Cornish Game Hens can be found in our local market all year long and can be served for a crowd or a romantic dinner for two.
We seem to forget about them and overlook them except during the holidays, but they are a great alternative to turkey for Thanksgiving, Christmas or as a New Year's Eve dinner.
And don't be intimated, they are easier to cook than a turkey and this is one way not to be overwhelmed with leftovers.
My son always loved these little birds, the prospect of being served an entire bird always appealed to his Viking persona. Of course, he would just pick it up and eat it with his hands.
I swear, raising boys! But I do miss those times now that he has survived me and grown into a nice young man with better manners.
These Cornish Game Hens can be plated for two or cut in half for four. They are baked with rosemary and plenty of garlic and are served with a delicate garlic wine sauce that makes them the Best Cornish Game Hens!
*Tip- Suggestions for side dishes, please scroll to the bottom
How to bake the best Cornish Game Hens
- 2 Cornish Game hens
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 lemon, cut into two
- Sprigs fresh rosemary
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1/3 cup white wine
- 1/3 cup chicken broth or stock
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F
2. Rub birds with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Lightly season hens with salt and pepper.
3. Put 1 lemon wedge and 1 sprig rosemary in the cavity of each bird
4. Place in a heavy roasting pan with garlic cloves around them
5. Roast in preheated oven for 25 minutes.
6. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
7. In a mixing bowl, whisk together wine, chicken broth, and remaining 2 tablespoons of oil; pour over birds
8. Baste with pan juices every 10 minutes.
9. Continue roasting about 25 minutes longer, or until birds are golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees F and the juices run clear.
10. Transfer birds to a platter, pouring any cavity juices into the roasting pan.
11. Tent birds with aluminum foil to keep warm. Transfer pan juices and garlic cloves to a medium saucepan and boil until liquids reduce to a sauce consistency, about 6 minutes.
12. Spoon sauce and garlic around birds. Garnish with rosemary sprigs, and serve.