Coq au Vin

It’s January, the holidays are over and it’s time for some comfort food.  Food historians differ on the origins of Coq au Vin. Legend has it that a similar dish can be traced back to Julius Caesar’s reign in 44 BC when Gaul was under Roman Rule.  Another, cites  a cookbook published in the 19th century titled ,” Cookery for English Households” as the first known recipe for a form of Coq au vin called Poulet au Vin Blanc.  However, the Chef that popularized Coq au Vin in the United States in the 20th century was Julia Child.  Coq au Vin was one of the featured recipes in Julia Child’s famous 1961 cookbook, “Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking”.

Here is a recipe for Coq au Vin that will delight your dinner guests.

Coq au Vin
Serves 4

1 chicken 5 lb. quartered
Salt &  ground pepper
Butter & oil
½ tsp. thyme leaves
2 bay leaves
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 ½ c. good burgundy
2 c. chicken stock or broth

Salt and pepper chicken to taste; dredge chicken slightly in flour. Pan fry in equal parts butter and oil until golden brown on all sides. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place chicken in casserole with remaining ingredients. Cover and bake for 1 hour. Remove chicken to platter; strain liquid in saucepan; reduce 15 to 20 minutes over medium heat. Thicken sauce with 2 tablespoons of roux, with equal proportion butter to flour; stir until smooth. Adjust seasoning if necessary to taste.

2 oz. lean fresh bacon, cubed
½ c. pearl onions
½ c. whole mushrooms

Saute bacon and onions 5 to 10 minutes, add mushrooms and cook 2 to 3 minutes longer. Strain and add garnish to sauce. Pour sauce over chicken and serve.

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