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Roast Chicken - How to make French Roast Chicken

Updated on June 30, 2013
Lizam1 profile image

Liza is a passionate self taught creative vegetarian, vegan & gluten free cook/baker. A wine enthusiast, watercolour artist & optimist.

French Roast Chicken

5 stars from 3 ratings of French Roast Chicken

This is an easy to make gourmet roast dinner, adapted from a recipe by Prue Leith. A delicious alternative to plain roast chicken - with a cream reduction gravy. Served with potatoes and buttered carrots - the family will toast you for making this dish - maybe they'll even wash the dishes!

We served two chickens for Easter Dinner instead of turkey.

French Roast Chicken garnished with rosemary, sage (optional) garlic and thyme lighly browned and ready to roast
French Roast Chicken garnished with rosemary, sage (optional) garlic and thyme lighly browned and ready to roast | Source

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 1 hour 30 min
Ready in: 1 hour 45 min
Yields: 4-6


  • 15g 1/2oz butter
  • 1 tbls vegetable oil
  • 1.6kg/3 lb 8oz whole roasting chicken
  • celery salt
  • ground black pepper
  • 12 sprigs fresh rosemary and thyme
  • fresh sprigs sage (optional)
  • 15ml 1/4pt chicken stock
  • 3 tblsp double or whipping cream
  • OPTIONAL EXTRA add 2tblsp white wine or brandy to cold stock
  1. pre-heat oven to 400F or 200C or Gas mark 6. Melt butter with oil in large pan and lighlty brown chicken back, front and sides for about 5 minutes. Turn constantly. Reserve cooking juices in the frying pan.
  2. Transfer chicken to roasting pan or dish with a cover and season with pepper, celery salt, tuck garlic gloves or ground garlic under the legs with about 4 sprigs each of rosemary and thyme and place 2 sprigs rosemary and thyme and sage (optional) of the back of the chicken. Add 2fl oz of cold stock (add wine or brandy if using)
  3. Cover and cook the chicken for 50 minutes, uncover and cook for 20 minutes - timing depends on size of chicken - lengthen time if using larger or more than one chicken. Do not over cook.
  4. Transfer chicken to a serving dish and keep warm in a low oven whilst preparing the sauce.
  5. Strain juices from roasting dish into the frying pan. Pour in the reserved chicken stock and boil stirring constantly until it reduces by half. Allow to cool slightly and add in cream.
  6. Serve chicken with roast potatoes, butter carrots and roasted onions or other vegetables. Pour sauce into gravy boat to accompany. Garnish chicken with remaining sprigs of rosemary and thyme for presentation.


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    • Lizam1 profile image

      Lizam1 4 years ago from Victoria BC

      You are welcome it is a tried and tested family favourite.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      I like roasted chicken and will love to try this recipe. Thanks for sharing.

      Voted up and gave 5 stars.

    • Lizam1 profile image

      Lizam1 5 years ago from Victoria BC

      healthylife2 - it really is easy and your guests/family will love it. The quality of the chicken is important so I do try to use organic or farm fresh:-)

    • healthylife2 profile image

      Healthy Life 5 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      This looks delicious. I'm not the best cook but this looks like something even I could make.

    • Lizam1 profile image

      Lizam1 5 years ago from Victoria BC

      I hope you enjoy. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Vincent Moore 5 years ago

      I can't wait to try this alternative method to roasting a whole chicken. I buy range fed chickens only and enjoy their flavors over the regular ones. This should be a savory taste and being single I will have lots of leftovers to enjoy. Thank you for this tasty method of cooking a chicken.

    • Lizam1 profile image

      Lizam1 5 years ago from Victoria BC

      Thanks for reading Jackie - it is very good - I used to associate Rosemary with lamb and I also find it wonderful on sausages baked in the oven with olive oil.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 5 years ago from The Beautiful South

      This sounds very good, I love rosemary on chicken.