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Raise a Glass to Dry Farmed Wines

Raise a Glass to Dry Farmed Wines


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How you can help the world's fresh water supply one bottle of wine at a time

Today I want to take a moment to consider the impact winemaking has not just on our lives, but also on the world around us. It can be a very intensive type of farming, with many producers using fertilizers, pesticides, fungicides, and significant amounts of carbon-based fuels during production, just to name the biggest factors.

One aspect of farming that is often overlooked is the use of water. While we are all in a tizzy when it comes to fossil flues and chemical additives used in farming, we often forget to examine the use of life’s most basic requirement: water.

I’m not going to belabor the point, water is a limited resource that is renewable to a certain extent, but our agricultural system is exploiting this resource faster than our aquifers can be refilled. So what should we do about it? There’s a lot we can do, but one thing we can do today, right now, is drink a bottle of wine made from dry farmed grapes. Here are five of my favorites.

Click here for the Dry Farmed Wines Slideshow.

— Gregory Dal Piaz, Snooth


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Raising a Glass to Chicken Marsala, an Italian-American Classic

Produced in and around western Sicily, Marsala wines come in varying degrees of sweetness, but all contain at least four times the residual sugar of standard dry wines. These (heavily) fortified wines have a long history in Europe, but most Americans associate them with an iconic Italian-American dish: chicken Marsala.

By most accounts, Marsala wines owe their international footprint to English wine merchant John Woodhouse, who came to Marsala, Sicily in 1773. Specializing in sherry, Port, and Madeira, Woodhouse was surprised to discover a Sicilian wine produced using a similar aging process to sherry’s solera method. Sensing there was money to be made — sherry was the height of U.K. fashion at the time — Woodhouse purchased some barrels of Marsala and fortified the wine with a grape spirit to help preserve it during the journey to England. Marsala soon became massively popular in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Nowadays, Marsala is best known as a cooking ingredient, particularly in the context of classic chicken and veal Marsala at red-sauce Italian-American restaurants nationwide. (This is not to say that fine Marsala drinking wines don’t exist — they do they’re just nowhere near as coveted as in Woodhouse’s day.)

This Is The Last Corkscrew You’ll Ever Buy

“It’s a dish that’s meant to be hearty — rich in sauce and flavor,” says Glenn Rolnick, director of culinary operations for Carmine’s, an Italian-American chain with five locations in the U.S. and one in the Bahamas. Founded in 1990, Carmine’s mission could easily be a metaphor for the dish itself: “We want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

Carmine’s chicken Marsala features chicken scallopini, made by slicing the breast in half lengthwise and seasoning with flour, salt, and pepper. Before cooking, Rolnick lightly coats the meat in this mix — “We don’t want any excess flour to burn,” he says — and then sautés it until golden brown in a preheated pan with a splash of canola oil.

To create the sauce, Rolnick starts by caramelizing onions and button mushrooms. “A hot pan is extremely important because you don’t want all the juices and liquid to come out of the mushrooms,” he says.

After a few minutes, he adds the dish’s name-giving ingredient. “We add a full cup of Marsala, which creates a rich savory flavor,” Rolnick explains. The wine cooks down to half its volume before a rich house-made veal stock is incorporated, adding color, depth of flavor, and a viscous texture. In addition to chicken, the sauce “can be accompanied by fresh pasta, risotto, noodles, or even a vegetable on the side,” he says.

Like spaghetti and meatballs or penne alla vodka, chicken Marsala is immigrant fare.

“It’s an Italian-American dish,” Fortunato Nicotra, executive chef at New York institution Felidia, says of chicken Marsala. A Sicilian native, Nicotra believes the version of chicken Marsala enjoyed throughout America is likely the product of immigrants trying to recreate a flavor from their childhood, without access to the relevant ingredients.

“In Sicily, we cook with Marsala but usually to braise lamb or pork,” he explains. “The result is great — probably much better than chicken Marsala!”

Tough words, but he makes a solid point. Braising, or cooking in liquid for a long time at a relatively low temperature, turns meat tender without drying it out. One of the main advantages is that it also infuses the meat with the flavor of the cooking liquor. This isn’t possible when quickly sautéing thinly sliced chicken and using the wine as sauce.

In Sicily, Nicotra says, the type of meat used depends on the season — lamb in spring and early summer, and pork in fall and winter. (Best of all, Nicotra says, is the Sicilian black swine, native to the island’s Nebrodi Mountains. “It’s a little gamey, so, combined with the sweetness of Marsala, it’s a really great combination.”)

When making an Italian American-style chicken Marsala, the type of Marsala you use is important. “I usually like a medium or medium-dry Marsala, and obviously don’t use anything too expensive,” Nicotra says. Carmine’s Rolnick prefers sweet Marsala to create a slightly sweeter sauce.


Watch the video: Γεύσεις και Οίνος - Ποτήρια για Αφρώδη Κρασιά (July 2022).


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