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Cooking Together – French Bistro – French onion soup, Coq au vin, lyonnaise potatoes

We hope you enjoyed your Superfood Saturday, below are the recipes – if you have any questions for chef please do ask and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

You Cooked:

Starter – French onion soup with gruyere cheese crouton

Main – Coq au vin and lyonnaise potatoes I think.

Dessert – Creme brûlée or Lemon Posset

French Onion Soup with gyuyere cheese crouton

Ingredients – Makes 4

  • . 25g butter
  • . 2 medium to large red onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • . 1 tsp sugar
  • . 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • . 1 tbsp plain flour
  • . 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • . 2 slices French bread
  • . 20g gruyere, grated


  1. 1. Melt butter in a large heavy-based pan. Add the halved and thinly sliced onions and fry with the lid on for 10 mins until soft.
  3. 2. Sprinkle in 1 tsp sugar and cook for 20 mins more, stirring frequently, until caramelised. The onions should be really golden, full of flavour and soft when pinched between your fingers. Take care towards the end to ensure that they don’t burn.
  5. 3. Add 2 thinly sliced garlic cloves for the final few mins of the onions’ cooking time, then sprinkle in 1 tbsp plain flour and stir well.
  7. 4. Increase the heat and keep stirring as you gradually add the stock. Cover and simmer for 15-20 mins.

To serve, turn on the grill, and toast 2 slices French bread. When you turn the bread, heap grated gruyere cheese on and melt. Ladle the soup into heatproof bowls and top with the crouton.

Coq Au Vin

Ingredients – serves 4

  • 2-3 tbsp sunflower or olive oil
  • 1 x 1.8kg/4lb chicken, jointed into eight portions
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 x 75cl bottle red wine
  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2-3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 16 small shallots
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large non-stick frying pan set over a medium-high heat. Season the chicken on all sides with salt and pepper and add to the pan. Cook until deep golden brown, turning once. You might need to do this in 2 or 3 batches, depending on the size of your pan. Transfer to a large, flameproof casserole.
  3. Add the onion to the pan and cook over a low heat for 4-5 minutes until golden-brown, adding the garlic for the last minute or so and stirring often. Tip the onion and garlic into the casserole with the chicken pieces.
  5. Deglaze the pan with some of the red wine, stirring well to remove as much of the tasty sediment from the bottom of the pan as possible. Pour the remaining wine mixture over the chicken. Add the tomatoes, bay leaves and thyme. Bring to a gentle simmer and cover loosely with a lid. Cook for 30 minutes over a low heat.
  7. Meanwhile, put the shallots in a large, heatproof bowl and cover with just-boiled water. Leave to stand for 5 minutes then drain away the water. When the shallots are cool enough to handle, peel off the skins leaving a tiny part of the root intact to help hold them together.
  9. Heat the remaining oil in a clean frying pan and fry the shallots over a medium heat until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Stir the shallots into the casserole after the chicken has been cooking for 30 minutes. Cover loosely once more and simmer gently for a further 30-45 minutes, or until the chicken is tender and the onions are softened.
  11. Using a large slotted spoon, transfer the chicken and vegetables to a large bowl. Return the sauce to the heat and bring to the boil. Cook for 4-5 minutes, or until the sauce is thickened, stirring regularly. When the sauce has reduced enough to coat the back of a spoon, return the chicken to the pan and warm through.

Lyonnaise Potatoes

Ingredients – Serves 2:

  • – 900 g potatoes, peeled and sliced into thick rounds
  • –  Quarter of a fennel bulb
  • – 3 tbsp. butter
  • – 3 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • – 2 small onions, thinly sliced
  • – handful parsley, chopped
  • Salt


  1. Cover potatoes and fennel with 5cm cold water. Bring to a boil and let simmer until crisp tender, about 4 minutes. Drain completely. 
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick pan until shimmering, add 1/2 potatoes and 1/2 of the onions. Let cook until potatoes are starting to crisp and the onions are golden, about 5 minutes. Add the rest of the butter, oil, potatoes, and onions and continue to cook, mixing until all onions are softened and browned, about 15 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in parsley. Season with salt and pepper before serving.

