Honey-Apple Glazed Hens with Rice Pilaf

Although this recipe does require a bit of work it is well worth the effort. I made this for a special family gathering several years ago and it was devoured. Whenever possible I recommend using homemade chicken stock – its cheaper and much more flavorful.

Game hens will work just as well as Cornish. I made a double batch when I prepared this using 2 Cornish hens and 2 Game hens because that’s all that was left at the store.

Yield: 4     (serving size: 1 hen half + 3/4 cup rice pilaf)

Pilaf

1/4 cup uncooked wild rice

1 tsp. olive oil

2 tbsp. onion, finely chopped

2 1/4 cups fat-free, low-sodium chicken broth

1 cup Golden Delicious apple, peeled & diced

2/3 cup uncooked long-grain brown rice

2 tbsp. dried apple, finely chopped

1/2 tsp. salt

Hens

2 (1 1/2 lbs.) Cornish hens

1/4 cup honey

2 tbsp. apple juice or cider

1 tsp. lemon rind, grated

1 tbsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. low-sodium soy sauce

optional garnish Granny Smith apple slices

optional garnish rosemary sprigs

  1. To Prepare Pilaf - wash wild rice in (3) changes of hot water; drain and set aside. Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat. Add onion; saute 3 minutes. Ad wild rice, broth and remaining (4) ingredients; stir well. Bring to boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer 1 hour + 10 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. set aside.
  2. To Prepare Hens – preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove and discard giblets and necks from hens. Rinse hens with cold water; pat dry. Remove skin trim excess fat. Split hens in half lengthwise.
  3. Spoon (4) 3/4-cup mounds of Rice Pilaf onto jelly-roll pan lined with foil. Place hens, meaty sides up, over rice mounds.
  4. Combine honey, apple juice, lemon rind, lemon juice and soy sauce in a bowl; brush over hens. Bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes or until juices run clear, basting every 10 minutes. Garnish with apple slices and rosemary, if desired.

CALORIES 467 (14% from fat); FAT 7.3g (sat. fat 1.1g); CHOL 66mg; SOD 300mg; CARB 59.5g; FIBER 2.7g; PROTEIN 39.4g

from The Complete Cooking Light, cookbook (2000)

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