Coq au Vin Rouge originates in France. It is said to come from Burgundy, the home of Pinot Noir, but I prefer use a red wine with more body. For this recipe I used a delicious fruit driven Shiraz , but a good Cab, Merlot or a blend will also be suitable. Certainly serve it with a Pinot Noir or a wine similar to the one you used in the preparation.

It is also enjoyed in various other regions of France, where the recipe changes according to the wine used. I have made it with Chenin Blanc and it was sublime. Coq Au Vin Blanc is therefore quite acceptable!

In every supermarket in Europe you buy beautifully cubed bacon. In France they are known as ‘lardons’ and are often the foundation of casseroles.

Small onions and button mushrooms are usually used, but as we were in C19 lock down when I made this I used the smallest shallots that I had (I had to halve one or two) and I used sliced brown mushrooms. They certainly did not interfere with the final product.

I love this hearty rustic dish that both shows up beautifully for a dinner party or satisfies a hungry family. Mark declared it the ‘best chicken dish you have ever cooked!’

It can be served with new potatoes, as it usually does in France, but I have served tagliatelle, mashed potatoes and rice on previous occasions. This time I kept it French and simple with beautiful green beans.