Coq Au Vin

First you get the gravy, then you get the power, then you get the women

Recently chicken went on super sale and I bought way too much to fit in the already packed freezer. One of these days we are going to get a stand-alone freezer. Probably when I finally commit to the half cow at the butcher.

This recipe is adjusted from the great cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking which everyone should own. I cooked the mushrooms and onions with the chicken, which really gave the sauce an excellent flavor, but if you want to do it Julia’s way add the sauteed mushrooms and onions at the end and drizzle with the pan sauce. Any young full-bodied wine will do, but a cheap Beaujolais or Cotes du Rhone is your best bet. Butcher the chicken into legs, thighs and breasts removing the skin but leaving the bones in.

Coq Au Vin

  • 3-4 slices bacon sliced into strips 1/4″ wide by 1″ long
  • 2 1/2-3 lb chicken cut up into pieces
  • 1/4 cup cognac
  • 1 bottle cheap young red wine
  • 1-2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 cloves garlic, mashed
  • 1/2 tsp basil, chopped fine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 12-16 small onions
  • 1 cup mushrooms, quartered
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 2 tbsp butter room temperature
  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley
  • Salt/pepper

Saute bacon in a tablespoon butter until fat renders and it is lightly browned in a large 10-14″ fireproof pan. Remove bacon and brown chicken in fat. Season chicken with salt and pepper and add cooked bacon, onion and mushrooms to pan. Saute until onions and mushrooms begin to brown. Cover and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, turning chicken once. Uncover, pour in cognac and light on fire. Shake pan until flames subside. Pour in wine and add just enough to stock to almost cover the chicken. Stir in tomato paste, garlic and basil. Bring to a simmer over medium heat then cover and cook slowly until chicken is done, about 30 minutes. Remove chicken to a side dish and raise heat to reduce cooking liquid to about three cups. Make a smooth paste from the flour and butter and beat it into the hot liquid. Whisk the sauce until it begins to thicken, about 3-5 minutes. Pour sauce over cooked chicken and serve immediately sprinkled with the chopped parsley.

About Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

This blog attempts to collect some of the things I try to create with food and booze. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I fail. My hope is to entertain and maybe help people think a little harder about what they decide to eat and drink.
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55 Responses to Coq Au Vin

  1. spree says:

    Now there’s a mighty fine lookin’ dinner!!

  2. My Dad used to love this stuff. I didn’t appreciate it when I was younger…

  3. The Wookie says:

    Love the caption. Coq Au Vin by Tony Montana – Scareface Style. “Say hello to my tasty chicken!”

  4. WSW says:

    Good for what ails you — better even than chicken soup.

  5. Tammy says:

    Gorgeous food!!

  6. k.m. says:

    I own that cookbook and while I’ve read through it, for some reason I never got round to making anything from it. However, I think your shortcut makes at least this recipe that much more approachable! Time to finally start cooking from the classic.

  7. oh. my. gosh. I just picked up two chickens from the Farmer’s Market.. and I can’t wait to try this. But hacking them into parts.. that could get tricky…

  8. ChgoJohn says:

    That picture of yours says it all. It’s a great dish and makes a wonderful meal to share with friends.

  9. I love the deep color of the inviting

  10. rsmacaalay says:

    Ohhh look at that suace, I feel like I wanna dip some bread on it

  11. I’m not a follower of Julia Childs, but she’s done a good job on that recipe. Looks great.

  12. Always such a beautifully right and satisfying meal.
    πŸ™‚ Mandy

  13. I had no idea that was the secret of getting women… all in the gravy eh?

  14. Love the caption! This is a really stunning version of the dish and we will soon be filling our freezer once more with “Coqs” so will be coming back to this recipe for sure.

