3 Simple Rosh Hashanah recipes

Chicken agrodolce, prepared with sweet and sour onions

Chicken agrodolce, prepared with sweet and sour onions and fennel. (September 2012) (Credit: Marge Perry)

TIP The chicken may be made with dark and light meat. Place dark meat at one end of the pan and breasts at the other; take the breasts out when an instant-read thermometer hits 160 degrees; dark meat, 170 to 175 degrees.

These recipes for Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, help start the year off on a sweet note for you and your guests.

1. CHICKEN AGRODOLCE

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 cups chopped yellow onion

2 cups chopped red onion

1 cup chopped fennel

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, divided

3/4 cup red wine

2 tablespoons sugar

1/3 cup golden raisins

1 tablespoon chopped rosemary, plus sprigs for garnish

1 teaspoon salt, divided

5 pounds bone-in chicken breasts

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon honey

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a baking pan with cooking spray.

2. Heat oil in a large, nonstick pan over medium high. Add yellow and red onions and cook 5 minutes. Add fennel and cook, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes, until onion is very soft. Add 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar, red wine, sugar, raisins, chopped rosemary and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt. Boil 10 minutes, until most of the liquid is evaporated.

3. Cut the breasts in half across (through the bone); place on the baking sheet. Combine the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt, pepper, remaining 2 tablespoons of vinegar and honey; brush over chicken. Bake, basting occasionally, 20 minutes. Add onion mixture to pan, and cook until largest piece of chicken reaches 160 degrees, about another 20 to 25 minutes.

4. Serve chicken over onion mixture; garnish with sprigs of rosemary.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition per serving 443 calories, 50 g protein, 25 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 13 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 412 mg sodium

2. MOROCCAN LAMB, CHICKPEA AND FIG STEW

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 1/2 pounds boneless leg of lamb cut into 1-inch pieces

1 teaspoon salt

4 cups chopped onion

6 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

3 cups low-sodium beef broth

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 cups baby cut carrots

1 (15-ounce) can low-sodium chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 cup dried figs, halved

1/4 cup parsley, chopped

1/4 cup mint, chopped

1. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high. Add half the lamb and half the salt. Cook until browned, about 6 minutes. Remove from pan and repeat with remaining lamb and salt.

2. Add onion, garlic and ginger to the pan and cook, stirring, until the onion begins to soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add 1/4 cup of the broth and stir to scrape up bits from the bottom of pan. Stir in cumin, coriander, saffron, allspice and cinnamon until evenly distributed; add lamb and combine. Stir in remaining broth and bring to a boil; immediately reduce heat, cover and simmer 1 hour. Stir in carrots, chickpeas and figs; cook 20 minutes longer, until carrots are tender. Just before serving, stir in parsley and mint.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition per serving 430 calories, 35 g protein, 31 g carbohydrates, 7 g fiber, 19 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 460 mg sodium

3. BEEF TENDERLOIN WITH CHERRY-BALSAMIC DRIZZLE

2 teaspoons olive oil

1/4 cup cherry preserves, divided

2 1/2 pounds trimmed beef tenderloin

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 cup orange juice

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Coat a baking sheet pan with cooking spray.

2. Combine the olive oil with the 2 tablespoons of cherry preserves; brush over the beef. Season with salt and pepper and place on prepared pan in the center of oven for 25 minutes, until beef reaches 135 degrees (for medium-rare). Remove from oven; let stand 10 minutes.

3. While beef cooks, bring orange juice, remaining 2 tablespoons cherry preserves, balsamic vinegar and brown sugar to a boil in a small saucepan set over medium high. Cook until syrupy, 7 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat; warm just before serving.

4. Slice beef and serve drizzled with warmed cherry-balsamic sauce.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition per serving 247 calories, 27 g protein, 13 g carbohydrates, 0 g fiber, 9 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 348 mg sodium