Category Archives: coq au vin

Coq and Bull

There has been a deplorable lack of output from ironchefnt of late, possibly due to the intervention of bored gods, who knows. Anyway, poor Cockie the ex-cockeral has been hibernating for way too long at -19c in the bottom of the freezer. So before a natural disaster forced a thaw, he was exhumed from his icy grave.

I’ve been wondering what to do with him for a long time, and have been wavering between coq au vin and a Mexican Mole. Though a mole might be more appropriate to our similarly tropical climate I have failed to find any of the dried peppers essential to a good mole. A pity, since a Oaxacan (chocolate based) mole in particular is one of the finest expeditions an ex-bird can make off the table. However, I had three bottles of Tasmanian pinot noir to choose from and two from Bogong estate to put to good use. Coq au vin it was.

In the end I plumped for a recipe from Simon Hopkinson over Robert Carrier, though saying that I adjusted it as usual. Even though I accidentally invited a vegetarian to this blood fest, one coq wasn’t going to be enough so a rump ‘tri-tip’ joint was added to the mix. In fact when I had this thought, I wondered about doing more of a pot au feu. Interestingly this is the cut the Austrians use for Tafelspitz; slow simmered and with dumplings, apple  horseradish sauce- very tropical(?), but sounds divine. Add to this was the revelation of a bag of pigs trotters in the department freezer. Previously these had been used for suturing practice under the auspices of a vegetarian specialist friend and colleague. I am abhorrent of waste and this is the second time I have had to rescue bits of pig that have been used for medical training.

It is obvious now why it has taken me so long to decide what the hell to do with Monsieur Cockie.

One bottle of Bogong Estate Pinot Noir reduced to half volume with

  • 3-4 sprigs of thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 onion stuck with 2 cloves
  • 2 chopped celery sticks
  • 1 chopped carrot
  • 4 cloves garlic, bruised
And then strained.
The following dipped in flour and fried in butter in batches till golden
  • M. Coq jointed to 8 pieces, breast still attached to bone, and skinned. I left out the wings and spine and made a stock with these and a pigs trotter.
  • 1kg tri-tip rump cut into large chunks

Wine and meat combined and simmered exceedingly slowly until tender, adding a little stock for richness. This might have been time to use the slow cooker. Next time. Simon seems to add small onions, button mushroom and bacon/ pancetta lardon for the entire cooking. I thought these were meant to be cooked separately and served as a garnish. Failing to find a source of small onions, I jut cooked the mushrooms with my homemade pancetta.

Kipfler potatoes, parsley and my Romanesque walnut, mustard and lemon condiment.

A fitting exit indeed.

And I have half a turkey for a Oaxacan Mole…….