Dear Katie,

Should people who completely abstain from alcohol cook with wine? Should they avoid desserts that have alcohol in them (e.g., bananas foster)? I was recently at a wedding with many sober people, and some took tiny sips of champagne for the toast. How strict do people have to be?


Little Sipper

Dear Little Sipper,

This is a really interesting question, and the answer is going to be slightly different for each person. Here’s the deal for me: I’m fine eating something that has been cooked with alcohol. For the most part (and certainly for my concerns), the alcohol cooks out, so I don’t worry about it. That said, if I were making food at home, I would find a substitute for alcohol if the recipe called for it. Why the difference? I don’t trust myself with a bottle of anything alcoholic. If a sauce called for wine, for example, I could very easily see myself pouring some of the wine in the sauce but then pouring all the rest of the wine down my throat (continued)