I’ve been taking inspiration from Julia Child’s coq au vin for ages – although I never quite follow the recipe. I’m always missing an ingredient, trying to save some time, so on and so forth. But, it still always turns out really well. Here is my homey take on a legend.
1/2 lb bacon (about 8 slices), cut up into small pieces (if you do not wish to use bacon, just substitute about 2-3 tbs butter)
2 tbs butter as needed
3-4 lbs dark meat chicken (I use a combination of bone in thighs and drumsticks)
1/4 cup brandy for flaming (optional)
2 medium onions (or 1lb peeled pearl onions) cut into 1 inch pieces
3-4 carrots, cut into 1 inch pieces (optional)
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups red wine
1/2 tsp dried or fresh thyme (1/4 tsp if powdered)
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 bay leaf
1 tbs tomato paste
1 lb mushrooms, quartered
1/2 cup flour
Salt and pepper
TO SERVE: This is delicious served over mashed potatoes or with baguettes. I use mashed potato flakes for the potatoes and it’s quick and yummy.
6-7 qt dutch oven or large pot WITH TIGHT FITTING LID (lid is very important)
cutting board and knife
large mixing bowls
long reach lighter
Render the fat out of the bacon. If you are not using bacon, substitute 2-3 tbs butter until the bottom of the pan is fully covered. Once the bacon is browned, remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and leave the drippings in the pan.
If there is not enough oil in the pan, add butter. Using tongs, lay the chicken skin side down. Lightly salt and pepper, and sprinkle a little thyme, some garlic powder. Flip after about 2 minutes. The skin should be golden brown. Be careful when flipping not to strip the skin off the chicken.
Do the same on the other side. Salt, pepper, a little thyme, some garlic powder.
You may need to work in batches, to avoid overcrowding.
When all the chicken is golden, you are ready for your next step.
Get your LID ready!
Optional step – Pour the brandy into the pot. Using a long reach lighter, light the chicken on fire. Let flame for a minute or 2.
To put out the flames, COVER the pan with the LID.
Give it a minute or two to make sure the flame is out. Whisk together the flour, chicken stock, wine, and tomato paste.
Uncover the pot, and add cooked bacon, onions, carrots, the flour mixture, and a bay leaf. Mix gently.
Cover the pot and simmer for about 30 minutes.
Remove the chicken pieces if they are done (juices run clear).
The sauce should be thick enough to viscously coat a spoon. Boil down to thicken or add water as necessary.
Add mushrooms to the sauce and cook on medium for another 10 minutes.
Wait, what? Salami?? Why would you do such a thing? Well I’ll tell you why. I had a birthday party recently, and had almost an entire tray of salami left over. When cooking greens – bacon. When cooking pasta – pancetta, guanciale. So… why not? P.S. It’s delicious.
1 lb chicken breast
6 slices of Italian salami
3-4 large cloves of garlic
1/2 tsp each of dried oregano, thyme, rosemary (1 tbs each if fresh)
1 cup white wine (or chicken stock, but seriously, wine is better)