Rachel Ray has a number of recipes for Cornish hens, one of which serves this game bird with citrus-scented roasted vegetables. Potatoes, leeks, carrots and fennel are coated in extra-virgin olive oil and cooked with lemon, orange zest, salt, pepper and bay leaves. The Cornish hens themselves are also coated in extra-virgin olive oil, then seasoned with salt, pepper, fresh thyme, lemon and orange juice before roasting.
Rachel Ray's Cornish Hens and Citrus-Scented Roasted Vegetables
This recipe uses two halved hens to serve four people.
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cook Time: 45 min.
Ready In: 1 hr.
- 2 lbs., baby potatoes
- 3 leeks, trimmed of rough greens and roots
- 3 carrots
- 1 fennel bulb
- 1 lemon, zested and halved
- 1 orange, zested and halved
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and black pepper
- 2-3 bay leaves
- 2 Cornish hens, halved lengthwise, cleaned and dried
- 6-7 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves stripped and chopped
- Whole grain crusty bread, to serve
- Prepare vegetables
- Roast with the hens
Heat oven to 425 F. Cut the potatoes into thirds and place in a roasting pan. Slice the leeks in half lengthwise, and then cut across into half-inch pieces, before washing in a colander, separating, drying and adding to the potatoes. Peel the carrots and cut them into half-inch pieces on an angle, then add to the roasting pan. Trim the top of the fennel bulb and quarter before adding to the other vegetables, along with the bay leaves. Finally, coat with lemon zest, orange zest, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Coat the hens with olive oil, salt, pepper and fresh thyme. Arrange on top of the vegetables in the roasting pan, skin side facing up, and place in the oven for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 375 F and leave in the oven for 30 minutes longer.
Remove from the oven and drizzle with the juices of half a lemon and half an orange. Serve hot with the bread.