Tarragon-walnut chicken salad
Makes 4 servings
The distinctively, seductively nutty flavor and aroma of walnut oil is the essence of this salad. Serve it over red-leaf lettuce leaves or a mixture of signature greens, such as endive, chicory, and escarole.
7 ounces (about 3 cups) farfalle (bow tie pasta)
1 tablespoon olive oil
12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 3-inch by ½-inch strips
Dash of freshly ground pepper, or to taste
For the Walnut Vinaigrette
¼ cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons walnut oil, preferably roasted
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
¼ cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon or 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
? teaspoon freshly ground pepper, or to taste
Dash of salt, or to taste
To complete the recipe
3 plum tomatoes, each cut into 6 wedges
2 green onions, coarsely chopped
8 leaves red-leaf lettuce
Freshly ground pepper and toasted chopped walnuts for garnish
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat; add the farfalle. When the water returns to a boil, stir occasionally to separate the farfalle. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook until al dente, about 12 to 14 minutes, or according to package instructions.
While the bow ties are cooking, heat the oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken; cook, stirring occasionally, until it is lightly browned and cooked through, about 5 to 6 minutes.
While the farfalle and chicken are cooking, whisk together the vinegar, walnut oil, lemon juice, and mustard in a small bowl; stir in the remaining vinaigrette ingredients.
When the chicken is done, transfer it to a plate and lightly sprinkle with pepper; allow to cool. When the farfalle is done, drain and rinse well in cold water, then drain again.
Transfer the farfalle to a large bowl. Add the chicken, tomatoes, and green onions; toss. Add the vinaigrette and toss again. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Serve the chicken salad atop the lettuce leaves arranged on individual salad plates.
The vinaigrette will keep in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. The completed salad can be made early the day it is to be served; allow it to come to room temperature and assemble the plates with the lettuce leaves just before serving.