Preparation time: 1 hour
Resting time: 4 hours–overnight
4 as a Main Course
Given that Spring seems to have finally sprung, I thought I would share a recipe that invites a bit of time outside working on the grill. As you already know, I love Coq Au Vin, and I can’t wait to try this uniquely fresh twist on the French Classic!
By Rachel Khoo
From The Little Paris Kitchen: Cooking with Rachel Khoo
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- a knob of butter
- 4 small sprigs of thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 2 cups red wine
- 1½ lb boned chicken legs, with skin on*
- 5 oz lardons or cubes of smoked bacon
- 2 large carrots, cut into large chunks
- 8 small new potatoes
- 8 small button onions, peeled and left whole
- 8 small button mushrooms, brushed or peeled
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 tbsp sugar
- salt and pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 8 barbecue skewers—if they’re bamboo, soak them in water for at least an hour before using
Fry the garlic and onion in the butter until golden brown. Add the thyme and bay leaves and cook for another minute before adding the wine. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Leave to cool.
- Cut the chicken into large chunks, place in a large plastic container with the lardons, and add the cold marinade. Cover and marinate in the fridge for at least 4 hours (best overnight).
- Lift the chicken and lardons out of the marinade, then strain through a sieve. Measure 1 ¼ cups marinade, pour it into a pan and set aside. Put the carrots, potatoes and onions into a large pan of cold salted water and bring to a boil. Parboil for 5 minutes, then drain the vegetables into a sieve and hold under cold running water for 2 minutes. Leave to cool.
- On a high heat, reduce the marinade by half before adding the vinegar. Mix the cornstarch to a thin paste with some water, whisk into the sauce, and boil for 5 minutes or until the consistency of heavy cream. Add the sugar and season with salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it down in direct contact with the sauce. Keep the sauce warm until needed.
- Thread the chicken onto the skewers, alternating with the lardons, parboiled vegetables and mushrooms.
Brush with the olive oil before cooking on the barbecue (or indoors on a griddle pan) for around 5 minutes, turning regularly. To check the chicken is cooked, cut a piece open—the juices should run clear, not red or pink. Serve with the sauce (reheated in a pan or microwave if necessary).
* Chicken legs have more flavor and tend to be juicier than breast, or you could use boneless chicken
thighs (skin on) instead. Breast meat will be fine too, as long as you are careful not to overcook it.