Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Chicken with Mustard and Tarragon Sauce

I’ve been making a Chicken in Mustard Sauce recipe for years and a couple of summers ago I updated it a bit, being inspired by all the lovely summer produce and herbs that were available.  It’s easy to buy herbs year round now, or you can always grow your own on your windowsill - even in the depths of winter - and I thought that as so many folks are experiencing such cold weather and snow these days a recipe that tasted of summer might be welcome! Of course you can use dried tarragon, or the tarragon that is available in the chiller or freezer cabinets in your local grocery store.

I also think this would be lovely rolled into savoury crepes if you are celebrating Shrove Tuesday today. Just slice the cooked chicken thinly, dress it with lightly with the sauce and roll it up in homemade or ready-made crepes. Serve a little more sauce over the top, and then serve the rest on the side. Delicious!
4 chicken breasts

salt and pepper

2 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons butter

3 shallots or baby onions, finely chopped

125 ml good white wine (you can serve the rest with dinner if you like)

juice of one lemon

1 tablespoon fresh tarragon leaves, washed and chopped with scissors

3 tablespoons Dijon mustard 

1¼ cups double cream (you may not need it all)

Melt the first two tablespoons of butter over medium heat in a frying pan with a lid. Add the shallots and cook, stirring constantly until they just begin to turn golden in colour. Now add the next two tablespoons of butter and the chicken breasts. Grind some salt and pepper over the chicken as it cooks. Add the wine and cover the pan with the lid. Turn the chicken after about three to five minutes and then cook for another three to five minutes on the second side. Turn them again if they are still not done. You want the chicken breasts to be cooked through, with no pink inside. I always use a removable meat thermometer to be absolutely sure they are done. 

Once the chicken is cooked, remove it from the pan and place it in a casserole dish tightly covered in foil. Set aside. 

Turn the heat down a bit and add about 250 ml of cream to the buttery shallots still in the pan. Stir together. Now add the lemon juice, mustard and tarragon. Stir the sauce until heated through. If it appears too thick or you simply want more sauce, add the rest of the cream. Taste the sauce to be sure it is flavourful and add salt and pepper if necessary. If you want to add a bit more mustard, lemon or tarragon to taste, do feel free! 

Return the chicken breasts to the pan and turn to coat in the sauce. Serve each one with a bit of sauce spooned over. Any remaining sauce can be served in a gravy boat so people can add more at the table if they like.
I’ve linked this post up to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday at Blessed With Grace, Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam and Tuesdays at the Table at All The Small Stuff. Go and visit for some great recipe inspiration!

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