Chicken Stewed In Red Wine, Coq Au Vin
The colder months always make me think of recipes where you can cook with a wine as well as drink it so do your best to use the same wine for both. Recipes such this have been used for centuries to tenderize poultry and red meats.
2 cups full-bodied red wine, such as Zinfandel or Cotes du Rhone
1 Tlbs tomato paste
2 Tlbs extra-virgin olive oil
Two 3 1/2-pound chickens, each cut into 8 pieces
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 Tlbs all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken stock
1 bouquet garni, made with 5 parsley sprigs, 1 large thyme sprig and 1 bay leaf, tied in cheesecloth
1/3 pound slab bacon, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/2 pound small white mushrooms, quartered
Here’s What To Do:
In a large skillet, bring the wine to a boil over high heat. Remove the skillet from the heat, turn your exhaust fan to high and, using a long match, ignite the wine. When the flames subside, whisk in the tomato paste. Woody’s Note: you’re trying to burn off some of the alcohol so if the wine will not light simply reduce it for a minute or two on high boil.
Heat a Tlbs of the olive oil in another large skillet. Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. Add half of the chicken to the skillet and cook over moderately high heat until lightly browned all over, about 12
minutes; transfer to a large enameled cast-iron casserole. Repeat with the remaining Tlbs of olive oil and the rest of the chicken pieces.
Pour off all but 3 Tlbs of the fat in the skillet and whisk in the flour; cook over moderate heat, whisking occasionally, until chestnut colored, about 4 minutes. Add the chicken stock and wine and whisk while bring to a boil. Pour the liquid over the chicken in the casserole. Tuck in the bouquet garni and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat until the chicken is cooked through, about 25 minutes for the breasts and 35 minutes for the drumsticks, thighs and wings. Transfer the chicken to a large platter as it is done; cover loosely with foil and keep warm.
Set half of the casserole over the heat and bring the sauce to a boil. Skim the fat from the side that isn’t boiling and continue to boil until the sauce is reduced to about 2 cups and slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and keep warm.
Meanwhile, in the skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat until crisp, 6 to 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate or cookie sheet. Pour the fat into a glass measuring cup and wipe out the skillet. Add 1 Tlbs of the bacon fat to the skillet along with the mushrooms and cook over moderately high heat, stirring frequently, until softened and golden, about 7 minutes. Scatter the bacon and mushrooms over the chicken and serve right away, passing the sauce separately.
Serve with steamed potatoes or egg noodles
What Goes With What Wines Selections
Renwood Zinfandel 2005 Sierra Foothills (Zinfandel)
This is the wine you should cook with and drink the Rosenblum. The nose is fairly open, showing earth, some black fruit, and a smoky element. The taste is very smooth with black cassis fruit, earth, tar, and tobacco flavors. It’s a soft style of Zin without the over-the-top, jammy fruit and high alcohol you find in many zinfandels, it reminds me of an easy drinking Cotes du Rhone. 85 Points $9.00
Rosenblum Zinfandel – Richard Sauret Vineyards, Paso Robles (Zinfandel)
This is a rich and fruit-packed Zinfandel with a nose of ripe black currant and blackberry with a touch of cherry followed by flavors of raspberry and vanilla with hints of earth and black pepper spice. R90 $25