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coq au vin for gluten-free

I plan to make coq au vin for dinner with guests next weekend. One guest is allergic to gluten and I just realized that the recipe includes flour. Any suggestions for an alternative to conventional wheat flour? I have rice flour in my cupboard. It would be great to use some of that up, but I am open to other options if something else would be better.

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  1. What's purpose of the flour? If the chicken is dusted with flour before frying, it has two purposes - to develop a bit more flavor as the flour coating browns, and to thicken the sauce as it stews. Chicken can certainly be browned without that flour coating, and you can use other starches (e.g. cornstarch in slurry) to thicken the sauce as desired at the end.

    3 Replies
    1. re: paulj

      +1 - I typically use corn starch as a substitution for flour in recipes of this type. In the initial phases of course, except for the sauce in the finishing of the coq au vin, you wouldn't make a slurry you'd simply dust the chicken pieces with corn starch instead of flour. Rice flour will work for dusting but it's a bit coarse for something like coq au vin.

      1. re: paulj

        The flour is to coat the chicken before browning. Cornstarch, then?

        1. re: morrissey.brendan

          Why bother coating in flour before browning - just get on with the browning.

      2. My daughter is celiac AND has an allergy to corn (including corn starch). I make Julia Child's Coq au Vin and use rice flour or potato flour for the final thickening of the sauce.

        Frankly, I have also done this dish using no flour and simply reducing the sauce at the end instead of thickening. Just cut back on the salt content earlier.

        3 Replies
        1. re: LJS

          Thanks! Another question, do you refrigerate your rice flour? I have Bob's Red Mill rice flour. The label says to refrigerate but I have had it in the cupboard for a few months after purchasing...

          1. re: morrissey.brendan

            rice flour is no different than wheat in terms of storage/spoilage - it should be fine in the cupboard unless your kitchen gets particularly hot or damp.

            as everyone else has already said, either the rice flour or cornstarch will be fine as substitutes for the wheat flour.

          2. re: LJS

            +1
            If your sauce is still a little thin at the end, you could use a corn- or tapioca-starch slurry to thicken it up...but I don't ever use flour in my coq au vin.

          3. I never use flour when making any kind of meat stew. I just remove the meat and veggies at the end and turn up the heat to reduce the liquids to create the sauce. I like it better that way then creating a "gravy."

            1. Your rice flour will be fine. If you didn't already have that, I'd suggest a cheap box of sweet rice flour from the regular grocery store (asian food section) for just this sort of occasion. Or -- just dry the chicken super well and brown it up without. You can always cook the sauce down.