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Cook And Eat French This Weekend—Because It’s Bastille Day (And The World Cup Finals Too)!

There are two reasons to celebrate all things French this weekend—Bastille Day on July 14 and the French football team competing in the finals of the World Cup on July 15.

So if you’re staying home this weekend, bring home a baguette from your favorite bakery, uncork a bottle of French wine, and cook up this easy French-inspired chicken recipe that will get you in the right celebratory mood.

This recipe by Chef Katrina Kuhn-Alcantara of Mesclun and CDP Global Table is proof indeed of her love for French cooking. She shares, “It’s kind of a basic recipe so I must have just picked it up from living in France. It’s not a familial recipe for me so I keep changing it depending on my mood and what’s available. If I have tarragon, I’ll add it. If I have wine, I’ll put it. If I’m in a hurry, I’ll poke it. If I have a deboned chicken, I’ll use it (not white meat). People usually use whole chickens so if the white meat must join the party, just take it out earlier to avoid over-cooking. I like putting it in the oven because it cooks more evenly.”

No fancy ingredients or complicated cooking techniques needed, just a few special French touches, namely cream, white wine, and tarragon, and you’ve got yourself a fancy French feast to enjoy at home.

Poulet à la Crème (Chicken in Cream Sauce)

Recipe by Katrina Kuhn-Alcantara

Serves 4

2 chicken legs?

2 chicken thighs

1/4 cups butter?

1 large white onion, sliced?

2 garlic cloves, chopped?

1 1/2 cups button mushrooms, preferably fresh

1/4 cup white wine, optional?

1 1/2 cups cooking cream or crème fraîche?

fresh tarragon, for garnish


1. Season chicken legs and thighs with salt.

2. Melt butter in a pan. Add chicken pieces and brown on both sides.

3. Add onion then chopped garlic. If using fresh mushrooms, add them as well.

4. Deglaze the pan with white wine, if using, or chicken stock.

5. Add cooking cream, then cover the pan. If using crème fraîche, add some water to thin the sauce, then cover the pan.

6. If using canned mushrooms, add them to the chicken at this point.?

7. When chicken is cooked, remove from pan. Reduce sauce to your desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.

8. Transfer chicken pieces to a serving platter. Pour sauce over the chicken. Garnish with fresh tarragon. Serve with rice pilaf (preferably made with basmati rice), roasted potatoes, or sourdough bread.



To cook the chicken faster, you can pierce the fleshy part of the chicken, under the skin, with a knife or a fork.


A longer version of this article appeared in FOOD Magazine, Issue 4, 2016

Photo by Paulo Valenzuela

Cover Photo from

Styling by Pixie Rodrigo Sevilla