Julia Child’s Coq Au Vin (Paleo, Gluten Free)

Julia Child’s Coq Au Vin (Paleo, Gluten Free)

I am under no illusion that when Michael Jr arrives in April, my days of being able to spend hours in the kitchen making elaborate dishes may be scarce. It would be a shame because there is nothing I enjoy more than putting my heart and soul into preparing fresh, beautiful dishes and then stuffing my face with it 🙂

Cooking for me is therapeutic. My day had started with a bit of unpleasantness (nothing major, some drama llama) and by the end of my 3 hour cooking session, everything was in perspective. I have a loving home, a husband who adores me, children who light up my life and a kitchen filled with the aroma of beautiful food. All is right with the world.

You’ll be pleased to note that I did not end up burning my kitchen down when I flambĂ©ed my chicken this afternoon. In fact, it was a bit anti-climatic because I failed to capture the tiny blue flames in my photos. So you’ll just have to trust me that I actually did perform the flambe as directed by Julia Child.

Cognac and long matches

First, we saute some blanched bacon lardons in our dutch oven.

mmm bacon

Remove the bacon and brown the pieces of chicken. Then add back the bacon and flambe with some cognac.

chicken pieces

Add wine, chicken stock, herbs and spices and bring to a simmer before covering for 25-30 minutes until chicken is cooked. While this is cooking, you can prepare the brown-braised onions and sautéed mushrooms.

Simmering in sauce

Take chicken pieces out and set aside while you work on the sauce.

take chicken pieces out

The sauce has to be reduced to about 2 1/4 cups.

Reducing cooking sauce

Prepare a beurre manie with the tapioca flour and butter.

buerre manie

Whisk this into the sauce and then bring to a simmer until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

whisk buerre manie into sauce

Return chicken to the pot and also add the onions and mushrooms. Simmer and baste for a few minutes.

Coq Au Vin

You may garnish with parsley or green onions and serve. This dish will keep warm on the stove top for a while too if you need to wait.

Coq Au Vin

You’ll need:

  • a 3-4 oz piece of chunk bacon
  • 2 TBSP butter or olive oil
  • A 2 1/2 to 3 lb young fryer chicken, cut into pieces
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup cognac
  • A long lighted match
  • 3 cups of a young, full bodied red wine like burgundy
  • 1-2 cups of chicken stock
  • 1/2 TBSP tomato paste
  • 2 cloves of garlic mashed
  • 1/4 tsp thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • brown-braised onions
  • sautĂ©ed mushrooms
  • 2 TBSP butter and 3 TBSP tapioca flour for beurre maine
  • fresh parsley or green onions for garnishing


  1. Remove rind from bacon and cut into lardons. Blanch in hot water for 10 minutes and wash in cold water and pat dry
  2. In a dutch oven, saute the bacon slowly in hot butter until lightly browned. Set aside
  3. Brown chicken pieces in the bacon grease
  4. Season chicken pieces with salt and pepper and return bacon to the dutch oven
  5. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, turning once
  6. Uncover, pour in cognac and set aflame with a long match, taking care to avert your face. The flames should subside in a few seconds, you can shake the dutch oven while this is happening
  7. Pour in wine. Add enough chicken stock to cover the chicken. Add tomato paste, garlic, herbs and bring to a simmer.
  8. Cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until chicken is done. Pierce the flesh and it should run clear.
  9. While the chicken is cooking, prepare the onions and mushrooms
  10. Set chicken pieces to a side dish when done and reduce sauce to 2 1/4 cups. You can skim the fat but we like fat around here. Correct seasoning and remove from heat
  11. Blend butter and tapioca flour together to form a paste (beurre maine) and beat this into the hot liquid with a wire whisk. Return to heat and simmer until sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon
  12. Return chicken to the dutch oven and add the onions and mushrooms. Baste with sauce. If not serving immediately, film the top of the sauce with stock or dot with butter and set aside. It can be kept for a while.
  13. Just before serving, return to stovetop and bring to a simmer while basting. Cover and simmer for 4-5 minutes until chicken is hot
  14. Decorate with parsley or green onions and serve

Bon Apetit!

coq au vin


  1. Thank you! I have big plans for this meal!!