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Slow Cooker Tarragon Chicken with Mushroom Cream Sauce

Slow Cooker Tarragon Chicken with Mushroom Cream Sauce


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Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper, to taste. Place the chicken in a 3- to 5-quart slow cooker.

Place the bell pepper, mushrooms, onion, and garlic on a cookie sheet. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Coat with the oil and season with the thyme and tarragon. Stir until well combined. Transfer to the oven and cook for about 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and place the vegetables on top of the chicken.

Add the chicken broth and slip the bay leaves into the bottom of the slow cooker. Coat the chicken with the soy sauce. Cover and cook on low until the chicken is tender, 4-6 hours. Remove the chicken from the slow cooker and transfer to a plate. Loosely tent with foil. Reserve the cooking juices from the slow cooker.

In a pan, melt the butter over low heat until frothy. Slowly whisk in 1 tablespoon of the flour at a time to form a roux. After all of the flour is added, the mixture will be really thick. Slowly add in the juices from the slow cooker, ¼ cup at a time. Whisk until the mixture is nice and thick and creamy. Then, slowly add in 1 tablespoon of the cream at a time. Season with additional tarragon, thyme, salt, and pepper, to taste.

Place the chicken on individual serving plates and top generously with the creamy sauce. Serve with a side of your favorite vegetables.


Slow Cooker Chicken and Mushrooms

Creamy slow cooker chicken and mushrooms are a delicious dinner dish and are super easy to prepare.

The creamy sauce cooks to be loaded with flavor thanks to the mushrooms, mustard, chicken, and herbs. The chicken itself takes on loads of flavor from the sauce and can be served whole or shredded.

Typically, I will serve one chicken breast per person. So, you should get roughly six or more servings out of a single batch of this recipe. I recommend cooking some side dishes to go with the chicken, for example, I love to serve it with noodles.

The leftovers of this dish will be great reheated for lunch or dinner the next day. I recommend keeping the leftovers in the refrigerator, but you can also keep them in the freezer. They should keep frozen for three months or three days in the refrigerator.


Creamy Crock Pot Tarragon Chicken Recipe – 2 Points

With winter in full swing, I am making my favorite Weight Watchers crock pot recipes on a very frequent basis. They are easy, hearty, and oh so comforting on a chilly day.

Today, I’m sharing a Creamy Tarragon Chicken Recipe that was inspired by a Rachel Ray recipe, but made over to be lighter and more Weight Watchers friendly. It is absolutely amazing…so flavorful and rich, and the sauce is so creamy and velvety.

Each serving is just very low in fat and calories, which is hard to believe once you taste how good it is.

Since I rarely cook with tarragon, this dish was a real treat and had me wondering why I don’t cook with tarragon more often.

I used carrots in this dish, but feel free to use another vegetable if you prefer. Asparagus, broccoli and peas work really well with it.

I recommend serving this Creamy Tarragon Chicken over some buttered whole wheat noodles or buttered brown rice for a complete meal. Enjoy!


Poached Chicken in Tarragon Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 Whole Chicken cut into quarters
  • 2 Pieces Shallots finely chopped
  • 1/2 Cup White Wine
  • 1/2 Cup Chicken Stock
  • 1 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 Stick Butter
  • 1 Bunch Tarragon Leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste

Instructions

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Most of us, well at least for me in the past, usually pass on the breast part when having chicken for dinner. This white cut of meat, which I find too lean, could end up really dry and chewy. The thing is, they don't have to be all that less juicy. Cooking them properly, with the right method, and to a specific internal temperature should make them equally appealing as the other cuts such as wings and thighs.

Let's start cooking. Cut your chicken into quarters. Bigger cuts such as what we'll be making here poach much better, keeping them more moist. Reserve those small bite sized cuts for stir-fries or when deep-frying them with a breading of some sort.

