Henri IV of France is remembered for saying: “If God keeps me, I will make sure that there is no sharecropper in my kingdom who does not have the means to have a chicken in the pot every Sunday!”. You will find many recipes for casseroled chicken, especially Coq au Vin.
However, the Jura goes one better with a unique dish using Bresse chicken (or the majestic capon) cooked in Vin Jaune, made even better with morel wild mushrooms and, for this is a dairy region, cream!
Although not a classic dish (its ingredients can be very costly) by 1961 Poulet au Vin Jaune was well-enough established that the Michelin red guide named it as a specialty of all three of the starred restaurants in Arbois.
Although we have eaten this dish on a number of occasions I had not cooked it until last New Year’s Eve when we had good friends to stay and share in a relaxing evening of conversation, good wine and food.
A classic wine to drink with this dish is of course a Vin Jaune – this is the one we enjoyed:
Vin Jaune, Château d’Arlay, Côtes du Jura 2002
Gold. Warm spicy lemon with a touch of (French) curry. Dry, juicy, good acidity. Big on the palate with the preserved lemon and spice continuing to a long finish.
Poulet au Vin Jaune
- 25g dried morels
- 2kg free range chicken (cut into 8 pieces)
- 50g unsalted butter
- 250ml dry white wine (Jura if possible!)
- 500ml crème fraîche
- 500ml chicken stock
- 75ml Vin Jaune (using rest to enjoy with this dish!)
I decided to use a free-range chicken, less expensive than a Poulet de Bresse and a bottle of Vin Jaune; it would be quite alright to cook with a good Jura white wine adding a glass of the pricey Vin Jaune to complete the dish.