Crème Brulee


  • . 2 cartons double cream, 1 large (284ml) plus 1 small (142ml)
  • . 100ml whole milk
  • . 1 vanilla pod
  • . 5 large egg yolks
  • . 50g golden caster sugar, plus extra for the topping


  1. 1. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl, set aside.  Check the spice, if you want it a bit fiercer, add more paste or some chilli flakes


  1. 1. Heat the oven to 150c. Sit four 175ml ramekins in a deep roasting tin at least 7.5cm deep (or a large deep cake tin), one that will enable a baking tray to sit well above the ramekins when laid across the top of the tin.
  2. 2. Pour the large and small cartons of double cream into a medium pan with the milk.
  3. 3. Lay the vanilla pod on a board and slice lengthways through the middle with a sharp knife to split it in two. Use the tip of the knife to scrape out all the tiny seeds into the cream mixture. Drop the vanilla pod in as well, and set aside.
  4. 4. Put the egg yolks and sugar in a mixing bowl and whisk for 1 min with an electric hand whisk until paler in colour and a bit fluffy.
  5. 5. Put the pan with the cream on a medium heat and bring almost to the boil. As soon as you see bubbles appear round the edge, take the pan off the heat.
  6. 6. Pour the hot cream into the beaten egg yolks, stirring with a wire whisk as you do so, and scraping out the seeds from the pan.
  7. 7. Set a fine sieve over a large wide jug or bowl and pour the hot mixture through to strain it, encouraging any stray vanilla seeds through at the end.
  8. 8. Using a big spoon, scoop off all the pale foam that is sitting on the top of the liquid (this will be several spoonfuls) and discard. Give the mixture a stir.
  9. 9. Pour in enough hot water (from the tap) into the roasting tin to come about 1.5cm up the sides of the ramekins. Pour the hot cream into the ramekins so you fill them up right to the top – it’s easier to spoon in the last little bit.
  10. 10. Put them in the oven and lay a baking sheet over the top of the tin so it sits well above the ramekins and completely covers them, but not the whole tin, leaving a small gap at one side to allow air to circulate.
  11. 11. Bake for 40-45 mins until the mixture is softly set. To check, gently sway the roasting tin and if the crème brûlées are ready, they will wobble a bit like a jelly in the middle. Don’t let them get too firm.
  12. 12. Lift the ramekins out of the roasting tin with oven gloves and set them on a wire rack to cool for a couple of minutes only, then put in the fridge to cool completely. This can be done overnight without affecting the texture.
  13. 13. When ready to serve, wipe round the top edge of the dishes, sprinkle 1½ tsp of caster sugar over each ramekin and spread it out with the back of a spoon to completely cover.
  14. 14. Spray with a little water using a fine spray (the sort you buy in a craft shop) to just dampen the sugar – then use a blow torch to caramelise it. Hold the flame just above the sugar and keep moving it round and round until caramelised. Serve when the brûlée is firm, or within an hour or two.

Lemon Posset

Ingredients – Serves 3-4:

  • – 300ml of double cream
  • – 60g caster sugar
  • – 1 juicy lemon


  1. Squeeze the lemon.
  3. Bring the cream and sugar to the boil (careful it should just boil but not boil over). Once you see it boil – stay there and boil for exactly 3 minutes.
  5. Take the pan off the heat and whisk in the lemon juice.
  7. Strain this into a jug and leave to cool for 20minutes.
  9. If you wish to put a crumbled biscuit in the bottom of the receptacle – this is the time to do it. If not gently pour the cream into the glasses.
  11. Refrigerate for 6 hours minimum.
  13. Serve with fruit and edible flowers

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