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Cornish Hens With Fresh Figs


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  • 8 large onions thinly sliced
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
  • 2 large or 4 small Cornish game hens
  • 2 tablespoons virgin olive oil
  • 12 threads Spanish saffron toasted and crushed
  • 12 fresh figs peeled and halved


Servings 4


Step 1

In a heavy ovenproof skillet or Dutch oven, combine the onions with 3 tablespoons of the honey, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions turn a deep caramel color, 25 to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, wash and dry the hens. In a small bowl, mix the oil with the saffron, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Coat the hens inside and out with the mixture and set them on top of the onions. Still over medium heat, cover, and cook until the hens are tender and the juices run clear, 45 to 50 minutes.

Preheat the broiler. Remove the hens from the pan and cut them in half, if desired. Return to the pan and surround with the figs. Drizzle the dish with the remaining 3 tablespoons honey. Broil, watching carefully, until the breasts turn brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and serve.

This recipe yields 4 servings.

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