The February issue of Salt Lakemagazine features slow cooking comfort food in the On the Table section. Here's one of our favorites from the section by Meditrina's Amy Britt. The issue is on newsstands now.
Coq means Rooster, and that's a clue to the nature of this dish—a tough old rooster requires long, slow cooking. These days, it's most often made with chicken, browned then braised in red wine (traditionally Burgundy, but not necessarily), mushrooms, salt pork, onions and garlic.
12-15 small cipollini onions 4 chicken thighs and legs, or 1 large chicken, cut into serving pieces Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 cup flour 8 oz. slab bacon, cut into 1/2-inch-thick strips 20-30 medium-sized cremini mushrooms 3/4 cup brandy 11/2 (750-ml) bottles red Burgundy 3 Tbsp. tomato paste 1 medium onion, roughly chopped 2 stalks celery, roughly chopped 2 medium carrots, roughly chopped 8-10 cloves garlic bundle of fresh thyme 2 cups chicken stock 1/4 cup butter
Step 1: Slowly cook the bacon in a big saute pan over medium heat until it is golden brown and crispy. Remove bacon from the pan and set aside in the same pan and fat, saute the onions and mushrooms. Remove from the pan and store in the fridge until ready for use.
Step 2: Season the chicken on all sides. Place it into a big plastic bag with the flour and shake to coat it well. Brown chicken in the same bacon fat (you may need to add some olive oil) until deep golden brown. Transfer the chicken to a large enameled cast-iron pot.
Step 3: Pour off any remaining fat and deglaze the pan with the brandy and 2 cups of the wine. Reduce by half. Pour this into the pot along with the chicken, stock, tomato paste, onion, carrots, celery, garlic and thme. Add remaining wine. The chicken should be almost covered.
Step 4: Place the chicken (and the entire enameled cast iron pot) in the oven at 274 to 325 degrees and cook for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or until the chicken is tender enough to fall off the bone. Make sure the chicken remains at a low simmer- no more.
Step 5: Remove cooked chicken and keep it in a warm oven. Strain the sauce to remove the vegetables, then pour it in the pot and reduce by half. Add the bacon, onions and mushrooms and heat. Off-heat, whisk in the butter a little at a time. Add chicken.