Natural Cornish hen is one of my favorite protein to cook and eat. It is essentially easy to prepare and easy to infuse with flavors because of its small size and tender meat. I actually did not pre-plan for this meal but three friends informed me the night before that they were in town and would love to stop by for a visit . I can’t have guests over and not prepare something nice for them to eat, especially good old friends. I am sure they remember the delicious meals I prepared back in college .
It is funny how time flies. I remember back then after a very busy week of long lectures and tests, I would invite my friends over for a movie night. They would bring appetizers and deserts while I made the main course. Of course being college students, it was nothing fancy but it was better than having ramen noodles every other day. Oh by the way I have a good ramen noodles recipe that I will share soon. It is an elevated or gourmet version of the basic method of preparing 3-5 minutes noodles.
Back to my college memories, my friends and I would watch a movie over dinner, afterwards have hot chocolate or in my case, hot tea (I am addicted to drinking tea). Sometimes we would talk and laugh all night .
So since my friends were coming over, I had to put something together but didn’t want to go grocery shopping. So I took an inventory, if you will, of what I had available in the kitchen and that is how I decided to prepare oven roasted cornish hen and potatoes.
• 2 Cornish game hens
• 7 Small potatoes, washed and cut in quarters
• 6 oz or 3/4 cup of butter at room temperature
• 3 sprigs each of fresh rosemary and thyme
• 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely diced
• 1 medium size onion, finely chopped
• 1 small piece of ginger, finely diced (about 1 tbsp )
• 1 fresh whole mango, peeled and cubed
• 4 baby carrots, chopped
• Salt, chicken bullion and black pepper
- Wash and dry the hens with a kitchen cloth or paper towel. If the hens are frozen, make sure they are completely defrosted.
Combine butter, rosemary and thyme leaves, garlic, half the amount of ginger, half of the onions, salt, chicken bullion and black pepper. Mix thoroughly and taste for flavor.
Rub each hen all over, underneath the skin of the breast if you can, and inside the cavity with the now seasoned butter mixture.
Combine mango, carrots, ginger, a pinch of salt and black pepper. Stuff the hens with the seasoned mango and carrots and tie the legs of each hen to keep the cavity closed.
Leave the hens to sit for an hour or in the fridge over night. I put the seasoned hens in the fridge overnight.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Take out the hens and place on the oven rack with a foil pan right underneath the rack (bottom level) or on a roasting rack and pan lined with aluminum foil.
Roast for 35 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F, then carefully baste hens with the liquid in the pan underneath the rack.
Roast for another 25 minutes or till the hens are cooked.
While the hens are roasting in step 9, heat the left-over seasoned butter in a pan. Add the remaining onions, salt and pepper to taste. Add potatoes and stir continuously for 2 minutes making sure all incorporated .
Add 1 cup of water and cover the pan with a lid. Cook for 10 minutes or till the potatoes are fully cooked.
Serve roast chicken, potatoes and mixed vegetables (carrots and peas) . Don’t forget to untie the legs of the hens, you don’t want your guest chewing on crispy string… Enjoy!