Coq Au Vin

Back in London, I know a part of me still lingers in Provence.


Inspired by what we saw, the food we ate, I felt a need to re-create elements of last weekend’s experience in the sanctuary of home.


Besides it’s been a week of events that give much pause.  Throw in Good Friday and Easter, some prayer and quiet celebration seem fitting.


A sudden need for green plants arranged casually.  A desire to decorate in a very plain, unadorned fashion.  Eucalyptus- such a verdant, and yet modest plant with literal and metaphorical healing powers, move me so.


We didn’t see lavender fields on our trip.  But my imagination is vivid.  So I decided to lay an Easter table with lavender.

IMG_82681st draft

IMG_8273 2nd attempt

IMG_8288 Final decision.

The lavender shed as I was unwrapping.  I decided to keep the fallen bits on the table as well.


What to cook for Easter Lunch, along with the French-inspired table?


Coq au Vin.  My cousin B made a terrific version when we visited her in February.


It’s my first attempt.  After reading a few recipes on-line, I decided to simply approach it the way I do my grandmother’s curry.

Sayang is the Malay word for tenderness, for care, for love.  I stayed up last night to sayang my coq au vin.


My grandmother taught us through her cooking, that the only way to cook something memorable, is without haste, and with full commitment.  She used to say to me, in reference to preparing our Peranakan dishes, Step by Step, no other way.

Before midnight, to be served at Easter lunch- especially for my daughter, for our friends J and G, Coq du Vin from my heart.


Ingredients (improvised):

  • chopped up chicken (thighs/breasts)
  • 1 bottle of red wine
  • salt, pepper, soya sauce (because I forgot to get brandy)
  • 2 large onions
  • smoked pancetta
  • 1 small tin of pureed tomatoes
  • rosemary
  • thyme
  • a lot of butter
  • chicken stock
  • garlic- crushed/optional
  • flour
  • carrots
  • mushrooms (which I didn’t add as we don’t like mushrooms)



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