I am really disappointed that I missed the train for Germany for our virtual culinary tour around the world, as I was planning to participate but I lost track of the time, so my Pigs in a blanket, will have to wait before I lose another train and I am now heading right away to Paris.
Paris is one of the few cities I have been dreaming to visit since I was at School (decades ago) as I graduated a French Convent School, in Limassol, Cyprus, L’ Ecole de St. Marie, where the main language we learned was French and all the main lessons, history, maths, literature, geography, science etc. were taught in French. However, although at the time I finished school, I had a degree with which I could teach French in Greece, I never used it and have never practiced French although I do understand French and can still communicate quite well.
By the time we graduated we knew everything one has to know about Paris, I could easily find my way around visiting the Eiffel Tower, or Montmartre, Notre Dame de Paris, La Place de la Concorde, Sacre Coeure, Le Louvre, Les Champs Elysees, or just walking across the Seine River. I remember a funny story one of the nuns would tell us that when she visited Paris, she was very tired and wanted to rest and sat outside Le Moulin Rouge, which at the time, morals were very strict and it was considered by them as the House of Devil or something similar and it had a very bad reputation for a nun to even pass from there.
When we last went to France, I bought a little cookbook in French, and since then I’ve cooked a few recipes from there. I made tartiflette, pork chops and caramelized onions and I also made Coq Au Vin, as I still had some rooster our friends sent us from Crete.
I did some changes, however, to the recipe and I made a healthier and lighter version. I skipped the lardons (pancetta or bacon) and instead of using butter, I only used olive oil. I also skipped the mushrooms as my daughter doesn’t eat them.
I wish I had money to visit Paris, but traveling around the world costs a lot of money so we are taking this virtual trip and pretend we are there. Would you like to become virtual tourists like us? Come and join us and have A Culinary Tour Around the World, organized by Joan of Foodalogue.
Our virtual ‘trip’ into various cultures is to motivate readers to participate in the fight against hunger via the World Food Programme and other worthy organizations, so there are still many trips where you can join us.
Coq au Vin (in Greek Kokoras Krassatos)
Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 2 hours
Serves: 4 – 6
- 30 small shallots or pearl onions
- ½ rooster about 1½ kilos, cut into serving pieces
- coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 – 1 ½ cup of water
- ½ cup of olive oil
- 2 glasses (about 500ml) of red dry wine
- 1 medium onion, cut into small pieces
- 2 stalks celery, cut into small pieces
- 5 medium carrots, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, finely cut
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- 2 bay leaves
- 12 black peppercorns
Prepare the rooster to marinate from the previous day. Wash and cut the rooster into serving pieces and place in a large salad bowl with 1 onion, the carrots and celery, bay leaves, black peppercorns, oregano and dried thyme, cover bowl with lid or cling film and refrigerate.
The following day, cut off the root end of each shallot and then peel.
Heat the olive oil and sauté the onions and remove to a platter before they brown and set aside.
Remove the rooster from the marinade and sauté on both sides. Add garlic and sauté for a few minutes, add the marinade ingredients and the coarse sea salt, add water and cover sautéing pan. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer until rooster is almost cooked (depending on the size of the rooster, it will take about an hour or more). Add onions and continue cooking until onions are soft and the sauce has thickened. You may need to add some more water, depending on cooking time.