Sunday best

Out of all the days of the week, Sunday is the golden day. We take time off and enjoy a quality ‘déjeuner‘. Our kids love this family ritual, and I secure it by making sure to cook something memorable. I would like to imagine my children’s lives bookmarked by food memories, especially Sunday lunches. It’s a sacred moment in time where all the ingredients matter.

With so many recipes ideas flowing in my head, I always have a soft spot for Lyonnaise cooking. In a way, it’s the French equivalent to my other food love which is Shanghainese cooking. They both have a point in common where a lot of elements are ‘drunken‘ by wine and spirits. There is also a lot of sourness mixed with sweetness, refined and preserved meats. My identity is defined between these two food cultures where East meets West. It’s good to know where you stand.

I made a Xérès vinegar chicken à la Lyonnaise, a classic dish filled assertive with flavours. I love serving this with braised endives and red wild rice from Camargue – the tangy sauce is a big appetite opener and goes perfectly well with the slightly bitter taste of the endives.

Ingredients (for 6 people) :

6 large chicken legs
80 g butter
2 tbsp olive oil (for frying chicken)
3 shallots (chopped)
1 large onion (chopped)
6 garlic cloves
3 tbsp plain flour
2 large tomatoes (chopped)
6 bay leaves
300 ml white wine
150 ml Xérès vinegar
150 ml chicken stock
A handful of chopped chives
Salt and pepper

Chop shallots, onion and garlic cloves. Chop tomatoes to small squares. Set aside. Dissolve 1 cube of chicken stock in 150 ml warm water and set aside.

In a frying pan, heat olive oil and fry chicken legs till golden on both sides (approx 4 minutes on each sides). Set aside on a large plate.

In an oven-proof large cooking pot, melt butter and fry shallots, onion and garlic for 4-5 minutes on a medium heat, drizzle flour, mix well, and add chicken legs. Stir gently so the chicken gets coated. Add wine, vinegar and reduce for 4 minutes, still on a medium heat. Add chicken stock, season with salt and pepper. Add bay leaves and tomatoes. Cover and place in a preheated oven (210°C) for 25-30 minutes.

When ready, sprinkle with chopped chives and serve immediately. I serve this dish with braised endives and wild red organic rice from Camargue (bought at my local organic health store).

Braised endives:

3 endives/ chicory (leaves plucked and washed)
2 tbsp unsalted butter
A pinch of salt

In a large pot, melt butter until golden, add endives, stir, add salt and continue stirring for 3 minutes. Lower heat and cover. Cook for 10 minutes. Serve immediately.

14 thoughts on “Sunday best

  1. I am a vegetarian – so the chicken is definetely not for me. but I like the spirit of sunday in your item. I also love sundays in our garden, having a barbecue (with some nice vegetables 😉 ), children playing games, harvesting. everybody should have a garden. love & peace.

  2. A beautiful post Mimi – as always! – there is nothing more important to me than my family and sharing real food together, it is always a joy to read your blog and see the way you celebrate family and food.

  3. I love seeing this peak into your family ritual. The picnic style nature of it is completely charming!! Someday, I’d love to establish a similar practice with my own family.

  4. Beautiful pictures of a beautiful day… I already posted a comment on your instagram saying you are living in my dream:) And it’s true! I always dreamed of a wineyard in the French provence with beloved husband, kids and dogs:) The gardnen and growing salads and greens was obligatory!
    So now I know how it looks:)
    Wish you all the best and I continue to dream of my dream….

      1. Thank you for your reply, I am just interested in the dishes with the crown in the center, any marking on the back that can help me find those dishes. Thank you so much for your help in finding these dishes. Linda

Leave a Reply