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Wine Wise - Wine in the Kitchen

( Originally Published 1933 )

EVERY housewife should provide some wine for the kitchen. In his book, "What Shall We Have to Drink?" M. X. Boulestin, the wellknown restaurateur, suggests many tempting recipes which include wine in their composition. He points out that a dull thing like beef stew is transformed into a perfect dish from Burgundy by simmering the beef in red wine with the proper seasoning of spices and aromatic herbs. He suggests also that you try a simple dish like compote of prunes or compote of pears and add to the water, halfway through cooking, a glass of red wine or a glass of Port and you will see the difference. White wine and red wine, Claret or Burgundy, Sherry and Port, all play their part in the kitchen.

Mr. Boulestin explains that the expense of using wine in the kitchen is very little because you can utilize any wine that is left over at the table. Or if wine is specially bought for cooking, ordinary wine will do. Expensive wines are not necessary. The flavor of wine is not preceivable; in fact, if a wine sauce when completed tastes of wine, it is not a good sauce, the wine in this case being only an ingredient contributing its richness to an harmonious ensemble in which all things should collaborate.

No foreign chef would be able to cook without wine. He uses the different types in a thousand different ways. Dry red wines, for example, in the preparation of beef a la mode, sauce Bordelaise, salmi, civet of hare, red cabbage and soups and sauces.

White wines for stewed rabbit, stewed fish, filet of sole, bouillabaise and other fish dishes and vegetables of all kinds as well as soups, sauces, puddings, etc.

Champagne figures in recipes for cooking ham and pheasants and in making sherbets and cakes.

Sherry for lobster a la Newburg, deviled crab, sweet-breads, chicken, turkey, puddings, fruitcake, mince pie, plum pudding, etc.

All through the prohibition era cooking wines, sweetened and salted, have been available, but now the housewife will welcome back the old dry and sweet wines that were used to transform simple dishes into rare treats with a new and richer flavor.

In the preparation of salads and sauces and for cooking purposes, Grape Wine Vinegar is the choice of the best chefs, particularly for the meal to be served with wines. Ordinary vinegar is often hostile to wines, whereas Grape Wine Vinegar is friendly, being of the same family.

In making Grape Wine Vinegar the soundest wines are used and the greatest care is taken to insure purity and healthfulness. In addition they are given time to mature properly, for vinegar, like wine, improves greatly in quality if it is kept for some time.

Grape Wine Vinegar is the product made by the alcoholic and subsequent acetous fermentation of the juice of the grapes, and in France and Germany is used almost exclusively. There the great chefs in cooking never permit a substitute for wine vinegar, such as malt or cider vinegars, inasmuch as they will not give the "fineness" to cooking that is assured by a good wine vinegar. Good wine vinegar possesses a mellow richness, wholesomeness and flavor which distinguish it from other vinegars.

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