Where have all the food posts gone to ?? *guilty*
Here’s a super long one. ….. really really long to make up for all the delicious food photos
Remember that time I was so ambitious to prepare a Christmas dinner for my family. Hehe.. This was the main dish. Actually I just wanted to give my try on this dish, but it would seem really awkward to have a duck, and nothing else at the sides. What the heck, cut the story short, I bought a duck, boned it (or is it deboned it), stuffed with minced meat, closed, tied, fried, wrapped, baked it.
So this dish is from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking book. I had to make copies of the recipes because I wouldn’t risk tainting the book with duck juice *errr yeah* But really, I had to be like “what the heck” all the time because it’s my first time boning a bird, duck or chicken (or any animal). If you have seen the movie Julie & Julia, it’s also one of the dish that Julie dreaded (besides killing the lobster) Whether I would make this dish again, probably not, not because of the tedious hardwork that goes into the preparation of this dish, but I thought it didn’t taste as tasty as I wish it would. Maybe I had used pork, chicken and duck instead of minced beef ? Or was it because I left out the truffle? Nevertheless, the crust was tasty (made with pork fat) and I would love to have that crust again (maybe encasing some other birds)
So here we go! (lots of pictures, if you’re wondering how I took the pictures, I had a tripod ON my kitchen counter and had the camera there).
Hang on there little tomato, I think I’ve posted a coq au vin recipe some time ago… anyway, a stew in a cold and rainy day is good..
I’ve wanna cook a bouillabaisse actually, but… I didn’t know why I ended up going for coq au vin. LOL. No wait, I actually wanted to make JC’s Boeuf bourguignon but we don’t eat beef at home, that kinda defeats its entire purpose.. ANYWAY, save the bouillabaisse for another day when I get my hands on fresh seafood. Let’s get on with chicken..
Coq au vin
- 4 strips bacon
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 white onion, diced (JC calls for pearl onions)
- 1 pack baby carrots (not in the original recipe)
- 1 whole chicken, cut to pieces
- ½ tsp salt
- ⅛ tsp pepper
- 3 cups red wine
- 1 to 2 cups brown chicken stock.
- ½ tbsp tomato paste
- 2 cloves mashed garlic
- ¼ tsp thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 tbsp flour
- 2 tbsp softened butter
- 250g field mushroom
- Sprigs of fresh parsley
- Cut the bacon into “lardons” (rectangles ¼ in across and 1 in long).
- In a large dutch oven, saute the bacon in hot butter slowly until lightly browned. Then remove to a side dish.
- Dry chicken very well and season with salt and pepper. Brown in the bacon fat on both sides. Then add bacon back to chicken, cover and cook slowly for 10 minute turning the chicken once.
- Remove the chicken, you may need the 2tbsp of butter here, add in onions and sweat it. Add in carrots.
- Add in flour and make a roux.
- Pour wine and just enough stock to cover chicken. Stir in tomato paste, garlic and herbs. Bring to a simmer for about 30 minutes until chicken is tender and cooked through.
- For the mushrooms, in a separate skillet saute mushrooms in oil and butter until lightly browned, or add in as it is like how I did..
- As the chicken is simmering, skim the fat off the top. Raise the heat and boil rapidly, reducing the liquid to about 2-3 cups. Discard bay leaf.
- Before serving, bring to a slow simmer so everything is heated through.
* the first top 2 photos are misplaced. it should be bacon first, then fry the chicken in bacon fat..
Having look back at the photos.. the dijon Le Creuset pot definitely shines bright in the kitchen!!
Check out their Facebook page for latest promo and cooking demo classes!
Since the last giveaway in December, I’ve had people asking me what’s the fuss about Le Creuset ? Even my cousin and aunty!
Well I haven’t been cooking a million things in it to give it justification, but I’ve made some stuffs, like pot roast, stew etc. In fact, lately I haven’t cooked much. But LC is a gem in the kitchen. Before you go around saying, aiyah it’s so expensive… Well it is! It’s only so expensive in Malaysia because of tax.
