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Roast Cornish Game Hen with Spiced Rosemary Pear Mirin Glaze

Servings: 4


Main Ingredients

Cornish Game Hens2
Butter, cut into pieces3 tablespoons
Melted Butter2 tablespoons
Small Carrots, scrubbed and split lengthwise4
Pearl Onions, blanched and peeled10
Lemon, cut into wedges, optional1
Thyme4 sprigs

Rustic Herb Rub

Dried Rosemary1 teaspoon
Dried Thyme1 teaspoon
Crushed Coriander Seeds1 teaspoon
Rubbed Sage1/4 teaspoon
Allspice1/4 teaspoon
Sea Salt1/4 teaspoon
Freshly-Ground Pepper1/4 teaspoon

Spiced Pear & Mirin Glaze

Chicken Stock1/4 cup
Takara Mirin1/4 cup
Pear Juice1/4 cup
Dried Rosemary1/8 teaspoon
Garlic Cloves2


Cooking Steps

  1. Rinse and pat dry hens. Gently loosen skin from flesh of bird with your fingers

  2. Place butter pieces under skin through breast, back and leg area of hen

  3. Brush skin of hens generously with melted butter

  4. In a small bowl combine together spices for rub

  5. Rub exterior of hens with herb rub. Set birds into a shallow baking dish and allow to come to room temperature; or cover with plastic wrap and keep in the refrigerator overnight if planning ahead. When ready to roast, be sure to let the hens come to room

  6. Start making the glaze. Combine all of the ingredients into a small saucepan and reduce liquid over medium high heat for about 20 to 30 minutes or until reduction has a syrupy consistency

  7. This usually happens when liquids have reduced a little more than 3/4th of the way. Check reduction often so it does not evaporate and burn

  8. Once glaze looks syrupy and coats the back of a spoon, turn off heat and strain into a heat proof bowl. NOTE: Glaze will thicken slightly as it cools

  9. Meanwhile place half of the carrots into the middle of a cast iron skillet and place one hen right on top, add half of the pearl onions around the sides. Repeat using another cast iron skillet with the other hen and remaining vegetables

  10. NOTE: if using a roasting pan, you can roast both birds in the same pan. Place each hen, breast side down on top of a cross-hatch of carrots, so that the skin does not stick to the pan during roasting

  11. Roast breast-side down for 15 - 20 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven, brush with glaze and then using tongs, turn hen over. Add lemons and thyme sprigs and roast breast side up for another 15 to 20 minutes

  12. Remove from oven and check temperature. If thermometer reaches 160 F and juices look clear between the leg and thigh area, the hen is done and can be glazed. If not, roast for another 8 to 10 minutes and check temperature again

  13. Once internal temperature of hen reaches 160 F, coat with remaining glaze and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes

  14. When hen is finished roasting, take out of the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes before carving and serving

Tender and succulent roast Cornish Game Hen is further enhanced with a delicate pear juice and Mirin reduction spiced with rosemary, allspice and cloves. The glaze is also burnished onto the pearl onions and carrots that accompany the hen resulting in an elegant entree for a rustic fall dinner. Try this recipe instead of turkey this holiday season for an intimate dinner.
by  KITCHEN TREASURES™ – Lizette and Geoffrey Marx for Takara

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