Chicken Marsala

April 24, 2004 | 59 comments
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I hear conflicting statements about the propriety of using alcohol in cooking. For example, chicken marsala, which is one of our family’s favorite dishes.

Some members say that alcohol evaporates during the cooking. I am sure that at least some of the alcohol evaporates during cooking. At the same time, I am doubtful that it all evaporates. I also hear that some de minimus amount is probably allowable, since homemade bread contains trace amounts of alcohol (from the yeast fermentation) and that’s a Mormon staple. Again, I’m not sure of the veracity of this tale.

Does anyone know of an official statement about this? Alternatively, does anyone have information to support or discredit the Mormon myths about cooking with alcohol? What think ye?

By the way, the chicken marsala recipe I use is more or less:

1. Brown the chicken breasts
2. Remove from pan, add mushrooms and onions and butter, sautee.
3. Add wine and lemon, simmer with mushrooms and onions till it makes a nice sauce. (Some people add cream or capers here).
4. Add chicken back in, cook together for a bit.

So you’ve got simmering wine for ~10 minutes. There’s certainly a lot of fluid evaporation going on, as it reduces to a sauce, but there’s also quite a bit of fluid left as well (if there wasn’t any fluid left, you wouldn’t have much of a sauce).

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59 Responses to Chicken Marsala

  1. Julie in Austin on April 24, 2004 at 11:54 am

    I consider myself the world’s foremost Mormon authority on wine (grin) because my parents own a winery (www.pleasanthillwinery.com).

    Seriously, I don’t know anything official, but I would say that even if all of the alcohol doesn’t evaporate from your sauce, a good percentage would, and so the amount left would be inconsequential and no more than you might find in some other products. (Does anyone worry about the alcohol in their mouthwash? Cough syrup? Vanilla? etc.)

  2. Dave on April 24, 2004 at 12:01 pm

    Kaimi,

    I think there’s an informal “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy in place on this question that seems to make everyone happy.

    However, I’m inclined to take an empirical approach here by giving your recipe a taste test next week. Any suggestions on the best wine to use? I confess complete ignorance on the finer points of wine selection, so keep it simple.

  3. John David Payne on April 24, 2004 at 12:13 pm

    I don’t know about any official statements. But my father says he doesn’t eat food cooked with alcohol because he doesn’t want to like the taste of alcohol. I agree. I don’t want to like a cake because it tastes like rum. I don’t want to like a steak because it tastes like whiskey. I don’t want to like a bratwurst because it tastes like beer. I don’t want to like chicken marsala because it tastes like wine.

    People who cook with wine say to cook with the wines you like to drink, because that’s what you’re going to taste. My favorite wine to drink is no wine, so that’s what I cook with.

  4. lyle on April 24, 2004 at 12:18 pm

    what about the italian desert made with coffee beans…tiramisu? i asked one restaurant chef how he prepared it, and it had approx. 1 ounce of espresso per service size.

    don’t ask, (too late), don’t tell (too late)?

  5. cooper on April 24, 2004 at 12:24 pm

    Kaimi,

    1. The alcohol content does completely evaporate. It’s a “fuel”.
    2. I think John said it best. I am reminded of a blog I’ve read authored by a member who has become disaffected with the church. It is difficult to read about the opportunities he has now to sit and enjoy a cup of coffee and have a beer with friends. (Why is it when we leave the first thing we do is abuse the WOW?)
    3. The policy underscores the “avoid the appearance” admonition.
    4. I too am confilcted. I spend about $100 a month at Starbucks.

  6. Sci on April 24, 2004 at 12:51 pm

    Data from a study conducted by the US Department of Agriculture’s Nutrient Data Laboratory, the percent alcohol remaining after various processes:

    alcohol added to boiling liquid & removed from heat 85%
    alcohol flamed 75%
    no heat, stored overnight 70%
    baked, 25 minutes, alcohol not stirred into mixture 45%
    baked/simmered, alcohol stirred into mixture:
    15 minutes 40%
    30 minutes 35%
    1 hour 25%
    1.5 hours 20%
    2 hours 10%
    2.5 hours 5%

    This is not surprising since the boiling point of ethanol is 78 degrees Celsius–not very volatile.

