Rosh Hashanah is the two-day celebration of the Jewish New Year, and falls on Sept. 14 this year. It is the first of the High Holidays, and is the anniversary of the creation of Adam and Eve. Holiday customs include sounding the shofar (a hollowed-out rams horn) and eating symbolic foods such as apples dipped in honey to evoke a “sweet new year.” Need a dinner menu that incorporates the traditional foods? Try these recipes from Joan Nathan’s cookbook “Quiches, Kugels and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France.”
Rosh Hashanah Chicken with Cinnamon and Apples From Metz
Serves 4 to 6
- One 3-1/2 to 4-pound roasting chicken
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
- 1 medium onion, peeled and cut into chunks
- 1 cup chicken broth or stock
- 1 cup white wine or dry vermouth
- 3 apples, cored and each cut horizontally into 4 pieces (the French would use reine-des reinettes apples or pippins, but Fuji apples are fine)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Season the chicken with salt, freshly ground pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of the cinnamon. Place the onion in a roasting pan and set the chicken in the center. Pour the chicken broth and wine around the chicken, and roast in the oven for 45 minutes.
3. After the chicken has been cooking for 45 minutes, surround it with the apples and sprinkle the combined sugar and remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon over the apples. Baste them with the wine, and roast for about 45 more minutes, or until the apples are very soft and the chicken is cooked through. Cut the chicken into serving pieces, place on a serving platter and surround with the apples and juices.
Riz au Safran (Saffron Rice Pilaf)
Serves 4 to 6
- Pinch of ground saffron or 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup pine nuts, almonds or pistachios
- 1 cup long grain white rice
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- 2 cups water
1. Stir the saffron into 2 tablespoons hot water in a small bowl, and set aside.
2. Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and pine nuts, and cook over medium heat, stirring, for about 5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent and the nuts are fragrant and beginning to change color. Lower the heat, and stir in the rice and cook 1 minute. Add the saffron and its water, the nutmeg, bay leaf, salt, pepper and the water.
3. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to a slow simmer, cover and cook for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. Fluff the rice with a fork and remove the bay leaf. Taste, and adjust the seasoning. Serve warm.
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