Sunday, May 7, 2017

Tarragon Chicken Salad

Tarragon is an herb that gets no respect. Maybe because the dried version doesn’t do justice to the fresh. There is something about the anise undertone of Tarragon that makes my salads, creamy soups and casseroles memorable.  So much that my friends ask, “What am I tasting?”  From the beginning of April until the first frost, I have plenty of Tarragon in my herb garden, and I have perfected the art of freezing it for the colder month’s hot recipes.  But for my chicken salad, there is nothing like Tarragon, picked fresh from the garden.  My Tarragon Chicken Salad is a staple on afternoon boating trips from our backyard, and I have turned many a friend into raving fans of this simple, yet delicious staple. Whether on crackers or served between two great pieces of bread, every time I serve it people fall in love.
Most herbs can be frozen immersed in water or olive oil and placed in an ice tray, but I like to freeze fresh, leafy herbs like Basil, Parsley, Tarragon, Sage, Cilantro and Oregano without liquid.  Frozen herbs can be used in the same proportion as fresh herbs but they will be limp when defrosted, so although they are great used in recipes, they cannot be used as garnish.

Your first step is to harvest and rinse herbs in clear water.  Let dry.  Once dry, strip the leaves off the stems and coarsely chop.  Spread in a single layer on a cookie sheet, and place in the freezer.  Once frozen, place them in a plastic container or freezer bag.  Make sure to label the container since once frozen, you may not be able to tell them apart.

§     2 cups cubed or shredded chicken
§     1 cup celery, finely chopped
§     3 - 4 tablespoons freshly chopped tarragon leaves (Not dry or frozen tarragon)
§     1/2 cup or more mayonnaise (to taste)
§     1/2 cup slivered almonds
§     Kosher salt


In a large bowl, combine chicken

Add chopped celery

Add finely chopped, fresh tarragon

Add almonds, salt and mayonnaise. 

Fold ingredients and adjust seasoning.  If you prefer a moister salad, add more mayonnaise.  

Serve on a sandwich, in a bowl with crackers or in phyllo or pastry cups as an hors d’oeuvre.  For a printer friendly copy of this recipe, go to Tarragon Chicken Salad.  Enjoy!

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