    Why ascribe a moral character to ethanol? It’s just C2H6O. I thought the prohibition was against strong drinks, interpreted by church authorities as alcoholic drinks. I do not imbibe ethanol in large quantities to obey this rule, but I do not fret over every molecule of ethanol I might injest in some other manner.

    The same story with caffeine as the essential evil of coffee and tea (thanks to John Widstoe, former chemist). Does this make decaffeinated coffee OK? What about Coke? In my mind these questions are wrong-headed and even dangerous. The result of trying to essentialize every commandment and look beyond the mark.

    Woohoo, Coke and Chicken Marsala!

  7. Grasshopper on April 24, 2004 at 1:01 pm

    Does anyone have Arrington’s “Adventures of a Church Historian” handy? He has a great anecdote about a church president eating rum cake with relish after being told what was in it. I don’t own it (I read a library copy), or I’d post the excerpt.

  8. Kristine on April 24, 2004 at 2:10 pm

    Julie’s comment brings to mind a marginally related, but funny story:

    Scope mouthwash is actually about 40 proof, so it’s pretty dangerous for small kids. One time, my clever two-year-old daughter found some and spilled it all over herself. Since I couldn’t tell how much she had ingested, I took her to the ER. She was fine, and I learned that there are few things in life as funny as a two-year-old being tested with a breathalyzer!

  9. Aaron Brown on April 24, 2004 at 3:16 pm

    I have never heard of an official statement on this.

    Kaimi, what exactly are the “Mormon myths” on this subject anyway?

    cooper asks:
    “Why is it when we leave the first thing we do is abuse the WOW?”

    Because people recognize, correctly, that the negative health effects of drinking an occasional cup of coffee or tea are virtually nil. Once the religious motivation is gone, there’s usually nothing left to motivate one to abstain. The same often cannot be said for sexual monogamy, etc.

    Aaron B

  10. ronin on April 24, 2004 at 3:28 pm

    I am a convert who converted as an adult, while I was a fraternity brother at a major midwestern Univ. In fact, I first called the Church’s 800# in response to a Church commercial I saw when I was quite drunk one saturday evening!!!! Of course, I have since stopped imbibing all forma of alcoholic beverages, giving up tea and coffee was much more difficult, and temptation still rears its ugly head, because there seems to be a Starbucks or an independent coffeeshop at every street corner. So, sometimes, in the context of this discussion I wonder, why were coffee or tea designeted as the drinks prohibited? Why not hot chocolate, for example? because, unlike alcoholic drinks or tobacco, there are no health risks associated with t he consumption of tea or coffee. Plus in my case, the giving up of tea has caused a major rift between me and my parents , because, my mom’s side of the family is involved in the tea business in India!!!! Mom hasnt spoken to me for t he last 10 years!!!

  11. Kristine on April 24, 2004 at 3:37 pm

    Grasshopper, rum cake with relish? Yuck ;>)

  12. Scott on April 24, 2004 at 3:53 pm

    Leave it at the definition of “Hot Drinks” and “Strong drinks”- any more parsing, and you are going to develop a gospel hobby.

  13. Ethesis on April 24, 2004 at 3:58 pm

    Well, you can buy de-alcoholized wine and cook with that, we do at my house, and it cooks just fine.

  14. Bob Caswell on April 24, 2004 at 3:59 pm

    Aaron (ALL),

    I think there is less of a myth on the subject and more of a gray area where Mormons tend to take sides and try to prove to the other side how wrong they really are. It’s similar to the rated R discussions that happened. But with this crowd the cooking/alcohol topic is much less controversial, apparently.

    For the record, I love dishes cooked with wine and also love the desert tiramisu.

  15. John David Payne on April 24, 2004 at 4:09 pm

    Ronin, I think that your question about tea could be answered several different ways. Here are my answers, for what they’re worth.

    Q. Why do we not drink tea?
    A. Because God commanded us not to, as recorded in section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants.

    Q. Why do we abstain from tea and coffee when D/C 89 says only “hot drinks”?
    A. Because the presidents of this church since the time of Joseph Smith have consistently interpreted “hot drinks” to mean tea and coffee.

