Revenge of the Frogs

Happy BASTILLE DAY everyone!  As a former resident of France (I lived in Paris for 6 months during college) I have a little soft spot in my heart for France’s day of independence.  I managed to control myself and refrain from singing their national anthem at work today (to my coworkers:  you are welcome.) but I did make myself a great French themed dinner tonight!
Here’s the menu:

Simple Coq au Vin Blanc

Salade de Carottes Râpées (Shredded Carrot Salad)

Green Salad

I started by making the carrot salad.  First, I peeled and grated two carrots.

You can also do this by throwing the carrots in the food processor, but I like to do things in the most difficult way possible so I went with my little box grater.

Once the carrots are grated, toss them with a little vegetable oil (or other light, neutral flavored oil), white vinegar and a pinch of these guys:

Set those aside and let them marinate while you prepare the chicken.

Traditionally, coq au vin (chicken in wine sauce) is made with bone-in chicken, red wine and a whole bunch of ingredients, but tonight I went with simple ingredients that I had on hand.

First, chop up some yellow onion and a clove or two of garlic.

Then throw some flour on a plate and season it with salt and pepper.

Stand by: you’re going to dredge the chicken tenders in this in a minute…

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat with a little oil and add the onions and garlic.

While those start to get soft, dredge the chicken in the aforementioned flour and then nestle them in the pan with the veggies.  Season this mix with salt, pepper and a few pinches of dried rosemary.

Cook the chicken on each side until they get slightly golden brown, then add some white wine (the drier the better.  This is the part where you’d roll with red wine if you wanted to go traditional) and some chicken broth.  Lower the heat to low and let it simmer away for a few minutes.  It’ll look a lil somethin’ like this:

Once the sauce reduces, turn the heat off.

I then made a simple green salad and drizzled it with a little Trader Joe’s balsamic vinaigrette.  Pretty self explanatory, I feel.

The end result:

Voilà!  It was so good.  No, really- for how easy this meal was it was so. good.  Toot my own horn?  You betcha!

French cooking sometimes gets a bad rap for being time consuming to cook and unhealthy to eat, but it can actually be pretty healthy and easy!  Check out this article from the WSJ about how French cooks are trying to regain their culinary prominence in a world that is becoming increasingly daring and health-conscious with its food choices.

I’m contemplating some banana soft serve for dessert.  Ok, so it’s not French, but it sounds so so right. 🙂

Au revoir!

What traditional dishes do you like to make?  Do you play around with them to make them easier/more inexpensive/deliciouser?  (that’s right, you heard me.  Deliciouser.  It’s my new word.  Go with it)

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6 thoughts on “Revenge of the Frogs

  1. Thanks for stopping by my blog! This was definitely the perfect way to spend Bastille Day!

      • Hi Gary! I buy my Ezekial bread at Trader Joe’s, though other grocery stores carry it as well. My favorite is the sesame variety, but they also make regular, cinnamon raisin, english muffins, etc. I definitely don’t bake it myself- way too much work!!

  2. Ooooh, I love the looks of that coq au vin!! I recently just made my first boeuf bourguignon and it was amazingly delicious. I simplified it as well. I’m sure the longer cooking methods garner better results, but you can still end up with a crazy delicious French dish by going the simple route!

    • Absolutely! I don’t buy bone-in chicken every day, but using this method with the chicken tenders worked really well…not as fancy, but equally delicious. 🙂

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