Chicken in Red Wine

This is an excellent dish to prepare in advance. Leave the prepared but unbaked dish in the fridge overnight to tenderise in the reduced red wine. Non wine drinkers can use red grape juice to which you have added 3 T of Balsamic Vinegar to cut the sweetness.

YOU WILL NEED

  • 1 x 750 ml bottle medium bodied red wine such as Merlot or Pinotage
  • 2 cups (500 ml) water
  • 2 T (30 ml) Ina Paarman's Chicken Flavour Stock Powder or 2 x 25 g Ina Paarman’s Liquid Chicken Stock
  • 10 sprigs of fresh parsley plus 2 T of chopped parsley for later
  • 2 t (10 ml) Ina Paarman's Reduced Salt Garlic & Herb Seasoning
  • 4 T (60 ml) butter
  • 250 g streaky bacon, cubed
  • 300 g baby onions, peeled
  • 12 - 15 bone in skinless chicken thighs
  • Ina Paarman's Chicken Spice
  • 2 T (30 ml) flour
  • 250 g portobellini mushrooms, thickly sliced
  • 3 T (45 ml) Ina Paarman's Sun-dried Tomato Pesto
Method

Reserve 2 T of the wine to add at the end, pour the rest into a heavy based saucepan together with the water, Stock Powder, parsley and Reduced Salt Garlic & Herb Seasoning. Boil open over a high heat for about 15 – 20 minutes until reduced by half. This will remove the harsh wine taste and evaporate the alcohol. In the meantime add one tablespoon of butter to a large heavy fry pan and sauté the bacon until crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and keep on one side. Pour out about half of the bacon fat for browning the chicken later.

Add the onions to the remaining fat in the pan and shake them over medium heat until nicely browned on the outside but not cooked through. Keep on one side.

Season the chicken lightly with Chicken Spice and dip and shake in the flour. Lightly brown the chicken pieces in two batches until golden. Remove and keep on one side. Lastly sauté the mushrooms in the same pan, in another two tablespoons of the butter. Add Tomato Pesto to the mushrooms.

Place the sautéed onions, mushrooms, chicken and bacon in a heavy casserole or saucepan. Pour the reduced wine stock over. Pre-prepare to this stage and refrigerate.

Remove the dish from the fridge. Adjust the oven rack to one slot below the middle and preheat the oven to 180°C. Bake for 40 – 45 minutes or simmer slowly on top of the stove.

Stir the remaining butter into the dish, add the reserved wine and sprinkle chopped parsley over. Serve with fresh bread or noodles.

Ina's Tip

Dip the handle of a wooden spoon into the red wine mixture before starting to boil – mark the watermark with a pencil – keep testing with the spoon until the wine comes halfway up to the original watermark.

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