Cooler weather makes us all want to snuggle down at home, nest and make delicious, comforting food. And cooking with booze is ALWAYS a good idea, especially when you use it as an ingredient! Whether you’re incorporating wine into your meals, using beer in your batter or trying out flambé with spirits, you should always cook with alcohol that you’d be happy to drink – that’s the rule of thumb! So here are some recipes we love if you want to start experimenting with using wine, beer and spirits into your culinary adventures!
Cooking with red wine adds amazing flavor and richness to your meals. The richer and deeper the flavour of the wine, the more complex the flavour that will translate to the meal. Introducing a Heritage House Shiraz into a comforting, slow cooked lamb shanks recipe will make it so decadent and yummy. The ultimate winter recipe! And what better way to ensure that your wine pairs well with your meal than using it in the preparation? And don’t think that red wine is only useful in savoury cooking! Pears poached in red wine is an elegant and nostalgic dish that will fill the house with aromas of Christmas.
Cooking with beer can add both flavour and lightness with the carbonation. You’d be familiar with beer batter from your local fish and chip shop, but did you know that it’s pretty simple to recreate at home? This fool proof recipe for fish and chips is a go-to, with the resulting batter so light and crisp, you’ll feel like a master chef. It’s great to use a flavourful but not too overpowering beer, like Peroni.
Spirits are incredibly diverse in the kitchen! They are so flavourful, and when the booze is cooked off they impart flavours that are impossible to get from any other ingredients. There’s this rich and creamy Penne alla Vodka, a very sexy dish that is great if you’re trying to impress a date with minimal effort! Be sure to get a high quality vodka, like Grey Goose (also good for impressing dates!) And perhaps the only thing more Scottish than Jonnie Walker whisky is whisky cream sauce, which you will find on almost any menu in the Highlands! This sauce goes amazingly well with haggis, balmoral chicken, or of course steak, which is maybe more likely to be what you’ll be cooking at home!
White wine is an incredibly versatile ingredient for cooking. Emulsified with butter, it will transform any dish into something elegant and decadent. This mussels in white wine sauce could not be simpler or quicker to make, but is so impressive, you will dazzle your guests! It’s best to use a nice crisp wine like a Jolly Trotter Pinot Grigio, that will add flavour but not change the characteristics of your dish. There’s also nothing so comforting as a well executed risotto, like this chicken and mushroom risotto with dry white wine- yum!