- One 4-pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
- 2 bottles dry, light-bodied red wine
- 4 thick strips of bacon, cut crosswise 1/2 inch thick
- 2 carrots, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 celery rib, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup Cognac or brandy
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3 flat-leaf parsley sprigs
- 2 oregano sprigs
- 1 bay leaf
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
- In a large bowl, combine the chicken pieces with the wine, bacon, carrots, garlic, onion, celery, Cognac and 2 tablespoons of the oil. Tie the parsley, oregano and bay leaf into a bundle and add it to the bowl. Cover the chicken and refrigerate it overnight.
- The next day, drain the chicken and vegetables, reserving the marinade. Pat the chicken and bacon dry with paper towels. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and dust with 1 1/2 tablespoons of the flour. In a medium enameled cast-iron casserole, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add half of the chicken pieces and brown them over moderately high heat, about 5 minutes per side; transfer to a plate. Reduce the heat to moderate and repeat the browning with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and chicken.
- Add the reserved vegetables and bacon to the casserole and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 12 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour, then add the reserved marinade and herb bundle and bring to a boil over high heat. Using a long match, ignite the liquid. When the flames subside, return the chicken to the casserole and simmer over low heat until the breasts are just cooked through, about 15 minutes. Transfer the breast pieces to a plate and cover loosely with foil. Continue to simmer the chicken legs until very tender, about 45 minutes longer. Add the legs to the breast pieces.
- Boil the sauce over moderately high heat until reduced by one-third, about 15 minutes. Discard the herb bundle and add the coconut milk. Simmer over moderately high heat until slightly thickened, about 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and return the chicken to the casserole. Cover and simmer over low heat, turning the chicken a few times, until hot, about 5 minutes.
The stew can be refrigerated overnight. Reheat gently.
Boiled potatoes or noodles.
A full-bodied wine from the same general region in France as this coq au vin, one with some smokiness and smooth fruit, will match the bacon and coconut milk here.