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Oct 22, 2013 03:00 PM

Grappa - can it be used in baking recipes

Received a bottle of Grappa which no one here will drink and would like to use it up in baking. I just made a bourbon pecan fruitcake with 2 cups of bourbon. Was tempted to try the Grappa but didn't want to mess with a family favorite. Can Grappa be used in baking?... cakes, loaf cakes (banana & pumpkin), etc?

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  1. Good grappa is generally somewhat expensive. Because of that, few recipes call for more than a tablespoon or two. One might be able to substitute it for Kirsch under some circumstances. Like bourbons some grappa is quite smooth and some quite "bold".

    Personally, I'd consider trading it to a grappa lover for something else. I know its and acquired taste.

    1. I've always gone by the general guideline that if you wouldn't drink the wine/liquor/liqueur/etc, you shouldn't cook with it.

      That said, there's grappa and there's grappa. If you go to the Poli web site (URL below) you'll see just how many grappas exist. Some are strong enough to be used a paint stripper and others are sweet and gentle.

      Poli's own web site describes the taste of the Ruta as "pleasantly bitter" and the Classica is "persistent and strong." In contrast, the Cleopatra Prosecco Oro is described as "delicate and smooth." All three are specific types of Grappa.

      So, what have you got? Did your friends/family reject the grappa after having tasted it?

      If they rejected the grappa after having tasted it, the taste is not going to be significantly transformed in the baking process.

      1. You can, with delicious results.
        You can flavor a custard, ice cream or sorbet. Add some to nut tarts for that little something. Plump dried fruit in a grappa/sugar syrup to go alongside cake and cream.
        I love grappa, and the nice stuff will only make your desserts nicer.

        1. I tried some last night. It seems very powerful (40% vol) but I could not discern any taste other than alcohol. Perhaps I will try a tablespoon in a loaf cake or flame it for Cherries Jubilee. The bottle is from Italy Villa de Varda - Grappa de Lagrein. No English on the label.

          1. You might find some recipes for Italian cookies calling for grappa.