    Q. Why does God not want us to drink tea and coffee?
    A. I don’t know.

    Q. Do you really think drinking tea is bad for your health?
    A. I don’t know, but in section 89, God promises blessings for obeying this commandment, and some of those blessings sound like they’re health-related.

    These may be unsatisfying answers. Some people talk more about tannic acid, caffeine, etc. I don’t know about that. But I know I can’t go to the temple if I drink tea, and that I like going to the temple and feeling the spirit.

    Maybe that’s not an answer that will make sense to your family. Maybe the best answer for them is that God has asked you to make this sacrifice, without explaining the reasons. Like Abraham and Isaac, we may not always understand the reasons that God asks us to do things but we have faith that we will be blessed for our sacrifices.

    You’ve probably said things like that to them before, so maybe that’s not very helpful to you. I’m sorry I don’t have a better answer for you. There are a lot of wise people who read and comment here, and perhaps one of them will have a better answer.

    But I would definitely steer clear of scientific explanations, because you open yourself up to scientific rebuttals. And ordinary folks relying on what they remember of scientific studies they saw on 60 Minutes ten years ago often find themselves in shouting matches about subjects like this. At least if you explain this to them as an article of your faith, they can’t dispute your motivation, although they can say you’re stupid for believing the way you do.

  16. Jeremy on April 24, 2004 at 5:38 pm

    cooper asks:
    “Why is it when we leave the first thing we do is abuse the WOW?”

    No way. If I left the church first thing I’d do is allow my wife to wear pants and cut her hair…

    Back to the topic: for what it’s worth, I know someone who kept cooking wine in his cupboard back when he was a bishop; now he’s in the First Quorum of the Seventy. I can’t say whether he still uses it in the kitchen, though.

  17. VeritasLiberat on April 24, 2004 at 5:39 pm

    My cousin makes baked beans with whiskey.
    I figure it’s all right to eat them. I don’t think anybody can EAT enough of those beans to get tipsy, and if somebody DID eat that many beans, that person would still be in the bathroom long after the alcohol buzz had worn off.

  18. Geoff Matthews on April 24, 2004 at 7:18 pm

    VeritasLiberat,

    As long as it takes to cook beans (assuming he makes them from scratch), I could believe that all of the ethanol (properly, C2H5OH) would be cooked out. I think they take 2-3 hours to cook (not including the overnight soak).

  19. Julie in Austin on April 24, 2004 at 7:35 pm

    John–

    I *love* your Q and A. I hate it when people make stuff up and pass it off as the reason behind a commandment.

    That said, I, of course, have a Personal, Private Theory about why things are included in the WOW: I don’t think it is accidental that coffee, tea, and alcohol are social beverages. (In fact, I had this little theological insight while reading a bizarre book called _Home Comforts_ that said that it was impolite for someone to come into your home for more than 15 minutes and you not to offer then coffee, tea, or alcohol. I think the point here is that the WOW serves as a social marker for LDS.)

  20. David King Landrith on April 24, 2004 at 8:26 pm

    In the borderline instances mentioned above (alcohol in food, coffee in deserts, cola drinks), it seems pretty clear that it is given unto us to choose. If there were only one answer, and if that answer had moral consequence, we’d be given it (isn’t that what having a living prophet is all about?).

    Since we haven’t been given an answer, it seems to me that there is either more than one good answer (in the sense that what is right for you may be wrong for me) or the answer is not morally significant. I don’t think that god is a trickster waiting to judge us on which direction we tilt when considering the casuistic subtleties of commandments.

  21. Michael on April 24, 2004 at 9:22 pm

    This reminds me of people who think that chocolate is against the Word of Wisdom because it contains caffiene. While in the military, my grandfather was serving on some obscure pacific island. My grandmother made brownies for a social, and one of the members complained. So, my grandfather sent a letter to the serviceman’s committee of the church inquiring into this. A month letter, he got a letter signed by the entire first presidency indicating that chocolate should not be considered against the Word of Wisdom under any circumstances. (Not sure if this adds to the conversation, but I like telling the story. :>)

  22. Alaska on April 24, 2004 at 9:26 pm

    >>Since we haven’t been given an answer, it seems to me that there is either more than one good answer (in the sense that what is right for you may be wrong for me)

  23. Julie in Austin on April 24, 2004 at 10:56 pm

    Alaska–

    I don’t suppose you are the same Alaska that posts on the WTM boards? Because I am the same Julie in Austin.

