One of my favourite dishes to make is tarragon chicken. This really is delicious. It takes a bit of time to make but it really is worth it, the flavours are incredible.
I make it with double cream but you could substitute the cream for half-fat crème fraîche if you wanted to be a bit healthier. I made this last night and tasted it just before I added the cream and it could have been eaten just like that. It tasted amazing. The flavours were really intense. But I was in the mood for cream so I stirred some through and it was even more delicious.
8 chicken pieces with skin removed (I personally prefer thigh)
12 small shallots
8 small garlic cloves
200ml white wine vinegar
600ml medium-dry white wine
2 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon leaves,
plus 8 small sprigs, to garnish
4 fresh bay leaves
Double cream (I use about 150/200ml but its up to you. To make it healthier you can substitute it with a heaped tbsp of half-fat crème fraîche)
Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat, add a little olive oil and add the chicken, 1 layer at a time. Don’t overcrowd the pan! Fry for 5-8 minutes, until richly golden on all sides then set aside on a plate lined with kitchen paper.
Wipe the pan clean, return to the heat and add a little more oil. Fry the shallots and garlic and until lightly browned then set aside with the chicken. (I slightly over-did these shallots!)
Add the white wine vinegar and boil until it is reduced by two thirds.
Then add the wine and boil until reduced by three-quarters. Stir in 300ml water, the tarragon and bay leaves then return the chicken to the pan with the shallots and garlic.
Cover and simmer for 20 minutes then turn the chicken and cook, uncovered, for 25 minutes, until the sauce is nicely reduced.
Stir the cream or the crème fraîche into the sauce and season. (Alternatively you can skip the cream stage. Taste it beforehand, it still tastes really good without the cream)
Scatter with tarragon sprigs and serve with creamy mashed potato. This is true comfort food. Absolutely delicious.