Art is the Handmaid of Human Good

Life in Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

There’s a first time for everything…



I love roast chicken (who deosn’t, right?) It has always been one of my favorite foods. True confession time: up until this point, I had roasted one chicken in my life and it was a miserable failure. When I tell people this, they are shocked. I get a lot of “But roast chicken is so easy…” and “I don’t even cook, and I can make a roast chicken.” For many of the years when I was first learning to cook, I was a vegetarian. As a result, I am really comfortable cooking vegetarian meals but I am kind of intimidated by meat and poultry.

Now, I haven’t been a vegetarian for over a decade, but it’s only been in the past few years that I’ve started cooking meat and poultry at home. One of the first things I tried to make was (you guessed it) a roast chicken and it was too soon. I had a hard time getting past handling the raw chicken, I didn’t have a meat thermometer and was worried about under-cooking the chicken (so I over-cooked it) and I had no idea how to carve so I pretty much decimated the poor chicken. It was pretty awful but I hoped that someday I would be able to do it right.

I have been trying to stretch myself in the kitchen and so when my friend Heddi at Dairy-Free Switzerland posted her recipe for Suisse Romande Roast Chicken, I was inspired. This recipe includes a lot of things I love – chicken, lemons, wine, mustard… so I figured I’d give it a whirl. Spoiler alert: I am really glad I did, it was the best roast chicken that Gist and I have eaten. It was pretty easy, too.

The chicken is marinated for a couple of hours in lemon juice…

Then a paste of butter (what I used) or margarine (what Heddi used,) herbs de provence, and mustard is rubbed all over the chicken, and some shallots and lemons are tossed both into the chicken and the pan before the chicken goes into the oven. When the chicken is almost cooked, you dump some wine over it and add some more lemons to the pan.

When it’s done, the chicken rests and you can either make a pan sauce or gravy from the drippings.

As I mentioned above, this was the best roast chicken we’ve eaten. It was juicy and lemony and paired perfectly with steamed broccoli and crash hot potatoes. And, as an added bonus, I never need to hang my head in shame because I can’t roast a chicken 😉

If you’re like me and love chicken, you should definitely head over to Dairy-Free Switzerland and make Suisse Romande Roast Chicken. While you’re there you can learn all about Heddi’s family’s adventures in Switzerland and what it’s like raising a child with food allergies, complete with recipes.


4 thoughts on “There’s a first time for everything…

  1. Marianne! You are the sweetest. So glad this recipe worked for you! Thanks so much for sharing it. Great photos too. The original recipe calls for about 2T of cream added to the sauce, but I skipped it. Will have to try these potatoes. Many thanks, Heddi

  2. That sounds and looks so good. For many of my early cooking years I lived with vegetarians and only ate meat at restaurants. As I result, I have the same reticence to cook meat at home. In fact, though I’ve done a turkey for Thanksgiving, I’m not sure I’ve roasted a chicken either. You might just have inspired me!

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