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The Coq au Vin Blanc that brings back childhood memories

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Coq au Vin Blanc was a regular winter dish in my house when we were growing up. I have distinct memories of it steaming up the kitchen windows while we did our homework on the kitchen table. My mom would stick the radio on and check on us while this creamy chicken dish bubbled away. It's a recipe that was passed down from my grandmother and now to me with very little changes through the generations- the true sign of a good recipe! In that sense this simple chicken will always mean comfort food for me. It’s a wonderfully warming meal, perfect for cold evenings. Chicken joints such as thighs and legs are often far cheaper to buy than chicken breasts, and meat cooked on the bone always seems to have more flavor.

The Coq au Vin Blanc that brings back childhood memories

  • Servings: 4


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 chicken legs
  • ¼ stick of butter
  • 5 oz bacon or pancetta pieces
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 10–15 mushrooms, sliced into quarters
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 cups white wine
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons cream
  • Good handful of freshly chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper


  1. Place a large cooking pot over a high heat and add the olive oil. Put the chicken legs in the pot and brown on all sides until they are a golden colour. Remove and set aside on a plate.
  2. Reduce the heat slightly and add the butter. When it begins to foam, add the bacon and fry until just crisp. Add the garlic and onion and fry for 3–4 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook for a further 3 minutes.
  3. Return the chicken to the pot along with the thyme and pour in the white wine. Bring to the boil and simmer over a low heat for 45–50 minutes or until the chicken is cooked all the way through. Turn the legs halfway through the cooking time and remove any fat or scum that rises to the top.
  4. When the chicken is cooked, remove from the pot and set aside. Stir the cream into the juices, add a good pinch of sea salt and black pepper and simmer for a further 10 minutes or until the sauce is has become a little thicker.
  5. Place the chicken back in the pot to allow it to warm through and stir through the chopped parsley. Make sure the food is hot when you serve it at the table.

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