Here’s a dish with classic cold-weather flavors: sage, maple and apple. It’s a great alternative to roasting a whole turkey for holiday celebrations. Use a carving knife to split each cooked hen through the breastbone and then cut out the backbone so that each hen serves two.
Home » Recipes » Maple-Sage Cornish Hens with Roast Apples
1 cup apple cider
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1/4 cup chopped fresh sage
1/2 shallot, chopped
2 Cornish hens
2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter, divided
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon fine sea salt, divided
4 apples, peeled, cored and quartered
In a small saucepan, combine cider, syrup, sage and shallot. Simmer over medium-low heat until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425°F. Brush hens all over with 1 tablespoon of the butter and sprinkle inside and out with pepper and 3/4 teaspoon of the salt. Tie the legs of each hen together with kitchen string and tuck the wings under the birds. Place them in a large roasting pan and surround with apples. Drizzle apples with the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Roast 30 minutes.
Brush hens generously with cider glaze and continue to roast, brushing them with more glaze every 5 minutes, until they are browned and their juices run clear (an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, not touching bone, should register 165°F), 15 to 20 minutes more. Allow to rest 10 minutes, then split each hen down the middle and serve.
Per Serving:540 calories (270 from fat), 30g total fat, 10g saturated fat, 185mg cholesterol, 700mg sodium, 40g carbohydrates, (2 g dietary fiber, 33g sugar), 30g protein.
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