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Moist and Tender Salt-Roasted Chicken it’s Child’s Play

What a fabulous introduction to family cuisine involving your little ones in the kitchen with a child’s play approach to cooking their supper. This is David’s adaptation of salt-roasted chicken from an amazing cookbook designed for children. Read more on David’s day of play exploring La Cuisine est un jeu d’enfants

salt roasted chicken recipe

Poulet au Sel - Salt-Roasted Chicken

Fuss free, moist and tender chicken baked in salt, served with braised carrots and sautéed haricot verts.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine French
Servings 4 people


  • 1 3 1/2 lb Chicken I used an organic fryer
  • 1 herb bouquet bay, rosemary, & thyme - optional
  • 1 large shallot quartered - optional
  • 12 cups coarse salt I used Morton's kosher salt


  • Wash and completely dry the chicken.
  • I let mine sit on a rack in the refrigerator uncovered all day as the self-defrosting function of the fridge helps dry the chicken nicely.
  • If using the herb bouquet and shallot, stuff them into the cavity of the chicken.
  • No need to truss or tie the bird.
  • Preheat oven to 500°F.
  • Place 2 cups of salt - I used a tea cup - in the bottom of an oven-proof casserole dish that has a cover.
  • Place the chicken on the bed of salt and then pour 6 more cups of salt around the chicken, making sure there is salt between the chicken and the sides of the casserole.
  • Finally, cover the chicken with 4 more cups of salt. Place the lid on the casserole, and bake for 50-60 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 15-20 minutes.
  • Carefully remove the chicken from the casserole.
  • Much of the salt will fall away. Place the salt-crusted chicken on a large cutting board, and break the remaining salt crust with a wooden spoon.
  • Remove and discard the crust.
  • Using a dry pastry brush, carefully brush away any remaining salt, then remove the skin from the bird.
  • Slice off the meat and place on a platter to serve.


Braised carrots - per request!
This recipe is so easy that I can hardly call it a recipe.
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
12-15 baby carrots, multicolored ones are nice
splash of Madeira
salt and pepper, to taste
Heat the olive oil in a nonstick skillet (that has a tight-fitting lid) and sauté the carrots for a few minutes, shaking the pan frequently to roll the carrots. Add a splash of Madeira and cover tightly, continuing to shake the pan frequently until the carrots are tender and well caramelized on all sides - about 15 minutes.
Serves 2
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David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen is the author, photographer, and cook behind Cocoa & Lavender, a weekly food blog based in Tucson, Arizona. Passionate about travel, he especially enjoys eating traditional foods and learning local customs, whether in the United States or around the globe.

David's first trip to France took place when he was 14, and he returned as often as possible thereafter. However, it wasn't until his 50th birthday that he finally made it south to Provence. The beauty, history, charm, warmth, cuisine, and - of course - the rosé wines captured his heart. He shares his Provençal recipes here on Perfectly Provence, and his food and wine pairings monthly on the Provence WineZine.

David is a firm believer that sharing a meal with friends around the table is one of life's greatest pleasures. And if it happens to be in Provence, all the better!

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