Roast Cornish Hens with Herb Crust

Roast Cornish Hens with Root Vegetables

The last full meal from my Sept 18-24 family menu plan was Roast Cornish Hens. They were on sale for $3.99 for two. I figured one hen per person, and we've got a $2 entree. I had some great root vegetables to use, but other than that, no specific recipe or plan, especially for the hens.

It was still blazing hot outside, so a long grilling wasn't appealing. But I did quickly brown them on the grill. Think about how much time it would take to brown 6 hens on both sides, even if I used three large skillets at a time. And the splatter all over my fairly clean stove wasn't appealing either. So I threw all six hens on the grill for about 7-8 minutes a side to get some browning.

While they grilled, I sauteed a few diced shallots in olive oil, then tossed them with panko (breadcrumbs), fresh thyme leaves and S&P.

Before putting the hens into the grill, I drizzled melted butter over them, then pressed on the herbed bread crumbs. I roasted at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, then let the birds sit for almost that long to re-absorb juices.
The birds were......OK. Inexpensive, easy, decent taste, pain in the butt to eat. Not bad.

My original expectation was that the kids would think having their own individual chicken would be so cool that they'd attack the birds with youthful glee. They did not. Maybe the kids were tired. I also thought that with enough carrots in the root vegetable medley, they'd like that too. Not so much.

Is this menu good for an adult dinner party? Kind of - there's a good bit of labor and fine knife skill involved. Maybe this is why I don't cook Cornish hens too often.

On the other hand, I thought the root veg was fantastic. I'll place the recipe in the next post.

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