Éléonore Toulin’s perfect roast chicken

The model-turned-chef chats changing careers, moving to LA and her recipe for the ideal Sunday lunch

Written by Clara Strunck August 25, 2021

Parisienne style icon Éléonore Toulin is certainly a woman of many talents: the photographer, director, model and singer has walked for Chanel, graced the pages of ‘Vogue’ and worked with renowned photographer, Thierry Bouët. Recently, she expanded her CV even further by moving to LA and changing careers to follow her lifelong dream to become a chef.

‘For me, the pandemic – as is true for a lot of people – was life changing,’ she says. ‘I started thinking about what I really wanted to do. It took me a while, but I moved to Los Angeles and pursued my passion to become a chef. I started off by cooking for a friend’s event; word spread, and now I host private dinners. I’d love to open a farm to table hotel in California in the next five years.’

Though going from the catwalk to the kitchen may seem like a surprising leap, Éléonore has always found joy in cooking. ‘I’m one of five children and my mum wasn’t a great chef, so I cooked a lot of family meals,’ she says. ‘And growing up, I was constantly organising dinner parties at my house.’

Here, she shares her recipe for roast chicken with The Sette. ‘It’s a classic,’ she says. ‘People love this chicken. And don’t be afraid of the amount of butter used – I promise, it’s worth it!’

Éléonore Toulin’s roast chicken

Ingredients

  • 2 bulbs garlic
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 300gr butter, at room temperature
  • 1 medium-sized chicken
  • Preheat the oven to 180C.
  • Chop the garlic as finely as you can and, using your fingers, mix it into the butter in a bowl.
  • With a finger or a small knife, pull the skin of the chicken away from the meat so that you can stuff the garlic butter, little by little, underneath.
  • Push the thyme and rosemary under the skin too, before coating the chicken in the rest of the butter.
  • Don’t hold back here! Drizzle some olive oil into a pan before placing the chicken on top.
  • Finish with a final drizzle of olive oil, some more herbs to garnish, salt and pepper, before cooking for around one and a half hours (ask your butcher for precise timings).
  • Every half hour, use a large spoon to baste the chicken with the juices from the pan.
  • Once cooked, the chicken should be golden brown, with juices running clear.
  • Allow to rest for ten minutes before serving.