Monday, October 29, 2007


Chicken with creamy tarragon sauce and peas (recipe in the comments)
Rice pilaf
Sauteed grape tomatoes with garlic

The rest of the orange chocolate cake
Hot tea (variety of flavors for various participants)
This was a new recipe that we decided to make for M's mom. We chose it because we haven't had chicken in a long time and the nighttime lows are beginning to drop below freezing, making our abundant fresh tarragon supply look endangered. It was a wonderful dish and everyone enjoyed it a lot. I think the final verdict, however, was that it wasn't good enough to warrant the amount of effort. With three people cooking, it took us about 45 minutes. Since we don't usually have a staff, I doubt it will get made very often. That said, it's a great tarragon recipe (an under-appreciated herb (along with marjoram) from my perspective) and definitely company worthy.

Prep Notes
Difficulty: Simple, but lengthy
Chopping: Tarragon
Time: About an hour, without staff
Make ahead: You can prep the ingredients and toast the rice for the pilaf ahead, but everything else should be done last minute.

J: "I wish we ate more tarragon."
M: "Gourmet product, but not worth the effort."
Mn: "Not your grandmother's chicken and peas."

1 comment:

J said...

Chicken with Tarragon Cream Sauce – Eating Well
Serves 4

Juice of 1 lemon
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 teaspoon plus 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoon butter, divided
3 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds), trimmed
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 teaspoon peanut or canola oil
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided, plus more as needed
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
3 tablespoons finely minced fresh tarragon

Combine lemon juice and cream in a small bowl. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Mash 1 teaspoon flour and 1 teaspoon butter in another small bowl until a paste forms. Set both bowls aside.

Dry chicken thoroughly with paper towels. Season with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and white pepper. Dredge lightly in the remaining 1/2 cup flour, shaking off any excess. (Discard leftover flour.)

Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and oil in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken—do not crowd the pan. Cook, turning once, until nicely browned on both sides, about 2 ½ to 3 minutes per side. Lower heat to medium-low, remove pan from heat and add 1/2 cup broth, return pan to heat and cover. Simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 6 minutes.

Add the remaining 1/2 cup broth to the pan and bring to a boil over high heat. Cook until reduced to about 1/4 cup, 2 to 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, add the reserved lemon cream and bring to a simmer. Gradually whisk in the reserved butter-flour paste, a few bits at a time, until the sauce lightly coats the spoon, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in peas.

Reduce the heat to low and return the chicken to the pan along with tarragon. Stir to coat the chicken with the sauce.