The Best Coq Au Vin Recipe ???

What’cha got?

I’m a fan of Alton’s…

Getting the right chicken is the key. As he points out, we don’t really get the old tough birds that traditionally were used for this dish. His solution is to use dark meat which works fine.

I usually use Julia Childs recipe.

I will usually make it ahead ,as I think it needs an overnight to come together.


Julia Child:

Whole Foods (slow cooker): Recipes | Whole Foods Market

I haven’t tried this one, but have loved every Ginette Mathiot recipe I’ve ever tried:

I also highly recommend her book, I Know How to Cook, for the reasons explained in this NYT article on her Boeuf Bourguignon recipe - top-notch results with less work:

Get some good carmalization on the onions>>

I use this recipe:

with some of the suggested modifications and some of my own. You definitely need more wine than is called for in the marinade. I use cognac rather than port. I add garlic. I’ll use a mix of whatever mushrooms look good - shiitake are a surprisingly good albeit untraditional option. Speaking of untraditional I like to pair it with homemade biscuits as opposed to french bread.

Warning: it’s very time consuming though fortunately most of the work can be done on the previous 2 nights (one night for the marinade, one for most of the cooking, one to combine ingredients and slowly simmer back to serving temperature).

I don’t have my recipe handy but for something different try a Coq au Riesling. I first had this on a trip to Alsace and loved it. Great with buttered noodles.

I use Julia’s recipe as well and agree with Paul that is needs the overnight - so much better the next day. I love the braised pearl onions with this.


thanks all. i’ve got some recipes to look over.

Many of Alton’s shows are on Youtube too. Even if you use another recipe the show is worth finding and watching as he explains some of why you do what you do.

PS: Ohhh… and HD version: - YouTube

watching this on the xbox now. thanks!

A favorite in our house. I have no idea if our version is classic or not, but we love it. Chicken thighs, bottle of Riesling, carrots, onions, mushrooms, tarragon & Dijon. We serve it over brown rice, rather than noodles. It’s comfort food at it’s absolute best! [cheers.gif]

Tie chicken thighs with bacon, and brown thoroughly in a cast-iron skillet. The other steps are standard.

(note: this assumes access to farm raised chickens, sorry) In our farm we use our old chickens, who have stopped laying eggs and now have to go to the pot. After a life-long of running around and scratching in the vineyards, they indeed are tough, and 3-4 days of cooking serves them well. After the initial cooking in the kitchen, we put the pot on the woodstove to keep simmering for an extra two to four days. During the slaughtering, we collect the fresh blood in a pan that has some water and lemon juice on the bottom - this way the blood does not coagulates and remains useable for the sauce, which is a major key for the best sauces. At this time of the year, there are plenty of wild mushrooms available. A blend of Boletes and Tricholomas will add an amazing earthiness and complexity to the flavor. Wine in the pot? my favorite is still the traditional Pinot, (although I completely agree with all that was said about riesling) but you cannot match the depth & richness of color of sauces made with red wine and blood. I know this would not be relevant for many of you city folks, but the point is that the effort to get truly fresh foods, from as close to its natural habitat as possible, is well worth it. These intense flavors and textures are not delivered by commercially available, packaged foods. [cheers.gif]


You ever Castrate a chicken? Seems weird to me… but supposed to make Capons… that way?

Doc B

We don’t caponize anybody. We have thought about it, but never gone ahead with it. The thing is, that when you have vineyards, livestock, kids, and an attempt to also have some life of your own, you gradually adapt the minimal intervention approach to nearly all farm practices… no time to get around to everything, no matter how many hours you work how many days a week. So, in matters directly related to chickens, our approach is to view them as (1) vineyard mowing and fertilizing team, (2) egg laying crew, (3) occasional meat production. The meat production is limited to old (non laying) hens and young “surplus” roosters. And the goal is to create as little extra work for ourselves in the process. One thing to note is that when you regularly eat farm raised animals for a while, you no longer expect your meat to melt in your mouth as you used to with supermarket “meat”. Chewing is fun, as long as the meat keeps its flavor, and is even good for you!

Tried this recipe a few weekends ago. Followed ingredients exactly. Let the sauce cook down for at least an hour at the end and still not quite as thick as I wanted so cheated and added some corn starch and water mixture to add some body to the sauce. It was just a tad too salty so next time may reduce some of the salt pork. A little goes a long way with that ingredient.

If any of you have a Chinese supermarket near you, look in the freezer or meat aisle, or ask the butcher if they have “stewing hens”. Those are the older birds that have the extra connective tissue that a real coq would have. Hard to eat those things outside of a braise like coq au vin or a soup/broth.