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Mustard-Tarragon Chicken Saute

Nancy Anderson, Countdown to Dinner

Any year that starts off with a Rosemary Roasted Salmon recipe from Mary Tambellini has a good feeling to it. Of the 50 or so Countdown to Dinner recipes we've tested since then, many were memorable. After agonizing unduly over which was the best, we decided on two.

Mustard-Tarragon Chicken Saute

  • 4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 1/3 cup dry vermouth
  • 2 tablespoons whole grain Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream or chicken stock (optional)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon, divided

Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Melt the butter in a heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken breasts and saute until cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a platter and tent over with foil to keep warm (we stuck them in a 200-degree oven).

Add shallots to the skillet and saute for 1 minute. Add vermouth, mustard and 1 1/2 tablespoons of the tarragon. Bring to a simmer. Add cream (we used light cream), chicken stock or more wine and stir often till sauce simmers for about 3 minutes and thickens slightly.

Return chicken and any accumulated juices from the platter into the skillet. Simmer until the chicken is heated through, turning to coat, about 1 minute.

Transfer chicken and sauce to platter. Sprinkle with remaining tablespoon tarragon. Serves 4.

R.J. Bob Sule, Cranberry

Thursday, January 02, 2003

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