a family roast recipe

Now today it’s emerson’s birthday and we have some visitors coming up to stay tomorrow and the house looks like a bomb site! I’ve perfected the lived in look a little bit too well lately. So I’ll be collecting all the photos of emerson’s first year into a blog post, baking him a cake, madly cleaning the house before tomorrow and just enjoying the last few days of school holidays. In the meantime I’m going to share with you a delicious roast I made on the weekend. Can you believe this guy is now 1? I can’t!

Now I still have my L plates on when it comes to roasting chicken. And chicken is the only meat that I’m roasting. So recipes that spell everything out to me are my best friend. I was flicking through some really old BBC Good Food magazines and found their chicken in cider with celery. Looked good, looked easy and I thought I could do that AND I know everyone would eat it because they love chicken. And they loved it. This recipe is from the November 2006 issue of BBC Good Food.

You could easily leave out the cider as it’s only 150mls of it, just replace it with stock or you could increase the cider if you want more of a cider taste. Up to you. But if you’re looking to work on your chicken skills then this might be the one for you.

I’ll just say that it was a delicious chicken, it was easy, the vegetables were just gorgeous, no potatoes are great if you’re watching your carbs and there were no leftovers. I still don’t know how long it will be before I need to roast 2 chickens for family dinners.

5.0 from 2 reviews
moving forward + a family roast recipe
I hope you enjoy this one, we did.
Recipe type: Dinners
What you'll need
  • 25g butter
  • 1 medium sized chicken
  • 4 rashers bacon
  • 1 red onion
  • 3 carrots
  • ½ celery
  • a few sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 200mls cider
  • 300mls vegetable/chicken stock
  1. Preheat your oven to 190C (350F) and place the butter in a large casserole dish. Place in your chicken and brown on all sides. This takes about 10-15 minutes and I just carefully turned the chicken a few times and coating it in butter. You just want a light brown colour.
  2. Remove the chicken and set aside. Place the bacon in your dish and place back in the oven for a few minutes until the bacon is lightly cooked.
  3. Now add in the onion, carrots, thyme and place dish back in the oven and cook for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add in the celery and stir all the vegetables around and place the chicken on top. Now you want the breast side of the chicken down (you're going to turn it over later on) and pour the cider and the stock over your chicken.
  5. Roast for about 1 hour. It will look nice and golden and everything will be bubbling away beautifully.
  6. Turn the chicken over and roast for another 30 minutes. Your chicken should (everything going well) be beautifully checked. Do a quick check that the chicken legs and thighs are cooked (that's where I can come unstuck) and remove from the oven
  7. Season the vegetables if needed and serve. We just had it as it was but if you have a big family or big eaters you could add some mashed potato to the plate or add sliced potatoes to your dish.
  8. Either way this is a delicious family roast, you'll only be washing up the one dish and the timing was spot on for me.

I hope you enjoy this one, we did. 


  1. I’m sure it’s been very hard to hear and confront something you wished you didn’t have to hear about your beautiful Elodie, but it seems you have a lot of support and a very positive attitude, and with a loving family she’ll do just fine in life. I wish you all the very best.

    As for the chicken, it looks delicious. I’ll definitely give it a try. I often roast a chicken with Verjuice (Maggie Beer makes it), which is like a very mild vinegar/ or almost cider like, so it sounds a little similar. You get a very juicy chicken with a really great flavour.

    • thank you:)
      And yes very juicy chicken, will have to try a maggie beer roast with the verjuice, I’ve always wondered what it is.

      • If you want to purchase Verjuice or for more recipes using Verjuice check out Restdown Wines on Facebook or the internet. They are a small boutique winery in Southern NSW. Highly recommended…

  2. That recipe sounds great!
    Praying all continues to go well with Elodie, especially now that you have a definitive answer. I don’t know you, other than reading your blog, but from what I can see, she is blessed to be surrounded by such a caring family. I think it’s absolutely the right decision to keep certain things private. From all the photos I’ve seen of Elodie, she looks like a character! She has the best mum to raise her xx

    • thank you, it’s hard when everyone expects you to share everything but I’m glad to keep some things to ourselves
      thank you

  3. I’m sorry to hear that what you were expecting to happen with the beautiful Elodie happened, but at least now you know and you can work forward and get her the help that she needs (and if that came out harsh sounding, I’m sorry!).

    I wish Elodie and your family all the best in the coming days and weeks and a HUGE happy birthday to the birthday boy!