  24. Alaska on April 24, 2004 at 11:31 pm

    Why, yes! I am that same Alaska. Nice to see you here! :D

    I have my own personal theories about the purpose of the WOW. I think it’s a wee bit like Joshua and all that walking and horn blowing around Jericho.

    “You do this thing that I’ve asked you to do. If you do just as directed, then you get XYZ.”

    (I can’t read that chapter now without hearing French peas.)

    The WOW is a really simple test of a person’s faith and obedience. Those of us still sneaking coffee probably aren’t really ready for the more difficult stuff yet. And when we get that bit of obedience down, well that’s good sign.

    Maybe that’s why it’s kind of different for each person? (The alcohol in the cooking issue) Because maybe if you reach for the cooking wine and there is no twinge, nothing that says, “Hey! What are you doing?” Then you know that you and God are straight on the obedience issue. But if there is a twinge, (or a clonk on the head, as there was with me in front of the ice cream display today) then that’s a sign that you are still on the BASIC OBEDIENCE level, and all this matters *more* than it would to a person who mastered this all back at 19.

  25. Logan on April 24, 2004 at 11:33 pm

    Dave,

    I didn’t notice anyone else answering your question about the best wine to use for chicken marsala (if they did, sorry to say it again). Anyway, “marsala” is actaully a specific wine, often used for cooking, so that’s the one I’d probably recommend. You can usually find cooking marsala at the grocery store. Of course, if you’re like me, you probably look for any *legitimate* excuse to go into the corner liquor store . . .

    You know me — a rebel without a cause (at least without a good cause) ;)

  26. Logan on April 24, 2004 at 11:42 pm

    By the way, Kaimi, I love chicken marsala too. I don’t think my recipe uses lemon, but I’ll bet that’s good. Also, I never thought to add cream, but that’s got to be fantastic! I will definitely give it a shot. One thing I do do is bread the chicken breasts first, which seems to work well. Anyway, thanks for the tip.

  27. victor garza on April 24, 2004 at 11:50 pm

    Along the same lines, I was wondering if marijuana cooks out of brownies?

  28. John David Payne on April 25, 2004 at 12:15 am

    Thanks, Julie! I served a mission in Utah and spent a lot of time with people who didn’t go to church because of word of wisdom problems. I heard about a hundred different ideas on why coffee and tea are bad for you, but none of them are going to win you any arguments.

  29. Jason on April 25, 2004 at 1:38 am

    Cooking from the Alice B. Toklas Cookbook, eh? ;)

    I’m not sure how related this is, but I can predict a few answers to my question, such as, “avoid the appearance”, etc.

    I served my mission in the netherlands and most if not all of our branch presidents (and converts) drank ‘alcohol free’ beer. Now, we all know it isn’t 100% alcohol free. The fact is that it is just a very watered down beer. I never commented on it to them and even partook, the spirit of discernment overwhelming me. Anyone wanna comment on that?

  30. lyle on April 25, 2004 at 1:53 am

    Sure, Jason…I’ll chase after it :)

    All I can think of though, is that the spirit of discernment has really poor taste. beer just smells nasty & near beers taste even worse.

  31. Kim Siever on April 25, 2004 at 11:40 am

    John,

    I know exactly what you mean. I served in the Utah Provo Mission, and saw the same thing. I even had man come up to us while we were eating our hamburgers in the middle of July and condemn us for eating meat in the summer. Ironically, it was on my mission where I realised that caffeine wasn’t against the WofW.

  32. Jared J on April 25, 2004 at 1:35 pm

    My stake president in Cambridge when I was law student said his rule about alcohol was: “if you can eat it with a fork then you aren’t breaking the WOW.”

    Makes some sense, but then again this rule does nothing for medicines or mouthwash.

  33. Sarah on April 25, 2004 at 2:59 pm

    lol, a fork huh?

