Coq au vin is a classic French recipe that is typically made with rooster. However, rooster isn’t as common to find these days for cooking, so I went with bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs to get the most flavor out of the dish.
The base of this dish besides the chicken is wine—lots of red wine, bacon, mushrooms and pearl onions. Carrots are most often used, and some recipes also use celery. I omitted the celery in this version of the recipe and I used two types of mushrooms instead. One is a dehydrated mushroom blend from Cost Plus World Market that I rehydrated and the other is fresh button mushrooms (cremini mushrooms can also be used). The recipe does have many steps but they are all so worth it to make this dish as deeply flavored and comforting as the final result ends up to be.
Marinating the chicken in the wine is key while you prepare and cook the items up until it is time for the chicken to be cooked. Some recipes call for marinating the chicken overnight, but I found that marinating overnight causes the chicken to turn purple from the red wine and was a little off-putting. Unless you love purple chicken, marinating the chicken in the red wine for 30 minutes or so while you prepare and cook the other items is sufficient.
Like many other braises, this dish gets better in the days after it is initially cooked. You can take the finished dish and refrigerate overnight then reheat and skim off the fat the next day before serving, adding more red wine if desired. Cook the noodles only before you are to serve the dish; there’s no need to eat day-old noodles!
This dish will definitely help you channel your inner Julia Child. It’s a much more complex sounding recipe to make than it actually is. Take a day to relax and cook, sip on some wine, don an apron and pretend you are in France for a day making this incredibly delicious and filling recipe. Bon appétit!