Never quite follows the recipe. Doesn't really measure. Tastes with her fingers. Somehow, it always works.

I shall call him….. Mini Me

Posted: June 26th, 2009 | Author: johanna | Filed under: Johanna | 19 Comments »

Mini Me I am a sucker for a sale. Seriously.

A couple weeks ago, Fresh Direct had mahi mahi filets on sale. So when placing my grocery order for the week, I ordered some Mahi Mahi. Of course. It’s the part of me who remembers that my mom had an overflowing coupon drawer, and always always got the “Buy 4, get 5 free” deal if she could help it.

This week, while scrabbling around for dinner ideas as the deadline for placing a Fresh Direct order in time for Friday delivery wound down, I saw that Cornish Hens were on sale. Not just any Cornish Hens. “Local, Fresh Heritage Cornish Game Hens, Raised without Antibiotics”. Who was going to turn that down???? Certainly not me. I love a sale, and if you tell me something is the combination of Local, Fresh, Heritage, AND Antibiotic-free, all capitalized, no less, I’m hooked.
I will buy your tiny chickens, and I will like it.

Now, no, I had never cooked a Cornish hen before. Certainly not on a hot and stormy day, one day after the King of Pop is declared dead. So it was a learning experience. But I have roasted a chicken or ten in my life, as well as a heinous mystery fowl. So I wasn’t TOO concerned about the method. My bigger worry was time. I would normally just ignore time completely and use my probe thermometer, but the “meaty part” of the thigh on these tiny chickens was just not “meaty” enough for me to feel comfortable sticking a thermometer into to judge when it was done.
Sarah Moulton gave me the cooking time and a rough temperature, and I went from there. This is pretty close to my standard roasting method, except I didn’t have a lemon and I didn’t use any fresh herbs, because I’ve become obsessed with dried oregano lately. Seriously. It’s a condition. I may need a support group.

Roasted Cornish Hens
or…. I will eat your tiny chickens.

2 Cornish Hens
1 tablespoon butter, or 1 teaspoon butter and 1 or 2 teaspoons olive oil.
salt
pepper
dried oregano
1 shallot
4 garlic cloves

Preheat oven to 425 and put your casserole dish, pie plate, or Le Creuset braiser in to preheat

Take the 2 hens, and pat them dry. You want them as dry as possible, so that any butter or oil you put on them will stick. As we all know, water and oil don’t mix. This goes doubly for water and any fat, as anyone who has ever tried to rinse shortening off his or her hands will no doubt know.
Next, rub butter, olive oil, or both, over the skin of the hen. Drizzle a little bit inside the cavity as well.
Sprinkle the hens all over with kosher salt, black pepper, and dried oregano. Also sprinkle these things in the cavity.
Crush 2 garlic cloves per hen, peel, and put them in the cavity. Cut a shallot in half and stick half into each hen.

Put the hens in breast side down in the preheated pan (maybe drizzle in a little oil, mine stuck to the braiser) for 5 minutes. Flip them onto their backs and lower the heat to 405. Roast for 30 minutes. Check for doneness (thigh temp = between 165 and 170, clear juices, bones falling out all over the place).

Remove the pan from the oven, let the hens rest to collect themselves for a minute or two, and then serve.
Also, don’t forget to save the bones. Little teeny bones have a lot of good stock-making left in them after you’ve roasted them and sucked off all the meat.
Cornish Hen

Nomnomnom. Tiny Chickens for the win. :)


19 Comments on “I shall call him….. Mini Me”

  1. 1 eugene said at 2:43 pm on August 23rd, 2014:

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  2. 2 vernon said at 9:49 am on August 26th, 2014:

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  3. 3 Trevor said at 10:54 pm on November 29th, 2014:

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  7. 7 orlando said at 12:44 am on December 22nd, 2014:

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  8. 8 Bill said at 10:34 pm on January 19th, 2015:

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  11. 11 manuel said at 6:02 pm on January 24th, 2015:

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