This is a delicious dish that is flavorful, satisfying and healthy. Because chicken breasts are naturally lean, poaching helps retain their moisture for a rich savory flavor. Tarragon is such aromatic herb and is even more potent in dried form. Be careful when using tarragon, as you don’t want to use too much otherwise it will overpower the dish. You want the fullness of the cream to come through with this recipe and half the experience is the smooth, velvety texture the cream (And roux) add to the sauce. That is why you have the option to strain it, or keep the herbs. Straining it will ensure you and your guests will enjoy the smooth texture of the sauce. Not straining it will give you some texture contrast with the dried herbs inside the sauce.
Nothing is written in stone, so play around to find what you enjoy. If you decide you absolutely can’t get enough tarragon (I’m sure there’s someone out there who can’t), then by all means double the recipe. Quick note before we get started: If you opt for using fresh herbs instead of dried, use about 3 times more than the recipe calls for and only add it in as you finish the sauce.
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|Poached Chicken Breast With Tarragon Sauce||Yield: 4 175g (6oz) Servings|
|Chicken Breast, boneless||4|
|Whole Butter||60g (2oz)|
|Salt & White Pepper||To Taste|
|White wine||150mL (5 fl. Oz.)|
|Chicken Stock||625mL (20 fl. Oz.)|
|Dried thyme||½ tsp|
|Dried Tarragon||1 tsp|
|Flour||40g (1-1/2 oz)|
|Cream, 35%||175mL (6 fl. Oz)|
|Fresh Tarragon Sprigs (Optional)||As needed|
- Rub pan with butter to cover the entire bottom. This will prevent any sticking
- Season the chicken breasts with the salt and pepper and place them into the pan presentation side up (Smooth side up)
- Add white wine, chicken stock, bay leaf, thyme, and tarragon.
- Bring the liquid to a simmer, then reduce to poaching temperature.
- In a separate sauce pan, melt the butter until it bubbles
- Add the flour to form a roux. Cook until blonde, set aside and let cool.
- Once the breasts are done, remove from the liquid.
- Take some hot liquid from the pan, and pour it into the roux saucepan slowly, whisking to combine. When roux has combined into the liquid, add the roux to the liquid in the pan and heat. The liquid will thicken as it cooks.
- Add the cream and bring to a simmer. Reduce until desired consistency has been reached.
- Strain the sauce through a cheesecloth or strainer to remove any unmixed roux. Adjust seasonings if needed.
- Place chicken breasts onto serving plate and ladle the sauce over the chicken.
- Garnish with sprig of fresh tarragon. Serve
- Roasted baby potatoes
- Rice/Rice Pilaf
- Duchess Potatoes
- Mashed potatoes
- Roasted cherry/grape tomatoes
- Mixed Seasonal veg (Roasted peppers, onion, zucchini, carrot)
- Grilled/broiled tomato
Be sure to prepare your chicken stock in advance. This recipe is a good excuse for purchasing a whole chicken, then breaking it down to get the breasts and using the back and trim to make your stock. With the stock that you’ll yield will last you for another meal at the very least!