Poaching is an overlooked method for cooking chicken breast. The gentle, even heat of barely simmering water results in juicy, tender meat that is perfect for shredding into a quick soup or making into chicken salad. Here, poached chicken is paired with salsa verde herb sauce based on flavorful staples you may already have on hand.
Poached Chicken with Salsa Verde
6 Boneless chicken breasts, about 175 g /6 oz each
500 ml/1 pint Chicken stock, preferably homemade
For the salsa verde:
2 teaspoon Capers
3 tablespoon Freshly chopped mint
4 tablespoon Freshly chopped parsley
2 tablespoon Chopped gherkins (optional)
2 tablespoon Lemon juice or red wine vinegar
125 ml/4 fl oz Extra virgin olive oil
1 handful Wild rocket leaves, chopped (optional)
2 Garlic cloves, chopped
3 Anchovy fillets in olive oil, drained and finely chopped (optional)
Sprigs of mint, to garnish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Freshly cooked vegetables, to serve
Place the chicken breasts with the stock in a large frying pan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until cooked. Leave to cool in the stock.
To make the salsa verde, switch the motor on a food processor, then drop in the garlic cloves and chop finely. Add the parsley and mint and, using the pulse button, pulse 2-3 times. Acid the capers and, if using, add the gherkins, anchovies and rocket. Pulse 2-3 times until the sauce is evenly textured.
With the machine still running, pour in the lemon juice or red wine vinegar, then add the olive oil in a slow, steady stream until the sauce is smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then transfer to a large serving bowl and reserve.
Carve each chicken breast into thick slices and arrange on serving plates, fanning out the slices slightly. Spoon over a little of the salsa verde on to each chicken breast, garnish with sprigs of mint and serve immediately with freshly cooked vegetables.
Serve it hot, or chill the chicken for a delightful brunch entree that can be served with a salad.