With the days getting warmer I find myself turning to salads more often and with the fresh local produce starting to come in it is getting easier. I came across this recipe for a chicken and asparagus salad with a creamy tarragon dressing in the latest issue of Food and Drink. Several things about this salad caught my attention with the primary one being how green it was and how perfectly Spring that was. With the local asparagus coming in already I just had to wait a bit for the local peas to show up at the farmers market and I was all set to go. In general I really like salads like this where you can easily add some meat and turn it into a light meal. I also liked the sound of both poaching the chicken with tarragon and the creamy tarragon dressing as tarragon is a herb that I enjoy but rarely use. Salads are generally pretty easy to make and this one was no exception. The chicken and asparagus salad with a creamy tarragon dressing was really good and I certainly got my tarragon fix. The tarragon dressing was nice and creamy and and I enjoyed the use of the capers in it. During the Spring/Summer when I can get fresh peas I like to use them in salads like this straight from the pods without any cooking and that is what I did this time. This salad was a really nice light Spring meal!
Chicken and Asparagus Salad with Creamy Tarragon Dressing
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 small onion (peeled and quartered)
- 1 teaspoon tarragon, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 (6 ounce) chicken breasts
- 3 cups baby spinach (or other salad greens)
- 1/2 pound asparagus (cleaned and trimmed)
- 1/4 cup peas
- 1/4 cup pine nuts (toasted)
- Bring the chicken broth, onion, tarragon and bay leaf to a boil in a large pan, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add the chicken and simmer, covered, for 6 minutes turning once in the middle.
- Remove from heat and let the chicken cool in the broth.
- Steam the asparagus and peas (if using frozen) until tender, about 4 minutes and 1 minute respectively.
- Cut the chicken into slices.
- Assemble the salad and pour on the dressing.
Creamy Tarragon Dressing
- 1 tablespoon plain yogurt
- 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon capers (chopped)
- 1 teaspoon tarragon (chopped)
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic (chopped)
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- salt and pepper to taste
- Mix everything.