Roasting Cornish Game Hens

I love roasting chicken in the winter months.  Nothing beats the aroma through the house on a snowy day.  However, besides the tantalizing smells, you can’t beat the presentation factor when serving Cornish Game Hens.  Here are my tips for roasting and presenting juicy and beautiful individual hens.

Start with a fresh and plump hen.  Count on one per person.  Wash and pat dry with paper towels.  I like to stuff mine with fresh lemon, herbs de Provence, salt and freshly ground pepper.

Stuff each bird with the lemon wedges, seasonings and a clove of garlic and/or fresh rosemary if desired.  With cooking twine, push the “tail” up and tie the drumsticks around it so as to close the cavity.  Turn the bird over and gently twist the wings so as to tuck under the hen (see picture).

Place the prepared hens into a roasting pan that is slightly oiled.  Season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper.

Roast in 400F preheated oven for 10 minutes, remove pan and turn the hens over.  Roast for another 10 minutes.  Remove pan and turn the hens back to breast side up.  Turn oven down to 350F.  Continue to roast until juices run clear and skin is golden (approx. 45 to 60 min. depending on size).  Remove from the oven and tent with aluminum foil for approx. 10 to 15 minutes.  Plate and serve with your favorite sides.