Rosh Hashanah is just around the corner, and though summer may be at an end, the Jewish New Year is the perfect opportunity to celebrate new beginnings as well as fresh and seasonal ingredients.
Take advantage of the largesse of fall with these apple-based recipes just as the New York State crop starts to peak. Ensure a sweet and prosperous year to come with three of our favorite dishes for the holiday: roast chicken with an autumnal flourish, spiced applesauce, and mascarpone with roasted apples and a dash of honey.
Roast Chicken with Apples
1 4-lb chicken, rinsed and dried with paper towels
3 tsp kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp fresh chopped thyme
2 cinnamon sticks
4 crisp cooking apples like Gala or Sansa
4 thick slices country bread cut into halves
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Rub 2 tsp of salt all over the chicken, along with the ground black pepper, thyme, and 2 tbsp of the olive oil. Make sure to season inside the cavity and under the skin. Put the chicken breast side up on a rack in a roasting dish.
Place in the center of the oven and cook for 20 minutes.
While the chicken is cooking, halve and core the apples and set aside.
After 20 minutes, remove the pan from the oven. Carefully remove the rack and chicken. Scatter the halved apples and bread in the pan. Season with salt and pepper and toss with the pan juices. Add 1-2 tbsp olive oil if needed.
Place the rack with the chicken on it back in the pan. Brush the breast of the chicken with some of the oil from the pan if it looks dry.
Return the pan to the oven and cook for 40 minutes.
Check the chicken for doneness by inserting a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the thigh. It should register 165°F.
Set aside to cool for 10 minutes loosely tented with aluminum foil. Carve the chicken and serve on a platter with the roasted apples and bread.
2 lb of your favorite local apples
4 tbsp honey
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 small stick cinnamon
1/2 tsp cardamom powder
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
Peel, core, and coarsely chop the apples. If you prefer, you can leave the skins on—it’ll give the applesauce a lovely rosy color.
Place the apples in a large, heavy-bottomed pan with all the other ingredients and cook over the lowest heat, covered, for 20 minutes undisturbed until the apples are falling apart.
Mash the apples with the back of a fork or a potato masher, taking care not to break up the cinnamon stick. If you want a finer purée, remove the cinnamon stick and pass the mixture through a food mill back into the pan.
Cook for another 20 minutes, covered, or until a spoon drawn through the applesauce leaves a track in the bottom of the pan.
Let cool before putting into a jar and refrigerating.
Roasted Apples with Mascarpone
2 lb crisp local apples like Ginger Golds, halved and cored (with skin on)
3 tbsp butter
4 whole sprigs thyme
2 sprigs rosemary
4 tbsp honey
Preheat the oven to 375°F
Melt the butter in a small saucepan along with the honey.
Place the apples in the pan cut side up. Drizzle the honey-butter mixture over them, making sure it stays in the hollow of the fruit.
Sprinkle the apples with sea salt and rub the butter and salt on the cut surfaces of the apples so that they’re evenly coated. Tear the thyme and rosemary into smaller sprigs and distribute evenly over the apples.
Roast in the oven for 35-45 minutes until the fruit is tender and scoopable but still holds its shape.
Let cool for 10 minutes and serve warm, or at room temperature with unsweetened mascarpone.