Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce

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Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce
Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce

We are always looking for ways to improve the humble chicken breast. Let’s be honest, chicken can really be underwhelming, and often leaves us board and unmotivated. Well, this Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce is absolutely magical and a delight for the tastebuds!

What are Golden Berries?

I would put golden berries in the category of underused and even unknown in the United States. These beautiful fruits are about the size of a small cherry tomato with an outside texture like a tomatillo, and they are full of flavor. Golden Berries are also known as the Peruvian groundcherry or Cape gooseberry and they are more commonly found in South America.

What do Golden Berries taste like?

We’ve read numerous descriptions on how to describe the Golden Berry flavor, but what sticks with us is lemon, cherry, and a hint of mango. They are tart-sweet and are perfect to use in a sauce. If you can’t find golden berries, substitute the juice and zest of a large lemon and your sauce will still be great, although different.

Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce
Golden Berries add a little something special to this dish with their sweet and tart flavors.

Why choose pink peppercorns?

I’m not sure if pink peppercorns (which are not actually peppercorns at all) can be considered little known or exotic anymore. But do yourself a favor and get some and start experimenting. Their flavor is unique and certainly not comparable to black, green, or white peppercorns. There is some spiciness and sweetness, and they work perfectly in this dish with the sweet-tart golden berries and rich cream. 

And if you fall in love with pink peppercorns and want more recipes using them, check out our Pear Sage and Pink Peppercorn Martini or these delicious Grapefruit Bars with Pink Peppercorns by Leisure Fan Club.

Browning the Chicken

Resting the seasoned chicken in the refrigerator prior to browning is purposeful and twofold:

Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce
The Pink Peppercorn Chicken is great on its own, but the sauce takes this to new heights!
  1. The drier the chicken, the better and quicker the browning process will be. This also promotes flavor, as the butter and chicken interact without excess moisture that must be evaporated.
  2. Secondly, by seasoning the chicken and refrigerating we are creating a similar effect as brining a chicken in salted liquid. This dry-brine is very useful for chicken and pork and will produce a juicer chicken breast in the end.

So we highly recommend that you don’t skip the resting step in this recipe for best results.

Reducing the Sauce

Now, you may have noticed that this recipe calls for the sauce to gently reduce. And you may be thinking, “I ain’t got time for that!” Well, please do us a favor and make the time for it!

Honestly, the sauce will be far better if you give it time to reduce so that the flavors can meld. And you don’t have to hover over it while it reduces, so you can spend this time doing something fun like listening to a podcast or scrolling mindlessly through TikTok. Just make sure you give the sauce its time!

Enjoy!

We hope you enjoy this recipe for Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce! If you give it a try, leave us a comment and tell us how you liked it below! Or tag us on Instagram @cooking_with_wine!

Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce
Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce

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Pink Peppercorn Chicken with Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce

Course: DinnerCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

1

hour 
Total time

1

hour 

10

minutes

This Pink Peppercorn Chicken is a delight for the tastebuds! The magical Golden Berry Tarragon Cream Sauce elevates this easy chicken recipe!

Ingredients

  • For the Chicken
  • 4 small chicken breasts, boneless and skinless

  • ¼ cup pink peppercorns

  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt

  • 3 Tbsp butter

  • ¼ cup dry white wine

  • For the Sauce
  • 2 tsp olive oil

  • 1 medium shallot – small dice

  • 1 tsp kosher salt – divided

  • ¾ cup white wine

  • 1 Tbsp pink peppercorns

  • 4 sprigs tarragon

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 20 golden berries, halved

  • 1 ½ cups chicken stock – divided

  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • Garnish/Toppings
  • Finely chopped tarragon

  • Halved golden berries

Directions

  • Prepare the Chicken
  • Trim the chicken breasts, and if very thick on one end, gently pound the chicken to get somewhat uniform thickness. Dry the chicken with paper towels and set on a cutting board. In a small skillet, toast the pink peppercorns over medium heat until fragrant – about 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool in a small bowl.
  • Once the peppercorns are cool, grind them in a spice grinder, mortar and pestle or crush them in a zip lock bag with a glass or pot. Season the chicken breasts on both sides with the pink peppercorns and salt.
  • Put the chicken on a rack over a sheet tray and place in the refrigerator uncovered while you begin the sauce (see blog content above for more info on why we do this).
  • Make the Sauce
  • Heat a medium saucepan on medium heat. Add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the shallots and ½ tsp of the salt to the saucepan. Sauté the shallots for several minutes until they are translucent and soft, without browning them.
  • Add the wine, peppercorns, tarragon sprigs, bay leaf, and golden berries. Cook on medium heat until there is just about 1 tablespoon of liquid left in the pan. Add 1 cup of the chicken stock and reduce the heat a little (it should be gently simmering not hard boiling). Again, reduce the stock until there is about 1 tablespoon of liquid, this will take about 25 minutes.
  • Once reduced, add the remaining stock and stir. Strain the mixture, gently pressing the solids to extract all liquid. Return the liquid to the pan and discard the solids.
  • Continue to reduce until there is about ¼ cup of liquid and then add the cream and remaining ½ tsp of salt. Reduce until the cream is thickened into a thicker sauce consistency and the flavors intensify. The entire sauce cooking process should take about an hour. Taste for seasoning and add salt if needed. Keep warm, covered, until the chicken is done. The sauce can be gently reheated if it cools too much.
  • Cook the Chicken
  • Remove the chicken from the refrigerator 10 minutes prior to beginning to cook it. Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat, add the butter until it melts. Add the chicken to the pan and cook for about 2 minutes per side or until the chicken browns. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pan. Turn the chicken a few times during the process until it is done – about 6-8 more minutes. The internal temperature of the chicken should be 165°F. Remove the chicken to a cutting board cover loosely with foil and let rest for about 3-5 minutes. Slice the chicken and serve with the sauce and garnishes.

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