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Cornish hens

Love these little guys! How do you prepare them?

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  1. Last time I cooked them, I deep fried. ~~ Salt well, and drop whole into hot peanut oil. When they bob around on top, scoop them out. Enjoy!!

    Edit: If ya do this, make sure they are completely dry before frying.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Uncle Bob

      Brilliant! What do you think about flourin' 'em first?

      1. re: MGZ

        No flour. Think frying a turkey for ideas...


        1. re: Uncle Bob

          I did. I was just thinking how cool it might be to make 'em chicken fried. Think Blues Brothers - "And the short one wants four whole fried chickens and a Coke".

          1. re: MGZ

            Served with a side of dry white toast

      2. I just stuff and roast. Boring but yummy

        1. Rub with current seasoning mix and broil.

          Stuff full of whole garlic cloves and ginseng, pin the opening closed, and make soup.

          1. Season inside and out with S&P, Italian Seasoning and garlic powder. Drizzle with olive oil and into a 350 degree oven for whatever the wrapper says, an hour or 1.25 hrs., I think. Really, really good!!!!

            1. Butterfly (aka spatchcock, lots of videos on youtube), stuff tapenade under the skin (all over), rub with olive oil and a good squirt of lemon juice and roast at 475 or 500 until crispy, about 25 minutes.

              Butterfly, season as desired, grill over direct medium heat, about 8 to 12 minutes per side. I was deeply skeptical about this but it came out fabulous.

              1 Reply
              1. re: GretchenS

                +1 on the spatchcock, grill or oven.

              2. We marinate 'em, sometimes in Italian dressing with extra chopped garlic, sometimes with some olive oil, cumin, sometimes with some oil and cayenne. Split or butterfly, and grill. Nice, crisp skin. Flavor so good. !

                1 Reply
                1. re: nikkihwood

                  Butterfly.....we've grilled'em and smoked'em. And we use a rub, whatever's available in the pantry. I love them!

                2. I like to take 'em and use an indirect grilling method that makes a fantastic barbecued hen. I use a rub that is really nothin' but salt, turbinado sugar, black pepper, and ground chiles. The rub sits on the hens for at least six hours, then they "come to room temp" on the counter for an hour. I use lump charcoal and fruit or maple wood for my fuel. The ideal temp at the surface of the grill should be around 350-375. One option is to baste with barbecue sauce or bourbon and butter after about forty minutes or so and then plop the birds breast down over the smoldering coals.

                  I must admit, I love Uncle Bob's notion of deep frying. I'm thinkin' I could do four at a time in the turkey fryer.

                  1. I put some sliced limes in them, rub with montreal seasoning then wrap in foil. I wrap them in clay and set on the edge of the fire or in the coals. It is fun for everyone to crack them open to eat them.

                    1. Whenever I buy these, I have to have them with cornbread/fruit/nut stuffing. Then I split them and roast them over the stuffing.

                      I think I need to go out and buy a couple of these.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: NE_Elaine

                        That's pretty close to one of my favorite methods, except that my CB stuffing tends more towards onion and sausage. I haven't cooked ANY chicken since the last time Mrs. O was out of town, since I'm the only one who eats it and I try to avoid generating the kind of aromas that could make her regret her veggie-hood, but this is definitely on the agenda the next time she goes somewhere.

                        1. re: Will Owen

                          I start the stuffing with sauteing peppers and onions, celery too if I have it. Usually there is some pork breakfast sausage in it as well. The fruit is generally apples and dried cranberries and the nuts, pecans.

                          There is no realy recipe, it is just what looks good when I am putting it together.

                          It is very considerate of you not to cook something like this when there is a vegetarian in the house. It would be very tough to resist!

                      2. These are my fall-back company dish when I'm not sure of my guests food tastes. You know, when in doubt serve chicken.

                        In any event, I serve them de-boned. I remove the body cavity and the wings (keep the drummies on!), and stuff them. For the stuffing you can do anything that you might do with a chicken or turkey. I generally do wild/white rice with cranberries, a crab stuffing, or cornbread & sausage but you can let your imagination and creativity run riot. It takes anywhere from a cup to 1 1/2 cups of stuffing so that they are nice and plump. I usually serve them on a bed of fresh spinach that I 'wilt' with a little bit of the pan juices.

                        The work is in the de-boning but they are a charm to serve for guests because once the hens are stuffed I only have to pop them in the oven so no other work is required when guests are there. It is a beautiful presentation and I always get rave reviews.

                        1. We fix these little beauties nearly every 4th of July with Grilled Corn on the Cob and Melon Ball Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette. Delicious

                          Honey Lime Game Hens

                          2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
                          1/4 cup fresh lime juice*
                          3 Tbs vegetable oil
                          2 Tbs honey
                          2 tsp finely chopped fresh thyme or 1 tsp (5 ml) dried
                          1 tsp finely chopped lime zest**
                          1 tsp paprika
                          Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
                          2-3 Cornish game hens, halved, backbone removed

                          Whisk together all ingredients except the game hens in a mixing bowl and transfer to large resealable plastic bag. Add the halved game hens and turn the bag to distribute the marinade. Refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours, turning occasionally.

                          Remove the game hens and discard the marinade. Grill hens over indirect heat, bone side down, until the juices run clear and the meat is no longer pink at the bone, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the grill and allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 4 to 6.

                          *I use bottled. **I don’t do the zest.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Wtg2Retire

                            It sounds like an awesome meal! Thanks for the recipe -- we'll be trying it out. :)

                            1. I just had a friend send me another a picture of the hen in clay.