Season the cuts of chicken with salt and pepper. I've used ground white pepper to keep the cream sauce which we'll be finishing the dish with, free from specks of black pepper if I've chosen otherwise. Moreover, white pepper is noticeably less pungent than its black counterpart.

Chop the shallots as fine as you possibly can. This way we get the most flavor out of them in the relatively short poaching time. Also, doing a good job at mincing them would eliminate the need to strain the poaching liquid later as we make the cream sauce. A slight coating of butter at the bottom of the pot will ensure that the chicken pieces won't stick. The non-stick finish of most slow cooker vessels though may be enough for you to do away with this step.

Lucky for me, I always have new slow cookers on hand and don't need to worry about non-stick surfaces being old/used. Today, I used one of my favorite Hamilton Beach slow cookers. They make high quality products and they are generally cheaper than other brands!

Arrange the chicken pieces on top of the shallots. Space them nicely if possible. Too much contact between these pieces may cause them to stick together, making it difficult to handle them without tearing off the skins.

Adding in sprigs of fresh tarragon at this point would infuse the wonderful aroma of this herb into the chicken, making it blend perfectly with the tarragon cream sauce we'll be making in the end. Tarragon goes perfectly with any meat that has subtle flavor. Fresh, very aromatic, but not overpowering.

You may add any flavoring component of your choice at this point to make the recipe your own. Add basil for Poached Chicken in Basil Cream Sauce, prepared horseradish for Poached Chicken in Horseradish Cream Sauce, pesto for Poached Chicken in Pesto Cream Sauce, you get the point. Let your imagination inspire you. Go with preserved fruit, mushrooms, wine, or any ingredient sitting in your pantry. Using fish or any seafood as your main component would also be recommended.

Next, add in the wine. This will add a depth of sweetness and tang that'll ideally pair with the cream. Any wine will do. Choose a white variety to keep the cream sauce white of course.

Add just enough chicken stock to come up to about half the level of the pieces of chicken. Don't get them fully submerged. Doing so will get them to stew instead of poach, which will make them less moist in the end.

When the chicken is fully cooked, strain off the cooking liquid into a small stockpot to get it to reduce, further concentrating the flavors. A good way to check if the chicken is cooked enough is to make a small incision at the joint where the thigh meets the drumstick. A very clear liquid must leech out. Any trace of blood will mean that you'll have to cook the chicken for more time.

Allow the poaching liquid to reduce to about a quarter of a cup before adding in the cream. Adding the cream too early will yield a thin consistency to the sauce which you may need to reduce again, this time risking your cream to split. Do this over very low heat.

Once the sauce has thickened a bit, turn off the heat, add in chopped tarragon leaves, and whisk in cold butter nuggets. Whisking in butter will thicken the cream sauce a bit more and give it a good sheen. This process of refining a sauce with butter is common to French cuisine and is termed monter.


Slow-Cooker Chicken with White Wine, Tarragon, and Cream

If
cremini mushrooms (a.k.a. baby bellas) are unavailable, substitute
portobello mushroom caps, cut into 1-inch pieces. Fresh tarragon,
unlike its dried counterpart, has a distinctive anise-like flavor that
is crucial in this dish.

6 split bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts (10 to 12 ounces each), or 12 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (6 to 8 ounces each), trimmed
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/4 pounds cremini mushrooms , quartered
1 onion , chopped medium
4 cloves garlic , minced
1 3/4 cups dry white wine
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 bay leaves
1 pound carrots , peeled and cut into 3-inch lengths
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup minced fresh tarragon
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1. Dry the chicken with paper towels, then
season with salt and pepper. Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a 12-inch
skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Brown half of the
chicken on both sides, about 10 minutes, then add to the slow cooker.
(Remove the browned skin if using chicken thighs.) Return the skillet
to medium-high heat and repeat with 2 more teaspoons oil and the
remaining chicken. Discard any fat left in the skillet.

