This single serving chicken recipe flavored with tarragon and mushrooms will make you think you’ve gone to a fine French restaurant (without the big bill at the end of the meal).
I adapted the recipe from Pierre Franey’s 60 Minute Gourmet cookbook. Its official name translates to Fricassé of Chicken with Tarragon. My friends and family used to call it “cholesterol chicken.”
The original recipe called for three tablespoons of butter and an entire cup of cream! Much as I love butter and cream, that’s a bit…much.
So, I decided to make it a bit lighter, while also adapting the recipe to make it a single serving chicken recipe instead of the original four. I reduced the amount of butter and used canola oil instead. Then, I replaced the cream with a mixture of Greek yogurt and milk.
It’s still a quick and easy chicken recipe and it still tastes great (though it’s certainly not low fat) and I haven’t sacrificed one bit of flavor.
Let’s call it Tarragon Chicken with Mushrooms for One Person instead.
It’s also pretty forgiving. I made a larger recipe for my parents, with a few variations, since mom had different ingredients and onions bothered dad’s stomach. I used “better than bullion” concentrate, garlic powder instead of fresh garlic, and dried shiitake mushrooms. My dad was not a big fan of chicken, but he certainly liked this recipe. He licked his plate clean! Mom insisted that I write down exactly what I did so I could repeat it.
Single Serving Chicken Recipe with Tarragon and Mushrooms
Chicken fricasee with tarragon and mushrooms, cooked with with butter, Greek yogurt, and milk. Or, indulge yourself and use cream instead.
- 1 chicken thigh, bone-in
- 1T canola oil
- 1 tsp butter
- 1/2 C onion, chopped
- 1 small clove garlic, chopped
- 1/8 tsp dried tarragon
- 1 C mushrooms, sliced
- 1/2 tsp flour
- 1/4 C chicken broth
- 1/4 C mixture of Greek yogurt and milk (use two thirds yogurt and one third milk; the idea is to get the consistency of cream); or just go for it and use the cream
- Wash the chicken and pat dry. Season it with salt and pepper.
- Get a medium skillet and heat on a medium flame. Add the oil. Then add the butter. Once the butter melts, add the chicken. Cook the chicken, turning it every once in a while, for about 5 minutes total. Add the onion, garlic, and tarragon
- Sprinkle the flour over the chicken and mushroom mixture, and stir it all around to make sure it's spread evenly around the pan.
- Add the chicken broth and the mushrooms to the pan. Cover the pot and let it simmer for 15 to 20 minutes (depending on the size of the piece of chicken).
- Remove the chicken from the pan with tongs and put it on your plate while you finish making the rest of the sauce. Cover the chicken with the lid of the pot to keep it warm.
- Cook the sauce, and keep stirring it, for 5 minutes.
- Add the cream (or yogurt mixture). If you use the yogurt, spoon some of the sauce from the pan into the yogurt and mix it together before adding it to the pan. This will keep it from separating.
- Simmer for three minutes. Then, put the chicken back in the pan and spoon the sauce over it.
Tarragon Chicken with Mushrooms Recipe Substitutions and Variations
- If you don’t have the yogurt/milk use the cream, or mix butter and milk together and melt it before adding it to the sauce (since butter is essentially solidified cream)
- The original recipe called for fresh tarragon. I bought some and found it tasted like licorice. Since I don’t particularly like licorice, I wasn’t too happy about that! On the other hand, if you do like licorice, or fresh tarragon, use one small sprig.
- Try using wild mushrooms, like shiitake or chanterelle instead of white button mushrooms; this also works well with dried mushrooms (reconstitute them with hot water to cover and let them sit for five or ten minutes)
Easy Recipes Ready in Under an Hour
The New York Times 60-Minute Gourmet
Here’s the 60 minute gourmet cookbook I got the recipe from. My copy is battered, beat up, and has been loved to pieces. The meals are all fairly easy to make and fast. In addition to the chicken, I recommend the chicken in red wine sauce, the chicken scarpariello, shrimp in creole sauce, broiled lamb patties, london broil with sauce chasseur, and the tongue in dill mustard sauce (which is both tasty and super-easy to make).
Cooking with the 60-Minute Gourmet: 300 Rediscovered Recipes
More from Pierre Franey; these recipes were published in his newspaper column but hadn’t been collected in a cookbook. There are plenty of chicken dinners here too, such as baked chicken breasts stuffed with ricotta and herbs, Indonesian chicken breast, chicken with spicy mango barbecue sauce, shrimp with snow peas, and fettucine with goat cheese and asparagus.
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