Le Creuset (pronounced as Lay Crew-Say) is a French cookware manufacturer best known for its colorful enameled cast iron French ovens, also known as “casseroles”, or “dutch ovens”. The company also makes many other types of premium cookware, from sauce pans to tagines. Having being around for 85 years, these pots are forged by hand in the original foundry in Northern France.
The enameled cast iron absorbs and spreads heat evenly, creating a balanced (read: forgiving) cooking environment. And its sand-colored interior is easy on the eyes — in more ways than one — making it easier to monitor food as it cooks, preventing burning or sticking. Cooking for friends and family is a pleasure, and thanks to the smooth, glass-like surface of our enameled cast iron that prevents foods from sticking, so is cleaning up.*
*All it takes is warm soapy water.
When Le Creuset first started, there was hardly such a thing as color in the kitchen. I can imagine! Today they are probably the oldest continuous manufacturer of enameled cast iron cookware, and to own Le Creuset is to be in the company of passionate cooking enthusiasts around the globe. Le Creuset’s products are used the world over, from chefs in the finest restaurant kitchens to in-the-know home cooks, and is lovingly passed down for future generations to discover and enjoy. *hello future children, please use with care*
This recipe of ‘roast’ chicken, is more of a pot roast, where the chook is buried in the pot, then covered with a lid and roast. Because one of Le Creuset’s pros is it retains the flavour and smell in the pot itself, the aroma is intoxicatingly good when you lift the lid up. And, because there’s a lid, it retains the water content, thus making the chicken more tender and soft. On the last 10 minutes, I lifted the lid away and pumped up the temperature to give it come colour.
And to make it more yummeh, I stuffed herbs (tarragon, thyme & rosemary) butter between the skin and flesh. Giving it an extra moist-ness (if that word even exist) but really, who can deny butter.
Herbs Butter Pot Roast Chicken
- 1.5kg free range whole chicken
- 60g butter
- bunch of mixed herbs (mainly tarragon, bits of rosemary and thyme)
- pinch of salt
- 2 carrots
- 3 sticks celery
- 1 big red onion
- 2 whole garlic
- 1 whole lemon
- 1 clove
- 1 bayleaf
- 2 sprigs thyme
- ¼ cup chicken broth
- extra butter
- salt & pepper to season
- olive oil
- Wash and pat dry chicken. Preheat oven to 200 C
- Finely chop herbs and mix with butter with a spoon. Add a pinch of salt.
- Lightly, using fingers, rub in the herb butter between the skin and flesh of the chicken, massaging it as well.
- Use a fork and poke the lemon all over. Stuff it inside the cavity of the chicken.
- Once done, truss the chicken legs and wings (optional).
- Roughly chop carrots, celery and onion and lay it at the bottom of the french oven.
- Slice the whole garlic horizontally and mix in with the carrots and celery. Using the end of a clove, poke thru a bayleaf and onto a carrot piece Lightly bruise thyme and place it in the pot.
- (optional) Heat a pan with olive oil. Colour the skin of the chicken by slightly pan frying it. If you skip this step, you probably need to let it cook longer (for the colour) once you remove the lid in the oven.
- Place the chicken into the pot and add in chicken broth. (I was told not to dry cook in a LC pot? So I guess adding some broth also makes the chicken more moist)
- Cover the lid and let it roast in the oven for 15 mins. Then reduce the heat to 180 C and roast another 50 mins. Remove the lid, crank the temperature up to 220 C, roast for another 10 minutes.
So verdict? I actually did 2 versions of this, one with a french oven with a lid covered, and another was on a LC cast iron pan. Using a french oven to roast, the chicken tastes more tender as there were no moisture escaped till the very last 10 minutes of cooking. Thus making it a little like steamed chicken ? I do also like one on a cast iron because it chars better and a roast chicken is not a roast chicken if it’s not … charred
(uhm… my dogs got the benefit of eating the carrots and celery from this dish, they gave paws up!)