    Sophie xxx

  4. WOW, is it a year already? Seems like yesterday you were sharing photos of Emerson’s birth. Such a sweet baby. Elodie is beautiful and a special gift to you and your family. She is in a loving home and she will be fine! Prayers are with you and your family. Don’t worry, God has a special plan for your family, I will offer my mass next Sunday for you all.
    hugs from the USA
    I enjoy reading about your wonderful little family. You are an inspiration to so many young mothers. I am a grandmother and love reading about your little ones.

  5. Lesley G says:

    Ah yes, the beautiful sweet Elodie. Onwards and upwards. It’s just a little curly bit in life that will unwind in time. You know you are all up to it!
    Your roast sounds yummy. I have been perfecting the humble, nay the not so humble, roast for 4 decades now and it is the most requested family dinner here. So many variations. I love your Dirty Granny touch.
    When it comes to family and entertaining we love to use our weber kettle too. After the first couple of disasters (25 years ago now) we have it perfected and it is so easy with all in together and minimum cleanup. Maybe a good gift for Fathers Day for Retro Daddy.

  6. Carol Lee says:

    Corrie your children are all so beautiful. Cant believe Emerson is 1 happy birthday.

    Elodie will do well, she has her wonderful family around her.

  7. Happy Birthday Emerson You Gorgeous Boy

  8. Corrie
    I too have a child with a dx (several of them I guess if you want to be picky) but you know what something I have always thought is THEY ARE EXACTLY THE SAME KID YOU HAD THE DAY BEFORE THE DX seriously, nothing really has changed, the diagnosis does not change who they were yday the day before etc. It just gives you information and knowledge and tools to help them be the best little them they can be. I know not easy all the same and takes some adjusting and some worrying and lots (and lots and lots) of appointments and therapy and homework but it is all so worth it in the end. Having lots of brothers and sisters around can be awesome therapy too. My little guy has learnt so much from his beautiful big sister. They are the best little ‘therapists’ for modelling how things are done and picking up skills etc. Hang in there, find out all you need to know and do and just get on with doing it. She is gorgeous and loved and whats that saying – “it will all be ok in the end if its not ok its not the end” : ). PS I love the Dirty Granny. Thinking I need to get me a bottle of that and take a photo with my 90 year old (totally not a dirty granny) Gran. All the best x

  9. I lost some of my comment…
    Thinking of you Hun

  10. Thinking of you Corrie & praying for your whole family as you move forward as a more educated Mum because of having a diagnosis for Elodie. I agree with one of the comments above about Elodie being the same person she was before the diagnosis as she is now. You are just better equipped now to help her as you gather more information & she gets involved in the various therapies that can help her be the best person she can be :)

    Emerson 1……i can’t believe it!

  11. A beautifully written post and a beautifully cooked roast. Happy Birthday Emerson. May you have a lovely family weekend and some time and peace to absorb all. Much love xx

  12. Dear Corrie,
    I don’t know what to say other than Elodie – and all your lovely children – have the best Mum they could ever need. I’m so glad you have a diagnosis, whatever it is, because it means you can help sweet Elodie grow and flourish in her own special way.

    It wasn’t till I received my own diagnosis at the age of forty-six(!!!!) that I started to understand why I felt out of step with the world. Only last year it took all my courage to visit you at Matilda’s, and now I am doing markets and expos! Learning to do it my way, and not expecting myself to be the same as everyone else, has been the key for me. I hope Elodie finds her own path early on. She is an absolute sweetie.

    Happy birthday to baby Emerson, happy holidays to Keira, Finn and Tilly, and a big good-on-ya to hardworking hubby.

    • oh Joanne, thank you! you are gorgeous and yes I still remember meeting you at Mathildas. You are lovely and nothing is stopping you now:) well done and congrats to you!
      thank you

  13. Honeyaar says:

    My thoughts with the the Retro family…God bless and prayers for you all.
    (Of course you must keep some things private…it’s YOUR life and you must protect it.)
    Now A big Happy Birthday to The retro baby Emerson…and a BIG congrats to retro mummy and retro daddy.
    I’m vegetarian and can’t do any chicken…it frightens the life outta me…so Corrie woo hoo. Well done!! Bravo x
    Ps Do you use organic chicken?

  14. Hi Corrie
    Happy birthday to the cutest little boy on the planet!! Can’t believe he is 1 already – wow time flies!!

    As for little Elodie, regardless of what the diagnosis held, she is the same gorgeous little chubby faced girl that she was yesterday, last week, last year and her whole life. A diagnosis doesn’t define her in any way. She is and always will be so very loved and you, as a family, will do everything you can to help her. You know that if you ever wanted opinions you could ask on your blog or facebook and those of us who have travelled similar paths would be more than happy to share any information or tips we have learnt along the way.

