Many of you may have heard that alcohol burns off when you cook or bake with it, but what you may not know is that a substantial amount remains behind. A recent study by the Department of Agriculture showed that it would take around 2.5 hours of cooking to bring the alcohol content of a typical dish down to nothing – far less than most people would cook that dish. However, the final ABV of your cooked dish is very important for the taste. Harold McGee of “On Food and Cooking” fame found that alcohol inhibits flavors generally, however at very low concentrations “alcohol actually enhances the release of fruity esters and other aroma molecules into the air.”
Usually a recipe will account for this when it gives the quantities you need, yielding a final ABV around 1-2%, which is the ideal range for this effect. If you are reheating food, though, you will need to add additional alcohol back in to bring the final ABV back up to what the recipe originally intended, which usually equates to about 2 tsp of hard liquor per cup of cooked food. Nowcado (for Android or iOS ) can help you find the best liquor you need whether for drinking or cooking!