    Obviously he had never heard of Jello Shots…

  34. J on April 25, 2004 at 4:21 pm

    I’m not Mormon so I’m not going to weigh in on what qualifies as “alcohol” for the purposes of the WOW, but I recommend trying Chicken Marsala with pinot noir or merlot. Vino.com sells alcohol-free wine, and although they don’t offer AF Marsala, they do have Merlot and Pinot Noir. The bonus there is that either of those is great in spaghetti sauce, too, if you make your own.

  35. Logan on April 25, 2004 at 4:45 pm

    That’s funny, Jared. As a friend once observed to me about tiramisu, the Word of Wisdom doesn’t say not to EAT coffee, right?

  36. John David Payne on April 25, 2004 at 5:00 pm

    The fork rule also doesn’t prohibit Amsterdam space cakes, or victor garza’s brownies.

  37. Jason on April 25, 2004 at 9:57 pm

    Actually, I started to enjoy the taste of beer (alcohol free) on my mission. That was 7 years ago and I’ve never desired ‘real’ beer, if anyone might suggest non-alcoholic beer might be a ‘gate-way’ substance.

  38. Jim F. on April 26, 2004 at 12:43 am

    The cooking school story is that alcohol is used in cooking because many flavor compounds are alcohol soluble, but not water soluble. In many sauces it is not easy to tell that they were made with wine, so the wine isn’t necessarily there for its own flavor, though it adds some. A strong-flavored wine like Marsala will, of course, leave a strong flavor. So, if the cooking school guys are right, though it might do to drink non-alcoholic Pinot Noir or Merlot, cooking with them won’t accomplish the same thing that cooking as the alcoholic versions.

  39. Catherine on April 27, 2004 at 3:16 am

    Maybe the point of the Word of Wisdom is to show that our bellies and taste buds don’t have more power over us than our desire to follow the Lord.
    Is there any dish or drink or sweet that’s worth giving up the Spirit for? (Hmm…maybe that’s why Lehi talked about the fruit on the tree of life as being the most desirable of all…symbolic meaning is abundant in foodstuffs)

  40. John David Payne on April 27, 2004 at 12:56 pm

    Amen, Catherine. Speaking as one whose god is his belly (Phil. 3:19), I have always thought one of the main points of the WofW, as with fasting, is for us to show the Lord we love him more than we love that which the body finds pleasant. Maybe the reason I am good at obeying the word of wisdom and terrible at fasting is that with fasting I know what I am missing, which makes it harder to give up. Good thing I’m such a pharisee with chicken marsala, coffee ice cream, etc., or I’d really be in trouble.

  41. Kaimi on April 27, 2004 at 1:07 pm

    Dave,

    I’ve been remiss and forgot to address your question. Logan has the answer, anyway — you use Marsala wine. You can get a bottle of cooking Marsala in the grocery store for well under $5. (We’re talking the $2 to $3 range, or maybe a tiny bit more).

    I use that, and it works fine. Of course, you can always spend more on wine, but I’m told by oenophile friends that you don’t really get much benefit from cooking with better wine, you use that stuff for drinking. I’m under the impression that there is a minimal difference between chicken marsala made with $5 wine and chicken marsala made with $30 wine. (I could be wrong — I’m certainly not a wine expert).

    And let me suggest that you invest the dollar or two that you saved on wine into fresh mushrooms, for the best result. If you can’t find fresh ones, the canned stuff will do okay. But fresh portabello or the smaller ones (here they go under the brand “baby bella”) make a very tasty sauce. (They are not cheap, but not bank-breaking either — around $3 for a shrinkwrapped package, and you can usually buy sliced ones too, which is more convenient).

  42. Steve Evans on April 27, 2004 at 1:16 pm

    Kaimi, I’m no wine connaisseur either, but “cooking wine” is definitely not as good. It can have a high level of residual sugar and sometimes salt that ruin the flavor in your food. Best to go with a cheap wine (for uner $10 you can get what you need). Differences can be minimal, I guess, but when I cook (on that rare occasion) I like to control the level of salt.

