Coq au Vin Recipe
Today, I want to share one of my favorite French dishes with you: my beloved Coq au Vin Recipe. I have to admit that I didn’t really grew up with French food. But in my travels around the world, and as my cooking skills improved from burning eggs to actual edible dishes, French cuisine started to intrigue me more and more. So I decided to make one of the most iconic French dishes and try my hands on Coq au Vin for a dinner party.
If you speak French, you might have already guessed right, but Coq au Vin is a Chicken slow-cooked in a red wine wine gravy together with mushrooms, pearl onions and a bunch of fresh herbs, vegetables and aromatics. As this concoction simmers slowly on your stovetop (or in your slow cooker, see info below), the aroma that will fill your house, making your mouth water in anticipation and wish you could turn that clock forward.
There is something magic about cooking with red wine. And I am not talking about the glass you are enjoying while you are cooking. It makes your meal a bit more festive and elegant, but at that same time rustic and earthy. You feel like you are the queen (or king) of a French country kitchen in the quaint French country side. Well, at least, that is what I do. This is why I love cooking dishes from other countries. Just the cooking alone brings back memories or daydreams of exotic places and lets me escape my little suburban bubble for a little while.
But before I babble on about teleporting myself to random places around the world through my dreamy cooking escapades, here is my Coq au Vin recipe for you. Try it out, enjoy and maybe you’ll discover your inner Julia Child as well.
- 1 medium onion, chopped finely
- 2 medium carrots, chopped finely
- 2 stalks celery, chopped finely
- 5 cloves of garlic, pressed or finely chopped
- 1 small bag of frozen pearl onions, defrosted and patted dry
- 2 cups of button mushrooms, quartered
- 1 small potato, finely grated (to thicken the gravy)
- 1 cup of cubed pancetta or salted pork or bacon (optional)
- 1 whole chicken
- 1 bottle of dry red wine, get the large bottle, if you want to enjoy a glass while you cook 🙂
- 2 Tbsp oil (if you don't use the substitute for the pancetta/bacon)
- 1 Tsp butter
- 5-6 sprigs of thyme
- 2-3 sprigs of oregano
- 2 sprigs of rosemary
- 2 bay leave
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- Heat up a large, heavy bottom pot (I like to use my Dutch Oven) and add the bacon and let brown, stirring (about 7-10 minutes) (if you are not using pancetta/bacon, add oil)
- Wash the chicken, pat dry and rub with salt
- Remove the pancetta/bacon bits with a slotted spoon and leave about 2 Tbsp of grease in the pan
- Next, you add the pearl onions and stir occasionally until browned (about 8-10 minutes)
- Then add the chicken and brown until the skin is nice and browned (about 5-7 minutes per side).
- Add onions and stir until the onions are nicely browned (about 7-10 minutes).
- Next add the carrots, celery, potato and the garlic and stir until the garlic is fragrant (about 1 minute).
- And now the good part: Stir in about 1 cup of wine and scrape up all the browned bits from the bottom with your spoon.
- Then add the rest of the wine, so it covers the chicken to about 2/3s.
- After that, you can throw in your herbs (I like to tie them together with some kitchen yarn. The French call that a Bouquet Garni, and it makes it a bit easier later to fish them out. Don't add the Salt and Pepper yet, as you want to do that after you reduce your gravy, or you might end up with too much salt or pepper in the end.
- Last but not least, add back the pancetta/bacon.
- Cover and let simmer for 1 hour.
- Flip the chicken. You will see a nice purple color in the meat that was submerged.
- Add the mushrooms.
- Cover and let cook for 1 more hour.
- Remove the chicken and cover with foil to rest.
- Reduce gravy over high heat to desired consistency.
- Season with Salt and Pepper to taste.
- Serve and enjoy.
Coq au Vin Crockpot Modification:
Follow the recipe until the step where you add the diced onions. Instead of adding the onions first, you remove the chicken and add it to you crockpot, turn it on high and set for 4 hours and then add the onions to the pot on the stove. You let them brown and follow the same steps as the recipe again until after you pour in the wine. After you add the 1 cup of wine and scrape the pits and pieces, you carefully pour the liquid and the vegetables over the chicken. Then proceed the same as the recipe, except flipping the chicken after 2 hours instead of one.
Have you had Coq au Vin in France or even tried to make it at home? How did you like it?
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