For the chicken: Place the chicken in a pot and add the bay leaves, carrots, celery, lemons
, rosemary, thyme and some salt. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and poach
the chicken for 1 hour. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones and separate the meat into bite-size pieces. Strain
the stock and reserve.
For the pasta: Meanwhile, heat the butter
and EVOO in a saucepan over medium-low to medium heat. Add the fennel
and onions and cook very slowly until they are very sweet and soft, 20 to 25 minutes (do not let the onions brown). Deglaze
the pan with the wine
, scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon.
Transfer the fennel mixture to a blender
or food processor
and add the heavy cream
and 1 cup reserved poaching liquid (or chicken stock
). Puree until smooth, then return the mixture to the pot, season with salt and white pepper and simmer
over low heat to thicken the sauce a little, 10 to 15 minutes. Add one-third of the chicken to the sauce and reserve the remaining chicken for another use.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta and season with salt. Cook the pasta until al dente
. Scoop out a bit of the cooking liquid and add it to the sauce to thin it slightly. Drain
the pasta, then add it to the sauce and toss to combine. Garnish
the pasta with the pine nuts, cheese
, fennel fronds and tarragon
Cook's Note: If you are not serving the chicken immediately, cool the chicken-sauce mixture and refrigerate. Reheat in a saucepan
over medium-low heat.