Sunday, 19 October 2014

Coq au Vin

If you're planning a dinner party or want to make a special meal to impress, then look no further than this French classic. Don't be fooled by the fancy name, this recipe is really easy to make and you can leave it blipping away in the oven while you socialise.  

It's elegant haute cuisine made easy!

(Serves 4, takes 25 mins to prep)


1 large free range chicken 
500 ml red wine
Glug of olive oil
6 rashers thick unsmoked bacon, chopped
2 onions, finely diced 
200g sliced or button mushrooms
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tbsp flour
300ml chicken stock
Sprinkle of thyme
Salt and pepper


1. Preheat the oven to 190c/gas 4. Add a glug of olive oil to your largest saucepan and add the bacon. (It needs to be big as you're going to need to get the chicken in). Sizzle for 2 minutes and add the onion and garlic. Cook for 5 mins until starting to brown. Add the mushrooms and stir gently, cooking the mixture for a further 2 mins.

2. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the flour. Then gently lay the whole chicken on top of the onion mixture. Pour the red wine in to the pan along with the chicken stock, thyme and seasonings. 

3. Cover the pan with a lid and place in the oven for 2 to 2.5 hours or until the chicken is golden on top and cooked through.

Then decide who is for breast and who is for leg, and plate up for your hungry guests! I served mine with rustic mashed potatoes which went with the Coq au Vin beautifully. 

Proper French chefs may disagree but I really don't think it matters what kind of wine you use in this recipe; it's only going to be boiled within an inch of its life so the less expensive stuff is grand. When you're serving though, it would be nice to have a glass of something very nice to compliment the dish.

Bon appetit!

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