"Chicken in Red Wine Sauce". A perfect Sunday meal, best served with rice and a green vegetable. Also, this recipe marinades overnight, so for the love of Dionysus, START IT THE DAY BEFORE.
- 1 bottle of fruity red wine
- 1 onion, peeled and diced
- 1 carrot, peeled and diced
- Sea salt
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 4 cloves, ground
- 2 bay leaves
- 10 sprigs thyme
- 750g chicken thighs
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1½ cups (150g) diced, thick-cut smoked bacon
- 4 (300g) large mushrooms, cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 12–16 pearl onions, peeled
- ¾ cup water
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1½ tbsps cocoa powder
- In a large, wide bowl, mix the wine, onion, carrot, 1 tsp of salt, the pepper, cloves, bay leaves, and thyme. Add the chicken pieces and press down to submerge. Marinate in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days, turning the pieces once or twice during that time.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and blot it dry with paper towels. Strain the marinade through a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl, saving the vegetables and herbs as well as the wine.
- Heat 2 tbsp of the olive oil and 1 tbsp of the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken pieces in a single layer until dark brown on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. If all the chicken pieces won't fit in a single layer, cook them in batches.
- In the same pot, fry the bacon along with the mushrooms until the bacon is crisp. If browned bits stick to the bottom of the pot, add a splash of the red wine marinade and scrape the flavorful dark bits into the mixture.
- Add the drained vegetables and herbs from the marinade to the pot and cook until the vegetables are tender. stir the flour into the vegetables. Add the chicken back to the pot along with the strained wine, which should come up almost to the top of the chicken pieces. If not, add a bit of water or some more red wine. Cover and let the chicken simmer over medium heat for 1 hour.
- While the chicken is cooking, heat the remaining 1 tbsp of oil and 1 tbsp of butter in a saucepan. When the butter has melted, add the pearl onions, season with salt, and cook until browned, about 12 minutes. Pour the water into the saucepan along with the vinegar and season with more salt. Cover the pan and simmer for about 40 minutes, until the onions are tender. Add them to the chicken along with any cooking liquid.
- In a small bowl, make a slurry with the cocoa powder and about ⅓ cup (80ml) of the warm cooking liquid from the pot. Stir it into the chicken, letting it mix into the sauce. Cook for a few more minutes to heat everything through. You can pluck out the thyme sprigs, if you wish.
- Serve with green vegetables, rice, and yet more red wine.
Preparation time: 30 mins (plus 24 hours)
Cooking time: 1 hour 15 mins