A classic French chicken and wine stew.


  • 1 large chicken (cut for sauté, or 8 pieces of chicken on the bone)
  • 150 g smoked streaky bacon
  • 8-10 pearl onions
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 leek
  • 2 celery sticks
  • 2 garlic clove
  • 50 g plain flour
  • 30 ml brandy
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 200 ml chicken stock
  • 1 bunch thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 200 g button mushrooms
  • seasoning
  • freshly chopped flat leaf parsley


  • Begin by preparing your vegetables.
  • Peel the pearl onions and leaving them whole set aside.
  • Peel and cut the carrot into large pieces an inch or so squared. Wash and cut the celery and leek into large chunks.
  • Peel and cut the garlic roughly into 4 pieces and set aside along with all the others.
  • Now pre heat your oven to 160°C.
  • Heat a large pan.
  • Turn the chicken pieces in a bowl along with the flour and plenty of salt and pepper. Add a little oil to the pan and place the chicken in.
  • Continue turning the chicken until it is golden brown all over.
  • Remove the chicken and place it in a large casserole dish.
  • Return the pan to the heat and add a little red wine to wash out all the flavors from the pan ('deglaze').
  • After simmering for a minute or so pour over the chicken in the casserole dish.
  • After cleaning the pan return to the heat and a little oil.
  • Now fry the smoked bacon and add to the casserole.
  • Return the pan to the heat once more but be sure to keep all the bacon fat in it.
  • Now add the vegetables to the pan and continue to turn them over a high heat until they begin to colour.
  • Now add the remaining wine to the pan and bring to the boil.
  • Once it has boiled add all the vegetables and wine to the casserole.
  • Now put the thyme and bay leaves into the casserole along with the chicken stock.
  • Cover the casserole with a tight fitting lid and place in the oven for one- and-a-half hours before removing the lid and continuing to cook for a further 15 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and add the chopped parsley.
  • Serve in the casserole dish along with some steamed or boiled buttered potatoes.

More by Richie Wilson:

Find recipes by keyword:

autumn family dinners french spring summer winter mains entertaining the afternoon show