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Sherry vs. vermouth in a recipe

leonap's picture

In a CI recipe for Sauteed Chicken Breasts with Sherry-Cream Sauce with Mushrooms, it says you can sub white wine for the sherry. I'm trying to imagine the difference in flavor as I am barely familiar with cooking with sherry. I kinda, sorta think the sherry would impart a richer flavor, but would appreciate your opinions. Oh, and it says to replace the mace with nutmeg if not using sherry. The chicken is just floured, s&p and sauteed. Here are the ingredients for the sauce. TIA.

Sherry-Cream Sauce with Mushrooms
2 scallions or shallots, minced (about 1/4 cup)
8 ounces mushrooms , sliced thin (about 2 1/2 cups)
1/3 cup sherry , preferably cream or Amontillado
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth or chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
Pinch mace (ground)
Table salt and ground black pepper (or white pepper)
1 piece lemon

AnnL's picture

(post #37142, reply #1 of 19)

I would use vermouth or port if you have either of those around.

Ann
"The elders were wise.  They knew that man's heart, away from nature, becomes hard; they knew that lack of respect for growing, living things, soon led to lack of respect for humans, too."  Chief Luther Standing Bear, Lakota Sioux

Ann
"The elders were wise.  They knew that man's heart, away from nature, becomes hard; they knew that lack of respect for growing, living things, soon led to lack of respect for humans, too."  Chief Luther Standing Bear, Lakota Sioux

leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #3 of 19)

Thanks, Ann. I have both vermouth and sherry, just so you know.

I am almost skeered of port having had a disappointing result with a highly praised recipe. This would be where drinking would come in handy. I'd probably have a better idea what I'd like cooking with beforehand.

Jean's picture

(post #37142, reply #5 of 19)

I made this last week using a med dry sherry. It was delectable.. even the leftovers warmed up nicely. I love this recipe!


Thanks to Evelyn. 44134.1 

What was the best thing before sliced bread?





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Edited 2/24/2009 3:00 pm ET by Jean

A  clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
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leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #7 of 19)

Oh yeah, I remember seeing that and thinking I need to bookmark that. Very similar. Hmm, decisions, decisions. I asked my Dad if he liked mushrooms which made him recall a chicken dish with a creamy mushroom sauce he'd had on vacation, ergo my quest. He is used to, and I've always assumed preferred, very simply-prepared foods. Thanks, Jean, I'll report back.

Lee's picture

(post #37142, reply #2 of 19)

Sherry has a different flavor profile from white wine.  Some  are on the sweet side, some are dry, some are a little smoky.  I'd say most have a nutty flavor.  All are more assertive than white wine, IMO.  Once you've had something made with sherry, it's pretty easy to pick up the flavor when it's used in a dish.  White wine will be fine in the chicken dish, but the flavor will be different.   

leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #4 of 19)

I have dry sherry. I was thinking along the lines of what you said. Thanks!

ashleyd's picture

(post #37142, reply #6 of 19)

The recipe calls for cream (sweet) or amontillado (medium) sherry which will give a warm nutty flavour, dry sherry might be a little astringent for this, I think I'd go for white wine.


Age is unimportant unless you’re a cheese.

Age is unimportant unless you’re a cheese.

leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #8 of 19)

Okay. Now, I would have thought (who am I kidding, I did think) that white wine would be more astringent than dry sherry. I gotta' take up drinking or at least sampling more often while I cook! Thanks, Ashley.

Risottogirl's picture

(post #37142, reply #9 of 19)

A great substitute for sherry is vin jaune, a white wine from the Jura. Of course, since vin jaune is so rarely, if ever, found here, it would more likely be subbing sherry for the vin jaune in a recipe from the Jura region :) It has a distinctive nutty flavor, much like a very dry sherry.


I have done this many times as I am quite fond of the cuisine (and cheeses) from that region, but I do try to bring back a few bottles of Chateau Chalon everytime I get to France. CC is a TINY specifc appellation of vin jaune that is hard to find outside of the Jura, even challenging to find in Paris.


Actually I think that explains why SO likes it so much:)


I doubt I'd sub vermouth for sherry in a recipe where the sherry flavor is forward.



Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay


Edited 2/24/2009 7:41 pm ET by Risottogirl

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Lee's picture

(post #37142, reply #11 of 19)

I remember driving through the Jura on the way to Switzerland, but I have no recollection of the wines, nor do I recall ever having had vin jaune.  I'll have to do some reading about it.  I do remember buying cheese! 

FL.Cook's picture

(post #37142, reply #10 of 19)

Recipe please!!!  I did a search in recipes at FC and nothing came up.  It sure sounds good!

Carole

Carole
FL.Cook's picture

(post #37142, reply #12 of 19)

Sorry, I just realized that you said CT not FC!  What issue, as I get that too.

Carole

Carole
leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #13 of 19)

It's Cooks Illustrated, Sept. 1993.

FL.Cook's picture

(post #37142, reply #14 of 19)

Any chance of sending it?  I don't go back that far!

Carole

Carole
leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #15 of 19)

I sent you an email through FC. CI had a cow about some blogger posting one of their recipes.

FL.Cook's picture

(post #37142, reply #16 of 19)

Thanks, I read that after I had posted back to you.  I copied it and it is on my list to make.  Many thanks.

Carole

Carole
leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #17 of 19)

You're welcome.

BonnieinHolland's picture

(post #37142, reply #18 of 19)

The recipe says a cream sherry or an amontillado?  Very strange because they are totally different.  The cream sherry is very very sweet and will yield a lot of sweetness in the sauce.  The amontillado is the same as a 'medium dry' sherry and will have a rich nuttiness with just a touch of sweetness.  A 'dry' sherry is either a fino or a manzanilla (as stated on the front label, not on that small bit from the Sherry authority) -- that will be more like white wine, with lots of acids and often saltiness.  I would go for the amontillado/medium dry because it gives such a wonderful flavor with cream and mushrooms.  A dry white wine would be an appropriate subsitute.  cheers, Bonnie

leonap's picture

(post #37142, reply #19 of 19)

Thanks, Bonnie.