May 29, 2024

Turmeric and Honey-Glazed Chicken

The warming combination of turmeric, ginger and coriander is an easy way to bring some Middle Eastern spices to a roasted chicken. Turmeric adds a beautiful color to this dish, and with its slightly bitter overtones, marries well with ginger and coriander.

Make a beautiful golden roasted chicken with a glaze of honey and turmeric! Simple enough for a weeknight meal, but fancy enough for company.

With just a few spices you can turn a plain ol’ roasted chicken into something special to make on a weeknight or for an outstanding dinner for company.

Top it off with a honey soy sauce glaze at the end of cooking, and you have a gorgeous bird that is bursting with flavor and a touch of sweetness.

Spatchocking, or butterflying, refers to a whole chicken whose backbone has been removed. The chicken is then flattened slightly so that it forms an even layer in a baking dish to roast.

This reduces the cooking time in comparison to a whole roasted chicken. In addition, a butterflied chicken is much easier to cut up after it is cooked, which is why I favor this method of roasting a chicken, especially for a weeknight meal.

Look for a chicken that is three to three and a half pounds, which will take less time to cook than a larger bird. That size is plenty for four servings. If you can only find a large chicken, then expect it to take an extra 15 to 25 minutes longer to reach the desired internal temperature of 165ºF.

You can ask the butcher at the meat counter to do the work of spatchcocking the chicken for you but you can also easily do this yourself with a good pair of kitchen shears:


Once you get home from the market, all you need to do is slice some onions, layer them in a baking dish or skillet (either one will do), and place the chicken on top.

Rub the chicken with olive oil, sprinkle with turmeric and spices, salt and pepper and pop the chicken in the oven. I recently discovered a neat trick to distribute the spices over the chicken.

Pro tip! Instead of trying to sprinkle the spices on the chicken with my fingers (which is messy), I put them in a mesh tea strainer and shake them evenly over the chicken.

All the juicy goodness of the chicken and the flavors of turmeric, ginger and coriander infuse the onions, which cook gently along with the chicken. Wait to brush a honey glaze over the chicken until the last 10 to 15 minutes of roasting for a gorgeous golden bird.

Bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces can also be used for this recipe. It should take about the same amount of time to cook as the whole spatchcocked chicken, but use a thermometer to gauge the temperature after 35 minutes. It should register 165ºF when inserted into the thickest part of piece of chicken.

  • Vegetable or olive oil, for the baking dish
  • 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon crushed coriander seed (or ground coriander)
  • 4 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 small yellow onions, sliced
  • 1 (3-1/2 pound) chicken, spatchcocked
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

1 Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Lightly oil a large baking dish or ovenproof skillet. In a small bowl, mix the turmeric, ginger and coriander together. In another small bowl, mix the honey and soy sauce together. Set aside.

2 Prepare the chicken: Spread the onions in one layer on the bottom of the baking dish or skillet. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper. Place it in the pan on top of the onions with the breast-side.

Sprinkle the chicken with the lemon juice and rub with olive oil. Using a fine meshed strainer, sprinkle the spices over the chicken to coat it. If using crushed coriander, sprinkle over the chicken any bits of spice that did not go through the strainer.

3 Roast the chicken for 40 minutes.

4 Glaze the chicken: Remove the chicken from the oven and brush with the honey and soy sauce mixture. Return the chicken to the oven and roast for 10 to 15 minutes longer, or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken registers 165ºF. (This could take longer if the chicken is larger than 3 1/2 pounds. ) Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes.

5 Cut the chicken and serve: Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and cut into 8 pieces: 4 breast pieces, 2 thighs, and 2 drumsticks.

With a slotted spoon, transfer the onions to a serving platter and set the chicken pieces on top. Pour the pan juices into a small pitcher and serve alongside the chicken.

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