Most of us have encountered vermouth in a glass -- it's a key ingredient in martinis, Manhattans and makes an excellent aperitif on its own. But vermouth has another great use that you should definitely know about: cooking. Cooking with vermouth is a lot like cooking with wine, only a little punchier.
Here's the difference: vermouth is a fortified, aromatized wine, which means that its alcohol content has been increased (usually through the addition of a neutral grape brandy) and that it's been infused with herbs, barks and other botanicals. You can substitute vermouth in a lot of recipes that call for wine, but there are two things you should know: 1) vermouth (both sweet/red and dry/white) have a lot more flavor, so may overwhelm more delicate dishes and 2) because of the increased alcohol, you should either add it the pan off the flame, or be prepared for it to flare a bit, like a brandy would. One other thing, once you open your vermouth bottle, store it in the fridge. It is wine, it has a shelf life and it will stay much fresher this way. Trust us.
We love to use vermouth to deglaze a pan, or flavor a jam and we think you will too. We pulled together some of our favorite recipes that use vermouth on purpose. Let us know your favorite way in the comments!