Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Cooking with alcohol, alcohol substitutions, and reduction of alcohol content over cooking time

I had to put this somewhere so I don't lose it!

I find this helpful when trying to calculate calories, and suggest substitutions, so I hope it is of use to others as a vague guide too. I apologise in advance for any bad layout etc. this is almost more for my own reference but I know it might be useful to other people too, and I've included links to relevant sources of information.

Here is a really useful chart from homecooking.about.com regarding the reduction of alcohol content during cooking, which you may find helpful if you’re trying to get an *idea* of calories when cooking from scratch.
Before using the table, it might be useful to note that according to the website www.alcoholfreeweek.co.uk:
“Alcohol free and de-alcoholised drinks have about a third of the calories of their alcoholic equivalent.
A 100ml glass of de-alcoholised Carl Jung white wine contains around 28 calories compared to around 64 calories found in a leading low calorie alcoholic wine.
A 100ml glass of de-alcoholised Weinkönig red wine contains around 19 calories and less than 0.3% alcohol but has all the health benefits of ordinary red wine.
A 330ml bottle of non-alcoholic Bavaria has just 79 calories which is even fewer than the brand's own low calorie labelled alcoholic version of the product.
A 500ml bottle of de-alcoholised Erdinger contains 125 kcal. In comparison: 500ml of apple juice contains about 230 calories. Erdinger alcohol free is also isotonic and vitamin-rich making it an ideal sports drink”
Hence if cooking with wine, it would seem reasonable to include the non-alcoholic calorie content as it is, and reduce the remainder of the calories as suggested in the chart below.
e.g. for a recipe with one bottle of red wine in it (750ml), 750ml red wine contains, say, 645 calories. 750m  of de-alcoholised wine contains 143 calories. So 645-143=502 calories which could be attributable directly to alcohol.
If cooked for two hours, as per the chart below, 20% of the alcohol would remain, therefore 20% of 502 = 100 calories of alcohol remaining in the dish. Add this to the 143 calories of wine which are not attributable to alcohol, and you have 243 calories of red wine left in your dish.
Alcohol Burn-off Chart
 Preparation Method
 Percent Retained
alcohol added to boiling liquid & removed from heat
alcohol flamed
no heat, stored overnight
baked, 25 minutes, alcohol not stirred into mixture

Continued on the next page…
Baked/simmered dishes with alcohol stirred into mixture:

15 minutes cooking time
30 minutes cooking time
1 hour cooking time
1.5 hours cooking time
2 hours cooking time
2.5 hours cooking time

And here are some suggestions of substitutions you could make if you prefer not to use alcohol:

Alcohol Substitutions
Alcoholic Ingredient
Italian almond-flavored liqueur
Almond extract.
Various types.
For light beers, substitute chicken broth, ginger ale or white grape juice. For heavier beers, use a stronger beef, chicken or mushroom broth or stock. Non-alcoholic beers may also be substituted.
Liquor made of distilled wine or fruit juice.
Scotch or bourbon. If a particular flavor is specified, use the corresponding fruit juice, such as apple, apricot, cherry, peach, raspberry etc. or grape juice. Corresponding flavored extracts can be used for small amounts.
Apple brandy
Apple juice concentrate or juice.
Black raspberry liqueur
Raspberry juice, syrup or extract.
Sparkling white wine.
Sparkling white grape juice, ginger ale, white wine.
Light red wine or Bordeaux.
Non-alcoholic wine, diluted currant or grape juice, cherry cider syrup.
Aged, double-distilled wine or fermented fruit juice. Cognac is considered the finest brandy.
Other less expensive brandies may be substituted, as well as Scotch or whiskey, or use peach, apricot or pear juice.
French, orange-flavored liqueur.
Orange juice concentrate or regular orange juice that has been reduced (by boiling) to a thicker consistency.
Liqueur made from bitter Seville oranges.
Orange juice frozen concentrate or reduced fresh orange juice.
Creme de Menthe
Thick and syrupy, sweetened mint liqueur. Comes both clear and green.
Mix spearmint extract or oil with a little water or grapefruit juice. Use a drop of food coloring if you need the green color.
French raspberry liqueur.
Raspberry juice or syrup. Depending upon the recipe, seedless raspberry jam may also be substituted.
Italian hazelnut liqueur.
Hazelnut or almond extract.
Golden Italian anise liqueur.
Licorice extract.
French liqueur, orange-flavored.
Orange juice frozen concentrate or reduced fresh orange juice.
Italian grape brandy.
Grape juice or reduced red wine.
Pomegranate syrup, sometimes alcoholic.
Pomegranate syrup or juice.
Hard Cider
Fermented, alcoholic cider.
Apple cider or juice.
Syrupy Mexican liqueur made with coffee and cocoa beans.
Strong coffee or espresso with a touch of cocoa powder.
Kirsch (Kirchwasser)
Colorless liqueur made of cherries.
Black cherry, raspberry, boysenberry, currant, or grape, juice or syrup, or cherry cider.
Red Burgundy
Dry French wine.
Non-alcoholic wine, red wine vinegar, grape juice.
Red wine
Sweet or dry wine.
Non-alcoholic wine, beef or chicken broth or stock, diluted red wine vinegar, red grape juice diluted with red wine vinegar or rice vinegar, tomato juice, liquid from canned mushrooms, plain water.
Liquor distilled from molasses or sugar syrup.
For light rum, use pineapple juice flavored with almond extract. For dark rum, use molasses thinned with pineapple juice and flavored with almond extract. Or use rum extract flavoring.
Fermented rice drink.
Flavored, colorless liquor.
Use corresponding flavored extract such as peppermint, peach, etc.
Fortified dessert wine, sweet or dry, some with a slightly nutty flavor.
Orange or pineapple juice.
Southern Comfort
Bourbon mixed with peach liqueur.
Peach nectar mixed with a little cider vinegar.
Liquor made of the agave plant.
Cactus/agave nectar or juice.
Triple Sec
Orange-flavored liqueur.
Orange juice frozen concentrate or reduced fresh orange juice.
Wine-based drink infused with herbs. I may be sweet or dry.
For sweet vermouth, use non-alcoholic sweet wine, apple or grape juice or aged balsamic vinegar. For dry vermouth, use non-alcoholic white wine, white grape juice or white wine vinegar.
Distilled liquor.
Bourbon, Scotch and whiskey may be used interchangably. Small amounts may be eliminated. Large amounts cannot be effectively substituted.
White Burgundy
Dry French wine.
Non-alcoholic wine, white grape juice diluted with white wine vinegar.
White wine
Sweet or dry wine.
Non-alcoholic wine, chicken broth or stock, diluted white wine vinegar or cider vinegar, white grape juice diluted with white wine vinegar, ginger ale, canned mushroom liquid, water. For marinades, substitute 1/4 cup vinegar plus 1 Tablespoon sugar plus 1/4 cup water.

Charts from homecooking.about.com
For more information and detailed explanations and alcohol substitutions see the full article at http://homecooking.about.com/od/alcohol/a/alcoholsub.htm

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