Tarragon Chicken and Leeks

, from Issue #85. July, 2019
Photography by Olivia Galletly.
Tarragon Chicken and Leeks

Crispy-skinned chicken baked in sweet leeks and cream makes for an easy and extremely comforting dish! Serve with fettuccine pasta or crusty French bread.

Serves: 5


45 grams butter
2 leeks, white and pale green parts only, cut into 5mm rings
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon brown sugar
¼ cup chopped fresh tarragon
500ml good-quality chicken stock
⅓ cup dry white wine
5 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
½ teaspoon table salt
½ cup cream


Preheat the oven to 170°C.

Melt 25 grams of the butter in a large cast iron pan over a low heat. Add the leeks, garlic, sugar and 3 tablespoons of the tarragon and sweat for 8-10 minutes, or until soft and caramelising. Add the chicken stock and wine and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat.

Pat chicken skins dry with a paper towel. Rub remaining 20 grams of butter over each chicken skin then sprinkle with a pinch of salt and remaining chopped tarragon. Place chicken thighs on top of leeks and bake for 1 hour, or until chicken is golden brown and cooked through.

Place cast iron pan on the stovetop over a medium heat. Remove chicken from pan and set aside. Add the cream to leeks and simmer for 5 minutes. Return chicken to pan and heat through before serving.