October 03, 2005

Cooking In Sin

When cooking, and a liquor or liqueor is called for, one usually uses a lesser name brand. Unless, of course, it's specifically called for... like the Guinness cake recipe (I believe that was at ArmyWifeToddlerMom's). It's an unspoken law... to do otherwise is considered a sin. Sometimes unforgivable. So imagine my horror when I saw that my beloved blog sis, Boudicca, defiantly asks, "Who Cares HOW It Gets There?" While I truly understand what point she was trying to make, I felt ill...

There are a couple of considerations. Price, taste, and, I suppose in Bou's defense, availability.

When I boil brats in beer, I don't use an expensive beer. Kinda pointless. The subtle flavors that set that beer apart from others will be lost. I use MGD or Miller Lite instead. The basic flavor that I'm hoping for will be there. However, when it comes time to consume those brats, I wash them down with a dark bier. Pure heaven.

For her recipe, Bou needs a shot of brandy. Her father, TGOO, mentions that one could use whisky. So she looks at a bottle of Laphroaig (a fine scotch), and considers it's use. TGOO must read her mind, because he tells her NOT to use that. Thankfully, she does not sin... she finds what was originally required. Cheap brandy.

Laphroaig - about $70+ (more in a year when the single malt availability is down)
Cheap brandy - about $10

Brandy is made from fruit juices... most of the time, grapes. It usually has a sweet taste, or a sweet quality. It would enhance the marmalade that she was going to baste her pork tenderloin with.
Whiskies are made from grains... usually the sweet tones are very subtle... excepting Southern or Beam. As Eric pointed out, Laphroaig is a very rich scotch... as they proudly proclaim on their label, "The most richly flavoured of all Scotch whiskies." One of the strongest flavours is it's smokiness. There is a bit of a sweet undertone, but I can't see that smokey flavour going well with the marmalade. I don't think it would work at all, even if it wasn't just plain wrong.

Of course, when it all comes down to it, you use what you have on hand. You might end up using your good stock for a meal if that's all you've got. Personally, I wouldn't do it. The good stuff is too hard for me to come by, the cheap is a close as a quick trip to a certain establishment.

And I haven't even mentioned that 'tis just bad juju to be wasting fine spirits. In some cases, it's a quick trip to Hell. And I'm not trying to be all weird... even many athiests won't use good booze in such manner. They won't say it, but they know, deep down, that the things that aren't really there will suddenly be! It's true!

All this talk has made me hungry and thirsty... I think I'll have myself a bit of jambalaya, some apple pie, and then I'll crack open the Laphroiag. Yeah, already. Jealous?

Posted by That 1 Guy at October 3, 2005 09:23 AM

"it ussually has a sweet taste or sweet quality. It would enhance the marmalade that she was going to baste her pork tenderloin with".....

are you sure the booze didn't turn you into Bobby Flay, or Emeril instead of Jeebus?

Posted by: ArmyWifeToddlerMom at October 3, 2005 09:54 AM

LOL - I commented over at Bou's but hey... I'm always willing to make someone's head explode...

I'm with Bou - it's only one shot so what's the difference? If it was an entire bottle or something - that might be a bit too expensive - but other than the expense I still don't see the problem. Also, I will continue to claim that since you can always get more - why not use it? It's certainly not the last bottle ever to be made.

Nope I just don't get it... (so tell me - has your head exploded yet?) hehehehehehe....

Posted by: Teresa at October 3, 2005 09:58 AM

Hmm, apple pie and scotch . . . I'm hungry now too!

Posted by: oddybobo at October 3, 2005 10:20 AM

I've actually found that the nastier the cheap beer you use for cooking, the better it tatses when it's done.

This is especially true with beer battered fish.
Old Milwaulkee is a staple for that.

PS: TGOO and T1G here are absolutely correct, using a good single malt for cooking would be a crime....

Posted by: Graumagus at October 3, 2005 12:20 PM

If Grau's right you should probably try Milwaukee's Best.

Posted by: Harvey at October 3, 2005 07:07 PM

LOL! Well, the case that they baste might taste bad due to its strong taste might win me over. I must confess... I am SO tempted to throw a shot in there next time. Probably more tempted than before. It might be worth it just to see you and TGOO reverberate! ;-)

Posted by: Bou at October 3, 2005 09:27 PM

.. don't do it, Bou... trust us...

Posted by: Eric at October 4, 2005 07:16 AM

Let me drink my first, any good liquor and after the first one, I can then drink out of the urinal,all of it tastes the same, after the first one, Cat

Posted by: Catfish at October 4, 2005 12:47 PM