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It's fairly well known that alcohol in liquids used for cooking evaporates pretty well, at a lower temperature than the water it's in, so the end result doesn't contain much alcohol. It doesn't all evaporate out, but almost all of it does.

This makes sense for things like reductions. However, let's say I am doing some braising. I do my thing, pour in my alcohol (wine, beer, whatever) and slap on a very tight fitting lid.

Does this mean that most of the alcohol stays in the braising liquid? Obviously it will evaporate out but then will it condense on the lid and then drip back into the liquid? If so, should all braises done with an alcoholic liquid be boiled either before or after the braise?

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

I'm not sure your introduction is a good summary of the answers on the question you linked to - it takes a long time to get rid of the alcohol, and a good amount of water goes with it. The liquid as a whole is boiling; it's not just the alcohol.

This should make the answer fairly obvious too. If you're braising in a way that will leave most of the liquid in the pot, whether the liquid is just water or contains alcohol, the liquid is staying. The alcohol and water will both recondense on the lid and drip back in. If the lid isn't completely tight, with a little bit of vapor escaping, you'll lose a bit more alcohol than water (the vapor will contain more alcohol than water), but unless you're really letting out vapor, you naturally won't be getting rid of anything.

As for whether you should boil before braising, well, if you're trying to get rid of alcohol, sure, boil the alcohol first. But most dishes don't contain huge amounts of alcohol, so leaving it in is usually fine - and that's why most recipes get away with not simmering for the hour or two it takes to get rid of most of the alcohol.

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