The classic French dish coq au vin (“chicken in wine”) is made most often with red wine, but white wine works just as beautifully! The spices, complex and rich flavors of Ribera del Duero red Tempranillo wines highlight the pancetta and chicken, while the bright, mineral Rueda Verdejo white wines complement the vegetables.
2 cups red or white wine
4 ounces diced pancetta
3 pounds chicken legs and thighs, with skin
1/2 onion, chopped
4 carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
4 cloves of garlic, smashed
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cups chicken stock
1 bay leaf
4 thyme sprigs
1 small carton mushrooms, roughly chopped
18-24 peeled white pearl onions (optional)
Extra virgin olive oil
- Sauté the pancetta in a skillet over medium low until the fat is rendered and the pieces are crispy. Use a slotted spoon to remove the pancetta pieces, while leaving the fat.
- Increase the heat to medium. Pat the chicken pieces dry and season generously with salt and pepper. Cook the chicken in batches: place the chicken skin side down, in a single layer without crowding, and cook until the skin is crisped and brown. Flip the chicken over and cook the other side until crisped and brown, about 10 minutes in total.
- Remove the chicken and set aside. Add the chopped onions and garlic and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Add the carrots and nestle the chicken pieces in the pot, skin side up.
- Pour the wine and chicken stock, until the chicken pieces are just covered. Bring to a low simmer. Cover and let simmer for 25 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through (when pressed, the juices will run clear). Turn off the heat.
- While the chicken is cooking, sauté the mushrooms in extra virgin olive oil, and prepare the pearl onions in a separate skillet by sautéing in extra virgin olive oil.
- Once the chicken is ready, remove the chicken from the pan. Increase the heat to a hearty boil and cook until the liquid thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Add the chicken, mushrooms and pearl onions, and serve warm. Pair to perfection with either the vibrant Ribera del Duero red wine or crispy and sophisticated Rueda white wine.