Is it “Coq au Vert” or “Poulet au Vert”?


Poulet au Vert or just Chicken and Greens

This recipe comes with a story about Internet censorship and high paid lawyers with far too much time on their hands. Seems that prior to my paralysis when I probably did have too much time on my hand I was surfing the slow cooker section of WordPress on a daily basis and had found a recipe for Coq Au Vin and then a short time later found one for Coq au Vert based on white wine.

Before making any meal from a single recipe, I usually surf the net and check to see if there are variants of the recipe. The original posting which I fortunately printed out said that the author had heard about a traditional meal Coq au Vert while watching the  “Next Iron Chef” and found so many recipes on the Internet but the best was from “Real Simple Magazine”.

Well, I searched the Internet and couldn’t find a single recipe for chicken including the words “au vert”. I am a certified Google hacker and know all the advanced searching techniques and all I could find were recipes for “Anguille au Vert” which is eel in green sauce; recipes for mussels, steak and ox tongue “au vert”; and “Pot au Vert” which is the name of a vegetarian restaurant in Switzerland. If you search for “Poulet au Vert”, there are 189,000 references globally but noting germane in English. And I could find nothing in English for chicken “au vert”.

Now I know I am not dreaming because I have my original printout. I went to “Real Simple Magazine” and found  no record of “au vert”. I then went to WordPress to do a search for “au vert” recipes and found none. Now one of the idiosyncrasies of WordPress is that the address created when you first write the post is retained throughout all of the modifications so if you go to:

“Coq au Vin” at you will see the words “au vert” in the address bar.

The only person who seemed to have survived withe the phrase  is a designer who still has an English Language site describing a piece by her, entitled ‘Coq au vert’ in oil

Now my original guess was that  smart lawyers at the Food Network scared the crap out of the lawyers at WordPress and Google and all references to a recipe with “au vert” have been erased. While the  name was a cute play on Coq au Vin and that’s what attracted me, it appears that the author made a mistake and used the word green for wine and Coq au Vert is a whole new concept.  Actually,  while the name is unique,  it is hardly meaningful or precise.

It seems that Coq means rooster and Poule means hen. The word Poulet is used for androgynous body parts of unspecified gender so indeed “Poulet au Vert” is the correct name for my recipe since I started with two chicken legs of unknown gender and surfed a whole bunch of recipes in French.

I prefer the correct and very popular “Poulet au Vert” even if no one can find an English Recipe for the meal.

Poulet au Vert


¼ pound diced ham

2 chicken legs rinsed in lemon juice

1 cup dry sherry

12 oz water

1 chicken bullion cube

1 small onion sliced

3 cloves garlic sliced

½ tsp rosemary

bay leaf

fresh basil chopped

celery greens chopped

3 green onions

1 package chopped spinach (if using a thickener, skip this)

Traditionally this is thickened with cornstarch or a rue but I skipped it because I like my greens just the way they are.

Frying the Meat and Aromatics

The traditional source of flavor and fat is bacon but I prefer the lower fat level of diced ham browned in a little olive oil. The garlic was sliced and added to the ham along with the onion and slices of the white part of the green onion. The lemon rinsed chicken was then added to the pot.

I used a temperature around 250 Fahrenheit in my fondue pot for this stage but dropped it to about the boiling point (212) after the wine, water and bullion cube were added.

After the liquid was added, all of the spices were added to the pot and let simmer for an hour.

My Available Greens - Basil, Parsley, Celery & Onions

My available greens were parsley, celery greens, spinach and the green parts of the scallions which were all cut to size before adding to the pot. The French use almost any available green so you see many different combinations if you check the recipes. Unfortunately, they are all in French and you have to wait for Google to translate. My advice is use what you like and what you have on hand whether you are an “Iron Chef” or not.

All in the Pot

I chose not to thicken the greens and ate them like a vegetable instead of a sauce. Also, I skipped a starch substance because I’m still on a diet. I only ate one chicken leg and half the greens so this meal was not a diet buster. This is a pretty good meal and is similar to my sous vide ham and greens previously described. Maybe I’ll try “Dinde Fumée au Vert” one night in the near future. For those who don’t care to go to Google translator to find out, that’s plain old smoked turkey and collard greens with a fancy name.

As to censorship, it’s probably not true in this case. There simply never was a meal called “Coq au Vert”


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5 Responses to “Is it “Coq au Vert” or “Poulet au Vert”?”

  1. Sweet Treats & Savory Bites Says:

    WOW!!! mine was a miss-spelling and had no idea it would take me to where i am right now. I have actually stopped blogging about cooking since i have no time in general to even pick up a pot and cook something.

  2. Poppa John Says:

    It’s still a good story regardless of the truth.

  3. Smoked Turkey and Collard Greens « Coffee Pot Cooking Says:

    […] you calculate it on a pound of actual meat basis. Regardless, when I fabricated the French name “Dinde Fumée au Vert”, it got me thinking about smoked turkey and collard greens and I got a craving for them. Cutting […]

  4. theteachercooks Says:

    Good story telling.

    • Poppa John Says:

      Thanks. I enjoyed reading about your guest teachers and the culinary efforts of your classes. The Heart shaped Canadian bacon is a must for my granddaughters. The student who served that should have done an egg in the hole to go with it. 😉

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