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Old 08-14-2016, 07:08 PM   #1
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Beef Bourguignon--wine substitution

I'm going to visit a friend that doesn't use alcohol, not even in cooking.

I make a really good beef bourguignon, beef, onions, more onions, mushrooms, burgundy wine, worchestershire, beef broth, thyme, white pepper, salt, tomato paste, etc.
I use at least a couple cups to a quart of burgundy wine in it.

If I was to substitute something for the wine, I was thinking of using a red grape juice, if that can be found, then something for the acid, and something for the tannin taste--if that is the right word. There is an astringent quality to the wine, I call it a tannin taste but I'm not sure that is right.
I'd cut back on the amount of grape juice because it will be too sweet but what else would you add to replace the tastes I'm looking for?

I understand that you can 'boil off' the alcohol but that is not what I want to do here. Any ideas?
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:16 PM   #2
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Would a bit of balsamic vinegar work?
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:33 PM   #3
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Don't use grape juice, it's too sweet. Just skip the wine and make a delicious beef stew.
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:36 PM   #4
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I agree with Andy
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Old 08-14-2016, 08:22 PM   #5
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Why don't you make a Daube Provencale instead? Whilst it does use red wine, the amount is negligible, i.e. 1 glass, and the orange zest gives this stew a very interesting flavour:

2lbs good quality stewing beef
4 oz bacon lardons
3 medium carrots
1 glass red wine
2 dessertspoons red wine vinegar
1 bouquet garni, or, (same thing), a small bundle of bay leaves and thyme leaves
1 piece orange zest about 2 1/2 inches long
pinch sugar
olive oil
salt and pepper

Cut the beef into cubes more or less the same size. Marinade in the red wine and vinaigre - add a little water if you don't want a strong winey flavour - leave for four hours.
Slice up the vegetables, and put them and the bacon lardons into a terracotta casserole with some good quaity olive oil. Fry off for a short while then add the beef without the liquid. Seal the meat, then add the marinade liquid - which you could discard at this stage if you like - and freshly made stock, the bouquet garni and the orange zest. Bring to the boil slowly, and simmer for 4 hours or until the meat is tender. Don't let it boil down too much - you will need some dunking sauce. Instead of red wine, you could use white, in which make sure your meat is thoroughly browned. The original recipe requires 1 litre good red wine per kilo of beef.

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Old 08-14-2016, 08:25 PM   #6
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I agree with Andy, too. It's better to choose a dish that doesn't rely so much on an ingredient you don't want to use.
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Old 08-14-2016, 08:33 PM   #7
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Thank you for all the ideas. I like the idea of using some balsamic vinegar dawg, that will give it a little sweet and a little bite.

Di Reston, that recipe sound OH SO GOOD!! I made my DH some orange beef and then last night we were watching America's Test Kitchen and they said to put the orange peel with a little pith, sliced very thin, into it to give it both the orangey flavor and a little bit of bite from the pith. I'm going to try your recipe this next week, I have the roast in the freezer, carrots on the grocery list, that recipe sounds delicious.
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Old 08-14-2016, 09:38 PM   #8
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Why make a totally wine based dish for someone who can't drink?

Balsamic vinegar ... Are you sure? That sounds way off to me. Not a sub for the red wine in BB

Choose a different recipe !!!
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:43 AM   #9
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I don't drink or even use alcohol in any cooking other than what my Pure Vanilla Extract contains. Yet I have gone to homes that cooked meals with wine and to tell you the truth, I couldn't even detect it. Maybe my test buds are off. But I have the feeling that those dishes would have tasted a little flat. I do know for a fact that the Italian restaurant my family loves to attend, uses wine in the pasta sauce. And as a child, growing up and seeing a bottle of homemade wine always sitting near the stove for the purpose of cooking. Yet I sat at their table eating delicious food that had wine in it. Never bothered me, except to say I enjoyed it.

Unless it is for their religious reasons, then I see no harm in making it according to your own recipe.
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Old 08-15-2016, 04:34 AM   #10
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In my experience, if you 're not used to using wine in cookery, then if you do, it tastes awful, but just a little bit can lift it. The Burgundians put lots of wine in their dishes because the area produces so much of the stuff, and it's the same everywhere else where wine production is a major industry, not to mention the vinegar factories and producers - yes, you can get 'designer' vinegars! - and the wine spirits like brandy, but where wine is not produced, but beer instead, that's the alcohol that's used in cooking.

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Old 08-15-2016, 10:48 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blissful View Post
I'm going to visit a friend that doesn't use alcohol, not even in cooking.

I make a really good beef bourguignon, beef, onions, more onions, mushrooms, burgundy wine, worchestershire, beef broth, thyme, white pepper, salt, tomato paste, etc.
I use at least a couple cups to a quart of burgundy wine in it.

If I was to substitute something for the wine, I was thinking of using a red grape juice, if that can be found, then something for the acid, and something for the tannin taste--if that is the right word. There is an astringent quality to the wine, I call it a tannin taste but I'm not sure that is right.
I'd cut back on the amount of grape juice because it will be too sweet but what else would you add to replace the tastes I'm looking for?

I understand that you can 'boil off' the alcohol but that is not what I want to do here. Any ideas?
To be honest, I think I would leave it out and substitute more beef broth. It wouldn't really be beef bourguignon but it should still taste good.
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Old 08-15-2016, 10:52 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Dawgluver View Post
Would a bit of balsamic vinegar work?
Strictly speaking, vinegar has slight traces of alcohol - admittedly negligible but there all the same.
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Old 08-15-2016, 10:52 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by blissful View Post
Thank you for all the ideas. I like the idea of using some balsamic vinegar dawg, that will give it a little sweet and a little bite.
If you really want to do this, I would suggest red wine vinegar rather than balsamic. Here's a similar Italian recipe. You could change up the vegetables and seasonings you use in your beef bourguignon.

http://www.ciaoitalia.com/seasons/8/...wine-vinegar-2
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Old 08-15-2016, 11:05 AM   #14
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Bliss, my bet is you make more than one outstanding dish that you could do for your friend without wine or substitutions required. I'd rethink the menu myself.
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Old 08-15-2016, 01:20 PM   #15
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Yep. If your friend is that particular about alcohol, then I would not try to make something where one of the primary flavors comes from wine. Even though most of the alcohol cooks out of such dishes, for some people what's left is still too much. Whether the issue is cultural or physiological, I think that I'd just find a different dish to make.
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Old 08-15-2016, 01:37 PM   #16
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Beef Bourguignon--wine substitution

Agree with using a different recipe. Certain medications can make a person very ill if they have any alcohol, and alcohol is in a lot of stuff, including vinegars, extract, some salad dressings, other condiments, for example. DH's company produces alcohol, and it's amazing how prevalent it is in everyday ingredients.

It's a shame, I would think Blissful's beef bourguignon is delicious!
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Old 08-16-2016, 10:47 AM   #17
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Skip the alcohol altogether. There are no really good substitutes for really good wine. In one way or another it will be different. But as long as it tastes good you are ok.
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Old 08-16-2016, 12:48 PM   #18
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From what I've read, there's no more alcohol in vinegar than there is in sourdough bread, so vinegar should not be a concern. There are lots of options other than wine for making a tasty beef dish.
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