Updated: Jul 10, 2021
I adore the traditional Dijon chicken with flambéed with cognac, heavy cream and tarragon. It is SO rich though. I wanted to replicate the experience but as something the whole family can enjoy. This is generally an autumnal treat in our household, though it's fine any time of the year! My kids love it, too. Especially served with crushed or mashed potatoes and winter greens.
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
8-10 chicken thighs, bone in, with or without skin
2 Tbsp butter
2 banana shallots or 1 large onion, finely-diced
2 sticks celery, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed
3 heaped teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp plain flour
a large handful of fresh tarragon leaves
Juice of half a lemon
500mL chicken stock
3 heaped Tbsp crème fraîche
salt and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a large sauté pan or stovetop casserole over a high heat.
Brown the chicken thighs all over until a deep golden, starting skin side down, and remove from the pan.
Turn the heat down to medium and add the butter to the pan. Add the celery, shallots and garlic and sweat until soft. Stir the mustard through, then add the flour and stir vigorously for a few minutes.
Add the stock and lemon juice little by little, as the sauce thickens. When you've added all the stock, return the chicken to the pan with half the tarragon leaves and stir. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Season with some salt and pepper. Check one of the chicken thighs to ensure they're cooked through to the bone. Add the crème fraîche and stir through. Simmer for another 5 minutes.
To serve, add the rest of the tarragon leaves to the pan and stir through. Serve with greens and crusty bread , rice or crushed potatoes.
The version in the picture has a little wholegrain mustard too as I ran out of Dijon! It's fine - but I do prefer it with Dijon alone. If you're a wholegrain mustard fan though, go for it!