  15. Fantastic dish! Buy a stand alone freezer, you’ll never look back. We have two.. πŸ˜‰

  16. Mad Dog says:

    That looks great – you’ll have to do ALL her other recipes and blog them now! πŸ˜‰

  17. Wait – you took the skin OFF?
    (I agree with Celia – get a freezer. You’ll never be sorry.)

  18. sallybr says:

    First, I needed to grab my smelling salts to avoid fainting after finding out you do not have a separate freezer. Unacceptable. πŸ˜‰

    Love coq au vin – one of my favorite “classics” – I made it last month for a dinner party, but was too uncomfortable taking photos while the guests were here, and….that was the end of it. I must make it again

    on a side note, I think you time your post publications around the same time each night, and my email feed arrives a little later – so there you have it: I cannot go to sleep until I see the email notifying me of a new post. πŸ˜‰

  19. Yummm. One of my favorites. That sauce looks amazing.

  20. Kristy says:

    Oh my goodness. That looks so good! I don’t think we’ve tackled French cuisine yet. I should probably pick up that cookbook first. πŸ™‚

  21. Am'broisie says:

    All French that I am… I have never cooked any coq au vin! You inspire though… and who knows, maybe I’ll choose to follow your French recipe from America for my first try! It sounds perfect.

  22. billpeeler says:

    Simply gorgeous and simply amazing.

  23. Carolyn Chan says:

    Woah that sounds and looks delicious! I once made coq au vin and the chicken came out purple! Must try your recipe.

  24. Andrea says:

    This looks wonderful! Really must dust off that cookbook and try this!

  25. spicegirlfla says:

    I could just get a whiff of the aroma going on in your kitchen while this was cooking! Sounds and looks delicious! Now that I can eat mushrooms, this will be another recipe I can fully enjoy!

  26. Sad Man's Tongue: Rockabilly Bar & Bistro - Prague says:

    Pretty damn outstanding!

  27. This recipe is dog-eared in my copy of “Mastering”. Yours turned out great!

  28. BrainRants says:

    Almost looks too good to eat. Almost.

  29. chefconnie says:

    Such a delicious classic. Everyone should make this at least a couple times each year. Rustic comfort food at its best.

  30. ceciliag says:

    I told you i would send you a rooster if you wanted one.. c

  31. I’ve never had coq-au-vin before but this does make me want to try it. Did the chicken turn pink on the inside? I’ve seen photos where it’s almost red like cabbage! JT makes Julia’s BΕ“uff Bourguignon and he puts the onions and mushroom in with about 45 minutes of cooking left…that gives them time to flavour the sauce but not fall apart.

  32. trixfred30 says:

    Gravy – power – women. No one told me that one at college.

  33. Norma Chang says:

    Wow, that sauce is just sooooo rich and gorgeous looking. A stand alone freezer is a must have. You will wonder how you ever did without one.

  34. Charles says:

    You know I never had coq au vin before – which is pretty damn shocking since I live in France and just about every single brasserie in Paris is serving this stuff up, lol πŸ˜€ The sauce is so rich and glossy – I’d be all over those mushrooms too πŸ˜€

  35. TasteFood says:

    This is one of my most favorite ways to prepare chicken. Wonderful recipe.

  36. Karen says:

    A classic and always good.

  37. This sounds so fantastic! Ultimate comfort food.

  38. Would like to pour some cognac on the side too…

  39. Tandy says:

    YUM! We had to buy a new fridge / freezer combo as I ran out of freezer space when we bought half a springbok πŸ™‚

  40. Why do I feel the need to bathe in that gravy??? God that looks good.

  41. This looks and sounds divine!

  42. Purely.. Kay says:

    I go away for a long weekend and I come back to this heavenly dish. I am so hungry right now because of you lol

  43. zestybeandog says:

    Sounds so good! I love this kind of comfort food! πŸ™‚

  44. delicio8 says:

    You’ve brought back memories! When I was in the girl scouts, one of the mom’s was French and this is what she chose to have a bunch of 10 year olds make in a cooking class! She was probably drinking the wine as we ran around giggling.

  45. Cheap wine for the sweetness? I love this classic. It has been too long.

  46. Sissi says:

    I wonder now why I have never made this classic dish I adore… Your coq au vin looks fantastic! (You have had a good recipe source πŸ˜‰ )

  47. I have made this before but it’s been a while. I will try your recipe next time. It looks so good and we eat a lot of chicken here.

  48. ....RaeDi says:

    This is one of my favorites and the photo is incredible I can taste it!

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