As I mentioned in this post, the High Holy Days are upon us and it is one of my favorite times of year. I love having all of my family and close friends over for a Rosh Hashanah dinner where we all can hang out, relax, and just enjoy our time together. Because the rest of my family doesn’t identify as Jewish, this is not a stressed filled holiday. As far as they are concerned they are just coming over for some good food and wine. As someone who has had their fair share of stressful holiday events (I’m looking at you Thanksgiving) knowing this isn’t one of them is a real relief.
As I was planning out my Rosh Hashanah menu, I thought it would be fun to celebrate the symbols of apples and honey in the food as well as in the decor. As I have mentioned before, apples dipped in honey are a traditional Rosh Hashanah dish and they have now become symbols of the holiday. I remembered reading about a dish called “apples ‘n onions” in Farmer Boy (the Laura Ingalls Wilder book that focuses on her husband) and thought that might be a good idea to try with some chicken. I searched around and found this dish and then adapted it to create what you see above: A roasted chicken sitting on a bed of apples and onions, cooked in a honey and mustard broth and lightly scented with fresh sage & thyme. It sounds fancy but I assure you it is quite easy to make. And the best part is it can be made ahead of time and then gently reheated or served at room temperature.
- 2 chicken breasts, on the bone and with the skin
- 2 chicken thighs, on the bone and with the skin
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 apples skins on, sliced ¼ inch thick
- 1 small onion, sliced ¼ inch thick
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 3 Tbsp honey
- 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
- A few sprigs of fresh thyme
- A few fresh leaves of sage cut into small pieces
- salt/pepper to taste
- In an oven proof pan (I used a cast iron skillet but if I needed more space I would have used my Le Creuset roasting pan) heat up the olive oil. While the oil is getting hot, salt and pepper your chicken.Set the chicken skin side down for 3-5 minutes until the skin is medium brown. If your pan is small, this can be done in batches. Flip over and cook for 3 more minutes. Set aside.
- Pour off most of the fat leaving about 2 Tbsp. Add the sliced apples and onions and a bit of salt. Cook for about 5 minutes until the mixture is just starting to soften.
- In the meanwhile, mix together the chicken broth, mustard, and honey. This should be quite sweet. When the vegetables are softened, add to the pan and bring to a quick boil. Turn off the heat and add the thyme and sage. Then add the chicken on top.
- Place in a 450 degree oven for about 20 minutes. If you have a lot of chicken or a deep pan, it might take longer.
- I serve on a platter with the softened apples and onions spooned on top of the chicken. *Be sure to remove the thyme stems before serving.
I make this dish a day ahead of time and then let it come to temperature on my kitchen counter a few hours before serving.