It all started with a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne. A three year old bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne. The bottle was a gift from my graduate adviser to celebrate the successful defense of my Ph.D. thesis. But I kept it on my shelf because I wanted to save it for a special occasion. Months and years passed. I happened to mention it to a friend about two months ago and he took it off my shelf and put it in my refrigerator. His rationale was that I would drink it faster if it was there. Boy was he wrong. It took me until Saturday to finally crack it open.
On Friday, I was finally inspired to open the bottle. I was still on the happy high from running the 5K on Monday, so I decided to celebrate myself. In addition, I figured I could combine two of my loves, mimosas and chicken. I thought it would be great if I could marinate some chicken in a champagne based marinade and drink mimosas while doing so.
So after work, I headed to the grocery store and picked up the ingredients for coq au champagne (chicken with champagne). On Saturday morning, I turned on some French music and began to modify a recipe I found on this website called “french women don’t get fat”. The link is here. Here is my version of the recipe:
4 chicken thighs (with skin and bone)
Salt and Freshly ground pepper
1/2 bottle of Champagne (I used my three year old bottle of Veuve)
Place the chicken breasts in a big bowl after rinsing off the meat. Stab the meat with a knife, to make sure the marinade will penetrate the whole thigh.
Roughly chop the shallot and then throw it into the bowl with the chicken.
Peel and finely chop a ripe peach and then place it into the bowl with the thighs.
Take about two sprigs of tarragon and pull of the leaves and place them into the bowl with the chicken.
Then salt and put pepper to taste on the chicken.
Pop open the champagne and pour about a half over the chicken or until the chicken is fully covered. Cover bowl with saran wrap and stick into the refrigerator. Marinate overnight.
This is what the chicken looked like when it went into the refrigerator:
The following day, I roasted red potatoes with salt and pepper, steamed some string beans and then broiled the chicken that had been marinating overnight. I was very pleased with how the chicken looked after broiling it for about 15 minutes on each side. I broiled it until the juices ran clear and the skin had began to brown: