‘Sunday Dinner With…’ Ep. 3: Kate Walsh’s Recipe for Disaster

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Kate Walsh may not be the best cook in Hollywood, but fortunately her friend is. The "Private Practice" star's good pal Tess Rafferty just published a book, Recipes for Disaster, about learning to cook and the dinner parties she has thrown over the years. Since Walsh is admittedly not very comfortable in the kitchen, she turned to Rafferty, who whipped up coq au vin (chicken with wine) — her own take on a Julia Child classic — for the taping of this "Sunday Dinner With…" episode. "I still call my mom to ask her how to cook a chicken," jokes Walsh. Watch as the actress serves up stories about her worst auditions, playing the drums, and what inspired her fragrance, Boyfriend.

Coq au Vin Recipe


2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3-4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1/4 lb pancetta, diced
3-4 lbs chicken thighs
Sea salt
Black pepper
1/2 lb carrots, cut diagonally in 1-inch pieces
1 yellow onion, sliced
6 cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 lb mushrooms, quartered
1/2 bottle dry red wine
1 cups chicken stock
1 bunch fresh thyme
1-2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Fresh parsley, chopped

Directions: Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Heat the 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter in a large Dutch oven. Add the pancetta and cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove pancetta with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Meanwhile, lay the chicken out on paper towels and pat dry. Liberally season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. In the Dutch oven, brown the chicken in batches in a single layer until the skin is crispy and golden brown. When a batch of chicken is done, move it over to the plate with the bacon. Continue to brown the rest of the chicken until it is all done. Set aside.

Add the carrots and onions to the pan and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes or until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and mushrooms and cook for another minute. Then pour in the wine to deglaze all the crispy brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Return the chicken and pancetta to the pan, along with any juices that collected on the plate, and add the chicken stock and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer. Cover the pot with a lid and place in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour. Turn the oven up to 450 degrees, remove the lid, and cook another 20 minutes to crisp the chicken.

When the chicken is done, move just the chicken to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm. Make a beurre manie by mashing 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of flour together to form a paste. Place the Dutch oven over medium heat and stir the beurre manie into the stew. Bring the stew to a simmer and cook for another 5 minutes. If you would like a thicker consistency, add another tablespoon of butter and flour (beurre manie). Taste and season if necessary.

To finish the dish, add the vegetables and sauce to the chicken on the platter and garnish with freshly chopped parsley. Serve any extra sauce on the side in a gravy boat. Coq au vin is delicious served with something starchy to soak up the sauce, such as polenta, mashed potatoes, or crunchy bread, and works great served in large, shallow bowls.

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