Brrrr. . . we sleep with a fan in our bedroom window, and when I woke up this morning, I couldn’t get out of bed. Fall is definitely here! And no better time for hot, slowly cooked, hearty meals. The other night I planned on making a traditional coq au vin, but because it was about 90 degrees out (very different from today!) I morphed the recipe into a wine, veggies, and chicken dish that was quite different than coq au vin but delicious nonetheless and something I would definitely make again.
Start with 2 lean chicken breasts. I think this would make a great veggie side dish without the meat and chicken stock by the way, if you don’t eat meat or like me, don’t often feel like eating it.
I also roughly chopped about 5 large organic carrots, half of a large white onion, 2 red potatoes, and a white potato. Potatoes are definitely a fall/winter staple in my house! All of these things, plus some giant cloves of garlic go thrown into a pot with olive oil.
Once I heard some sizzling, I stirred around so that everything had a chance to get a little brown from the bottom of the pot. The I poured in about a cup and a half of chicken stock and started this simmering. About 15 minutes later, I poured in a cup of Nashoba Valley Vidal Blanc, one of the last whites we have left, and likely one of the last we will buy until spring! I also added in a tiny bit of roughly chopped fennel and fresh ground black pepper.
I cooked for another 10-15 minutes, stirring and checking the softness of the potatoes and carrots. I definitely didn’t want anything falling apart. At this stage I added a bit more wine and fennel, then the chicken, which I had seasoned liberally with black pepper. I don’t use salt ever when using stock, which I find salty enough to begin with.
I simmered this for another 10 minutes or so, then brought up to a boil near the end to make sure the chicken and everything was thoroughly cooked. While not at all a traditional dish, this was delicious and even better the next day. I loved the layer and complexity of the flavors from adding herbs and wine at different times during the cooking process. The fennel and white wine gave it an almost bouillabaisse like flavor, and it ended up being perfect for a warm early fall evening, paired with a small glass of the leftover Vidal Blanc.