    My stepson is autistic and a doctor recently said that he suspected there was more than just autism at work here. The decision now has to be made whether to have more tests or not. I have to back away as he isn’t my son and just let others make that decision. But I know that at the end of the day, regardless of what the future holds, we will always be here to support him as much as we can and allow him to develop to his full potential in this world.

    Hugs to you all and I wish you all the best in your journey, it may not be always easy but the love you have as a family will see you through :)


  15. Hi Corrie
    I feel for you in learning of Elodie’s diagnosis. I also respect you not wanting to share it and wanting to protect her (and yourself/the rest of your family) from public commentary/scrutiny. It must be hard to have chosen to live a very public life and then be faced with things you are unprepared to share. It is clearly up to you to set the standard of how you want to share on your blog but I hope that with time you do share details of your struggles, including sharing your feelings, concerns and the like around Elodie’s diagnosis. There are so many people facing these issues every day that surely it could actually help others to know they aren’t alone? I can’t for a moment understand how it must feel for you at the moment but for someone that seems to share so much it feels strange that you would withhold something so big…I don’t wish to be insensitive or critical and recognise this isn’t the best time to say this but these are my thoughts.
    All the best

  16. Very best wishes to you and your lovely family Corrie. I know a diagnosis can feel like a kick in the guts, even when you are expecting it. You have done a wonderful job getting an early diagnosis, I’m sure it will be a big benefit to sweet little Elodie in the long run.

    Happy birthday to Emerson, he is such a cutie!

  17. Corinne says:

    Hi Corrie,
    I have been reading your blog for a couple of years now and this is the first time I have felt the need to leave a comment. I just wanted to wish you well with your journey for little Elodie and to say good on you for your decision to withhold the details of her diagnosis. Don’t feel pressured to do so. In blogging, you are willingly sharing the details of your life with us readers. It is your life we are reading about, not Elodie’s (or the other kids, or RetroDaddy, or anyone else’s for that matter!). Your readers would be crazy to think that there are not some matters you keep private.
    Again, good luck for the road ahead and as PP’s have said, the diagnosis hasn’t changed who Elodie is, it just gives you assistance in helping her grow and develop into the person she is meant to be. xx

    • thank you so much for understanding. It is elodie I want to protect and she doesn’t know what this blog is so it’s best to keep some things to ourselves for now

      thank you

  18. Justine says:

    Thank you for sharing your struggles and concerns with Elodie. As each one of us is special and unique thats how our heavenly Father has created Elodie. She is perfection, her days were ordained before we even knew about them :) All the best with moving forward armed with new information and how to nurture this little gift from above!

    PS We love roast chicken in this house and I do mine just with chicken stock and sprinkled with salt and herbs:)

  19. Thanks Corrie for the recipe. I am hopeless at roasts. This one looks delicious and easy for me to do. I only started reading your blog religiously after Emerson was born. You are such a wise mum not to share Elodies diagnosis. Praying that as a family you can help Elodie with what she needs. She is gorgeous and a beautiful soul. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

  20. Georgia says:

    Hi Corrie
    I wanted to write to tell you that the chicken looked so good I am making it now in the oven! It smells delicious and I can’t wait to try it!

    A big happy birthday to the littlest handsome man in your life! I cant believe how quickly that year has gone! My little Lucy is now 15mths and it has flown by!

    Also I wanted to say thank you for sharing all you do on your blog and I completely understand and respect your decision to keep Elodie’s diagnosis private, as you said it is your blog not Elodie’s and when she is old enough to understand she will be so grateful! Also you know where I work and if you ever need any help with anything at all or to ask a question no matter how small I will help you in any way that I can!

    best of luck with the rest of your amazing journey!

  21. I’m sorry to hear about Elodie and thank you for your openness. In some way, Elodie is very lucky to have such a loving and committed family to lean on. You and your family are in my thoughts and pray.

  22. Well Elodie certainly couldn’t be in a more loving and supporting home. She will thrive and be the best she can be I’m sure!

    I actually bought a chicken today thinking this weekend I am going to try and roast a chicken, so your recipe came at the perfect time!

  23. janine b says:

    good luck to you and your family as you come to terms with elodie’s diagnosis and how you with deal with it. someone once told me that we are never given more than we can bear … and 10 years down the track i can say that is true. my thoughts and prayers are with you and yours.

  24. I cant believe Emmerson is 1 already !

    Elodie is loved, that is the main thing. Photos of her always make me smile

  25. Knowledge is power, Corrie. God has a plan for Elodie. Sometimes it’s hard to remember to ‘hand it over’. Onwards and upwards with the strength from your supportive family and friends.

    Happy birthday Emerson. A year already? How did that happen? Envious being one and all that fun that comes with it.

