Spring Turkey Ragout with Lemon and Tarragon

Preparation info

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    • Difficulty


Appears in

Lighter, Quicker, Better: Cooking for the Way We Eat Today

Lighter, Quicker, Better

By Richard Sax and Marie Simmons

Published 2000

  • About

Boneless turkey thighs, which are moist and succulent, can stand in for beef and other meats in stews and braised dishes. The dark meat is higher in fat than the breast meat (hence its juiciness), but by combining the dark meat with plenty of vegetables, you can make a healthier stew with plenty of turkey flavor. Serve it with barley, noodles, rice, or another carbohydrate side dish.


  • 2 boneless turkey thighs, skin and fat trimmed, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons (all-purpose) flour
  • Salt and Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 scallions, white and green parts sliced separately
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup low-sodium canned chicken broth, fat skimmed
  • 1 cup carrots cut into 1½-inch lengths, available in 16-ounce bags
  • 1 cup cubed (1 inch) scrubbed new potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon or 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
  • 1 cup cubed (1 inch) scrubbed zucchini
  • 1 cup cubed (1 inch) scrubbed yellow crookneck squash or yellow squash
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest


    1. Put the turkey thighs, flour, ¼ teaspoon salt, and a grinding of black pepper in a bag and shake to coat the turkey. Heat the oil in a large deep skillet, preferably nonstick, over medium heat. Add the turkey, shaking off any excess flour, and cook, turning with tongs, until it has browned evenly, about 6 minutes. Transfer the turkey to a plate. Add the sliced white part of the scallion to the pan and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
    2. Add the wine and boil, stirring the pan with a wooden spoon or spatula to scrape up any browned bits, until the wine is reduced to a thick, syrupy glaze. Return the turkey and any juices to the skillet. Add the broth, carrots, potatoes, half of the fresh tarragon or all of the dried, a pinch of salt, and a grinding of pepper. Cover and simmer over medium heat until the turkey and carrots are tender, about 20 minutes.
    3. Add the zucchini, yellow squash, sliced scallion tops, lemon zest, and the remaining fresh tarragon, if using. Cover and cook just until the squash is crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Taste, add additional salt and pepper, if desired, and serve.