Food Revolution Rock Cornish Hens

February 15th, 2011 No Comments Tags: , ,

Last week I wrote about how easy it is to make the simple and delish roast chicken on February 10. I thought I’d devote this week to the even simpler rock cornish hen. Because this is sold at a higher price point I don’t make these any old day. I’ll prepare these for a more special dinner for us at home and when we have company over and I don’t have a lot of time. Because they’re smaller the cooking time is much shorter, based on weight. When they’re done it’s hard to believe something so yummy is so fast and easy to prepare.

You just need to pay special attention to a few important details, but truly, this is so easy to do.


Fully defrost the uniformly sized hens before preparing them to roast. I will make 1 per guest. Some smaller eaters may only want half, but that’s ok. Who doesn’t love leftovers!! Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Wash out your sink and counter surface rinsing all suds away before rinsing and cleaning the raw birds with warm water. Remove and discard any inards/gizzards from the cavities. Place the birds in your roasting pan, as the photo indicates.

Fill your sink again with hot soapy water and clean any surface or utensil and your hands that the hens came in contact with. Raw meat can cross contaminate with salmonella remember. Use super clean diligence in your kitchen no matter what you’re making.

Ensure you know the weight of the birds you’re about to roast. Sprinkle them with salt, pepper and paprika. Gingerly pour canola oil over them. Below is general roasting time by weight (in pounds). Pay attention to details and it’ll be tender and roasted in no time.

Weight (in pounds) Cooking Time (in hours)

2-2.5                                              1.5

2.5-3                                               2

3-4                                                 2.5

Ok pop your pan into the preheated oven and allow to roast. Every 20 minutes or so remove the pan from oven and baste them with the oil drippings from the bottom of the pan using a spoon. If your oven doesn’t have uniform heating rotate your roasting plan to ensure even cooking.

Make sure they cook through. You don’t ; however, want them overdone and dry. Use the time, your eyes and sense to realize they’re properly cooked but not overdone. Use the same testing for doneness like you did for chicken.


There isn’t a lot of wiggle room in terms of waiting for them to be cooked. Precision is key here. I use the same sized birds so they generally cook uniformly. The last time I made these, everyone enjoyed feasting on their own. Some of the leftovers made terrific lunches.

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