    Bless you and yours,

  26. My dearest,I also went through what you have have just ,we also have a large family and it does make it easier,hugs to you and your precious bundle,PS that chook looks divine!!

    • thank you, you know I said to a mum of 5 in an email I’m so glad to have a big family as there are so many people to play with and help her along the way

  27. Engracia says:

    Hi Corrie, what a delicious recipe, will be trying it out this Sunday for dinner. Happy birthday to Emerson, like all your children he is gorgeous. All the best as you move forward with Elodie.
    Much love Engracia

  28. Hi, I think you are very wise not to share it. You cannot unshare it, and it is about Elodie and for her to decide if she wants to share it when she is older. That was a good decision. I love roast chicken! So yummy and yet quite easy, but just looks hard. xxx

    • yes there have been times I’ve undercooked a chicken and gone to cut it then had to put it back in again! that’s why I say L plates

      thank you:)

  29. Hi Corrie,

    It’s perfectly okay to keep things private, so there’s no need to explain to your readers:). Reasonable and worth keeping ones will understand; those who don’t, it’s no loss to you.

    Happy Birthday, Emerson:)

  30. Congrats on keeping the diagnosis private…..so much in life is not private. We all know Elodie will be defined by her strengths and character, just like everyone else! She is gorgeous! As a teacher, I see everyday that kids need the same respect as adults in maintaining their dignity, privacy and the opportunity to shine, without judgment. You won’t regret your decision.
    Wow, a beautiful one year old, happy birthday to Emerson. That time seems to have flown!
    I love the chicken recipe — chicken is always eaten by everyone at our house!

    • oh thank you, yes I really just don’t want people finding her because of what she has and I’m pretty firm about that

      thank you

  31. OMG!!Emerson is one??When did that happen?A very happy birthday to the little bubba:)
    And as for Elodie,she is a sweetie,I still remember how you said,she was the first one to warm up to Emerson :) I am glad that you got an early dx and even if its not what you want to hear,atleast you know what to do. Lots of love to you all.
    And I can’t roast a chicken either..I’ll try this one..:) Thanks for sharing.

  32. Holy cow. What a week for your family. I have been thinking about you and wanted to tell you that many of the moms I truly admire are dealing with the same issues. They become amazing advocates for their children and great community leaders. There is nothing like a mom on a mission.

    • I love that, mom on a mission! that’s me!!!!!

      thank you Vicki and it’s so lovely to hear from you again:) I remember all the estate sale finds you used to have on your blog

  33. Corrie, I just want to send you warm thoughts, it is always an upheaval to take a course that you hadn’t planned on – but early dx is great as early intervention programs (and there are some great ones in Nth Syd) really help children make big gains before school. It is all ok, really, and you along with the retros will continue onwards of your regular course and continue to all be fabulous and happy. Remember, rarely are things finite. XXX

    • thank you, yes we are lucky to have some amazing programs up our way. Unfortunately we have to go on a waiting list to access them but will start with a playgroup next week and our physio starts the week after that so I’m feeling lucky to have everything near us and such great quality too
      thank you

  34. I’m not really one to comment on blogs but thought that this may be of some comfort/value to you and your family. I have a friend who is one of eight children, two of whom have cerebral palsy. These two are now both one in their thirties. She told me “mum and dad tought us that everyone has some sort of disability and the people with the greatest disability are those that have no kindness in their heart”. Having two parents that love each other and are still together is something that loads of children aren’t lucky enough to have these days. I wish you all the best.

  35. Hi Corrie! Emerson is one! How time has flown by and he’s an absolutely gorgeous little man :-) Much respect for keeping Elodie’s diagnosis private. She is a darling poppet and I love checking in on you blog and seeing her as she grows, labels don’t matter to other people, but it’s great that you have information to assist her development. Hugs Jetts xoxo

  36. Dear Corrie,
    Happiest of days to Emmerson x
    Thinking of you as you digest the formal information on a different abilities journey. Bron

  37. A very happy birthday to Emerson! He is just too cute!!

    As for Elodie, I am a big believer in not labeling people just because of a diagnosis, I completely understand your choice to keep it private.
    I just wanted to share a little something that comes to my mind.. I went to high school with a girl who was diagnosed with a learning disorder. She struggled through school, she was a hard worker but was usually below average in her results. Despite her challenges she stayed positive and determined and has now not only graduated from university, but I recently learnt that she has been awarded a scholarship to write a Phd.

    Just like this girl, I am sure that Elodie will not allow her personal challenges to get in the way of her dreams. I wish her and your whole family all the best for the future.

