Coq au Vin from 'Donnie Brasco'

Coq au Vin from 'Donnie Brasco'

© Michael Rathmayer

Coq au Vin from 'Donnie Brasco'

Coq au Vin from 'Donnie Brasco'

© Michael Rathmayer

In the film, Al Pacino, in his role as Lefty Ruggiero, cooks for Johnny Depp who plays the eponymous hero in the movie Donnie Brasco. He gets upset about "the Italians" who can't cook anything but Italian. But, Lefty says, he will now demonstrate how to make real French coq au vin. The resulting dish, however, looks pretty much like an Italian-American gangster version of pollo alla cacciatora, the classic Italian dish.

 

Ingredients (Serves 4)

2
tablespoon
olive oil
3
slice
thick-cut bacon, cut into 1cm cubes
1
chicken, cut into 8 serving pieces
plain flour, for dusting
1
splash
brandy
1
stalk
celery, chopped
1/2
onion, chopped
1
carrot, diced
2
clove
garlic, chopped
200
ml
red wine
1
400g can tomatoes
400
ml
chicken stock
1
pinch
dried thyme
1
pinch
dried rosemary
bunch
parsley for garnish
salt
pepper
  • Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-based pan (use one with a lid) then add the bacon and fry until crisp. Lift out, leaving the fat in the pan.
  • Season the chicken pieces and dust them in the flour. Fry them, in batches, in the bacon fat until golden brown on all sides. Lift out the chicken pieces and set aside.
  • Add the brandy to the pan and scrape up the browned bits from the base of the pan using a woooden spoon.
  • Add the celery, onion and carrot and cook, stirring, until they start to take on a bit of colour.
  • Add the garlic, cook for 1 minute, then add the red wine and let it boil down a little. Add the tomatoes and crush them with the back of a wooden spoon.
  • Return the chicken pieces to the pan, pour in the stock, add the herbs and cook, covered, over low heat for 30 minutes.
  • Season the dish with a "pinch of salt" (really just a pinch), turn the chicken pieces over and cook slowly for another 20 minutes, this time without the lid until the sauce is reduced. 
  • Garnish with parsley leaves, if you like, and serve.

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