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Marsala Wine vs Madeira Wine

By Treasure Valley Food and Wine Blog

Two very, very classic sauces!! I told Robin that I have posted and article and recipe from Rudy's - A Cook's Paradise about Marsala Sauce. And she said that there is a difference betweeh Masarla Sauce and Madeira Sauce. I know. But the question is: How many others are not aware of the differences? I have the book, The Sauce Bible: Guide to the Saucier?s Craft by David Paul Larousse. If you are into cooking and sauce variations based on the classic sauces, this is the book for you. But for now, look at the basic differences between these two awesome sauces.

Madeira Sauce
(Sauce Madère)

1 T Butter, unsalted
1 Shallot, Minced
1 c Madeira wine
1½ c Demi-Glaze
2 T Butter, unsalted and cut into ¼ ?inch cubes

Sauté the shallot in the butter for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the Madeira and simmer until reduced by three-fourths. Add the demi-glaze and simmer until suitable thickness is achieved. Mount with butter.

Notes: Madeira (a fortified wine) sauce is frequently used either as is or as a base for numerous other sauces. It is typically served with omelettes; ham; sautéed or fried meat; grilled or sautéed kidney; and large roasted or breaded joints of meat.

Some variations of Madeira Sauce are:

Antin Sauce: Madeira Sauce flavored with a reduction of dry white wine and garnished with mushrooms, truffles and fine herbs.

Broglie Sauce: Madeira Sauce flavored with mushrooms and garnished with diced ham.

Camerani Sauce: Madeira Sauce garnished with minced black truffle.

Castelan Sauce (Sauce Castellane): Madeira Sauce flavored with tomato and garnished with diced bell pepper and ham. Served with lamb or beef medallions (tournedos), garnished with tomatoes cooked in olive oil, potato croquettes and fried onion rings.

Richelieu Sauce: Madeira Sauce flavored with a reduction of white wine, fish stock and truffle essence.

What is Madeira?
A fortified wine made from various grape varietals grown on the island of Madeira, in the Atlantic Ocean, 320 miles West of Africa and 620 miles Southeast of Portugal. It was an uninhabited volcanic island discovered and settled in the 1640's by Portuguese sailors and later farming immigrants. The gulf stream provides a fair and stable temperature of 60 -70 F in both the air and water. Often referred to as a Garden Island, grape rootstock were most likely brought from Portugal. Aging the finished wines fortified with different amounts of distilled and thus high alcohol brandy, mark or grappa changes the resulting product. Three well known styles of Madeira are 1.) Sercial - which has a distinctly dry finish. 2.) Bual- a richer finish. 3.) Malmsey - the sweetest of all.

Marsala Cream Sauce

1 Shallot, Minced
1 T Butter, unsalted
1 c dry Marsala Wine
1 t Thyme, fresh leaves
1 c Heavy Cream
2 T Butter, unsalted and cut into cubes
Salt and White Pepper to taste

Sauté the shallot in the butter, cover, for 5 minutes. Add the Marsala and thyme, and reduce until 2 Tablespoons of liquid remain.

Add the cream, and continue simmering until reduced by half. Add the butter and stir continuously until fully emulsified. Season with salt and white pepper. Set aside, keeping warm until ready to serve. Accompanies ?Medallions of Veal? and ?Ragout of Wild Mushroom?.

Source: The Sauce Bible: Guide to the Saucier?s Craft, David Paul Larousse, 1993

And from, we get this information about Marsala Wine,
What Is Marsala Wine?
Marsala wine is wine that comes from Marsala, Italy, and made with white skin or dark red skin berry grapes. Marsala is located in the western section of Sicily. In the early years of the wine, to allow the wine to last during the long ocean journeys, Brandy was added to allow the wine to be more resistant to temperature changes.

Marsala wines are typically used for cooking in Italian dishes, and can usually be found as Amber Marsala and Ruby Red Marsala. The age of the wine determines its type.

Fine wine is aged just over a year.
Superiore wine is aged between 2 and 3 years.
Superiore Riserva is aged just over 4 years.
Vergine Soleras is aged 5 years and over.

Marsala wine is a sweet wine made in Sicily. It is great for cooking and can be substituted with a port wine or maybe a Sherry. Although, it will change the flavor. If you are fixing Chicken Marsala, definitely stick with the Marsala wine!
Hope this helps you to understand the differences between the two wines and the sauces made from them. Cheers!

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By Treasure Valley Food and Wine Blog (Visit website)

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