Recipe: Coq au vin (chicken in wine)
I appreciate the meditative tranquility enveloping an evening spent cooking with, and sipping on, the red wine required of Coq au Vin. Additionally, the dish doesn't require much fuss. At its essence, it’s simply chicken pieces seared in fat, then slowly baked with onions, carrots and mushrooms in red wine. Broken down into pieces, it’s quite simple to make and is French country cooking at its finest.
Yield: 4-6 servings
Cost: apx. $25.00
Active Time: 50 minutes
Bake Time: 75 minutes
- 1/3 cup dried cepes (wild mushrooms),optional
- 1, 4-pound roasting chicken, cut into serving pieces, skin removed*
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 16 small cipollini onions, peeled
- 1/2 cup diced bacon or salt pork
- 2 cups mushrooms, trimmed and quartered if large
- 2 1/2 cups plus 1/2 cup good red wine
- 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh thyme (or 1/2 teaspoon dry)
- Several whole, peeled, thin carrots, stem attached or 2 large peeled and sliced carrots
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
*I prefer leaving the skin on and reducing the butter and oil used in the recipe. I find the chicken flesh retains more flavor and moisture when the skin is left on. Through the years I have been overwhelmingly overruled on this point; I leave this decision up to the cook. To save time, purchased pre-cut whole fryer pieces, often found on sale.
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Soak cepes, if using, in 1/2 cup of wine plus water as needed to cover cepes until softened, about 30 minutes. Season the chicken pieces with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. In a large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the butter and one tablespoon of the oil. Brown the chicken pieces on all sides until golden. Remove from pan and arrange chicken pieces in a large oven-proof casserole.
3. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons of the butter in the sauté pan. Sauté the onions, with a pinch of salt, 6-8 minutes or until barely tender. Spoon onions over chicken in casserole.
4. In the same sauté pan, add the remaining tablespoon of oil and sauté the bacon or salt pork until crisp. Remove, drain on paper towels and sprinkle over chicken.
5. Add the mushrooms to the hot fat and sauté until just lightly browned but firm, adding rehydrated cepes, if using, in the last 30 seconds of cooking. Remove and arrange mushrooms in casserole. Wipe out excess fat in sauté pan and add the wine, including wine used to rehydrate cepes, avoiding accumulated bottom sediment. (Note: If you did not use cepes, make sure you reduce 3 cups of wine.) Bring to a boil and reduce for 10 minutes. Stir in garlic.
6. Pour the wine-garlic mixture over chicken pieces. Add bay leaf, thyme and carrot; cover and bake for 1 hour. Uncover and remove chicken breast tenting with foil to retain heat. Cook casserole, uncovered, an additional 15 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.
This recipe was written by Peggy Lampman and originally posted on AnnArbor.com on Dec. 12, 2009.