Perfect Spring Chicken and Potatoes (Every Time!)

BY Batsheva Ribiat—The Midnight Chef

My idea of a good spring dish is one that allows me more time out of the kitchen. I LOVE simple food. I love low-maintenance food. I love food that requires few ingredients, and definitely food I can whip up with ingredients I already have on hand. I have spent many MANY Shabbosim working on perfecting my Friday night chicken to keep it as simple as possible, and I’m pretty sure I’ve finally hit it. The idea is to roast this bird with minimal effort- so no butterflying, stuffing, or fiddling with skin necessary- and with maximum flavor! A “V”-shaped roasting rack set atop an oval roasting pan is preferable because both chicken and potatoes end up cooking simultaneously, but if you don’t have one, a very large cookie sheet will do, or two 9x13 inch roasting pans.


Perfect Spring Chicken and Potatoes (Every Time!) 


(Serves 4)



1- 3 lb whole chicken, neck removed and patted dry


freshly ground black pepper

olive oil or chicken schmaltz

fresh herbs, such as parsley, basil, rosemary, and thyme, if desired

6 medium white or yellow potatoes, peeled and submerged in a bowl of cold water

1 medium onion, cut into small chunks

freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)



Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Rub the chicken down with a couple tbsps. olive oil or schmaltz until completely covered.

Season the bird all over with salt and pepper. Season with herbs and a couple tsps of lemon juice, if desired. Put chicken in the roasting rack (or on the cookie sheet or roasting pan). Set aside.

Oil the oval roasting pan, second 9x13, or cookie sheet. Arrange potatoes and onions inside, drizzle on more olive oil (be generous!), season with salt and pepper, and fit the roasting rack with the chicken on top of the roasting pan.

Roast for 1 hour. Remove chicken, transfer to platter and loosely tent with foil. Allow to rest 10 minutes. Meanwhile, toss potatoes and return them to the oven for approximately 10-15 minutes, or until desired doneness.

**Notes: It is best to roast the chicken as close to the start of Shabbos as possible, as it is best eaten fresh. After the chicken rests, I usually carefully wrap it up and place it on the vent of the oven, so that it remains warm enough, but also doesn’t dry out. I lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees and allow the potatoes to remain inside, sometimes covered, sometimes open, depending on my mood. Like I said: simple!

Rochel Lazar