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Old 12-13-2009, 06:58 PM   #8
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Most recipes that call for "Sherry" mean "dry" Sherry (otherwise they'll specify what kind of Sherry). However, there are even degrees of "dry Sherry!" I usually keep Fino Sherry on hand. The one in the cupboard now is Lustau's Jarana. Can't remember the brand that calls its "Palo Cortado," but it's similar.

Amontillado Sherry is not really sweet, but will be too sweet for most savory recipes.
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Old 12-14-2009, 06:54 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefJune View Post
Most recipes that call for "Sherry" mean "dry" Sherry (otherwise they'll specify what kind of Sherry). However, there are even degrees of "dry Sherry!" I usually keep Fino Sherry on hand. The one in the cupboard now is Lustau's Jarana. Can't remember the brand that calls its "Palo Cortado," but it's similar.

Amontillado Sherry is not really sweet, but will be too sweet for most savory recipes.
Thank you! I will look for these this week at the liquor store. I think I remember seeing "Fino" sherry.

I specifically have a Vol au Vent recipe that we enjoy, but still needs some oomph in it. The original recipe was written to include sherry, but I've been making it with white wine. I've tweak the recipe every other way and have come to the conclusion that it's not any of the other ingredients, it's using wine instead of sherry for the cream sauce. Thanks again!
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Old 12-16-2009, 07:44 AM   #10
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OK... I'm trying to understand why this is under substitutions now. I'm not looking for a substitution, I'm trying to find out more about an ingredient that I don't know much about. If that's not "general cooking questions", I don't know what is. This place confuses me anymore.

Anyway, thanks for the replies. I appreciate the help. I found the Fino sherry and will be using it tonight in the chicken dish I am planning.
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