Friday, April 23, 2010

Tarragon Roast Chicken Salad

Seems like every family has one or two exceptionally crazy days overloaded with activities. For us, it is Thursday. The girls have ballet class, netball practice (similar to basketball), German class and life-guard instruction. Jeff belongs to a running club. I play chauffeur/chef. 
With everyone coming and going at different times it is hard to find a dinner that the family can eat between activities.
It was with this chaos in mind that I came up with this recipe.
One roast chicken can satisfy lots of different tastes.
As I waited to ear dinner with Jeff when he came through the door at 9pm, I ate the crispy, salty skin off the roast chicken. All of it. 

1 free-range chicken
1 bunch tarragon
12 small, new potatoes
½ shallot, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
2 sprigs from the bunch of tarragon (leaves only)
2 teaspoons white wine (or plain) vinegar
½ cup mayonnaise
1 heaping teaspoon Dijon mustard
Healthy pinch of sugar
Healthy pinch of salt

Salad greens
Boiled green beans, if you’ve got them

1) You can use a roasted chicken from the grocery store if you are in a pinch for time. Otherwise, place most of a small bunch of tarragon (keeping aside 2 sprigs for the salad dressing) into the cavity of the chicken, sprinkle the skin with sea salt and roast at 200C (400F) for about 45 minutes, until crisp, tender and juicy.

2) While the chicken is roasting, simmer the small potatoes, whole in salted water until just tender (about 10 minutes simmering time, depending upon their size). Drain and cool slightly until you can comfortably handle them—then slice into halves or quarters.

3) While the potatoes are simmering and the chicken is roasting, make the dressing: Put the minced shallot into a small bowl with the vinegar. Allow it to steep there for a few minutes while you chop up the tarragon leaves (the vinegar will take the bite out of the shallot). Now, chuck the salt and sugar into the vinegar, too and whisk for a second to help dissolve the granules. Finally, whisk in the mayo, mustard and chopped tarragon. Pour over the potatoes (doing this while they are still warm is fine), toss to coat evenly.

4) Assemble the salad: Lay salad greens on a plate and arrange the potatoes around. Rip the chicken into large chunks and arrange along side the potatoes. Do the same with green beans, if you are using. To make it extra delish, separate the fat from the roasting juices of the chicken. Discard the fat and drizzle the juices over the top of the salad, as well.

Serves 4 with extra chicken left over. I roasted the chicken, boiled the potatoes and served my children that simply with chicken juices drizzled over the potatoes—made up the salad for Jeff and I to eat later.

No comments: