I feel like chicken, hmmm rather cornish hen tonight…

Tonight on the menu, I felt like a chicken dish, but was bored with the idea of just a pan seared breast. So I thought, how can I turn it up a notch? That’s when I thought stuffed Cornish Hens… This is perfect for one person to chow down on and it’s like your own little bird on a plate! Then I wondered what would be a different twist on a traditional side? Then it hit me… instead of a starchy potato dish, how about a parsnip purée seasoned with a touch of maple syrup and for a little heat in the back of your throat, some cayenne pepper.
For the stuffing, I combined diced onions, garlic, baby portabello mushrooms, chorizo, as well as grated pecorino and some breadcrumb. The onions were sautéed in olive oil until soft, then I added the garlic and cooked for a minute till aromatic. I tossed in the mushrooms and cooked until most of the liquid evaporated and then the chorizo and stirred just till fragrant. Off the heat, I added the the grated pecorino and breadcrumb and stirred to combine.
I rinsed off the hens, patted dry, trimmed the wings and then stuffed the cavity with the glorious, earthy mixture. Tied the legs with butchers twine, coated the outside with a touch of olive oil, fresh minced thyme and salt… Into a 350 degree oven until the hen was fully cooked and what emerged was a heavenly packet of delight…
The parsnip purée was very easy… two pounds of parsnip roughly chopped tossed into boiling water. Once fork tender, the parsnips are drained and added into a food processor with a dash of salt and pulsed together with some fat-free milk that I heated and mixed with some maple syrup and cayenne pepper. Everything is puréed until smooth…
This was one amazing dish and something that will definitely be made in the future again.

at a low simmer…
-R

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