  43. Davis Bell on April 29, 2004 at 5:41 pm

    I don’t know if anyone is on this thread still, but does anyone have any feelings insights on

    A: attending bars with friends/co-workers
    B: phsyically serving alcohol (i.e. pouring it into cups) at a social or work function
    C: serving alcohol in your own home to non-LDS guests

  44. Julie in Austin on April 29, 2004 at 5:45 pm

    Davis–

    Can I add to your list? The issue sometimes comes up that my husband and I are paying for dinner in a restaurant for other people who are ordering alcohol. What about that one?

    I am not claiming anything authoritative here, but I wouldn’t do A, B, or C. However, I don’t mind paying (as above). Not sure what my logic is; more an issue of what feels right.

  45. Kingsley on April 29, 2004 at 5:48 pm

    A. Would depend on the bar. A nice, classy joint Yea; a strip-club Nay.
    B. As a barkeep Nay, as a nice, curteous person Yea.
    C. If they were very close friends and they couldn’t live without it.

  46. Kingsley on April 29, 2004 at 5:50 pm

    Sorry; should read courteous. The wrong post to be slurring on.

  47. Kaimi on April 29, 2004 at 5:58 pm

    A. I do this all the time for work. At least, sort of. There have been a few meetings / functions in bars. There are also numerous work parties / functions that are held at hotels or restaurants where a lot of the people are over at the bar. And a lot of work events at the cafeteria or off-site where an open bar is part of the event. At first I felt a little odd — one law review meeting was the first time I had been in a bar (except for once on my mission, where we taught a bar owner at his work site after hours — long story). Now I’m totally comfortable in that environment. I just order my Coca-cola, grab some of whatever the hors d’ourves are that are going around, and mingle. I try not to stay too long, because it’s really boring. (Maybe it’s more exciting if you’re drinking alcohol?). Also, the music is often really loud and obnoxious.
    B. Never done that one. I don’t think I would have a problem with it. I did buy cigarettes for a co-worker once; that was a little strange. It was one of those “I’m running to the deli, does anyone want anything?” situations. I’ve gotten coffee for co-workers numerous times, similarly.
    C. Nope. My house, my rules.

  48. Logan on April 29, 2004 at 6:07 pm

    Davis, I personally don’t really have a problem with any of those things, although it might depend somewhat on the exact circumstances. I don’t not drink because I think you can’t enjoy alcohol from time to time and still be a good person; I don’t drink because of the covenants I’ve made. I don’t look at drinking as intrinsically “immoral”, and therefore don’t feel bad about enabling (or at least not discouraging) others to drink.

    But I’m one of those rebellious types, so take that for what it’s worth.

  49. Logan on April 29, 2004 at 6:08 pm

    Davis, I personally don’t really have a problem with any of those things, although it might depend somewhat on the exact circumstances. I don’t not drink because I think you can’t enjoy alcohol from time to time and still be a good person; I don’t drink because of the covenants I’ve made. I don’t look at drinking as intrinsically “immoral”, and therefore don’t feel bad about enabling (or at least not discouraging) others to drink.

    But I’m one of those rebellious types, so take that for what it’s worth.

  50. lyle on April 29, 2004 at 6:08 pm

    I go back & forth:

    from buying cuban cigars for friends when I’m overseas (as a present, cuz I know they like them and 1 theory = give em what they want);

    to

    handing people chocolate cigarettes (100% chocolate) when they ask If I have any on me; or to ‘smoke’ for myself when I’m around others taking a smoke break. Here, same theory…just that I have to tell myself that tobacco isn’t “really” want they want.

    re: C. The SS story is that you are a poor host who can’t entertain w/o alcohol (which explains why bars are boring w/o alcohol). however, i understand that Rex Lee (I got this from his wife) once had a few OJs at a Supreme Court clerks picnic…and no one told him they were alcoholic. He had two done before he knew the diff…

  51. Kingsley on April 29, 2004 at 6:13 pm

    Logan: I think your position a very sane one. Cf. Hugh Nibley’s Sunday School lesson on the Word of Wisdom, available from FARMS for 99 cents.

