RFF will be a new category for this blog and it stands for Random Food Facts.

As a student at the Culinary Institute of America, it is only natural that I am surrounded by food facts on daily basis – some of these facts happen to be random. The latest RRF comes courtesy of my Wine Instructor – Steven Kolpan.

We were discussing the ways that wine would be clarified before bottling, and one of the methods is fining the wine where the wine maker uses a colloidal agent, in this case egg whites to attract the sediment in the wine and force it to the bottom of the tank or barrel. (Egg whites perform a similar clarifying action in making of consomme – a crystal clear flavorful broth – except in the consomme, the egg whites form a raft on the top of the stock and pull all the impurities up, trapping them in the raft)

The fining method using egg whites was common Italy, leaving Italians with a lot of egg yolks. Rather than waste the egg yolks, the Italians came up with Sabayon/Zabaglione – an Italian custard of whipped egg yolks, sugar, wine, and flavorings. The egg yolks are placed in a bowl with sugar in a double boiler and whisked to thicken. Next they are transferred to a mixer, combined with wine and flavorings and whipped on high speed until cool.

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