There are many ways to cook with wine: de-glazing a saute pan for extra flavor, adding a dash to fish, steaming or simmering veggies or mussels, as a marinade, or the full on braise. Coq au vin falls into the last category. Caesar allegedly prepared this dish while battling the Gauls after they had sent him a scrawny chicken. He proved that a bottle of wine and herbs can do wonders for a dish.
Although this dish is said to originate in the Burgundy region, and thus typically prepared using les vins des borgognes with the most common grape being pinot noir, it can be made with pretty much any red wine. The end result is delicious, falling-off-the-bone chicken and a pot full of plate-licking-good sauce. However, I would not recommend drinking any old red wine with this dish. I'd suggest the most obvious, a Burgundy, Côtes du Rhône, or Pinot noir.
- You can either use a whole chicken, de-jointed, or a package of the pieces you love best (we went with drumsticks). In either case, make sure the skin is still on.
- The day before, put the chicken in a large bowl, season with salt and pepper. Add the bay leaves, thyme, and rosemary and pour the ENTIRE bottle of wine over the chicken. Let marinate overnight.
- After marinated overnight, drain the chicken and reserve the marinade.
- In a large skillet or saute pan, fry the bacon until golden brown. Remove from pan with slotted spoon onto plate with paper towel.
- Add 1/2 tbsp. butter and saute onions for approximately 5 minutes on medium. Add another 1/2 tbsp. butter and mushrooms and continue to saute until onions start to slightly brown. Remove onions and mushrooms and set aside.
- Add the rest of the butter and turn up the heat to high. Saute the chicken until golden brown all over. Remove the chicken and set aside.
- Add the flour to the pan and stir the roux until golden. Turn off the heat, but while still hot, pour in the brandy to de-glaze the pan.
- In large dutch/ french oven, place chicken, onions, mushrooms, bacon, tomato paste, and roux brandy mixture. Pour stock and reserved marinade over top.
- Bring contents of pot to boil. Reduce to medium heat and cook for approximately 30-45 minutes more or until chicken is done (reads 170 degrees Fahrenheit).
- If you need to thicken the sauce more, either remove chicken and simmer sauce to reduce for longer, or create another roux (technically beurre manie because you don't cook it) by mixing equal parts butter and flour and whisking into sauce to thicken.
- Garnish with herbs (optional) and serve over mashed potatoes (highly recommended). Enjoy!