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Penne pasta with vodka sauce, beer battered fish tacos, rum glazed pork tenderloin with grilled pineapple relish, beef linguine with red wine bolognese sauce… While you're preparing your Valentine's Day menu you'll notice there is certainly no shortage of delicious recipes that call for alcohol in the ingredient list. But there does seem to be a shortage of understanding as to what happens once the alcohol is cooked. Can you get drunk eating these foods? Or does it all evaporate out? We’re not food experts, but our research has found a few interesting things.
We’ve always been told that alcohol cooks out of food. (But we were also taught that Pluto is a planet, and we’ve since had our hearts crushed on that one.) The assumption was that since the boiling point of alcohol or ethanol is low relative to water, alcohol evaporated during cooking. But apparently this assumption wasn’t actually tested and proven.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture published an article about a study conducted. They looked at various ingredients and preparation methods, and they determined that between 4-85% of alcohol was retained in the food after being cooked! When you consider that even pure vanilla extract contains quite a bit of alcohol, this is an important finding.
It’s important that you understand a few things:
- The extent of loss of alcohol depends on the severity of the heat application, the type of cooking vessel used, the type of alcohol used, and other factors.
- If your blood alcohol content is above the legal limit or if you just have a small amount of recently ingested alcohol on your breath, you could potentially fail a breathalyzer test regardless of how the alcohol entered your body.
- It’s always important for you to be aware of what you’re eating. Just like someone allergic to eggs needs to know if eggs are in the ingredient list, knowing if your meal contains alcohol is something you need to know.
We are the experts in alcohol monitoring. Trust Smart Start of Alabama for the right solutions whether you’re in need of an ignition interlock device or portable alcohol monitoring. Contact us online or at 1.866.447.8686 to learn how we can help you.
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