Hi friends! We’re here to talk about French cooking, and not the technique-heavy, self-important kind reserved for only the finest of chefs, but the kind of French cooking that you can make at home. The French would call it Bourgeois. Is it crazy that I had never made Coq au Vin until this week? I always just assumed making Coq au Vin was a daylong charade of braising and simmering with expensive ingredients. But you’re about to hear me say something I rarely do–I was wrong. Making Coq au Vin is ridiculously easy. Anyone can do it with no experience or technique. It’s as simple as soup-making.
For those of you who don’t know, Coq au Vin is a traditional French dish made with bacon, sautéed vegetables, lots of wine, and chicken. I read Julia Child’s version as a jumping point and pared it down to a simpler version for the debutant home cook. Most of you have seen Coq au Vin with red wine, but I’m a sucker for chicken in white wine, so I present to you Coq au Vin Blanc! A beautiful simmered dish with bone in chicken thighs, white wine sauce, sage, and tender vegetables. Let’s get started on this recipe!
While we’re in the spirit of French cooking, we will begin with our mise en place (prepping our ingredients). First, chop your veggies, so peel your shallots and cut them into quarters. Peel and mince the garlic. Cut your carrots into two inch pieces. Slice your mushrooms. Chop your sage. Chop your bacon into 1/4 inch wide by 1 inch long slices.
In a large dutch oven over medium high heat, brown your bacon pieces until they’re nice and done. Remove the bacon to a paper towel lined plate. Dry your chicken and place skin side down in the same pan over medium high. Cook for about 8 minutes or until the skin no longer sticks to the bottom and is crisp. Turn over and cook for an additional minute or two then remove the chicken to a plate.
Drain half the fat from your pan and then add the carrots, shallots, sage, and mushrooms, continuing to saute over medium high. Cook for about five minutes or until vegetables start to brown and soften. Add the garlic and sage and cook for an additional minute. Add the tomatoes and bacon and stir. Generously season your chicken with salt and pepper. Nestle the chicken into the vegetables in the pan and pour in the wine and broth. Bring to a boil and then down to a simmer for 30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
Now the most important part! To thicken your sauce, create a roux by melting butter in a small dish. Whisk in the flour with a fork until a nice paste is formed. Add the roux to the sauce and whisk in until the sauce is slightly thickened and cloudy. Serve your chicken over mashed potatoes with the vegetables and sauce. See the full recipe below!
- 6 slices of bacon
- 2 lbs chicken thighs, bone in, skin on
- 2 carrots
- 3 shallots
- ½ lb baby bella mushrooms sliced (or white mushrooms)
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh sage leaves
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tomato, diced
- 2 cups dry white wine
- 1 cup chicken broth
- salt and pepper
- 2 tbsp butter
- 3 tbsp flour
- Slice your bacon into ¼ inch by 1 inch slices. Slice the carrots into 2 inch pieces, peel the shallots and cut into quarters. Mince the garlic, dice the tomato, and chop the sage.
- In a large dutch oven over medium high heat, add the bacon, cooking until bacon is browned and cooked through. Remove bacon from the pan and place on a paper towel lined plate.
- Dry the chicken thighs off and place skin side down in the same pan over medium high heat. Let the chicken thighs brown on the skin side for about 8 minutes. You'll know they're ready when they no longer stick to the pan. Turn over and cook the other side an additional minute. Remove the chicken to a plate. Sprinkle the chicken generously with salt and pepper.
- Drain half the grease from the pan. Add the carrots, shallots and mushrooms to the pan over medium high heat. Saute until the vegetables begin to brown and soften, about five minutes. Add the garlic and sage. Saute one minute more. Add the tomato and bacon and stir. Nestle the chicken into the vegetables and pour over the wine and broth. Bring to a boil and once boiling immediately turn down to a simmer and simmer with the lid off for 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
- In a small bowl add the butter and melt in the microwave for 30 seconds. To the butter add the flour and stir together with a fork to form a paste. This is the roux. Add the butter mixture to the sauce and whisk in. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed.