- Prep time
- 30 minutes
- Cook time
- 45–50 minutes
- 2 servings
There's something so festive about serving each diner his or her own individual game hen. These are roasted with a mixture of seasonal vegetables—enhanced, of course, by plenty of bacon.
- 2 Cornish game hens
- ½ bunch thyme
- ½ bunch sage
- 2 orange slices
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 6 ounces bacon, cut into lardons
- 1 cup yams, cut into 2-inch by ½-inch wedges
- 3 golden beets, cut into 2-inch by ½-inch wedges
- 1 parsnip, cut into 2-inch by ½-inch wedges
- 2 cups Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
- 2 shallots, sliced thin
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 4 tablespoons chopped parsley
Heat oven to 400°F. Remove excess moisture from the skin and cavity of the game hens with a paper towel. Place 2 sprigs of thyme and sage into each hen, along with 1 orange slice and 1 clove of crushed garlic. Chop the remaining thyme and sage.
Fold the wing tips under the birds and truss the legs if desired. Rub the exterior of each hen with 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil, season with salt and pepper, and evenly coat each bird with the chopped sage and thyme. Place birds on a rack and roast until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
After the hens have been roasting for about 25 minutes, heat a large, oven-safe sauté pan on medium heat. Add the bacon and render until just crisp. Remove the bacon, leaving the fat in the pan.
Add the yams, beets, parsnips and Brussels sprouts to the pan with the bacon fat in a single layer. When the vegetables have caramelized on the bottom, add the bacon and shallots, toss and place the whole pan in the oven. Roast until the vegetables are just tender and have caramelized. Remove from the oven, add the butter and parsley and toss to coat. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
Transfer vegetables to a serving dish. Top with the roasted game hens and serve.