Ginger gives the sweet-tart cherry glaze a little bite atop roasted Cornish game hens.
1/2 cup cherry preserves
1/2 cup port
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
2 (1 1/2-pound) Cornish hens
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 400°. Place a wire rack on a baking sheet; coat rack with cooking spray. Combine preserves, port, ginger, vinegar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil; cook 9 minutes or until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally. Remove and discard giblets and necks from hens. Rinse hens with cold water; pat dry. Remove skin; trim excess fat. Working with 1 hen at a time, tie ends of legs together with twine. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under hen. Sprinkle evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Set on wire rack on baking sheet. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes. Brush hens with cherry mixture; bake 40 minutes or until a thermometer inserted in the meaty part of thigh registers 165°, brushing with cherry mixture every 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Let stand 5 minutes. Remove twine; split hens in half lengthwise.
This is really great. I forgot to put foil in the bottom of the pan and now I'm regretting it (pan is crusted) but otherwise this is a great dish. My teenager isn't a huge fan of game hens so next time I may just get a whole chicken and use the sauce to baste that. I also don't see any reason why I couldn't grill this on our Traeger and save on the messy pan. Wonderful flavors even without the skin. Perfect with a lovely pinot noir.
This was an easy recipe, especially for a "fancy" dinner. I made this for Christmas Eve and it was a tasty hit. The hens I bought had already been split, so I didn't have to do much prep work. The only thing I modified was that I brushed the hens with the cherry glaze every 10 minutes. It turned out great!
Very easy to make and very tasty. I followed the recipe exactly and it worked out with no problems. I might use foil on the bottom of the pan next time because the glaze was difficult to remove from the pan. We had these on thanksgiving with cornbread stuffing and brussel sprouts with pancetta and figs.
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