Sunday, June 12, 2005

I dreamt of Paris and made coq au vin

I made this a while back but never quite got around to blogging about it. I made it after a night where my ever active mind didn’t let me sleep and was racing with greedy and envy from the conversation I had with Nicole when she asked if I wanted any food gifts from Paris. So while she was eating her way through Paris, I was determined to cook up a piece of Paris in my own little kitchen and decided to try my hand at a classic bistro coq au vin.

Coq au vin
Serves 4-6

300g eschalots
180g pancetta, rind removed, cut into 2cm long strips
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
250 button mushrooms
1 large chicken, cut into 10 pieces
2 tablespoons plain flour
¼ cup brandy
1 bottle of rich red wine (such as cabernet sauvignon or shiraz)
1 bouquet garni
crusty bread to serve


Pour freshly boiled water over the eschalots, as this will make them easier to peel, then remove skins.

Fry the pancetta in the olive oil in a large casserole or a heavy-based pan with a lid over medium heat for 2-3 minutes, until some of the pork fat has run into the oil in the pan and the pancetta is beginning to crisp. Add the peeled eschalots to the pan. Fry for 2-3 minutes until the eschalots and pancetta have a little colour, then set aside in a bowl.

In a separate fry pan, melt butter over low and medium heat. Add mushrooms to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the garlic and fry for a further minute until mushrooms have softened. Set aside in the same bowl.

Toss the chicken in the flour – the easiest way is to place the flour and chicken in a freezer bag, toss everything around until well coated. Return the casserole to medium heat and brown the chicken. You will need to do this is batches, setting the chicken aside once they are golden brown.

Share out any excess flour from the freezer bag into the casserole and scrap the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Pour in the brandy and ignite carefully with a long match (stand back! I just let the alcohol cook off as I didn’t want to risk losing my eyebrows knowing what a clumsy person I can be). Stirring as you go, pour in the whole bottle of wine and turn the heat up to high to bring the liquid to a boil.

Return everything to the pan, tuck the bouquet garni into the casserole and give everything a stir. When it begins to boil, cover with a lid, turn the heat to low and simmer gently for an hour or so until chicken is tender. Season with pepper and salt, place a piece of chicken, vegetables and sauce in each bowl and serve with crusty bread.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home