Do you not like tarragon? Page 1 / 2

paora-tm, Mar 14, 5:57am
I don't use it that often but as I have it growing I decided to look for a recipe to use it. It surprised me to see so many people either not personally liking it or knowing other people who didn't like it which made me feel unsure about offering a tarragon dish to dinner guests. Maybe some cooks add too much of it. Anyway, I ended up making a simple Chicken breasts in dijon mustard, tarragon and cream sauce. http://allrecipes.com/recipe/dijon-tarragon-cream-chicken/ although I cut back on both the dijon and the tarragon because I wasn't sure I would like so much of either in the sauce and I'm glad I did. A dessertspoon of dijon and a teaspoon of tarragon really is enough. So easy and so delicious.


socram, Mar 14, 6:02am
One of the few things I haven't really warmed to either. Whenever I have had it when eating out, I haven't enjoyed the sauce at all.

eastie3, Mar 14, 6:20am
I agree.
Nigella, Nigel et al, all said tarragon was the herb to use with chicken,but I dislike it and feel the same way about fennel, and five spice for that matter. I do like pastis,ouzo and aniseed, and other similar strong tastes.
Maybe it's just the alcoholic version that appeals.

davidt4, Mar 14, 6:49am
I love tarragon and use it almost every day in the season. It's one of my favourite herbs.

If anyone would like some recipes that use it let me know.

samanya, Mar 14, 6:52am
Russian Tarragon is the poor relation of the French Tarragon & I've never seen French Tarragon for sale, only the Russian one.
I do have some French Tarragon, only because I nicked if from a restaurant herb garden. I recognised it as the real 'McCoy' & got caught by the chef in the act of getting a rooted piece, (very embarrassing) but he was only too happy because he knew that I would value it & yes, I use it when a recipe states, but wouldn't bother with it's poor relative as a substitute.
Signed Ms thief. ;o)

paora-tm, Mar 14, 9:40am
We have French - from Kings Plant Barn.

paora-tm, Mar 14, 9:40am
Heck, why not. Please. Thank you. :)

davidt4, Mar 14, 8:46pm
Chicken, tomatoes, tarragon (Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall)

serves 6

1 large free range chicken, jointed
2 tab olive oil
125 ml white wine
juice of ½ lemon
500g tomatoes, halved or quartered
large bunch of tarragon, leaves only, coarsely chopped
salt and pepper

Heat oven to 190 C. Heat large frying pan. Season chicken, brown in olive oil, transfer to baking pan.

Deglaze frying pan with wine, add to pan with lemon juice and more seasoning. Cover and bake 30 min.

Add tomatoes, nestling them cut side up among the chicken pieces. Bake uncovered 20 - 30 min until chicken is tender and tomatoes soft and blistered.

Scatter most of the tarragon over, toss to mix, leave to stand a few minutes. Sprinkle remaining tarragon over to serve.

Parsley works well instead of tarragon - three times the quantity.

davidt4, Mar 14, 8:46pm
Roasted Mushrooms with Tarragon & Crème Fraîche

serves 4

12 large flat mushrooms

80 ml olive oil
2 tab lemon juice
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tab parsley, finely chopped
60 ml crème fraîche
2 tsp lemon juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tsp tarragon, chopped

Heat oven to 200C.

In large roasting tin combine oil, lemon juice and garlic. Add mushrooms and turn to coat well. Season to taste and arrange in a single layer, Roast 30 min, turning occasionally.

Combine crème fraiche, lemon juice, garlic and tarragon.

Serve mushrooms hot in a flat dish with cooking juices spooned over, parsley and crème fraiche drizzled over just before serving.

samanya, Mar 14, 10:48pm
Gosh, I have never seen it for sale down here & I looked for a long time before I 'acquired' mine. I have a feeling the it has to be propagated by root division as it doesn't grow too well from seed . not 100% sure though.

davidt4, Mar 14, 10:51pm
Yes, French tarragon does not set seed and is propagated by root division only.

paora-tm, Mar 14, 10:56pm
Perfect, thank you. Easy preparation and not too many ingredients suits me. Cheers.

lythande1, Mar 15, 3:20am
I dislike all the aniseed flavoured herbs.
And garlic.

gearbox1, Mar 15, 3:55am
I have used and eaten almost all herbs but never tried tarragon. Used it a few months ago - it was so vile, I wouldn't touch it again with a barge pole !

awoftam, Mar 15, 7:38am
Ahhhhh, but do you? I have been growing Tarragon for decades and many people think they have French when they actually have Russian. It is a Russian herb so it all gets very confusing lol this is an interesting article:

http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/newsletters/hortupdate/2009/jan09/Tarragon.html

fifie, Mar 15, 8:47am
Tarragon is good in vinegars stir into cream sauce and serve with chicken.

paora-tm, Mar 15, 10:48pm
I just have to take King's word for that - they do label it as French Tarragon. How do you tell the difference?

davidt4, Mar 15, 11:19pm
Russian tarragon is a bigger, more vigorous plant and has no particular flavour - it tastes like any green weed. French tarragon is a more delicate plant and has a strong aniseed taste and scent.

strebor1, Mar 16, 1:02am
I always sprinkle a small amount of tarragon into a mushroom based dish, or when cooking fish. The trick I think, is not to overdo it. It certainly does enhance these two flavours though.

luvmykicks, Mar 16, 1:58am
My business sells french tarragon. We stock most bunnings in the north island Under the herb Herbert brand. We only do french tarragon and is always done by cuttings

buzzy110, Mar 16, 3:53am
Until I saw the debate in here and looked at pictures of Russian tarragon, I'd never heard of it. I have never, ever seen Russian Tarragon being sold as 'French Tarragon' in Auckland. In fact, I've only seen tarragon on sale once in my life so I snapped it up. My own plant is definitely French but it was only labelled 'tarragon' when I bought it. The vendor obviously either hadn't heard of Russian tarragon or he is more ethical than plant sellers south of Auckland.

drommy, Mar 16, 4:29am
I like it, but find that it tastes a bit tobacco-y if there's too much in a dish.

mazzy1, Mar 16, 4:35am
I have a little Tarragon plant growing happily in a pot. Last night I made a super fast dinner; sautéed onions, red peppers, zucchini in a pan with a little salt, then shredded some leftover poached chicken, added some crème fraiche, garnished with a tablespoon of tarragon and served it on some mung bean fettucine- it all took about 8 or 9 minutes and tasted delicious!

samanya, Mar 16, 4:36am
I don't think anyone said that retailers were selling the inferior Russian Tarragon as French Tarragon.
The point is. many people wanting to add to their herb garden, might not know that Russian is not what recipes require & are disappointed in the flavour if they use the Russian type.
I'd be wary of buying any plant labelled just 'Tarragon' thinking it was the real French variety. One has to be experienced in the use to recognise the genuine thing.
How did you ascertain that you did buy the genuine French herb?

samanya, Mar 16, 4:38am
You are so right. The Russian leaves are darker green, bigger, courser etc & the plant is way more robust, in my experience

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