Maple Glazed Chicken

If you need a good entree for Sukkot, or for any family dinner or even a good company dish, think chicken.

Chicken is like a basic black dress. You can dress it up or make it plain, season it with almost any herb or spice and cook it by almost any method. It’s a good main dish for family but also suitable for company. Eat it cold. Eat it hot. We’d miss a lot if we didn’t cook chicken.

Here’s an easy chicken dish that’s perfect now as the weather gets cooler and we turn to fall foods. It’s a little sweet (maple syrup and orange peel), but also has a little heat (mustard and crushed dried red pepper). This dish doesn’t take long to prepare and it is easy to transport so it’s great if you’re bringing food to a sukkah or just planning an end of season picnic. Or having a meal at your kitchen table. You can make it ahead up to the actual cooking or cook it completely ahead if you want to eat the dish at room temperature.

Maple Glazed Chicken

4 large bone-in chicken breast halves or whole legs (or one quartered chicken)

6 tablespoons maple syrup

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon finely grated fresh orange peel

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (flakes)

salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Rinse and dry the chicken pieces and place them in a baking dish, leaving space between each piece. In a small bowl, combine the maple syrup. Dijon mustard, olive oil, orange peel and red pepper flakes. Stir well, then spoon the mixture over the chicken. Turn the chicken to coat all sides with the glaze. Sprinkle with salt if desired. Place chicken skin side down. Bake for 10 minutes. Turn chicken skin side up. Cook for another 15 minutes, basting occasionally. Raise heat to 450 degrees F and cook for another 10 minutes or until browned on top and cooked through. Serve with the pan juices. Makes 4 servings

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