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Coq au Vin, Rooster in Wine, was my choice this year to make for Robin, my wife of almost 40 years, and Marnie, my daughter. It’s not for the faint of heart. It takes some ambition and time. But it is well worth it. Delicious!

Just a few suggestions. Prep your ingredients first. I suggest paper bowls for your prep work. Take your time and don’t rush through this. If you are thinking of using an Instant Pot, try, instead, a large cast-iron skillet, at least 2″ deep and a glass lid, you can’t watch the cooking through a solid lid. The dish takes almost a constant vigil.

I used a package of frozen Pearl Onions instead of fresh ones that I would have to peel; heirloom carrots instead of the orange ones; Courvoisier Cognac instead of brandy; dried morel mushrooms reconstituted in the wine used for the dish instead of button mushrooms; pork belly cut into strips instead of bacon and for the beurre manie, I just added to the oil in the pan some flour for thickening. For the chicken, I used boneless, skinless chicken thighs. The original recipe, Julia Child’s, calls for you to cut up a chicken. (Still had to skin and de-bone the thighs.)

And this really needs to be emphasized: Watch your temperatures and don’t burn the sauce. Keep the liquid level just covering the chicken – use chicken stock, not broth, if necessary – and use a medium to low simmer temperature.

In my opinion, the dish has enough vegetables in it. So I did not use asparagus or rice to serve with it. I also served it with a dish of fresh cut fruit. Marnie had a Red Velvet Cake for dessert Try this and let us know what you think. We loved it.

Red Velvet Cake