You may need no arm twisting to have a glass of wine on February 18th, National Drink Wine Day.
But don’t feel obligated to finish the bottle. Instead, retain some of the wine in your cooking.
You can use any wine, including dessert wine, Port and sparkling wine, whether flat or still bubbly.
You can mix wines if you don’t have enough of one.
Use your judgment (and taste!) to decide how much wine to add when you’re freestyling (i.e., cooking without a recipe).
As a guideline—though not hard and fast—add wine to dishes with capers, garlic, mushrooms, tomatoes, olives, olive oil and red pepper flakes.
Don’t get tied up over whether red or white wine is better. The wine is just an accent, not the major focus; use what you have.
If you have a lot of leftover wine, you can reduce it to a savory syrup with onions (then add herbs and mushrooms); or make a dessert syrup by adding sweet spices and optional sweetener.
20 WAYS TO USE LEFTOVER WINE
Add a touch of wine to Bagna Cauda, a hot dip for crudités.
Add white wine to the butter dipping sauce for artichokes.
Add a bit of wine to any chowder or fish soup.
Add a half cup of wine to any chicken dish. Try the famed French Coq Au Vin, with red or white wine; or Chicken Piccata from Italy, with white wine, lemon and capers.
Braise chicken quarters in a garlic-infused wine broth.
Make a garlic-wine sauce for pasta.
For a red-wine pasta sauce, make bolognese with ground beef and diced tomatoes.
Replace the water in risotto with white wine or with half water and half dry Marsala (an Italian red wine from the area of Marsala, Sicily, that is made in dry and sweet variations) or a substitute.
Make a sauce for white-fleshed fish from dry white wine, lemon juice, olive oil, olives and/or capers.
Steam mussels or clams in broth with white wine, garlic, onions and herbs.
Make Veal Scallopine or Chicken Marsala with dry Marsala, mushrooms and shallots.
Add red wine to any beef braise, stew or stroganoff. Add some mushrooms, too. In addition to Boeuf Bourguignone, check out Boeuf Daube Provençal, a French beef and vegetable casserole.
Make a red wine glaze for meat loaf (so much more adult than a ketchup glaze).
Enhance a hearty vegetarian stew or cassoulet (bean, chickpea, lentil, squash, etc.) with red wine.
Accent any sautéed vegetables with white wine and garlic.
Red wine and mushroom sauce is a classic with Filet Mignon and other top cuts of beef.
Deglaze the pan to make sauce for any meat or poultry. Turn it into a mustard sauce with a tablespoon of Dijon.
Make a wine-enhanced dessert: zabaglione or tiramisu with sweet Marsala.
Make a wine syrup by reducing it along with cinnamon, nutmeg and/or other sweet spices. Serve it with fruit compote or fresh fruit salad, ice cream or pound cake.
Poach sliced apples or pears in the spiced wine.
Top: Chicken Cacciatore (photo Joshua Swigart | Wikimedia). Second: Accent Lobster Bisque or other seafood soup (photo Mackenzie Ltd.). Third: The classic French stew, Boeuf Bourguignon (photo CB Crabcakes). Bottom: Filet Mignon with a red wine and mushroom sauce (photo Palm Restaurant).