The idea of cooking a whole chicken can be intimidating to some people. Well, I was one of those people (at the beginning of my journey into the kitchen). I still kinda get overwhelmed sometimes when it comes to handling a big bird like that. Cornish game hen or known as poussin though, is more manageable in my humble opinion. They are smaller and easier to work with. Most of the time they already came cleaned up for you too. I’ve been cooking so much, but still removing guts and internal contents of chicken seems to be a bit scary to me. So, I thought, well..let’s do cornish game hen then!
This pot-roasted cornish game hen can’t be more delicious. I’m never a big fan of breast meat, but this pot-roasted thing really result in tender and juicy meat! I was a bit hesitant how my husband would react to the whole dish, but he couldn’t stop licking fingers! So, I figured that was really a good sign!
The sauce is slightly sweet and tart, kinda like a sweet and sour orange chicken (though not as sweet), but in a different look and presentation and with that hint of citrus. I would say…give it a try 😉
- 2 cornish game hens/poussins
- 1 red onion (peeled and thinly sliced)
- 1/2 orange (cut into halves)
- 3 Roma tomatoes (diced)
- 2 small cinnamon sticks
- 4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
- 1/2 cup of raisins
- 1/2 cup of pine nuts
- 1 cup of red wine
- 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 Tbsp of grape seeds oil or oil of your choice
Preheat your oven to 400 F. Meanwhile, prepare your chicken. Insert half of the orange into the cavity of the chicken, followed by one stick of cinnamon and one sprig of rosemary. You will need a large ovenproof pan with a lid that will snugly accommodate these two cornish game hens. Preheat the pan. Add in the oil. Gently put in the chicken to let it brown on both sides, about 15 minutes each side. Once they are lightly browned, remove them from the pan into a plate. Set aside
Add in onion into the pan you brown the chicken earlier, saute for about 1 minute, add in the tomatoes and pick rosemary leaves from the remaining sprigs and add in. Saute until fragrant, another 5 minutes. Put the chicken back into the pan (breast side up) and crank up the heat. Splash in the red wine vinegar, raisins, and red wine. Bring it to a boil and then let it gently simmer for about 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and put on the lid and carefully pop the pan into the oven and let it cook for about 30-45 minutes. Turning the chicken over once during that cooking time. Take the lid off after that and turn the chicken once again (breast side up) to let it brown for another 15 minutes. Sprinkle over the pine nuts and cook for another 15 minutes. Check to make sure the chicken is cooked through. Remove from the oven and let it rest for at least 10 minutes before serving