Whole Roasted Tarragon Chicken with Roasted Chantenay Carrots

Whole Roasted Tarragon Chicken with Roasted Chantenay Carrots


  • one 3 1/2 pound roaster chicken, preferably organic and free-range
  • 2 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspon dried tarragon
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 cup water
  • 6 large Chantenay or regular carrots (peeled, cut into 4-inch sticks)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil


For Whole Roasted Tarragon Chicken:

Remove the giblets and neck from the chicken. Set chicken aside, covered, in a cool place.

Juice the lemons and reserve the juice. Chop up the lemon rind and place it in a small bowl. Add the tarragon, crushed garlic, and salt.

Stuff the cavity of the chicken with the lemon rind mixture and truss the legs together with butcher’s twine. Combine the reserved lemon juice, minced garlic, shallot, paprika, pepper, brown sugar, canola oil, Worcestershire, mustard, and coriander in a bowl large enough to accommodate the chicken and whisk until well combined.

Immerse the chicken in the marinade. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Place the chicken, breast side up, in a casserole dish or roasting pan. Pour the marinade over the top of the chicken; bake for 20 minutes. Turn the chicken so the breast side is down, add the water to the dish, and bake for an additional 20 minutes. Flip the chicken again; reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees, and bake for another 20 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven and lift the chicken out, letting the juices drain into the pan. Place the chicken on a cutting board, cover with aluminum foil, and let rest for 15 minutes.

Strain the juices from the pan through a fine-mesh sieve into a large saucepan. With a small ladle or spoon, skim any fat off the surface and discard. Heat the liquid over medium heat and reduce by half, about 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Carve the breast and legs and place on a serving platter, spooning the sauce over the top.

For Roasted Chantenay Carrots:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Place the carrots in a medium-size bowl and toss with tarragon, salt, and zest. Heat a medium cast-iron skillet over high heat for 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and add the oil. Heat for 30 seconds, then add the carrots.

Cook for 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Place the skillet in the oven and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the carrots are golden brown.


4 servings


This recipe is courtesy of Chef Frank McClelland, world-class chef and owner of L’Espalier restaurant in Boston. He is one of the nation’s master chefs and was early to embrace the farm-to-table or "locavore" dining philosophy. This recipe is from his cookbook Wine Mondays: Simple Wine Pairings with Seasonal Menus.

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  • Nutrition Tip

    Lemons are a wonderful flavor addition to any recipe. Not only do they lend fresh taste they can also help to provide important antioxidants like Vitamin C and cancer fighting phytonutrients like limonene, shown to help reduce risk in certain cancers like breast cancer.

    Lemons also boast anti-nausea properties. Combining lemon with protein-rich, free-range/organic chicken can enable patients undergoing treatment who are feeling queasy to more easily eat the protein-rich foods their body needs.

    Tarragon and chicken is a match made in heaven — a classic, tried and true, French combination. Tarragon has aromatic, lemony nuances that bring out the flavor in the chicken.

    Chantenay carrots are the sweetest on the market. They are a French variety left in the ground until the ground freezes, which boosts their sugar content. You can usually find them in late fall and winter, but regular carrots work just fine, too.

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