News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Features

October 28, 2012

GRAPE SENSE: Food author makes stop in Indiana, gives tips on cooking with wine

TERRE HAUTE — So much fuss is made over pairing wine and food that the home cook may not think of wine as an asset in flavoring their dishes.

Michael Ruhlman, one of American’s most prolific and authoritative food authors, said wine can be used as a great marinade to enhance foods. Ruhlman, known for his 18 books and appearances on the Food Network and with Anthony Bourdain on the Travel Channel, made a recent brief visit to Indiana.

The Cleveland native said one of the most important rules is an old one. “Always use a wine that you would feel comfortable drinking,” he said. “But not a Chateau Margaux (very expensive French wine). You don’t want to throw that in a pot of stew; use a drinkable, affordable wine.”

“I like to add it in the beginning when the alcohol tends to burn off faster. You can add it at the end but it definitely flavors it different. I always add it first at the first de-glazing or adding of the liquid ingredients.”

Ruhlman has written books with some of the country’s top chefs. He also has learned from them while writing. His big career break came when he had the opportunity to help Thomas Keller, chef at The French Laundry in Napa, write The French Laundry Cookbook. The iconic wine country restaurant has long been considered one of the country’s best.

“I learned this from Thomas Keller,” Ruhlman said. “People often like to put wines in marinades but the alcohol in marinades will actually de-nature the exterior of the protein and prevent any flavors from entering the meat. You’re not really helping the meat; in fact, you’re helping the outside become slightly mushy by marinating in wine.

What I learned from Keller is that if you’re going to use wine, and it’s a great thing to marinate with, cook off the alcohol first then add the aromatics. Add the onions, carrots, and thyme or whatever you want. Throw in the pepper and some salt so that it steeps and cooks then flame it and make sure you can’t get any flame. Once the alcohol is cooked off then you have this really tasty fluid to marinate your meat.”

Ruhlman said he’d even eat boneless, skinless chicken breast if it was properly marinated. “And let’s face it, chicken breast is the skim milk of the protein world that America relies on. If home cooks would learn to marinate it properly they’d have something really tasty.”

As a celebrity chef often recognized for his appearances as a judge on Food Network’s Iron Chef, Ruhlman also gets asked about wine and food pairing.

“I tell people to use their common sense and pay attention,” he said. “Does it go well with the food? Does the red wine go with the fish or does it overpower the fish? How does a white wine contribute to the flavor? Does it have the right acidity for the dish?

“We educate ourselves by paying attention to what we eat and drink. There are no hard and fast rules. I try to tell people not to be intimated by wine. There’s so much to learn and there are experts out there to varying degrees. Don’t ever feel cowed by the experts and rely on your own taste.”

Howard W. Hewitt, Crawfordsville, writes every other week for 20 Midwestern newspapers. Read his wine blog at: www.redforme.

blogspot.com.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Features
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Joy Fills Streets of Cleveland As LeBron Returns Raw: Israel, Gaza Exchange Rocket Fire Raw: Rebel Leader Weds in Eastern Ukraine Police: Prostitute Linked to 2nd Death Texas Shooting Suspect Collapses in Court Ana Ortiz on 'Devious Maids' Finale Raw: Stunning Timelapse of WC Final Host City Arizona Mom of Missing Baby Released From Prison WH: LeBron's Move a 'Powerful Statement' Raw: Militants, Israelis Exchange Rocket Fire Proposed Bill to Regulate NY Costumed Characters Raw: Protesters, Israeli Security Forces Clash Diaz and Segel Strip Off for 'Sex Tape' Man Flees Police in World Cup Scalping Scheme Death Toll Tops 100 As Israel Offense Continues Raw: Airstrike Creates Chaos on Gaza Streets Israel Widens Attack As Gaza Death Toll Rises Raw: Airstrike Creates Chaos on Gaza Streets LeBron James Says He's Returning to Cavaliers More Immigrants Detained Along Rio Grande
NDN Video
Cleveland welcomes home LeBron Houston Killer Collapses in Court When Read Capital Murder Charges for Allegedly Killing Family of Six Worst Valet Ever Wrecks $500K Lamborghini Glee Star Becca Tobin's Boyfriend Matt Bendik Found Dead in Hotel Aerial fish restocking in Utah ScarJo Channels Marilyn Monroe Obama Responds to Hecklers on Immigration Tiny Hamsters Who Ate Burritos are Back for a Tiny Hedgehog's Party Watch Kelly Ripa Get Soaked! 'Referee' Hands Out Yellow Cards for Social Faux Pas in NYC 2014 Emmy Nominees: 8 Snub Shockers Emma Watson Is Va-Va-Voom in Valentino 7 Infamous Sports Blowouts Argentina tops Holland in World Cup semifinals News flush: Japanese toilet exhibition making a splash Emmy Nominations: What to Watch For 'Game of Thrones' Leads 66th Emmy Awards Nominations Photographic 'Proof' That LeBron Is Leaving Miami - @TheBuzzeronFOX Elephant Pool Party at The Oregon Zoo Must-See! Berry and Fallon Form Human Hamster Wheel
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity