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Asti: acceptable for cooking?

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Paul Lukas Dec 27, 2001 09:33 AM

For reasons not worth explaining, I was given several bottles of Martini & Rossi Asti this holiday season. I have no plans to drink any of it. It's 8% alcohol by volume. Does anyone know if this stuff would be suitable to use in recipes that call for white wine?

-- Paul

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    gourmound RE: Paul Lukas Dec 27, 2001 09:41 AM

    In GENERAL, I have found that using cheap wine in cooking can really screw up a good dish. My wife and I have a collection of bottles of Lambrusco that our neighbors bring us every year, so if you find a use for the Asti, please post it.

    1 Reply
    1. re: gourmound
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      tanyal RE: gourmound Dec 27, 2001 10:36 PM

      A catering co. I worked for had a "Champagne Rice" recipe, which uses good white rice, cooking liquid 1/2 half chix broth, 1/2 champagne. Cook til tender, add sliced almonds sauted in butter.
      It is actually really good... sounds odd I know. The Asti should work if it is not extra sweet.

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      Fred and Wilma RE: Paul Lukas Dec 27, 2001 09:44 AM

      probably not. the guidline is simple, don't cook with wine you wouldn't drink.
      Use it in punch this NYEVE.

      1. d
        Dennison RE: Paul Lukas Dec 27, 2001 09:59 AM

        Hi Paul -- You might want to consider using the Asti in a way that takes advantage of its sparkle and fruit. I've used it successfully with kiwi to make a refreshing sorbet. Just blend up 8 or so kiwis with a couple tablespoons of lemon juice and add about 1-1/2 cups of Asti. Pop it in an ice cream maker if you've got one, otherwise toss into freezer. You can also sweeten with sugar syrup to taste if you like it that way. You can also substitute berries, peach, watermelon, whatever -- have fun with it.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Dennison
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          lucia RE: Dennison Dec 27, 2001 10:15 AM

          I like this sorbet idea. It reminds me of a related use. Delia Smith has a recipe for a summer fruit terrine using bubbly and gelatin and maybe a fruit juice poured over mixed fresh berries and set. You serve it sliced with creme fraiche.

          1. re: lucia
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            Melanie Wong RE: lucia Dec 27, 2001 01:07 PM

            Asti spumante and strawberry ice is delicious. Or if you don't want to go that trouble, just pour chilled asti spumante over some sliced fresh berries or peaches for a refreshing dessert.

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          Chef Stefano RE: Paul Lukas Dec 27, 2001 11:40 AM

          I noticed that asti came with some nice gift glasses this year. I didn't buy it because I don't care for the stuff. I guess your friends found a way to get the glasses without being stuck with the asti.

          I like the punch idea, or maybe sangria. Also, I can see throwing it in with fruit that you are cooking...baked apples, for example.

          1. j
            jen kalb RE: Paul Lukas Dec 27, 2001 12:34 PM

            theres nothing wrong with asti spumante if you like slightly sweet, fizzy white wine. I happen to like these wines (maybe this is not the best example of a fizzy moscato wine) in the right time and place. But if you dont, the suggestions for a dessert soup or sorbet sound good. Bistro St. Marks was making a grape soup with champagne last fall that was excellent and refreshing. This wine would be a good base for that sort of dish. I bet you could use it effectively in deglazing pans to make a pan gravy too. dont despair.

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