  52. chad too on April 29, 2004 at 6:36 pm

    I’ve had many occasions where work get-togethers (farewell parties, etc) are in bars and it just doesn’t faze me anymore. Everyone knows I’m drinking Diet Coke and leaves it at that. I’ve also been in the position many times where I’m taking my clients to dinner and they order alcohol. It’s even gone on my corporate card. I just don’t imbibe.

    I’ve never been asked to play barkeep. I don’t think anyone who knows my standards would even bother asking. I’ve been asked to make coffee before and I apparently made it very strong. They never asked again.

    As to the last one, we had some new friends we’d invited over for dinner. We weren’t keeping it a secret, but they didn’t know yet we were LDS and they brought a bottle of wine. My wife and I did a quick conference in the kitchen and decided to diffuse the situation by letting them drink this wine with dinner, but let them kindly know that we don’t drink nor do we normally allow it in the house.

    There was just one problem with this plan. After tearing the utensil drawer apart, we discovered we had nothing that remotely resembled a corkscrew! We then made the best decision of all and just turned the bottle back over to them, thanking them for their kindness. They accepted it graciously.

  53. Kaimi on May 10, 2004 at 10:55 am

    I’m happy to report that at the meeting of the J Reuben Clark law society, last Friday (which was an interesting and informative time, by the way), there was a lunch served. And the pasta portion was shrimp with vodka sauce. (Jared J, who has commented on this thread, can confirm — he was sitting next to me).

    I was happy to apply the fork doctrine (folk doctrine?) and consume said shrimp. It was tasty.

  54. Angela on June 23, 2004 at 2:53 pm

    I was actually going to take a job at a coffee shop this summer. My reasoning was that it was a no-smoking facility (very rare in my neck of the woods) they didn’t allow alcohol inside, and they were closed on Sundays. The other pluses outweighed the negative of serving coffee. Besides, lots of places serve coffee, and if I worked there, I wouldn’t oppose pouring it if it was part of my job.
    I guess the same thing would go for the alcohol. As long as you’re not drinking it and you are doing a part of your expected job, I say there’s nothing wrong with it. I mean, you’re not shoving it down anyone’s throat if they ordered it…

  55. Tyler on August 19, 2004 at 4:57 pm

    Well angela, that is kind of a contradiction, if you worked for say a convienent store and had to sell cigerettes periodically/frequently, that would be different than being the marketing director for Phillip Morris.

    If its just a coffee house:starbucks, then i wouldnt’ want to be working there, if i was just a waiter and had to serve it? That would be less, but I have avoided waiting tables for the very reason.

  56. Times and Seasons » Wheat for Man on September 14, 2004 at 5:15 pm

    [...] we’ve previously touched on a number of Word of Wisdom topics: medicinal marijuana, chicken marsala, meat eating. And we all know about the tobacco and alcohol part. But what on [...]

  57. danithew on September 14, 2004 at 1:28 pm

    Some friends of ours recently purchased a bottle of tequila for a chicken marinade. The bottle is kept behind their microwave in the corner of the kitchen. I was imagining that perhaps they might forget about the bottle, that a year or two from now they move and the elders quorum comes over to help, an elder takes hold of the microwave …

  58. Lori on November 9, 2004 at 4:53 pm

    Let us remember the spirit of the law vs. the letter of the law. It is admirable that people are want to study out the finer details to ensure their obedience, but you can get to a point where you err by following the letter of the law instead of the spirit of the law.

    The simple truth of it is we are asked to abstain from hot drinks interpreted by the prophet as specifically the hot drinks of coffee, tea and alchoholic drinks. Their addictive qualities pose a serious threat to clean living (becoming an alcoholic) and enslave us as our bodies rely on them to function (caffeine addiction.)

    Worrying about chocolate, cough syrup and flavorings is unnecessary. Remember the spirit of the law.

  59. Kim Siever on November 9, 2004 at 5:00 pm

    Alcoholic drinks fall under the “strong drinks” prohibition.

    Lisa, if I am not affected by caffeine, then is it OK to drink coffee or tea? I have had caffeinated drinks on various occasions (infrequently of course) and in various amounts. At no time was I ever dependent on the drinks, nor did I receive any stimulation from them. If I am not enslaved by them, is it still wrong?

WELCOME

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