Coq au Riesling

  • Preparation Time20 mins
  • Cooking Time65 mins
  • Serves6
  • DifficultyEasy
2 tbsp garlic oil
225g bacon lardons
1 leek, finely sliced
12 skinless chicken thighs or 1.3kg pounds thigh fillets
3 bay leaves
280g oyster mushrooms torn into strips
1 bottle Riesling
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
5 to 10g freshly chopped dill leaves
Buttered noodles, optional
I have always loved the Alsatian version of coq au vin and this is it in a stunningly streamlined version. I replace the onion with leek, buy lardons ready cubed and buy chicken thighs. The brown meat is always best in a stew. In fact, nearly always best full stop. I don't bother to sear the meat, which really means you need skinless portions; unbrowned chicken skin is not pretty. If you're buying thigh fillets then it is probably more helpful to think in terms of boned weight, rather than number of portions: go for about 1.25kg.

1) Heat the oil in a casserole or large wide pan and fry the lardons until crisp.

2) Add the sliced leeks and soften them with the lardons for a minute or so.

3) Tip in the chicken thighs, bay leaves, torn mushrooms and wine.

4) Season with salt and pepper and bring to the boil, cover the pan and simmer gently for an hour.

5) Like all stews this tastes its mellowest best if you let it get cold and then reheat the next day. But it's no hardship to eat straight off. Whichever, serve sprinkled with dill and with some buttered noodles, if using.

Recipe from Nigella Express by Nigella Lawson (published by Chatto & Windus) Visit Nigella's site.

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