Oh Ina, how do we love thee? Let me count the ways. Ina Garten is one of the most beloved chefs of our time and one of the East End’s home grown, backyard celebrity personalities. She’s always enthralling us with her superb recipes, fabulous parties and of course, her divine life with her cherished, Jeffrey. Here’s her version of the French classic, Coq Au Vin…the perfect comfort food for these trying times.
I’d recommend you pop open that bottle of vino you just picked up, as you’ll be busy prepping/cooking for a good hour and a half before you and three others will be sitting down to indulge in this hearty dish.
What You’ll Need
2 tablespoons good olive oil
4 ounces good bacon or pancetta, diced
1 (3 to 4-pound) chicken, cut in 8 ths
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2-pound carrots, cut diagonally in 1-inch pieces
1 yellow onion, sliced
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/4 cup Cognac or good brandy
1/2 bottle (375 ml) good dry red wine such as Burgundy
1 cup good chicken stock, preferably homemade
10 fresh thyme sprigs
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2-pound frozen small whole onions
1/2-pound cremini mushrooms, stems removed and thickly sliced
How To Make It
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.
Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the bacon and cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove the bacon to a plate with a slotted spoon.
Meanwhile, lay the chicken out on paper towels and pat dry. Liberally sprinkle the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. When the bacon is removed, brown the chicken pieces in batches in a single layer for about 5 minutes, turning to brown evenly. Remove the chicken to the plate with the bacon and continue to brown until all the chicken is done. Set aside.
Add the carrots, onions, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper to the pan and cook over medium heat for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the Cognac and put the bacon, chicken, and any juices that collected on the plate into the pot. Add the wine, chicken stock, and thyme and bring to a simmer. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and place in the oven for 30 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is just not pink. Remove from the oven and place on top of the stove.
Mash 1 tablespoon of butter and the flour together and stir into the stew. Add the frozen onions. In a medium sauté pan, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter and cook the mushrooms over medium-low heat for 5 to 10 minutes, until browned. Add to the stew. Bring the stew to a simmer and cook for another 10 minutes. Season to taste. Serve hot.
What to Drink
This recipe suggests cooking with a red Burgundy (pinot noir), which is the ideal red to also drink with this meal. Donna McDonald (the owner of our store) recently cooked and drank our Spencer Boudrot Bourgogne Rouge with this dish and said it was sublime. The dark, earthy, nuanced fruit perfectly complimenting the savory mushrooms and smokey bacon notes, while the bright acidity counters the rich, herbal sauce. The wines from the south of France are another great option. The spicy, fruitiness of the grenache/syrah based blends will make this dish sing.
On the flip side, a white Burgundy (chardonnay) with its creamy, bright citrus notes would be a lovely choice, as would a sauvignon blanc from the Pouilly Fumé region in the France’s Loire Valley. It’s flinty, citrus notes would perfectly pair with the Coq Au Vin’s herbal savoriness.
Our Top Picks:
Darnat Bourgogne Blanc – $16.99
Raimbault Pouilly Fumé – $23.95
Spencer Boudrot Bourgogne Rouge – $24.95
Mas de Gourgonnier – $15.95
Did you make this Ina’s Coq Au Vin? What wine did you pair with it? For more delicious recipes, check out our blog. You can ask us any questions here (on our blog,) on Facebook or in the store. We are excited to hear from you!
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– Lisa Schock, Staff Writer