Poached Chicken with Lemon Vinaigrette
- Juice of 2 lemons
- 1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- Pinch of sugar
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 6 to 8 stems fresh tarragon, leaves reserved and chopped finely for vinaigrette
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1 cup sherry
- 1 stalk celery, roughly chopped
- 1/2 white onion, coarsely chopped
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, split
To make the vinaigrette, combine lemon juice, white-wine vinegar, mustard, and sugar in a small bowl. In a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly, drizzle in the olive oil until the mixture is thick and emulsified. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in chopped tarragon, and set aside.
Make a bouquet garni: Tie tarragon stems, thyme, bay leaves, and peppercorns in a small square of cheesecloth. Combine the bouquet garni, sherry, celery, onion, and 5 cups water in a medium pot, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat, and let simmer for 5 minutes.
Season chicken breasts on both sides with salt. Add to the gently simmering liquid, and cook until firm and the juices run clear when pierced with a two-pronged fork, 10 to 12 minutes.
Remove the breasts from the poaching liquid, and arrange on serving plates. Drizzle with the lemon vinaigrette.