This Coq au Vin is made with chicken thighs, which have a wonderful succulent flavour, but you could use chicken breasts if you prefer. I love it with the garlic mashed potatoes, but buttered noodles would also work well and take much less time to prepare.


  • 25g (1oz) plain flour
  • 450g (1lb) skinless, boneless chicken thighs, well trimmed and quartered
  • 2 tblsp olive oil
  • Knob of butter
  • 175g (6oz) button onions or small shallots, halved
  • 175g (6oz) button mushrooms, trimmed
  • 100g (4oz) pancetta (streaky bacon lardons)
  • 450ml (¾ pint) chicken stock (from a cube is fine)
  • 150ml (¼ pint) red wine
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme, plus extra leaves to garnish
  • 2 tblsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Garlic mashed potatoes
  • Steamed French beans, to serve


  1. Season the flour and toss the chicken thigh pieces in it until lightly coated, shaking off any excess. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over a medium-high heat and tip in the dusted chicken. Sauté for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until just beginning to brown.
  2. Add the butter and toss until evenly coated, then add the onions or shallots, mushrooms and pancetta and cook for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Pour the stock into the pan with the wine and Worcestershire sauce, then add the thyme. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for about 15 minutes, until the chicken and vegetables are cooked through and the sauce is slightly reduced and thickened. Stir in the parsley and season to taste.
  4. Place the garlic mashed potatoes on warmed plates and spoon over the Coq au Vin. Garnish with some thyme leaves and serve with the steamed French beans.