Cornish Hens: Individual portion birds of about 1 pound are excellent for
party service; larger birds are ideal for 2 people.
Thaw the birds; rinse and
dry. Season inside and out with salt and pepper. Stuff with Raisin-Nut Stuffing.
Raisin-Nut Stuffing: Sauté onion in butter until just tender. Add bread
crumbs, salt and freshly-ground pepper. Brown crumbs lightly. Add raisins and
nuts. Toss together, adding just a little water or chicken broth to moisten.
This will stuff two (1 pound) birds.
Fasten neck skin to back with wooden picks; twist wing tops onto back, tie
legs to tail. Place a piece of heavy-duty foil in a shallow roasting pan and
arrange birds in center. Brush all over with melted butter.
Roast in 425 degreess
F oven, basting with melted butter, 1 tablespoon dry white wine and a sprinkling
of herbs several times during baking.
When nicely browned (this will take about 30 minutes), close the foil by
bringing edges together up over the birds or, if several birds are in the pan,
cover with a second piece of foil. Do not seal airtight, since game hens do
not require much cooking. Continue roasting at the same temperature for 30 to
40 minutes for individual portion birds and 50 minutes for larger birds. Look
at them once during this period and, if juices have cooked away, pour on a little
more melted butter and wine. Birds are done when legs move easily. Remove trussing
strings and serve with sauce.
Sauce: Pour juices in the foil into a saucepan. Add a little more wine,
a spoonful of currant jelly, salt and pepper. Simmer for 5 minutes.
Serving ideas: Arrange birds on carving board or platter. Spoon on a border
of buttered rice with green pepper and pimento added for color. Garnish with spiced