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Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan or flameproof dish. Tip in 3 trimmed and chopped smoked back bacon rashers and fry until crisp. Remove and drain on kitchen paper.
Add 12 peeled shallots to the pan and fry, stirring or shaking the pan often, for 5-8 mins until well browned all over. Remove and set aside with the bacon.
Take 2 chicken legs, 4 chicken thighs and 2 boneless chicken breasts, all with skin removed and pat dry with kitchen paper.
Pour ½ tbsp olive oil into the pan, then fry half the chicken pieces, turning regularly, for 5-8 mins until well browned. Remove, then repeat with the remaining chicken. Remove and set aside.
Scatter in 3 finely chopped garlic cloves and fry briefly, then, with the heat medium-high, pour in 3 tbsp brandy or Cognac, stirring the bottom of the pan to deglaze. The alcohol should sizzle and start to evaporate so there is not much left.
Return the chicken legs and thighs to the pan along with any juices, then pour in a little of 600ml red wine, stirring the bottom of the pan again.
Stir in the rest of the wine, 150ml good-quality chicken stock and 2 tsp tomato purée. Drop in 3 thyme sprigs, 2 rosemary sprigs and 2 bay leaves to make a bouquet garni, season with pepper and a pinch of salt, then return the bacon and shallots to the pan.
Cover, lower the heat to a gentle simmer, add the chicken breasts and cook for 50 mins - 1hr.
Just before ready to serve, heat 1 ½ tbsp olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan. Add 250g chestnut mushrooms, halved if large, and fry over a high heat for a few mins until golden. Remove and keep warm.
Lift the chicken, shallots and bacon from the pan and transfer to a warmed serving dish. Remove the bouquet garni.
To make the thickener, mix 2 tbsp plain flour, 1 ½ tsp olive oil and 1 tsp softened butter in a small bowl using the back of a teaspoon.
Bring the wine mixture to a gentle boil, then gradually drop in small pieces of the thickener, whisking each piece in using a wire whisk. Simmer for 1-2 mins.
Scatter the mushrooms over the chicken, then pour over the wine sauce. Garnish with a handful of chopped flat-leaf parsley.
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