Chicken in Orange and Tarragon Sauce

For the French night on our world tour I chose Chicken in Orange and Tarragon Sauce for my husband.

As with the other fresh herbs, when we got to the supermarket, which as I already mentioned is over 200kms away, I discovered that I couldn’t get any tarragon.  Now, I know at this stage I should have changed my choice, gone for something I could get all the right ingredients for, but we were over 2 hours from home, and there was no way that we could go back to let me get a list of ingredients for something else, so dried tarragon would have to do.

I did research the quantities of dried vs fresh to make sure I got it as close as I could without the fresh herb.  I know that the fresh herb would have been so much better, but again I had to make do with what I could get.

And, from my husband’s reaction, and the fact he ate two breasts, it must have been okay.

It is a really simple recipe, the only slightly awkward moment came when my puppy decided he must go outside NOW as I was in the middle of reducing the sauce.  But all ended well, with Bob and the sauce getting all the attention they needed.

Chicken Breast in Orange Tarragon Sauce

  • 4 chicken breasts, skin on and wing bone attached
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 sprigs tarragon
  • 4 TBS unsalted butter, cut into bits


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Put 2 tablespoons of the butter and 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a large skillet and place it over high heat for 2 minutes. Season the chicken breasts with a sprinkling of salt and pepper and place 4 of the breasts in the pan skin side down. Sear for 1 minute or until the skin is crispy and a golden brown. Turn the breasts and sear 1 more minute. Remove to a baking dish and repeat the process with the rest of the butter, oil and breasts. Place the baking dish into the oven for 10 to 15 minutes.

Add orange juice, chicken broth, and tarragon to the hot skillet. Cook until reduced by about 3/4 (sauce should coat the back of a spoon). Right before serving, whisk in the butter. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Serve the chicken with the sauce spooned over the top.