Recipe by Myra Kornfeld, “Chef Confidential” and “The Healthy Hedonist”
1 (3 to 4 pound) whole chicken, rinsed and patted dry
Freshly ground black pepper
½ cup pure maple syrup (not pancake syrup)
½ cup fresh orange juice
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Set chicken on a cutting board, breast side down. Using kitchen shears, cut along both sides on the backbone and remove it (the back bone can be frozen to make chicken broth later). Flip chicken over and press down on breast to flatten. Sprinkle generously with black pepper. Transfer to a baking dish. In a small saucepan, whisk together maple syrup, orange juice, mustard oil, thyme, cayenne pepper and salt. Simmer over medium heat until thickened, about 5 minutes. Pour mixture evenly over chicken. Roast chicken, basting occasionally with pan juices, until a thermometer inserted in the deepest part of the thigh registers 170-175 degrees, about 50 minutes. If necessary, add water to pan to prevent juices from burning. Allow chicken to rest for a few minutes, then cut into pieces. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Note: I make this with chicken already cut in pieces and it comes out great.