Recipe: Coq au Vin

This classic French dish, Coq au Vin (pronounced coke-o-vaan), is chicken in red wine. There are literally thousands of recipes in existence. I use this version because it is simple and a crowd pleaser. It is traditionally served with rice or boiled potatoes. Not to worry, the alcohol content is burned off in the cooking process. The recipe Bill Winter shares here is one of his favorites outside of what he learned from cooking classes at Café Med.
“It’s French, it impresses people but it’s easy to do,” Winter says.


  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 to 5 pounds chicken, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 C chopped ham
  • 10 small white onions
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 3 parsley sprigs
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10 whole mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 4 tablespoons cognac or brandy
  • 2 C dry red wine (burgundy or pinot noir are the best)
  • 1 C chicken broth


  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
  2. Melt butter and oil in a large pan.
  3. Brown the chicken pieces on all sides.
  4. Remove and place in a casserole with the drippings.
  5. Add ham, onions, garlic, thyme, parsley, bay leaves, carrots, mushrooms, salt and pepper.
  6. Warm the brandy very slightly in a small saucepan (or heat 20 seconds in microwave). Ignite it with a match (be careful!) and pour it, flaming, over the chicken.
  7. When the flames die, pour on the red wine and stock.
  8. Cover and bake for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
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