Penne with chicken, tarragon and broccoli

Tarragon is one of my favourite herbs, especially when paired with chicken. Its unique flavour lifts simple dishes to new heights.

I first got excited about tarragon many years ago when my father-in-law cooked us Elizabeth David’s sumptuous poulet et l’estragon one summer holiday in France. It was incredible and my husband and I have recreated it many times since and it always takes us back to those long hot days in the Dordogne.

But that is really one to save for special occasions (my husband last cooked it for me on my birthday), while this pasta dish is much more of a quick, every day family favourite. Nonetheless it tastes fantastic and all because of that lovely fresh tarragon.

Penne with chicken, tarragon and broccoli

400g dried penne pasta
250g purple sprouting broccoli, cut into manageable chunks
1 large leek, washed and finely sliced
2 skinless chicken breasts, cut into bitesize pieces
2 tbsp vegetable oil
70ml chicken or vegetable stock
2 tbsp fresh tarragon, chopped
100g cream cheese
salt and pepper

Cook the penne in a large pan of salted water following the packet timings. About five minutes from the end of the cooking time, add the broccoli to the pasta water and cook until both pasta and broccoli are tender. Drain.

While the pasta (and broccoli) are cooking, heat the oil in a frying pan. Add the leeks and sweat gently for a couple of minutes. Add the chicken pieces and cook for about five minutes until there is no sign of any pink inside.

Pour the stock into the pan, stir well and cook for a couple of minutes before stirring in the tarragon and cream cheese. Season to taste. Mix in the pasta and broccoli and serve.

I’m entering this dish into July’s Herbs on Saturday blog challenge, set up by Lavender & Lovage and hosted this month by me! If you have a herby recipe you’d like to enter, you can find out all the details here.

6 thoughts on “Penne with chicken, tarragon and broccoli

  1. Pingback: July Herbs on Saturday Blog Challenge – Win a Copy of ‘The Best-Ever Easy-to-Use Herb Cookbook’ « Bangers & Mash

  2. Big tarragon fan here too and have lots growing. Reckon I’ll be making this but would also love to cook poulet et l’estragon too – do you have a recipe?

    • Oh you will love poulet et l’estragon! I’ll send you the recipe this evening. I’ve been meaning to put in on the blog for ages but just haven’t got around to it yet. The sun is finally shining here so once we get my daughter’s ballet lesson out the way (I know – on a Sunday!) we plan to spend the entire day outside in the garden. So I’ll write up the recipe later with a glass of wine in hand ;)

  3. Pingback: Herbs on Saturday – July Round Up « Bangers & Mash

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