I think that tarragon is definitely one of the unsung heroes of the food world – well, certainly in South Africa anyway. It’s definitely my pet herb of the moment (just like chorizo was my best friend a little while ago, see this Slow Cooked Chicken with Chorizo & Cider), and this is one of my favourite finds so far… Call it an updated twist on your good old classic chicken casserole if you like, but with the added elegance that this favourite French herb adds to everything it meets.
Serves 4 | Preparation time 10 minutes | Cooking time 15-20 minutes
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 chicken breasts or thighs
2 Tbsp butter
4-5 baby leeks, chopped (or 1 medium onion)
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 x 250g punnets of mushrooms, I mix brown and baby button
1 tsp dried tarragon
1 tsp dijon mustard (optional)
1/4 cup chicken stock or white wine
3-4 Tbsp cream, mascarpone or fat free yoghurt
S + P to taste
WHAT TO DO
1. In a large pan, heat the olive oil and brown the chicken on both sides, about 3 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.
2. Add the butter to the pan and fry the leeks for about 2 minutes, before adding in the garlic and mushrooms, along with an extra drizzle of olive oil if necessary. Fry together for another 3 minutes until the mushrooms have softened.
3. Add in the tarragon, mustard, chicken stock/wine and cream along with a good pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper. Bring to the simmer and add the chicken back in, stir gently and simmer for a further 5 minutes. Check for seasoning and serve.
* I serve this with mashed sweet potato, and sometimes add in a handful of frozen peas just before serving to add some extra colour.
* You can also add in a couple of rashers of chopped bacon and fry along with the chicken if you like.