1 hour 50 min
20 min

Rosemary Citrus Cornish Hens

    • Vegetable broth – 4 1/2 cups
    • Water – 4 1/2 cups
    • Whole allspice berries – 1 tbsp.
    • Whole black peppercorns – 1 tbsp.
    • Kosher salt – 1 cup
    • Cornish game hens – 4
    • Grapefruit, cut into quarters – 1
    • Juicy orange, cut into quarters – 1
    • Lemon, cut into quarters – 1
    • Lime, cut into quarters – 1
    • Fresh rosemary, chopped – 1 sprig, or to taste
    • Fresh thyme, chopped – 1 sprig or to taste
    • Water – 1/4 cup
    • Olive oil – 1/4 cup
    • Salt and ground black pepper to taste
    1. Bring the vegetable broth, 4 1/2 cups of water, the allspice berries, black peppercorns, and kosher salt to a boil in a large pot, stirring to dissolve the salt. Remove the brine from the heat, and set aside to cool.  Place the Cornish hens into the cool brine and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.
    2. Preheat the over to 350°F/175°C/Gas Mark 4. Remove the game hens from the brine, and pat dry. Discard the brine. Allow the hens reach room temperature.
    3. Place the cut-up grapefruit, orange, lemon, lime, rosemary, and thyme into a microwave-safe bowl, and microwave on High for 2 minutes; using tongs, stuff the fruit and herbs into the cavities of the Cornish hens. Generously oil each hen, and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Place the stuffed hens into a roasting dish, breast sides up.
    4. Roast in the preheated oven until no longer pink at the bone and the juices run clear, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, near the bone should read 180°F/82°C. For extra-crispy skin, set the oven to 400°F/205 °C for the last 15 minutes of cooking. Allow the hens to rest for 10 minutes before serving.
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