Julia’s Roast Chicken, with Love

Today, August 15th, is Julia Child’s birthday. She would have been 105 years old. Like many people, I watched her cook on PBS growing up.

Of course, I was like ten years old, so maybe that makes me a little strange. But I don’t care.

In her honor, I roasted a chicken for dinner tonight as I learned from her and Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume I many years ago.

I once had both of her Mastering books on my shelf. Alas, somewhere along the way, I’ve lost them. So what you get is the way I remember.

“We had a happy marriage because we were together all the time. We were friends as well as husband and wife. We just had a good time.” — Julia Child

Julia Child

Finely dice a stalk of celery, a carrot, and half an onion. Saute these and a teaspoon of thyme in a tablespoon of butter until it starts to get tender.

Wash a roasting chicken, about 3 pounds, and stuff it with the cooked vegetables, some chopped celery leaves and parsley stems, and a lemon cut into slices. Truss the legs with some kitchen string. Trim the wings or tuck them underneath so they don’t burn. Rub a room-temperature pat of butter all over the chicken and give it a good salting.

“I think careful cooking is love, don’t you? The loveliest thing you can cook for someone who’s close to you is about as nice a valentine as you can give.” — Julia Child

She taught a right proper way to roast a chicken. Happy Birthday, Julia Child. Visit suppertimeblues.com to learn more.

Roast the chicken in a 425°F oven for 15 minutes. Baste it with another pat of melted butter. Toss in 1/2 cup each of sliced onion and carrots around the chicken. Lower the temperature of the oven to 350°F and roast another 30 minutes.

I used rainbow carrots today. I thought they looked a little like flowers and that seemed good for a birthday.

She taught a right proper way to roast a chicken. Happy Birthday, Julia Child. Visit suppertimeblues.com to learn more.


“A party without cake is just a meeting.” — Julia Child

Baste again with a tablespoon of lemon juice. Cook another 15 minutes. Check the internal temperature at the thigh for 165°F. If it’s less than that, continue roasting until it is.

“The only time to eat diet food is while you’re waiting for the steak to cook.” — Julia Child

Let the chicken rest on a cutting board for about 15 minutes. Carve and serve.

“You don’t have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces – just good food from fresh ingredients.” — Julia Child


She taught a right proper way to roast a chicken. Happy Birthday, Julia Child. Visit suppertimeblues.com to learn more.

Happy Birthday, Julia Child. And thank you.


Be well, friends, and thank you for stopping by. Cook for each other and until next time, peace.
Bill (signature)

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4 thoughts on “Julia’s Roast Chicken, with Love

  1. Ha! I loved those quotes.
    Honestly, Bill, you’re fixin’ to make me start cooking again. I have declared myself a cooking burnout and just pretty much have given up the ghost, but these recipes make me go, “Hmm … I could maybe cook ONE thing…” (Except, of course, in my current state of singletude, one roast chicken lasts a lifetime or more …)

    • That is the nicest thing you could ever say, thank you. You can eat for days on one chicken, heck of a bargain. Then you make stock from the carcass and freeze that too. Julia also once said, ” In cooking you’ve got to have a what-the-hell attitude.” Thanks so much for stopping by!

  2. Bill, what a lovely reminder of Julia Child! We loved her show! Your neighbors here still have both volumes of Mastering the Art- Volume 1 is in tatters, but I still use it for so many things. Volume 2 is in better shape. If you need to copy a recipe, give me a call or come across the driveway! Glad you cooked a chicken for Julia on her birthday which in France is also my feast day (Assumption of the virgin Mary!–a legal holiday in France).

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