Farah’s Roast Chicken with Garlic, Honey, Lemon and Chili Flakes – Juicy, Flavorful Roasted Chicken Recipe
This recipe, Farah’s Roast Chicken, is an oldie but a goodie. It’s one of the very first recipes that I posted on my website, and it’s been a part of my family’s regular meal rotation for several years. I rephotographed it this week and I’m resharing it for the Rosh Hashanah holiday, as I think it would be a nice, simple and affordable entree option. The flavor is very special.
This recipe was taught to me by our Persian Jewish friend Farah, though she stressed that it’s not a Persian dish. She learned this simple roasting method when she was living in Israel many years ago. For larger parties I sometimes double the recipe and roast two chickens; place them side-by-side on a platter and garnish for a lovely presentation. This chicken will make your kitchen smell amazing, especially if you roast a whole head of garlic with it.
Please note that the garlic and chili flakes in the olive oil mixture may burn a bit when exposed to hot spots in the oven. Best to cook it in the center of the oven and keep it covered until the very end, when you’ll uncover to brown the skin; foil is your best bet at keeping those little garlic and chili pieces from burning. Never fear if a few bits burn, it will still taste wonderful. Enjoy!
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Farah's Roast Chicken
- 1 whole chicken 4-5 pounds, split down the back
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 teaspoon crushed garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary crushed in hand to release flavor
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 medium lemon
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 6 cloves garlic
- Salt & pepper to taste
- 1 head garlic (optional)
- Fresh parsley and lemon wedges for garnish
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F, place a rack in the center of your oven and lightly grease your roasting pan. Whisk together olive oil, mustard, honey, crushed garlic, rosemary and red pepper flakes in a bowl. Rinse and dry the lemon; zest ¼ tsp of lemon peel into the olive oil mixture. Cut the lemon in half and juice it, add the lemon juice to the olive oil mixture. Reserve lemon. Use a fork to stir olive oil mixture until well combined.Rinse chicken, pat dry. Place chicken breast side up in a roasting pan. Turn drumsticks so that the end tips are facing outward and tuck wings behind the chicken. Tuck the juiced lemon halves and the 6 whole garlic cloves underneath the chicken below the breast, so they will release their aroma into the chicken as it cooks. Season chicken with salt and pepper, then brush the olive oil mixture liberally all over the exposed parts of the chicken. Be sure to use all of the olive oil mixture.
- If you’d like to roast a head of garlic with the chicken, slice the top of the garlic head off to reveal the cloves and place it root side down in the roasting pan. This roast garlic will turn out tender, savory and aromatic, perfect for spreading on crackers or toasted bread slices.
- Cover roasting pan with foil and pierce the outer edges of the foil a few times. Alternatively you may cover it with parchment paper, but foil offers the best protection for those little bits of garlic and the chili flakes, which have a tendency to burn.
- Place the covered roasting dish in the oven on the center rack and roast for 80-100 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken. Rotate the roasting dish 180 degrees once during cooking to ensure even heat distribution. Chicken is done when internal temperature reaches 170 degrees F as measured by a food thermometer. Remove foil or parchment for the last 20 minutes of cooking to make the skin brown and crispy. Serve on a platter garnished with fresh parsley and lemon wedges.