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Feb 15, 2012 07:28 PM

Need rules of thumb for cooking with wine

Hi all. I bought a bottle of white wine for one marinade recipe, and now I have a bottle of wine minus one cup. There's a bean soup on the horizon that will use a bit more, but I'm wondering if I can just splash some here and there as I go.

Are there ingredients that benefit from wine (like tomatoes) that I should look for? Ingredients that hate wine? And when should wine go in, early or late? And other questions I haven't thought of yet.

Related to hating wine: if I use wine should I not use vinegar?

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  1. I can't really think of any ingredients that hate wine. As a rule of thumb, if you're making a sauce, throw some in. My advice would be to do so at least early enough in the cooking, with at least 3 minutes to go, in order to cook it off a bit so it doesn't taste like raw, alcoholic wine.

    1. White wine can go in later than red. I tend to use it in tomato sauces for pasta but my most frequent use is for making a quick pan sauce after I've sauteed chicken, pork or fish. Only takes a minute and with some herbs and a knob of butter or splash of cream it's easy and tasty.

      1 Reply
      1. re: escondido123

        +1 for this response. Also, I'm known for my risotto...definitely need a cup of relatively dry white in that.

      2. My trick is make a thick bean soup. Then bottom of each bowl 3-5 tablespoons of red wine plus some diced raw onion. Ladle the hot bean soup on top. Kind of a drunken bean soup.

        1. One thing I'll tell you is that wine doesn't keep forever particularly if it has been opened and has not been kept refrigerated.
          Other ways to use up wine is for cooking shellfish like mussels and clams. After cooking shellfish toss them with garlic, parsley, butter and some olive oil and spaghetti. Or use as your braising liquid for a thick pork chop.

          1. once opened, its shelf life is really only a few days. a week at most if tightly sealed in the fridge.

            you can also use it as a part of the liquid for a braise of lamb or pork.

            as to your last question wine has a much lower level of acidity than vinegar, but trust your taste buds to see if the dish needs more acid than the wine will offer.

            1 Reply
            1. re: hotoynoodle

              I disagree. I've kept a bottle for a couple of weeks with no problem. You can also freeze it in an ice cube tray and use it later...that works for red or white. On a side note, I have a bottle of Prosecco that's been in the frig for 3 weeks, opened with a cork, and it's still got taste and fizz.