  38. Love and cuddles with the support of a fantastic family is so important – and Elodie from what I can see and read is not lacking in that department. All the best on your journey.
    And delish Chook!!

  39. Ruby Lou says:

    I’ve worked for many years with people, including those with disabilities. What stands out for me in all that time is not the label but the impact of attitude, values and expectations. What a difference this makes in people’s lives. You will have different expectations for all your children but you will want the best for them all – hold on to this. Having a loving and supportive family is a great enabler to a positive live – Elodie has this so regardless of what you learnt yesterday and what you will continue to learn she is one lucky girl. Trust yourself and be kind to yourself. And enjoy the family celebrations for Emersons 1st Birthday!

  40. So lovely to hear a mum protecting the privacy of her kids over our modern day need to share everything without thinking. You are very wise. Thanks for even sharing what you did — I feel privileged to have a small window into your world.

  41. Elodie will be just fine, she is exceptionally lucky to be so very loved!

    The chicken looks amazing!

  42. Oh Corrie I know how hard it is to get a not so pleasant diagnosis of a condition involving your child, I have recently been through it with my daughter being diagnosed with a brain tumor and currently going through chemo. We have looked on the positive side and realise with a diagnosis comes a solution and a plan to help heal or learn to live with the condition. Good luck with your journey I know Elodie has the most amazing family support. And a little side note you need to take care of you, something I still struggle with.

    • Oh Louise I’m so sorry to hear that about our little one, I’m going to keep her in my prayers and for your whole family. Take care

  43. Corrie, I am just catching up on my blog reading.

    I remember waiting to know that dear Emerson had come safely into the world and that you were strong and recovering. Was it really a year ago?
    Happy Birthday to Emerson.

    To be a stay at home mum at this time is so wonderful. Those babies of yours will thrive basking in your love.

    Thinking of you and retro daddy while you fit in new ways of supporting Elodie: she is so precious and beautiful. I am always so happy to see pics of her (those chubby little legs). I know all members of your family will play their part in Elodie’s journey just as you always have. All children in every family are different and the differences make them who they are.

    As for privacy – you are right to keep some things about all of your children private – they are individuals being brought up in a world where people expect to know everything. You are generous in sharing all you can with your readers but the little ones need to feel protected at all times. xxxx

  44. He Corrie,
    I think it is a wise decision not to share what is wrong with Elodie! I hope knowing what it is really helps to understand and help here moving on! God will lead the way and take care of your worries!

  45. Hi Corrie,

    Happy Birthday to Emerson! I can’t believe it’s been a year allready.

    All the best for your lovely little Elodie. I think it’s a good decision not to share her diagnosis here too. Some things just don’t belong on the internet. But the diagnosis will help you to help her grow up in the best way. She is very lucky to have such a loving family around her.

    Lots of love from the Netherlands,


  46. Hello, just a late comment to send hugs to all. When my big son had assessment at Chatswood in 2000 we knew exactly that the dx would be. It was still a really hard day and I remember leaving him with my husband int he afternoon and swimming at North Sydney Pool, up and down and up and down, sobbing when doing breast stroke and learning that you cant cry doing the crawl. Ah well… my wee big boy is 16 now, a very beautiful soul. A big family is a blessing when one has additional needs, I’m sure that was my push to have my twinnies.

    • ohh thank you! yes most parents know what they are going to hear but there is a harshness in hearing it and having it confirmed. I’ve had a few teary moments with friends or when I’m with her but life still goes on and if anything I love her more because I understand her more

      thank you for letting me know what you went through, makes me feel normal:)

  47. Mama of 2 boys says:

    Oh Corrie, I have been so absent from blogland of late… not so much by choice, as by circumstance. Anyway, I do mostly read all your Facebook posts and I know I commented on the day you received Elodie’s diagnosis, but just wanted to reiterate what an amazing Mum I think you are. The love you have for your family shines through in the most beautiful way and I honestly think Elodie will thrive in this world, regardless of what life presents to her. You are incredibly brave and courageous for seeking an answer early on too, especially when the answer is not the one you were wanting to hear.
    Wow! Emerson is 1 already! Happy Birthday to your gorgeous little man, hope he had a lovely celebration.
    Hugs and best wishes Corrie xoxo

    • oh thank you! you are such a lovely reader here. We do love her and that’s what matters most and she was meant to be with us
      thank you and I still need to do my 1 year post on emerson! better get cracking this weekend
      Corrie:) !

  48. Hi Corrie
    I made this chicken last night, it was a HIT, never making another roast chicken recipe again.
    i am eating the leftovers as a i type!!! (I am not a pig i am just pregnant!!)

Leave a Comment



Optionally add an image (JPEG only)