Saturday, June 7, 2014

Hello friends! I hope you are having a beautiful afternoon. I am super busy but I wanted to share a test recipe with you with today. I decided to test out Julia Childs Poulet a l'Estragon - which is simply a casserole roasted chicken with tarragon. A friends suggested I try this because she had tried it and it was super delicious. This was the first time I tried this recipe because after all, Julias book is huge! Anyway, if you want to see how to make it, enjoy the video. Also below you will find the full recipe and some additional thoughts about making this dish.

Julia Childs Poulet a l'Estragon 


1 3 pound roasting chicken
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil

3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sliced onions
1/4 cup sliced carrots

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups brown chicken stock, or 1 cup canned beef bouillon and 1 cup canned chicken broth
1 tablespoon corn starch
2 tablespoons Madiera or port or sweet red wine
2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon (or 1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon)
1 tablespoon softened butter

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Thoroughly dry the chicken. Season the cavity of the chicken with salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon of butter. Insert the tarragon sprigs or sprinkle the dried tarragon. Rub the remaining tablespoon of butter on the outside of the chicken. Note: for a fancier presentation, truss the chicken using butcher's twine by folding the wing tips under back of the chicken and tying the drumsticks.

Heat a heavy, fireproof casserole dish over medium-high heat. Add butter and oil. When the butter foam has begun to subside, lay in the chicken, breast down. Brown for 2 to 3 minutes, regulating heat so butter is always very hot but not burning. Carefully turn the chicken to another side, using 2 wooden spoons. Be sure not to break the chicken skin. Continue browning and turning the chicken until it is a nice golden color almost all over, particularly on the breast and legs. This will take 10 to 15 minutes. Add more oil if necessary to keep the bottom of the casserole filmed.

Remove chicken from casserole and set aside. Pour out the browning fat if it has burned, and add fresh butter. Cook the carrots and onions slowly in the casserole for 5 minutes without browning. Add the salt and tarragon.

Salt the chicken. Set it breast up over the vegetables and baste with the butter in the casserole. Lay a piece of aluminum foil over the chicken, cover the casserole, and reheat it on top of the stove until you hear the chicken sizzling. Then place the casserole in preheated oven.

Roast for 1 hour and 15 minutes, regulating heat so chicken is always making quiet cooking noises. Baste once or twice with the butter and juices in the casserole. The chicken is done when the drumsticks move in their sockets, and when juices run clear.

Remove the chicken to a serving platter and discard trussing strings. Add the stock or bouillon and broth to the casserole and simmer for 2 minutes, scraping up coagulated roasting juices. Skim off all but a tablespoon of fat. Blend in the cornstarch mixture, simmer a minute, then raise heat and boil rapidly until sauce is lightly thickened. Taste for seasoning, adding more tarragon if you feel it necessary. Stir in tarragon and butter. Strain before serving.

Serve chicken with sauce along with additional sprigs of fresh tarragon.
Note: recipe from Julia Child, Mastering The Art of French Cooking, Volume One (Vol 1)

  • You brown the entire bird on top of the stove before putting it into the oven. Sorry.. this is just not necessary. Its rather hard and oil can splash up and burn you. You can certainly make a full oven roasted chicken without having to try to get the bird completely brown without breaking the skin. 
  • I suggest roasting it half the time in the oven covered up and then towards the end of cooking, increase the temperature of the oven by about 10 degrees and brown it. 
  • The carrots were amazing. I don't think she intended on them being served as a side dish but they were so good we ate each and every carrot. I would for sure put more in that 1/2 cup. 
  • The sauce was amazing. Like I suggested in the video chicken stock would work just fine by itself but a 1/2 of can of beef stock or bullion just makes it a little richer. 
  • Also its not really necessary to truss the chicken. Save you time. Add the seasonings and butter to the cavity and roast. 
  • I personally think the sauce is heaven. The tarragon flavor is slightly sweet and amazing. I loved it. However I used water instead of alcohol to make the starch into a paste. 
  • This was a great dinner, I just think you can get the same results a lot easier with roasting. 
  • I also think it would be better if you pulled the skin away from the breast and added some tarragon infused butter.

Let me know if you have any questions and also let me know if you try it! 

Have a great day. Ohhh and don't forget to click here to get entered in our latest giveaway! 

If you want to find me buzzing around online, here's where to go! :)
FacebookTwitter | Instagram | Pinterest Youtube Main Channel Youtube Vlogging Channel Bloglovin