The famous French dish Coq Au Vin is a wonderful chicken recipe to serve on special occasions or when you feel the need to eat something exceptional or unique. I love updating recipes and creating new ones. I also enjoy given food away to my family because I know they will share their likes and dislikes about taste and flavor. It is not always good, but at least I can trust them and make the right adjustments.
Every so often I take virtual trips to my kitchen. One might say that it is a bit weird, but as I previously mentioned in many of my posts, cooking is therapy for me. It is cheaper than hiring a psychiatrist, and the result is a happy and full stomach. What is better than being in my sanctuary? Please don’t all answer at once! LOL
What is Coq au Vin
Coq Au Vin is chicken cooked in wine with a mixture of spices, mushrooms, and bacon. There are several recipes, and each of them represents the personal touch of the cook or chef. My personal touch is adding a blend of fresh spices accompanied by Pikliz and letting the chicken marinates for a few hours before cooking.
One other important factor in making this dish and adding my culinary Caribbean touches. These touches are cleaning the chicken with lemon, lime or vinegar which is just a Caribbean thing and the blend of spices. If you prefer not to clean your chicken this way, that is up to you. But in the Caribbean, we use lots of herbs and spices to make our dishes more flavorful.
Another primary ingredient is a wonderful wine. No cheap wine there, please! If you want perfection, this dish requires a good red wine. You will not regret it. A nice deep flavored Shiraz or Argentinian Malbec works for me. I always think deep flavored red dry or semi-sweet wine add more aroma and flavor to poultry and meat. As far as seafood, dry white wine definitely.
How to make this special dish
First, the chicken pieces are cleaned with lemon, vinegar or lime. The herbs and spices blend is next. Dusted in flour and then browned to create a thin crust and color. The chicken pieces are cooked in broth and wine and finished with the earthy flavors of mushrooms. Just the way it was intended!
How to serve it
You can serve this special recipe with a salad and potato au gratin or macaroni au gratin.
- 4 pound Chicken pieces cleaned with lime, lemon or vinegar and then rinsed
- 2 fresh thyme sprigs
- 4 fresh parsley sprigs
- 2 fresh scallions chopped
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp Pikliz Haitian hot pepper sauce, optional
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon/lime juice
- 1/2 cup flour seasoned with 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/4 cup of oil
- 4 thick bacon slices sliced
- 12 - 14 pearl onions or 6 small onions skin removed
- 3 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp brandy
- 1 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 8 oz package of small whole mushroom
- 3 cloves
- 2 bay leaves
- Clean chicken pieces with vinegar or lemon and then rinse with cold water, pat dry and set aside.
- In a blender or shopper, add thyme leaves only stems removed, parsley, scallion, garlic, salt, pepper, lemon/lime juice and Pikliz if using. Blend to a smooth paste. Pour over chicken and make sure every piece is well coated. Let chicken marinate for at least 3 - 4 hours or overnight.
- Remove chicken, from marinate and shake off excess spices. Save spices and marinade for later.
- In a large bowl, add flour, salt and pepper. Toss the chicken in flour to coat, shaking off any excess. In a heavy-based pan, heat oil oils and brown chicken in batches over medium heat. Drain on paper towels. Remove any crumbs left in pan. Add bacon and onions, and cook, stirring until the onions are browned. Add leftover chicken marinade and let cook for about 2 - 3 minutes while stirring. Add tomato paste and stir to blend. Add chicken, brandy, wine, chicken stock, bay leaves and cloves. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer covered for 30 minutes.
- Add cleaned mushrooms and simmers uncovered for 10 minutes or until the chicken pieces are tender and the sauce has thickened. Sprinkle with fresh herbs and serve with crusty French bread or your preferred side dish.
Original recipe published 6/9/2014. Updated to include seasoning variations and cooking method.