Saturday, July 3, 2010

Herb Stuffed Game Hen

When it comes to roasting chicken or game hens, I usually opt for a non-edible stuffing that works to moisten and flavor the bird instead of being eaten as a side dish. We eat enough starches as it is so eliminating breading or rice in this instance seems like a healthier option.

4 game hens
1 large onion
16 sprigs fresh thyme
12 large sage leaves
12 sprigs of French or English lavender flowers
extra virgin olive oil
rosemary salt
Defrost and wash the hens, then pat dry and set aside. Skin and quarter the onion and add a quarter of it into each bird cavity. Wash the herbs and add 4 sprigs of thyme to each hen, then 3 sage leaves to each and 3 lavender sprigs to each. Set the birds on a rack inside a roasting pan and drizzle olive oil on each game hen. Sprinkle the poultry with the rosemary salt (you can make this yourself by pulsing 1 part fresh rosemary to 5 parts salt in a coffee grinder) and rub it into the skin all over the hen. Now roast in a preheated 375 degree oven for 45 minutes to an hour, until the skins cook to a crispy golden brown. The onion steams during the roasting and infuses it's flavors into the flesh of the bird. The herbs do the same thing and lavender was a nice change of pace for me.

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