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Coq au Vin Recipe

A French classic, this dish is simple to prepare and very economical. In years past, the farmer would make this meal with an old unproductive rooster. Today you can't find a rooster in the supermarket, young, old or unproductive. Instead, make this with a stewing hen or all dark meat, such as thighs and drumsticks.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time3 hrs 30 mins
Total Time4 hrs
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: French
Keyword: chicken
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients

  • 3 ounces bacon thick-cut, cut cross-wise into ½ inch pieces
  • butter or neutral oil, as needed
  • 3 dark meat quarters or thighs and legs to fit in one layer in the bottom of a Dutch Oven
  • ounces all purpose flour
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 medium carrots cut in small dice
  • 2 medium celery stalks cut in small dice
  • 1 medium-large onion cut in small dice
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 bottle dry red wine
  • chicken stock homemade or low-sodium canned, as needed
  • 8 ounces peeled pearl onions whole
  • 8 ounces button mushrooms small ones cut in half, large ones cut in quarters

For the Bouquet Garni

  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried
  • 2 sprigs fresh parsley or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 5 pepper corns

Instructions

  • In the bottom of a large Dutch oven, fry bacon pieces until crisp. Drain and reserve bacon. You should have 1 - 2 tablespoons bacon grease in the bottom of the pan. If not, add a little butter or neutral vegetable oil.
  • Depending on how much fat you like, you can remove the skin from the chicken pieces. Sear chicken pieces on all sides until golden brown. Reserve.
  • Again, add butter or oil so you have 1 - 2 tablespoons fat in the pan. Sauté the peeled pearl onions with a little salt and pepper until golden brown. Reserve. Add more oil or butter to the pan, if necessary, and sauté the mushroom pieces with a pinch of salt and pepper until golden brown. Reserve.
  • Add the carrot, celery, onion, and a pinch of salt and pepper and cook over medium heat until the vegetables are beginning to soften and turn golden.
  • Add the flour, and whisk and cook over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook another minute or two. Deglaze the hot pan with a cup or so of wine.
  • Put the chicken back into the pan. Add the rest of the wine. Cover the pot and refrigerate overnight.
  • The next day, preheat the oven to 300°F, and add enough chicken stock to the pot to almost cover the chicken.
  • Tie the bay leaves, thyme, parsley, garlic cloves and peppercorns together in a square of cheesecloth and add to the pot. Submerge the bouquet garni in the cooking liquid.
  • Cover the pot tightly and let braise in the oven until the chicken is very tender, about 3 hours.
  • At the end of the cooking time, remove the chicken and the bouquet garni from the pot. Reserve the chicken and keep warm. Throw the bouquet garni away. Do not get the two confused and throw away the chicken.
  • With an immersion blender, blend the sauce until smooth, and then reduce on the stove top by about ¼ or until a nice saucy consistency.
  • Taste the sauce and add more salt and/or pepper, if needed.
  • Add back the reserved onions and mushrooms and heat through. Add the chicken back to the pan and stir everything together.
  • Spread the bacon pieces on a baking sheet and heat them up in the oven.
  • Garnish each serving with some of the hot, crispy bacon pieces.