Thursday, May 29th, 2014
Funny Speaker and Celebrity Chef Celebrates National Coq au Vin Day
Today, May 29, is National Coq au Vin Day. This is not to be confused with Coq au Vin Day which is March 22nd. This classic French dish is so good they gave it 2 days on the food calendar. There are a lot of different elements to this recipe but the good thing is you can do most of it separately and in advance. The dish, like a fine wine gets better with age, for a couple of days at least.
Coq au Vin literally means “Rooster with Wine,” but has become chicken with wine as it’s hard to find rooster in your local market and your neighbors will get pissed if they catch you poaching some of their roosters. The chicken and wine are braised in the oven or simmered slowly on the range.
When I was living in the NYC it was easy to get fresh chicken from a poultry store including rooster as well as beautiful pieces of pork fat. Although you can find pork fat here in the mountains it’s usually Salt Pork, and when they say salt in the South they’re not kidding. You’d have to scrub the salt off and then soak it. It’s just a lot easier to use the thickest bacon you can find. Besides I have learned to appreciate, no love, the Smokey goodness of bacon.
I like to use chicken thighs as they won’t dry out and are uniform in size making for good portion control. Serve the Coq au Vin over egg noodles One way to go gluten free is to use corn polenta.
For years I’ve used Julia Child’s recipe from Mastering the Art of French Cooking. The recipe printed here is a hybrid. Part Julia but with traditional mirepoix and some of my own ideas thrown in. Click HERE to see the full recipe with notes from an earlier post.