Pronounced as "ver-mooth," the liquid known called vermouth comes in sweet or dry varieties. Similar to wine, this fortified alcoholic beverage contains a blend of herbs. While most recipes call for dry vermouth, a plethora of recipes and meal ideas exist using sweet vermouth. Traditionally used in drink mixing, sweet vermouth also adds a characteristic flavor to poultry dishes, marinades and sauces.
A popular mixed beverage calling for sweet vermouth is the Manhattan. To make a Manhattan, mix 2 ounces rye whiskey with 3/4 ounce sweet vermouth and three dashes of bitters. Stir the mixture and strain into a cocktail glass garnished with a maraschino cherry. Try using sweet vermouth in a sweet martini which requires 3 ounces of gin, 1 ounce of sweet vermouth and dashes of orange bitter to taste. Complete by stirring the mixture with cracked ice and straining into a martini glass garnished with an orange twist. For a list of other cocktail recipes using sweet vermouth see the resources section on this page.
Glazes, Marinades and Dressings
Try adding sweet vermouth to your favorite meat, fish, vegetable and poultry dishes for a twist on the taste. Simply add sweet vermouth and vodka to any oil-based marinade and store in a sealed container or plastic bag with the meat, fish, vegetable or poultry for at least 30 minutes. Marinate zucchini, squash and peppers in equal parts sweet vermouth and olive oil before cooking for another simple marinade. Also, try whisking sweet vermouth into salad vinaigrette's for a sweet taste without tons of sugar on leafy green salads. See the resources section for a dinner recipe with Cornish hens using a sweet vermouth glaze.
When cooking use sweet vermouth the same as white wine. Sweet vermouth helps accentuate the flavors and aromas of almost any dish. Try mixing white wine and sweet vermouth or you can also substitute the wine with sweet vermouth. Similarly, sweet vermouth works well as a substitute for apple or grape juice in mixed drinks and recipes. Substitute sweet vermouth for balsamic vinaigrette in recipes as well.
Sweet Vermouth Chicken
The recipe for sweet vermouth chicken contains only 315 calories and 2.5 grams of fat per serving. You will need cooking spray, 8 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 2 cups sliced mushrooms, 1 cup frozen pearl onions, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, 1 cup sweet vermouth, 1 cup peeled roasted chestnuts, 1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, 1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon and 1/4 cup dried cranberries. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and fry in a nonstick skillet. Transfer the chicken to a jelly roll pan covered with a thin layer of cooking spray and bake at 350 degrees until cooked thoroughly. Follow with another nonstick skillet over medium-high heat with the mushrooms, onions, and garlic. Sprinkle the flour on top of the vegetables and cook until flour is lightly browned. Add the vermouth to the pan to help loosen the browned pieces, scraping as needed. Throw in the chestnuts, broth, parsley, tarragon, salt and pepper than boil. Reduce the sauce on a low simmer until it reaches 2 cups. Finish by adding the cranberries and cook for 2 minutes. Top the chicken with the mixture and serve.
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