Have you seen the film ‘Julie and Julia’? A terrific chick flick, it’s based on the life of Julia Child who is recognised as bringing French cuisine to the United States. Her first cookbook ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’ is on my Christmas wish list. I can’t believe I’ve gone this long without a copy of it in my ever growing recipe book collection.
In the film, Julie cooks Julia’s recipe for Beef Bourguignon and I’m trying to rack my brain to remember if the traditional French dish, Coq au vin, translated to “rooster in wine” gets a mention. Slow cooked in red wine with onions, garlic, bacon and mushrooms it’s rich and delicious, making for the perfect meal on a cold winters night or Sunday lunch.
This version of Coq au vin comes from my mother-in-law Anne who often takes it to work to share with her fellow teachers for lunch. I believe Anne got the recipe from a trusty Australian Women’s Weekly cookbook and I’ve made a few tweaks to the recipe, as you do. It’s really easy to make and cooked ‘low and slow’ in the slow cooker results in the meat completely falling apart and melting in your mouth.
A friend of mine Jules requested some more slow cooker recipes and Jules, I can guarantee you – you won’t be disappointed with this one. A great recipe to cook for a crowd, it can be made the day before and freezes really well too.
And come Chrissie time – it’ll be interesting to see if Cork Daddy (or Santa) received my ever so subtle pressie hint.
My fingers are crossed.
coq au vin (serves 8)
2 x brown onions, peeled and cut in to thin wedges
6 x rashers of bacon, chopped
4 x cloves of garlic, crushed
15 x button mushrooms, quartered
1.5 kilos of chicken thigh fillets
2 x cups of red wine
2 x carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
3 x bay leaves
Sprinkling of dried thyme (or fresh thyme if you have it)
1 1/2 cups of chicken stock
100 grams of tomato paste
A good splash of Worcestershire sauce
A dash of olive oil, for frying the onions and chicken pieces
Salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
1/3 cup of cornflour, to thicken the sauce
Mashed potato and steamed greens to serve
- In a large fry pan, add a dash of olive oil and sauté the onions until soft. Reserve in to a slow cooker.
- Add the bacon to the same pan and cook for a few minutes until nearly cooked. Add the garlic and mushrooms and continue to cook until the bacon is crispy and the mushrooms are browned. Reserve in to the slow cooker.
- Adding a dash more olive oil to the fry pan, brown the chicken pieces in batches until browned on all sides. Season with salt and pepper here. Reserve to the slow cooker.
- Add the red wine to the same fry pan and bring to the boil, stirring. Add to the slow cooker.
- Add the stock, carrots, bay leaves, thyme, Worcestershire sauce and tomato paste to the slow cooker and stir.
- Cook on low for 8 hours or until the chicken completely falls apart when poked with a fork.
- To thicken the sauce – place the cornflour and a splash of water in a mug and using a fork whisk together to form a paste. Then whisk this paste in to the chicken mixture and cook on high for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until the sauce has thickened slightly.
- Serve with mashed potato and steamed greens.
- Replace the brown onions with French shallots if you have them.
- This chicken would make a delicious filling for a puff pastry pie.
- You could also serve this with steamed rice, polenta or cous cous.
- Make sure you have some fresh bread handy to wipe up the juices on the plate!
If you make this coq au vin, please leave your comments below. xx