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December 07, 2011

Coq Au Vin | Hearty Chicken Stew Recipe | Warm Winter Dinner Ideas

It is that time of year - snow is in the forecast, Christmas is around the corner and we're all in the mood for cozy dinners.  This stew is a warm-you-to-the-bones, stick-to-your-ribs winter dinner that will satisfy your every craving.  For more Cozy Dinner Ideas, click here.

Coq Au Vin has been on my 'list' for about 3 years now.  I'm not sure why I've been putting it off - maybe I was intimidated by the sophisticated name, or maybe I though it would be too complicated?  Or maybe I just thought that it was too much like Beef Bourguignon, so I'd just make that instead.  I decided to give it a whirl this week - and am I so glad I did.

I made a lighter, healthier version of the classic.  Instead of using a whole chicken cut into pieces with the skin on, I used chicken breasts.  Instead of using bacon, I used pancetta that has a smokier flavor and less fat.  Mike thought that it would have been great served with mashed potatoes, too... of course, typical meat and potatoes guy!
Coq Au Vin
hearty & healthy chicken stew

1/3 pound of pancetta, diced
2 pounds chicken breasts
Sea Salt & Black Pepper
5 carrots, large dice
1/2 yellow onion
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups of mushrooms, sliced
2 cups of red wine
2 - 14 oz. cans of chicken broth
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme 
2 tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons of flour

1 baquette
olive oil
clove of garlic

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.

In a large dutch oven (or heavy pan with lid), cook diced pancetta on medium until the fat has rendered off.  Remove pancetta with a slotted spoon and set aside, leaving the fat in the pan.  Cut the chicken into 2-3 inch pieces, salt and pepper liberally.  On high heat, sear the chicken in the pancetta fat for 2-3 minutes on each side until brown.  Remove chicken and set aside.

Add carrots and onions to the pan and cook for 3-5 minutes until they begin to soften.  You may need to add some olive oil to the pan at this point.  Add mushrooms.  Cook for a couple of minutes to brown.  Add garlic.  Cook for just 1 minute.  Add wine, broth and thyme.  Add chicken and pancetta back into the pan.  Simmer for 5 minutes, then put in the 250 degree oven for 30-40 minutes until chicken is cooked thru.  Return pan to the stove top.

In a small bowl, microwave the butter for 15 seconds.  Add flour and mix together.  Add flour butter mixture to the pan with the chicken, vegetables and wine broth .  Heat on medium high until the wine and broth mix begins to bubble and thicken.

Slice baquette into thick slices.  Drizzle with olive oil.  Place them under a hot broiler for 1-2 minutes until browned.  Remove from oven and rub the garlic clove over the top of each piece.

Serve the stew with a piece of the garlic bread in a shallow soup bowl. 

Brown the pancetta.

Sear the chicken on each side until it has a brown crust. 

Cook the vegetables in the same fat.

Add mushrooms. 

Be sure to use fresh thyme - it really does make a difference!

This is a great soup for a cold winter night in front of the fireplace... perfect.  For more Cozy Dinner Ideas, click here.


  1. Looks delicious. Would love for you to share this with us over at

  2. What a yummy preparation! Loved this recipe and the way you write. I am fond of food and I think there is a lot to learn from you! Your photography is praiseworthy too. Do you have a facebook page? Please feel free to follow my blog as well as my FB page (Cosmopolitan Currymania)and I'll follow your wonderful blog as well!!

  3. I've been meaning to try coq au vin but haven't gotten around to it. Your lovely step by step photos will be the impetus for me doing it really soon. Thanks for sharing.


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