The Silver Palate Cookbook’s Tarragon Chicken Salad

Tarragon Chicken Salad

This classic chicken salad from The Silver Palate Cookbook is one that's worth learning by heart.

Serves4 to 6

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Credit: Ariel Knutson

We feel this is a chicken salad with style as well as substance. It is dressy enough to serve as a main course, delicious in a sandwich, and so simple to assemble that you’ll soon know the recipe by heart. We adore this recipe and think it’s pretty safe to say that it wears well — it has for decades now. You can always vary it by using black walnuts, or by tossing in some green grapes or dried cranberries.

Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins’ The Silver Palate Cookbook is Kitchn’s March pick for our Cookbook Club. See how you can participate here.

Tarragon Chicken Salad

This classic chicken salad from The Silver Palate Cookbook is one that's worth learning by heart.

Serves 4 to 6

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • About 3 pounds

    boneless, skinless whole chicken breasts

  • 1 cup

    crème fraîche or heavy cream

  • 1/2 cup

    sour cream

  • 1/2 cup

    mayonnaise, preferably Hellmann's

  • 2

    celery ribs, cut into 1-inch-long pencil strips

  • 1/2 cup

    shelled walnuts

  • 1 tablespoon

    crumbled dried tarragon

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  2. Arrange the chicken breasts in a single layer in a large jelly-roll pan. Spread evenly with the crème fraîche and bake until cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool.

  3. Shred the meat into bite-size pieces and transfer to a bowl.

  4. Whisk the sour cream and mayonnaise together in a small bowl and pour over the chicken mixture.

  5. Add the celery, walnuts, tarragon, and salt and pepper, and toss well.

  6. Refrigerate, covered, for at least 4 hours. Taste and correct the seasoning before serving.

Recipe Notes

Note: Use the accumulated juices from the jelly-roll pan to enrich soups or sauces.

Reprinted with permission from The Silver Palate Cookbook by Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins, 2007. Published by Workman Publishing Company; Anniversary Edition.