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Vermouth, Leek and Tarragon Pan Sauce


Makes enough for 4 chicken breasts or 8 chicken cutlets

2 teaspoons vegetable oil (if needed)

1 medium leek, white part only, halved lengthwise, sliced 1/4 inch thick, and rinsed thoroughly

1 teaspoon unbleached all-purpose flour

3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth

1/2 cup dry vermouth or white wine

1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter

2 teaspoons minced fresh tarragon leaves

1 teaspoon whole-grain mustard

Salt and ground black pepper

1. After removing the chicken from the skillet, add the oil (if needed) and the leek and cook over medium-high heat until softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the flour and cook for 30 seconds.

2. Stir in the broth and vermouth, scraping up any browned bits. Bring to a simmer and cook until the sauce measures 3/4 cup, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in any accumulated chicken juices, return to a simmer, and cook for 30 seconds.

3. Off the heat, whisk in the butter, tarragon, and mustard. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

From The Best Chicken Recipes. Copyright © 2008 by the Editors of Cook's Illustrated.

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