I love watching French television. It keeps me up-to-date with whatever is going on in France and it also helps to improve my French. You probably won't be surprised to know that I am especially fond of French cooking shows. Les Escapades de Petitrenaud, for example, is always very entertaining. Seeing how Jean- Luc interacts with chefs is fun and the recipes are never mundane. Not your everyday cooking, but certainly inspirational. Last summer I really enjoyed Le BBQ de Louis, and no, not only because Louis-François Marcotte is serious 'eye candy' for us girls, but because the recipes were smooth, fresh and extremely cool, like the chef himself.
Last Wednesday, I happened to catch a show about mustard in Burgundy where they featured La Moutarderie Fallot in Beaune and talked about the production of mustard. Did you know that most of the mustard seeds used in French mustard are actually imported from countries like Canada, The US, Hungary, Romania and Denmark? Most of the mustard seed fields in Burgundy have been wiped out by the more profitable production of colza. This company, however, is doing its share to encourage the cultivation of mustard seeds in Burgundy. They work with wonderful ingredients like the white Aligoté wine and have a wide variety of flavors. Lucky me! I will definitely be stocking up when I go back to Burgundy in a few weeks!
Watching the show inspired me to make a nice dish with mustard and chicken and to pop open a bottle of Aligoté, which I usually leave for the summer, but oh well. Unfortunately, I did not have any good French mustard in the house. Only a few small jars which I had gotten at the Maille shop in Dijon last year, all with very jazzy flavors. Not really what I had in mind. I opted for a Dutch mustard from Limburg with a rather mild taste and a coarse texture. The dish was very simple. Plump chicken legs, sweet shallots, a few garlic cloves, wine, mustard and cream. We had it with some fettuccini but I can imagine it would be great with some fluffy basmati rice.
Chicken in Mustard Cream
flour seasoned with a generous amount of salt and pepper
2 tsps goose fat
6 chicken legs
5 shallots, quartered
2 cloves of garlic, halved and flattened with the back of a knife
100 ml Aligoté
200 ml strong chicken stock
2 tsps dried tarragon
1 1/2 tbsp Limburg mustard
65 ml cream
Dust the chicken with the seasoned flour shaking off any excess. Melt the goose fat in a large casserole and brown the chicken on all sides. Add the shallots and the garlic and cook for another minute or two. Add in the wine, the stock and the tarragon. Lower the heat, cover the pan and allow the chicken to cook gently for 40 minutes. Add the musrtard and the cream, cover and cook for an additional 5-8 minutes. Serve and enjoy!