Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunday Dinner Classic Coq au Vin From Bon Appetite Magazine 2002

  • I've got my hubby's family coming over for dinner tonight. At first thought the idea was to order in a whole bunch of Chinese food (for no less than 17 people). I nixed the idea for a number of reasons. All week long "Coq au Vin" kept coming to mind. Why not? This would be the perfect winter meal and one that would feed an army (I'm going to also serve French Mashed Potatoes with a salad, some delicious rustic bread for sopping up all the juices and now I've just go to think of something for dessert. I've got puff pastry in the freezer and a pile of tart Granny Smith Apples.....) At the moment I am marinating the chicken, breasts and thighs in red wine and have been since last night. This is an all day venture, but one that is done in steps and over a long period of time so yes, you can get your laundry and dishes done, the table set, and your exercises in all while this delicious dish soaks. I'll post my French Mashed Potatoes and Dessert later on. XO

  • Begin with Marinating Chicken

  • 1 750-ml bottle French Burgundy or California Pinot Noir
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled, sliced
  • 1 large garlic clove, peeled, flattened
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 6-pound roasting chicken, backbone removed, cut into 8 pieces (2 drumsticks, 2 thighs, 2 wings with top quarter of adjoining breast, 2 breasts)

Cooking chicken
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 ounces thick-cut bacon slices, cut crosswise into strips
  • 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 large shallots, chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 4 large fresh thyme sprigs
  • 4 large fresh parsley sprigs
  • 2 small bay leaves
  • 2 cups low-salt chicken broth

  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1 pound assorted fresh wild mushrooms (such as crimini and stemmed shiitake)
  • 20 1-inch-diameter pearl onions, or boiling onions, peeled

  • Chopped fresh parsley


For marinating chicken:
Combine wine, onion, celery, carrot, garlic, and peppercorns in large pot. Bring to boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and simmer 5 minutes. Cool completely; mix in oil. Place chicken pieces in large glass bowl. Pour wine mixture over chicken; stir to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 day and up to 2 days, turning chicken occasionally.

For cooking chicken:
Using tongs, transfer chicken pieces from marinade to paper towels to drain; pat dry. Strain marinade; reserve vegetables and liquid separately.

Heat oil in heavy large pot (wide enough to hold chicken in single layer) over medium-high heat. Add bacon and sauté until crisp and brown. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to small bowl. Add chicken, skin side down, to drippings in pot. Sauté until brown, about 8 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to large bowl. Add vegetables reserved from marinade to pot. Sauté until brown, about 10 minutes. Mix in flour; stir 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in reserved marinade liquid. Bring to boil, whisking frequently. Cook until sauce thickens, whisking occasionally, about 2 minutes. Mix in shallots, garlic, herb sprigs, and bay leaves, then broth. Return chicken to pot, arranging skin side up in single layer. Bring to simmer; reduce heat to medium-low. Cover pot and simmer chicken 30 minutes. Using tongs, turn chicken over. Cover and simmer until tender, about 15 minutes longer.

Meanwhile, melt 3 tablespoons butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms; sauté until tender, about 8 minutes. Transfer mushrooms to plate. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter in same skillet. Add onions and sauté until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer onions to plate alongside mushrooms; reserve skillet.

Using tongs, transfer chicken to plate. Strain sauce from pot into reserved skillet, pressing on solids in strainer to extract all sauce; discard solids. Bring sauce to simmer, scraping up browned bits. Return sauce to pot. Add onions to pot and bring to simmer over medium heat. Cover and cook until onions are almost tender, about 8 minutes. Add mushrooms and bacon. Simmer uncovered until onions are very tender and sauce is slightly reduced, about 12 minutes. Tilt pot and spoon off excess fat from top of sauce. Season sauce with salt and pepper. Return chicken to sauce. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled.) Rewarm over low heat.

Arrange chicken on large rimmed platter. Spoon sauce and vegetables over. Sprinkle with parsley.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Simple with a side of Sunset

I am at this very moment BBQing beef tenderloin, cooking green beans in pesto, baking Herb De Provence French fries and artichoke stuffed mushrooms. Bliss, joy, soul food, what I love. Oh yes, I am also enjoying the most beautiful winter pink and orange sunset and having a glass of cab AND THEN tomorrow am heading downtown with my girlfriends to go for dinner and spend the night. We are very very lucky indeed. XO

One Month Later....

It happens every so once in a while where I just sort of fall of the Internet, blog-as-phere, yadda, yadda, yadda, yadda. It's as though one needs to regroup, refresh, and be ever so reinspired. My life is cooking and I love it! I tried being resourceful and know, New Years Resolutions. I tried buying low budget foods...kind of. But the truth is, everyday is a gourmet invitation for me. How about you? I need to cook, I love it. I found my Sonoma cookbook and I'm re inspired. I can hardly wait. This past month I've made about 4 big fat Greek Salads. I love the red onion and the meaty delicious black olives. I'm also craving soups! Like really craving them. My mom does a great job of making soup and it is true therapy. I am glad to be back and I'm really sorry I'm inconsistent. I need this blog. I love writing for it. Sometimes I just think no one is reading it, so I don't put anything down. My friend wants me to cater one of her dinner parties. Just appies. I am somewhat of a Queen in this department. Now I need to go and clean my kitchen so I can cook some beef tenderloin tonight...or stuffed chicken. I'll let you know. Feel free to drop me a line once in a while and let me know how you are and what you love to eat! XO