California Central Coast Recipes

Rock Cornish Game Hens Balsamico

This is an absolutely divine way to serve Rock Cornish Game Hens!—It’s quite unusual and has a taste and dramatic presentation that will make your dinner guests crave for more. If you use Rock Cornish Game Hens, get yourself a couple cooking bricks to press the hens flat. I use a weighted bacon press. They're available at kitchen stores up and down the California Central Coast.

If you're cooking for more than four, I like to use chicken thighs for this –thighs are not too fatty but have lots of meat and more importantly they stay moist.. --With thighs there's no need for a weighted brick.

Serve this with roasted potatoes with onions or brown rice (the sauce is delicious!) and a green vegetable such as peas or green beans and a salad and you’re set to impress!

This reheats tasting almost better than the first time around—so it’s smart to make extra for a “leftover supper.” ©2017, Rock Cornish Game Hens Balsamico
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 50 minutes
re-calculate ingredients for:


2 Rock Cornish Game Hens , split at breast and butterflied
1/2 teaspoons salt
freshly cracked black pepper ,several grinds to taste
2 cans reduced sodium chicken broth , (If chicken broth for this recipe is too wimpy, consider using beef broth.)
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup balsamic vinegar
4 Tablespoons cold butter.

2 12 inch nonstick skillets
2 Bacon presses

Preparation Directions.

1 Rinse Rock Cornish Game Hens and pat dry. Cut off excess fat or skin.

2 Split at the breast and butterfly (See photo)

3 Season with salt and pepper. In a nonreactive (because of the vinegar) large frying pan heat olive oil over medium heat. Add poultry, place weight on top and brown 10-15 minutes or until all sides are browned. Remove poultry from pan and drain off excess fat in skillet.

4 Add half the broth to pan, bring broth to boil, scraping up bits of poultry off bottom of pan.

5 Return poultry to skillet, turn heat up to medium, when starting to simmer, reduce heat to low. Simmer 20-25 minutes or until poultry is cooked throughout but still juicy.

6 Remove poultry from pan. Put aside and cover to stay warm.

7 Add wine and vinegar to pan. Bring to a boil over high heat, scraping up bits and pieces from bottom of pan. Boil until sauce is reduced to about 1 cup---about 5 min. Remove from heat and add cold butter; stir until melted. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Cut poultry in half through breasts. Place poultry back in sauce for a couple minutes, coating both sides.

8 Place each game hen half on individual dinner plates. Spoon sauce over poultry and serve as suggested above.

Wine and Food Pairing and Serving Suggestions.

Wine suggestion: A young but robust Red such as a Sangiovese or a Zinfandel.

A tip from Sue!

No cheese on seafood please!

When serving an Italian seafood dish, unless the recipe specifically calls for cheese, grated Parmesan cheese on top is not a good idea!

The pungent taste of Parmesan is usually too strong for the delicate fish flavors.