Chicken In Tarragon Cream


Chicken In Tarragon Cream

By Shannon O'Donnell

I've been making this easy, delicious chicken dish for about 15 years.  It's a favorite of mine from The Herb Farm Cookbook, authored by famous Seattle Chef Jerry Traunfeld, who put the book together to pass the time while the Herb Farm Restaurant was being rebuilt (it had been heavily damaged in a fire in the '90s).  Like most of the recipes in this wonderful cook book, this dish is simple,elegant and flavorful.  It's quick enough to put together on a week night, but fancy enough for a romantic dinner.


4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1/4 cup dry vermouth or dry white wine
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 to 3 TBSP coarsely chopped fresh French tarragon
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

Season both sides of chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook chicken about 1 minute each side until they begin to brown slightly. Transfer to plate.

Reduce the heat in the skillet to low. Add the shallot and cook, stirring continuously, until softened but not browned, less than 1 minute. Add the vermouth and cook 30 seconds, then add the cream and half the tarragon. Return chicken to pan and adjust heat so cream gently simmers. Cook until chicken is just cooked through (the cookbook says 4-6 minutes, mine took about 8).

Transfer the chicken to a warmed serving platter or individual dinner plates. The sauce should be thick enough to lightly coat a spoon. If it's too thin, continue to simmer for about 1 minute. Stir in remaining tarragon and lemon juice, season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour sauce over chicken and serve over a bed of buttered egg noodles.

Serves 4.

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About Shannon


When she's not forecasting, Shannon O'Donnell enjoys putting together tasty, season-appropriate meals and goodies for her friends and family.

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