Coq au Vin

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3–4 ounces bacon, cut into small strips
Cooking oil
2.5-3 lb frying chicken
½ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
¼ cup cognac
3 cups red wine preferably Burgundy
1–2 cups beef stock
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cloves garlic
¼ teaspoon thyme
1 bay leaf
12–24 pearl onions
½ pound mushrooms
3 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons softened butter


In a heavy cast iron Dutch oven, sauté bacon slowly in 2 tablespoons oil. Remove when browned. Dry chicken, then brown in hot fat remaining in pan. Season with salt and pepper. Return bacon to pan, cover and cook slowly for 10 minutes, turning chicken once. Uncover, pour in cognac and ignite. Shake pan back and forth until flames subside.

Pour in wine and add enough stock to cover. Stir in tomato paste, garlic, thyme and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer, then cover and cook slowly for about 30 minutes.

While chicken is cooking, drop small pearl onions into boiling water and cook for 1 minute. Drain and peel. Sauté onions in 1–2 tablespoons oil until lightly browned. Add water to pan, salt and simmer onions for 30 minutes.

Slice mushrooms and sauté in 1 tablespoon butter until lightly browned.

When chicken is done, remove from pot. Increase heat to medium high and reduce sauce to about 2–2.25 cups liquid. Remove from heat. Combine 3 tablespoons flour and 2 tablespoons butter in small bowl. Beat into cooking liquid, beurre manie, to thicken sauce. Add mushrooms and onions. Pour sauce over chicken and serve.

Beurre Manie

3 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons softened butter

Blend the butter and flour together into a smooth paste. Beat the paste into the hot liquid with a whisk. Bring to a simmer and watch the sauce thicken. Magic!


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