Braised Winter Chicken

Caroline Marson, Banbury
45 - 60 mins

The mulled wine flavours in which the chicken is cooked smacks of winter, and is delicious served with a creamy leek mashed potato or baked potato or you could even serve it with couscous. Accompany with seasonal vegetables or braised red cabbage.

75cl bottle red wine
1 mulled wine spice bag (or use 1 cinnamon stick, 2 cloves, 4 coriander seeds, little nutmeg and 2 all spice wrapped in a muslin bag)
2 washed and scrubbed satsumas studded with 4 cloves each
2 tablespoon dark muscavado sugar
Ground black pepper
12 chicken thighs or legs
1 tablespoon oil
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoon plain flour
100g dried cranberries
300ml chicken stock
Put the wine, mulled wine spice bag, and sugar in a pan. Bring to the boil and bubble until the mixture has reduced, about 10 -15 minutes. Add the satsumas studded with cloves.
Season the chicken skin and in a large pan, heat the oil and fry the chicken pieces until golden. Add the onions, garlic and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 1 minute before adding the reduced wine and stock. Bring the mixture to the boil, then cover and cook at 200°C (400°F) mark 6 for about 1 hour, the sauce should be the consistency of gravy.
Uncover the casserole, stir in the cranberries and cook for a further 30 minutes. Remove the satsumas and put into the compost bin. Serve the casserole immediately.
To freeze: Make the recipe up to the end of step 3. Cool then put into a freezer proof container, label and freeze for up to 3 months.To use: Thaw over night, put into a flameproof casserole, slowly bring to the boil on the hob. Add the cranberries and reduce to a gentle simmer. Cook for 30 minutes or until heated through.