Wednesday, December 3, 2014

12 Days of Christmas- Buttermilk Brined Cornish Hens

“Three French Hens” - Buttermilk Brined Cornish Hens

· 2 Cornish hens, about 1 ½ pounds each
· 3 cups buttermilk
· 2 teaspoons salt
· 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
· 1 teaspoon garlic powder
· Juice of 1 lime
· 1 lemon, cut in half
· Fresh thyme
· 2 tablespoons butter, melted
· Salt and pepper, to taste
· Optional: red potatoes

1. Rinse the hens under cool water, including the cavity. Pat dry and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, salt, lemon pepper, garlic powder and lime juice. Place the hens breast side down in the bowl with the buttermilk mixture and cover with plastic wrap. Put in refrigerator. Let sit for at least 3 hours or overnight.
3. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Take the hens out of the brine and lightly pat dry with paper towels. Insert a half of lemon and a sprig of thyme in the cavity of each. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine. Brush with melted butter and season with salt and pepper. Place in a roasting pan.
4. If you want, you can surround the hens with red potatoes, brushed with butter and seasoned with salt and pepper.
5. Place in the middle rack of the oven and roast for 50 minutes to an hour; until the skin is bronzed and internal temperature in the thickest part of the thigh is about 180 degrees.

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