Growing up, Passover meant sweet and sour brisket. Slowly braised in the oven for hours until Bubbe declared it was tender enough to eat. Sounds simple enough, but that poor brisket was in and out of the oven and examined and re-examined until it was dry. So we tried chicken one year. Surely that would fare better. But the story was the same- Bubbe, my Mom and Aunts gathered around the oven trying to determine if the chicken was done. Opening and closing the door, all whilst poking and prodding the poor bird. “Is it done?” “It looks done.” “No I see pink!” They were petrified of giving the whole family salmonella. Sigh.
Passover recipes are actually some of my favorite to develop- the limit in ingredients forces me to get creative and put together recipes that I never would otherwise. I decided to make a roasted chicken as homage to that Pesach–it would work for a seder, or you could nosh on it for meals during the chametz free week. Honey and mustard is one of my favorite combos, but of course mustard is out. How about horseradish instead as a nod to the seder meal? The horseradish gives the chicken a subtle spiciness much like a Dijon would, and is balanced with the sweet honey–delicious!
1, 5-pound whole chicken, rinsed well and with innards removed
5 bulbs garlic
½ white onion
5 fresh rosemary springs
¼ cup kosher for Passover prepared horseradish
¼ cup kosher for Passover honey
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
Parsley for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Rinse the chicken under cold water and dry thoroughly with paper towels. Then put the chicken breast side up on a roasting rack in a roasting pan.
Stuff chicken with the lemon garlic, onion and rosemary sprigs.
In a small bowl, whisk together horseradish, honey, olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread all over the chicken, making sure to get under the skin as well.
Truss the chicken, or tuck the wings under the body and tie together the legs.
Roast chicken for 1 hour and 20 minutes, and then turn the oven up to 450 degrees F to brown the skin. Continue cooking about 20 more minutes until the internal temperature near the thighbone is 160 degrees F and the juices run clear (it should continue to cook once removed from the oven until the temperature is 165 degrees F).
Let chicken rest for 20 minutes covered with aluminum foil before carving. Garnish with parsley if desired.
Pronounced: SAY-der, Origin: Hebrew, literally “order”; usually used to describe the ceremonial meal and telling of the Passover story on the first two nights of Passover. (In Israel, Jews have a seder only on the first night of Passover.)