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7 Wines That Make Good Cooking Ingredients

Wine has been around since the beginning of civilization, and people have used it in their food aside from drinking them. The earliest recipes for wine reduction date back almost five thousand years to Ancient Egypt, where cooks were adding grape juice or fermented grape pulp to soups and stews. People have been cooking with wine for thousands of years, and it’s a wholesome tradition that carries on today.

Alcohol delivery Sydney owner Ming Lin explains that the flavours of wine vary depending on style and grape variety, but most have fruit-forward elements like cherry or raspberry, which make them great for adding to both savoury and sweet dishes. You may even find yourself drinking more wine since it’s also healthier to cook with than some other options. All of these wines are meant for drinking, so don’t worry about cooking out any harsh flavours.

If you want to add extra flavour to your next meal without much effort, consider using one of these wines as a cooking ingredient.

Red Wine

This type of wine typically has notes of dark fruit flavours like raspberry or blackberry, which makes these wines sweet enough for marinades and barbecue sauce. It also gives them enough acidity to balance out rich flavours like beef stew or a hearty lasagna. Just make sure to use a wine you’d also drink because if it tastes good in the glass, it will taste good in your recipe.

White Wine

You can’t make seafood pasta without wine. The brininess of shrimp and other shellfish calls for white wines that have great acidity and fresh flavours like grapefruit, lemon, or cilantro. And don’t forget about the fish sauce! A little bit goes a long way toward adding a bright, salty flavour to any dish. Most people think of rice when they think of Asian food, but Thailand has its version of pasta called “Khanom Chin Nam Ya”. This noodle dish is cooked with plenty of white wine and finished with pork cracklings or crab meat. It’s the perfect marriage of Asian food and European cooking.

Rose Wine

This pink-hued wine has sweet fruit flavours like raspberry or strawberry, but it also has enough acidity to balance out rich flavours from deep-fried foods or creamy dishes. There are a few different styles of rose wines on the market today, so choose one that is meant for drinking when you’re cooking because they all have different flavour profiles.

Sparkling Wine

If you’re serving champagne at a party, there’s no need to open another bottle just for your sauce! A little bit of bubbly goes a long way in adding festive energy to any dish. It will impart some sweetness along with the aromas of fresh-baked bread and toasted nuts. If you’re planning on serving your dish with a side of cheese, consider champagne instead of the usual red or white wine pairing. When you add cheese to any savoury dish, it brings out the flavour of salt because it contains sodium. So champagne will go great with salty foods like a creamy chicken casserole or pepperoni pizza. Just remember that bubbles also intensify heat in your mouth so keep that in mind when you’re pairing it with your meal.

Cooking Wine

This is not meant for drinking! It adds saltiness to dishes without adding too much alcohol. Even though cooking wine has less alcoholic content than table wine, don’t drink it straight up if you’ve already cooked it because there’s still at least a 5 percent chance that it won’t taste great.

White Grape Juice

There are tons of different varieties of grape juice, but most flavoured versions have too much sugar for cooking unless you’re craving a sweet barbecue marinade or dish of baked beans. If you want an all-purpose white grape juice, stick with Zinfandel grapes because they produce a juice that isn’t too sweet or sour. You can use it in place of white wine with any recipe that calls for cooking wine, but you can also use this juice with poultry because it has enough acidity to make the birds tender.

Red Grape Juice

This is not the same as red wine, even though they are both made from grapes. The main difference is the way they are processed. White grape juice comes out of the grape press first while red grape juice comes out after most of the skin has already been removed. Since there’s less contact with the skins, these juices have lighter colour and flavour than their red counterparts. If you want to cook down a Chianti Classico for beef stew, pour yourself a glass before adding it to the pot. This juice still has enough tannins from the grape skins to give your sauce some life.

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