Chef's Recipes

Coq au vin

La Brasserie chef David Bransgrove shares how he makes the French bistro classic.

By David Bransgrove
  • Serves 6
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 55 mins cooking
Coq au vin
Coq au vin

Ingredients

  • 2 chickens (1.1kg each), jointed
  • 60 gm butter, coarsely chopped
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, coarsely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 250 gm bacon, cut into lardons
  • 250 gm Swiss brown mushrooms, quartered
  • 750 ml red wine
  • 250 ml (1 cup) chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp dried porcini
  • 1 bunch thyme
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 85 ml olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 400 gm pearl onions (about 10; see note)
  • 360 gm Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 6 sage leaves, to serve
Porcini spätzele
  • 200 gm plain flour, sieved
  • 1 tbsp porcini powder (see note)
  • 50 ml pouring cream
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

Method

  • 1
    Preheat oven to 200C. Remove thigh bones from chicken with a sharp knife (discard bones). Rinse chicken, pat dry with absorbent paper and set aside.
  • 2
    Heat a large non-stick frying pan over high heat. Add 20gm butter, cook chicken in batches skin-side down, turning once, until golden (5-7 minutes). Transfer to casserole, set aside. Add vegetables, garlic, 100gm bacon and 50gm Swiss browns to pan and stir frequently until golden (5-7 minutes), transfer to casserole. Deglaze pan with wine, add to casserole with stock, porcini and herbs. Roast, covered, until breasts are just cooked through (15-20 minutes). Remove breasts from casserole, set aside and keep warm. Return casserole to oven, cook until legs are cooked through (10-12 minutes). Remove legs from casserole and keep warm. Strain liquid into a saucepan (discard solids) and cook over medium-high heat until reduced to sauce consistency (20-30 minutes), return chicken to sauce to warm through.
  • 3
    Meanwhile, heat 30ml oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, add onion and stir frequently until golden (5-7 minutes). Cover with foil, stir occasionally over low heat until tender (15-20 minutes). Set aside, keep warm.
  • 4
    For porcini spätzele, combine flour and porcini powder in a large bowl, form a well in the centre. Combine cream, egg and 75ml water and add to well, then slowly whisk in flour from sides of well until a thick batter forms. Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Push small batches of batter through a colander with a spatula into boiling water, cook until spätzele rise to the surface (1-2 minutes). Transfer to a baking-paper-lined tray, lightly drizzle with oil to prevent sticking. Repeat with remaining batter.
  • 5
    Heat remaining oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add remaining bacon and stir occasionally until golden (5-7 minutes), add remaining mushrooms and cook until starting to colour (2-3 minutes), add spätzele and stir until golden and slightly puffed (3-4 minutes), set aside and keep warm.
  • 6
    Blanch Brussels sprouts until bright green (2-3 minutes), refresh, drain, set aside. Heat remaining butter in a frying pan over medium-high heat, add Brussels sprouts, stir occasionally until golden (4-6 minutes), add to spätzele mixture with reserved pearl onions, season to taste, keep warm.
  • 7
    Divide spätzele and chicken between plates, spoon over sauce, top with sage and serve.

Notes

If pearl onions are unavailable, use golden shallots. Porcini powder is available from select delicatessens; alternatively, grind dried porcini to make your own.

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  • Author: David Bransgrove