I didn't do anything too involved to truss the chicken (ie: chicken bondage to help it cook more evenly). After the cavity of the chicken was filled, I just used some cotton butcher's string and criss-crossed the legs. I also wrapped the string around the legs around the tail nub, then finished with bow. Sometimes chickens have the tails removed or are really small, so you can't always do this. I also pulled the wing in the opposite direction so they held tight across the back. I don't think it's necessary to do any involved trussing because the casserole method pretty much ensures even cooking. I do want to comment that you should be sure to use cotton butcher's string. You don't want to use some questionable string and end up having melted plastic in your food a la Bridget Jones's Diary, where she used blue plastic string and ended up with blue soup!
*Be sure to save the chicken bones after the chicken is cooked. I save several chicken's worth of bones in zip-lock bags that I store in the freezer to make broth. Also, do you see all those amazing juices from the chicken and vegetables mingling with the melted butter? Save those for your broth, use them for a sauce, or serve them as jus with the sliced chicken! Those pan drippings are full of flavor!
Edit: please check out the food blog Champaign Taste for a view of other great Julia Child recipes contributed by other food bloggers in CT's 5th Annual Julia Child Birthday Celebration!
Julia Child's Poulet Poele a l'Estragon (Casserole-Roasted Chicken with Tarragon)
7 tbsp butter (I only used a scant 3), divided
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp dried tarragon, or 8 fresh springs, divided
3/4 tsp salt, divided
pinch black pepper
1/2 cup sliced onions
1/4 cup sliced carrots
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
2. Add one of the tbsp of butter into the cavity of the chicken, then sprinkle in 1/4 tsp salt, some pepper, and 1/2 tsp tarragon. Truss the chicken.
3. Heat 2 tbsp of the butter and the oil in the casserole dish over medium heat. Add the chicken and brown on all sides; regulate the temperature so that the butter doesn't brown too much. Set the browned chicken aside.
4. Add the vegetables to the chicken drippings and butter mixture. If the butter became too browned, drain the grease away and add the 2 tbsp fresh butter, then add the vegetables. Sweat the vegetables over low heat with the remaining tarragon, 1/4 tsp salt, and some pepper.
5. Set the chicken breast-side up on top of the cooked vegetables, then sprinkle with the remaining salt and pepper and dot with the remaining butter.
6. Roast for 1 hour and 10-to-20 minutes until the chicken is opaque and the juices run clear.
- Servings per recipe: 6
- Per serving:
- Calories: 495
- Fat: 23.4 g
- Saturated fat: 8.4 g
- Cholesterol: 217 mg
- Sodium: 530 mg
- Carbohydrates: 1.4 g
- Sugar: 0.6 g
- Protein: 65.8 g