You may remember that one of my lovely Christmas gifts this past year was a subscription to Bon Appetit, and boy did I feel like I hit the culinary big-time. I mean, for someone to give me a subscription to such a prestigious, schmancy magazine, it must mean that they think of me as a chef that could one-day aspire to making prestigious, schmancy meals. Right?
Well, I’ve received about three editions of Bon Appetit so far, and though I read them voraciously, I’ve always been a wee bit nervous to take the plunge and make a featured recipe. Because, really, I’m no Ina Garten, much less a Dorie Greenspan or David Lebovitz. I’m much more like the little girl on the Easy Bake Oven box, ponytail tight, hoping her tiny cake won’t fall or taste like cardboard. But I digress.
While thumbing through the May 2010 issue of Bon Appetit, I came across the “Fast Easy Fresh” section and a recipe within called, Chicken with Tarragon and Quick-Roasted Garlic. The list of ingredients was short, and the steps straight-forward, so I decided to throw caution to the wind and make this for dinner on Saturday night.
We didn’t have a bottle of white wine, per se, so we went ahead and used dry vermouth instead. Also, the recipe calls for 2 tablespoons (i.e. 1/8 cup) of heavy whipping cream, but we decided that if 1/8 cup was good, then 1/4 cup would be great. At the end, the sauce seemed a tad liquidy, so we added about 1/2 tablespoon of flour to thicken it up.
And the result? Fantastically moist, buttery chicken covered in creamy, garlicky, tarragon-y (think mint- and anise-like flavors) sauce. Nate and I couldn’t stop raving about how perfectly the sauce complemented the chicken, and how using so few ingredients really let each flavor shine. It is wonderful. It is filling. It takes no time at all. So make it tonight!
Chicken with Tarragon and Quick-Roasted Garlic
Adapted from Bon Appetit, May 2010
3 large unpeeled garlic cloves
4 small skinless boneless chicken breast halves or cutlets
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup dry white wine (or vermouth)
1/2 cup low-salt chicken broth
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 tablespoon flour
Heat small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; cover and cook until browned in spots and tender when pierced, turning occasionally, 9 to 10 minutes. Transfer to work surface to cool.
Meanwhile, sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Melt butter in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook until browned and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to plate (do not clean skillet).
Peel garlic. Add garlic and wine to same skillet; cook until reduced by about half, mashing garlic finely with fork, about 1 minute. Add broth and tarragon; simmer until liquid is reduced by about half, 1 to 2 minutes. Add cream and simmer to sauce consistency, about 1 minute. Add 1/2 tablespoon of flour to sauce and stir to thicken sauce. Return chicken to skillet with any accumulated juices. Simmer to heat through, turning occasionally, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer chicken to plate; spoon sauce over.