The glimmering, crispy skin of this chicken dish gets its flavor from a sweet-tart blend of apple jelly and cider vinegar. Tip: To save time, cook the rice and chicken together in a casserole dish with a tight-fitting lid. That way the rice will remain moist as it bakes.
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup apple jelly
- 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
- 5 lbs whole roasting chickens
- 6 small tart baking apples, cored
- 1 (6 ounce) package long grain and wild rice blend
- 2 1⁄4 cups water
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1⁄2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced
- sage leaf (optional)
- In a 1-1/2- to 2-quart saucepan stir together vinegar and jelly.
- Heat; stir over medium heat.
- Bring to boiling.
- Boil glaze gently, uncovered, for 20 minutes until syrupy and reduced to about 1 cup, stirring frequently.
- Remove from heat.
- Stir in apple pie spice.
- Divide glaze in half; set aside. (Glaze will thicken as it stands; stir before brushing over chicken and apples.)
- Preheat oven to 325°F
- Skewer neck skin of chicken to back; tie legs to tail.
- Twist wing tips under back.
- Place chicken, breast side up, on a rack in roasting pan.
- Sprinkle with salt.
- Roast, uncovered, 1-1/4 hours.
- Cut string.
- Place apples around chicken.
- Meanwhile, in 1-qt. casserole combine rice and seasoning mix, water, and butter; cover. Set aside.
- Brush chicken and apples with some of one portion of glaze.
- Sprinkle with pepper.
- Roast chicken and rice together in oven for 1 to 1-1/4 hours more or until instant-read thermometer registers 180F when inserted into thickest part of the thigh and juices run clear, brushing with remainder of the glaze portion twice.
- Stir green onion into rice.
- Transfer rice to platter; top with chicken and apples.
- Cover with foil.
- Skim fat from juices in roasting pan; discard.
- Pour remaining glaze portion into the roasting pan.
- Using wooden spoon, scrape up any brown bits stuck to bottom of pan (place pan on stove top over medium heat, if necessary, to heat glaze).
- Strain; season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Transfer to gravy boat.
- Garnish with sage. Makes 6 servings.