What I love the most about this recipe is the way the Tarragon and other herbs enrobed in butter shine through introducing spring and at the same time yielding a super moist and flavorful roast chicken. This recipe will make more herb butter than necessary but it can be used on salmon or steak so no worries. The herb butter will keep in the refrigerator for about a week. —thecookandthetraveler
Allow butter to soften at room temperature. Meanwhile chop tarragon and chives and set aside. Mince the shallot and zest the lemon to obtain about 1 Tbs. Add all the ingredients to the soften butter and mix thoroughly with a spoon or small spatula. Remember the proportions of the herbs can be adjusted to your taste bearing in mind the tarragon should be at the forefront.
1 Whole Chicken
Preheat oven to 375. Meanwhile wash chicken thoroughly inside and out. Pat dry with paper towels. I like to let it air dry additionally while the oven is preheating. Liberally salt and pepper the interior cavity and skin side of the bird.
Using you hands gently separate the skin from the flesh being careful to not tear the skin. Work 4 Tbs. of the softened herb butter under the skin and rub breasts, legs and thigh joints until butter is evenly spread. Rub 1 Tbs. of the herb butter over the whole chicken and add 1 Tbs. of the butter to the interior cavity along with a whole halved lemon. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine and place the bird on its' side in a tight fitting roasting pan. Place in a preheated oven for 25 minutes and then turn the chicken over to roast the other side for 25 minutes, basting the bird thoroughly before returning it to the oven. When the second side has finished roasting place the chicken on its' back, baste with the melted butter and pan juices and roast for 30 more minutes or until the juices run clear when a skewer is inserted into the thigh and leg joint.
When chicken is fully cooked remove from oven and place on a cutting board and allow to rest for 15 minutes before carving.