You can turn just about any dish into a bistro-worthy meal by adding a wine reduction.
Every home cook worth their silicone cookwear should know how to whip up a few good sauces that can be used to make any dish seem fancy. Luckily, wine reductions are about as easy as they come and will make your friends think you're a true gourmand.
One solid rule to keep in mind is that the type of wine you would normally drink with a meat is the kind you'll want to use to make your reduction for that particular dish. (In case you didn’t know, reds pair well with beef, pork and hearty vegetables, while whites complement chicken, seafood and more delicately flavored veggies.)
To make a wine reduction, begin by sauteing an onion, a few cloves of garlic, two small ribs of celery and two medium-sized carrots in olive oil until the veggies are soft and aromatic. Then, just add your wine and let it simmer until it thickens to the consistency you want.
Herbs that add hearty flavor to a red wine sauce include rosemary, thyme, oregano and bay leaves. To enhance a white wine reduction, consider adding basil, parsley, chives or tarragon.
Looking for an even more powerful boost of flavor? Make your wine reduction in the same pan in which you browned your meat or cooked your veggies. The bits stuck on the bottom of the skillet will become part of the sauce, adding depth and cohesiveness to your dish.
Your options for using a wine reduction are almost unlimited. For example, you could drizzle some of the savory, DIY sauce over this simple Grilled Marinated Family Steak or add a fresh spin on Simple Honey-Glazed Salmon.