Marengo chicken

May 17, 2011
Chicken at Marengo's way


  • a cleaned medium-size chicken
  • 5 spoons of 00 flour
  • a glass of dry white wine
  • a glass of veal broth
  • butter
  • olive oil
  • the juice of a half lemon
  • one garlic yolk
  • salt
  • pepper
  • nutmeg


Cut the chicken in eight pieces, cover them with flour and fry them lightly in a pan with oil and butter and the garlic; add salt, pepper and nutmeg.

Then add the wine and let them cook until there’s no more wine.

Add the the broth, put a lid on the pan and cook on a high fire.

Put the chicken on a dish and cover them with a sauce made of the sauce left in the pan, and the lemon juice.

Serve hot, with potatoes.


This dish is said to have been eaten the eve of the battle of Marengo by general Bonaparte, who later won.

The food of the French was almost over, but war allows to even steal a chicken.

This chicken is said to have been fried in oil and covered with Madera wine. I have read the cooking books of the post-napoleonic era in Piemonte, by Chapusot (1846) and Vialardi (1854), but they don’t say a word about the Madera. Chapusot says to add tomatoes.

You wil probably ask yourself why I have written this recipe while talking of La Morra, which is near Alessandria.

An article on the “Popolo nuovo” on july, 3rd, 1958, talking about the Belvedere restaurant in La Morra, then run by Settimio and Giuseppina Roggero, cited the Chicken Nerone, unfortunately without telling the recipe.

But it was surely fried with some alcoholic adding: I have thought about this recipe, being quite similar to that one. I think Settimio and Giuseppina would agree.

Photo Credits: Rowena