2. Add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the empty skillet and
heat over medium heat until shimmering. Add the mushrooms, onion, and
1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook until the mushrooms are brown, 10 to 15
minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 15 seconds. Stir in the wine,
scraping up any browned bits, and simmer until reduced by half, about 5
minutes. Pour into the slow cooker.

3. Add the broth, thyme, and bay leaves to the slow cooker.
Nestle the carrots into the slow cooker around the edges. Cover and
cook on low until the chicken is tender, about 4 hours.

4.
Transfer the chicken to a large serving dish and tent loosely with
foil. Discard the bay leaves. Set the slow cooker to high. Whisk the
flour with the cream until smooth, then stir into the slow cooker.
Cover and continue to cook until the sauce is thickened and no longer
tastes of flour, 15 to 30 minutes longer. Stir in the tarragon and
lemon juice and season with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the
vegetables and some of the sauce over the chicken and serve, passing
the remaining sauce separately.


Melt-in-Your-Mouth Tarragon Chicken

Pour the broth into a 6- to 7-qt. slow cooker. In a small bowl, combine the mustard, 1 tsp. salt and 1/8 tsp. pepper rub the chicken with the mustard. Place the chicken in the slow cooker and top with the garlic and 2 tbsp. tarragon. Cover and cook on low heat until the chicken is tender and an instant-read thermometer inserted into a thigh away from the bone registers 165 degrees , about 5 hours.

Transfer the chicken to a serving plate and cover to keep warm. Strain the pan juices into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over high heat. In a small bowl, combine the cream and cornstarch. Whisk the mixture into the saucepan and cook until the sauce is thickened stir in the lemon juice. Pour the sauce over the chicken.

In a small bowl, combine the lemon zest, parsley, and 1 tbsp. tarragon. Top the chicken with the zest-herb mixture.


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  • Make sure you get French Tarragon, and not Russian or Mexican (which is sometimes called “impostor” Tarragon). French Tarragon is said to be the “real” tarragon with very aromatic leaves that have a flavor akin to aniseed and licorice. If you are unsure what type of Tarragon you have, do a taste test. The leaves should have a clear aniseed flavor with a tongue-numbing effect. Now, in my opinion, Russian or Mexican tarragons still have a nice taste, but are slightly more bitter. They also tend to lose their flavor when cooked, so they won’t deliver the signature flavor of this dish.
  • I recommend you salt your chicken beforehand (2 to 3 hours before), to allow the salt to penetrate the meat . If you’re interested in knowing more about how salt is used to build and enhance flavor in food (especially for meats), I recommend the book Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat.
  • Leaving the skin on the chicken is essential to this recipe. The chicken will be first cooked, skin-side down, in the pan. The fat from the skin will melt and render into the pan, and be used later to caramelize the onion and garlic, and as a base for the sauce. It will contribute greatly to building flavors in this dish. You can choose to remove the skin later on – in your plate, once the dish is served.
  • Instead of chicken thighs, you can substitute skin-on chicken legs .
  • For the white wine, I recommend you choose one that is dry and crisp, such as Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Gris or Pinot Blanc.

I hope you’ll love this Creamy French Chicken Tarragon (Poulet à l’Estragon) recipe as much as I do! Serve it over rice and/or with green beans or asparagus.


Boil or microwave potatoes and broccoli, separately, until tender. Drain. Cover.

Meanwhile, cut each chicken breast horizontally in half through the side to give two thinner pieces. Season.

Heat an oiled, large, non-stick frying pan over a medium to high heat. Add the chicken and cook for about 3 minutes on each side, or until lightly browned and just cooked through. Remove.

To make mushroom sauce, heat oil in same frying pan over a medium heat. Add garlic and mushrooms. Cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes, until mushrooms are lightly browned. Add sauce and mustard. Stir for 1 minute. Stir in the cream. Bring to a boil. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for about
5 minutes, or until slightly thickened.

Return chicken and any juices to pan. Simmer for 2 minutes, or until chicken is hot. 6 Serve with potatoes and broccoli.


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