Tag Archives: challenge

Coq Au Vin ~ Rare Recipe Challenge

24 Jan
Coq au Vin

Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine)

I recently joined in with a group of fun foodie blogger to participate in a recipe challenge. Lina over at Lin’s Recipes “challenged” us to choose from a list of exotic recipes from around the world we had never made before so that we could all expand our food horizon’s beyond our own country. I read through the list then sheepishly asked if I could use a post from a couple of years ago, because hey, at that time it WAS new to me! She graciously agreed. Thank you Lina!
Rare Recipe Challenge

Head on over to the Rare Recipe Challenge to see what others have made!  The cooks have a week to add their entry, so check back often to see new recipes added throughout the week.

Thank you Lina for creating this fun challenge for the month of January (new year, new recipes!), and a great big thanks to Jhuls for judging the entries. She can be found over at thenotsocreativecook.wordpress.com .

So without further adieu, I bring to you my story of cooking the French dish Coq au Vin!

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After feeding our foreign exchange student a healthy (or unhealthy you might say) dose of American food, I decided to surprise her one night with a traditional French dish. She walked into the kitchen and I motioned her over to the crock pot. I lifted the lid and said, “Tah Da! I made you Coq au Vin!” She had a very puzzled look on her face. I said it again nice and slow, like this: “COKE UHH VEEEEEN.” Blank look. “You know, chicken in wine!”

“Ohhhh, yes, yes. It’s Coh ah Vah,” she replied. There is barely a hint of the k and n sound, but I could not seem to quite get that part right and we had a few giggles at my poor attempts. So after I thoroughly corrupted the French pronunciation, I was hoping I didn’t do the same to the meal. For one, I couldn’t find a true Burgundy wine at the store, so settled on a Pinot Noir. I also knew my daughter wouldn’t eat the mushrooms in it, so added some baby carrots. I did, however, ask Caroline what the French typically served the dish over — potatoes or noodles? She said potatoes, so then I asked her if they were boiled or mashed? Another puzzled look from her then had me pantomiming round circles for boiled and banging my fist on the table to simulate mashing. Ahh, the second one, mashed potatoes!

Browning the Chicken

Browning the Chicken

After her bowl was filled twice and mopped dry with thick slices of French bread, I can say that the meal was a success! This dish is typically made with skin-on chicken thighs and legs, but all I had were large, boneless, skinless chicken breasts. So I lopped them in half, and hoped they wouldn’t come out too dry. I think using a slow cooker helped retain some of the juiciness but I think next time I would cook them only about 3 hours on high instead of 4 hours. But I was very satisfied with the results, and now I know how to properly pronounce this lovely meal even if I can’t actually say it right.

Mushrooms and Pearl Onions

Mushrooms and Pearl Onions

Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine)

4 slices of bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 1/2 to 3 pounds chicken, skin on or skinless
1/4 cup flour, divided
Ground black pepper, to taste
Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste
1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
8 ounces frozen pearl onions, thawed
8 ounces small button mushrooms
2 cups whole baby carrots
1 1/2 cups red wine
1/2 cup homemade or low-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, crushed and roughly chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 bay leaves
Fresh parsley, chopped
Mashed potatoes and French bread, for serving

Vegetable Medley

Vegetable Medley

Cook the bacon in a large skillet, remove from heat, and drain bacon on paper towels. Leave about 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease in the skillet, or if you used lean bacon then add some vegetable oil to make up for it. Season the chicken with pepper and Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste. Dust the chicken pieces with 1/8 cup flour, reserving the rest, and add the chicken to the skillet over medium high heat. Brown the chicken for several minutes on each side. Remove and set aside on a plate.

Chicken Vegetables and Bacon

Chicken, Vegetables, and Bacon

Add the tablespoon of oil to the skillet over medium heat, stir in the rest of the flour, then add in the pearl onions and mushrooms. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Transfer the mixture to the slow cooker, add the baby carrots, then return skillet to heat. Deglaze the pan with the wine and chicken broth, scraping up all the yummy brown bits.

Wine Mixture

Wine Mixture

Whisk in the tomato paste, garlic, thyme, oregano, and bay leaves. Cook and stir for about 5 more minutes and turn off heat. Place the chicken over the vegetables in the crock pot, add the bacon on top, then pour the wine mixture over all. Cover and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours, or low 6 to 8 hours.

Coq au Vin Ready to Cook

Coq au Vin Ready to Cook

Make your mashed potatoes in the last half hour or so of cooking and keep over low heat until ready to serve. Spoon mashed potatoes into bowls, top with the chicken and vegetables plus juices, and sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley. Have lots of thick-sliced French bread for sopping up all the savory juices. Enjoy!

Coq au Vin

Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine)

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

French Challenge #3 ~ Salads

25 Sep

OK my foodie friends, I’ve dredged up my French Challenge #3 post because way back I ended up in a tie and then life got busy and then, well, you know. So while we are still in limbo from closing on a house, I have a perfectly good (but small) kitchen to cook in now. I’m reviving this post and starting the count all over. Help me out! Which one of these recipes should I make for the the French salad??? Please comment on this repost instead of the original and then I can start a new count. Many thanks!

anotherfoodieblogger

French Classics Cookbook French Classics Cookbook

This is not only a post about my French Challenge going on, but to also say it’s been a challenging week at home with some personal family issues, hence no cooking blog this week. No new recipes or much cooking going on in this household besides microwaving and such, but we are slowly getting back on track. I hope to get you some new recipes after we get over this bump in the road of life.

Now, I present to you three dishes from the third chapter of my French cookbook. I had challenged myself to make at least one dish from each chapter, and this chapter is Vegetables and Sides. I found all the vegetable recipes to be quite simple, and one of them only had two ingredients so I wasn’t much challenged by that! So I picked three of the salads that at least expanded…

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French Challenge #2 ~ Mains

23 Mar
French Classics Cookbook

French Classics Cookbook

The second challenge using my new French cookbook covers what it entitles “Mains.” I have narrowed it down to three mains I’d like to present to you for voting. Some were easy eliminations, as I have to be able to feed this to my family for dinner. Calves Liver was right out. My husband won’t touch any form of liver with a 10-foot pole. The Pork Chops with Apples and Calvados looked interesting except an apple brandy would be not only be hard to come by in this area, but I doubt it would be worth it to have on hand for the very few dinner guests we ever have. Quiche Lorraine and Coq au Vin… been there, done that. Duck Confit or Fish Stew? I don’t think so with my daughter’s picky eating. So here is the short list, my friends:

Pot au Feu with Cabbage Rolls

Pot au Feu with Cabbage Rolls

Pot au Feu with Cabbage Rolls

Cassoulet

Cassoulet

Cassoulet

Bouef Bourguignon

Bouef Bourguignon

Bouef Bourguignon

You can comment below to vote or on my Facebook pages. You have through Wednesday, March 26 to give me your fave. Many thanks! I look forward to the results. 🙂

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