Capon with Pineau des Charentes and Morels
Capon is a deliciously succulent alternative to turkey and rightly popular on the French Christmas table. It’s often combined with the eye-wateringly expensive “vin jaune du Jura” and morel mushrooms. Here I’m using the less expensive aged Pineau des Charentes for this elegant dish.
1 capon around 4kg, cleaned and cut into pieces, 3-4 tablespoons cognac, 2 level tablespoons flour, 1 bottle very old Pineau, 1-1,5l single or whipping cream, 100g dried morels.
Soak the mushrooms to hydrate them, Heat a little oil in a heavy cast iron casserole dish and brown the poultry pieces on all sides. Take them out and discard the fat. Return the capon to the pan, pour over cognac and light it to flambé it for a few moments. Scatter the flour over the meat to cover all the pieces, add the pineau, bring to the boil and reduce for a few minutes. Reduce heat, add the cream, cover and gently cook for 30 minutes. During this time clean the morel in new water several times to remove any grit. Drain and add to the sauce for the last 15 minutes of cooking. Test meat for done-ness by inserting a skewer. No pink juices should remain.
Serve on a big platter accompanied by a white and wild rice mixture.