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Rock Cornish Hen or Cornish Game Hen


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..... Now I am thinking that maybe they are just a name for small chicken/Poussin.

.....

Yes.

-- Jeff

"I don't care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members." -- Groucho Marx

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According to this, they're a cross between two types of small chickens. They certainly taste just like chicken.

Yeah, Cornish Game Hens are a silly substitute for game, unless what interests you about the game bird in question is its size rather than its flavour.

They're not inherently bad, though (assuming you like chicken), they're just not gamey.

A jumped-up pantry boy who never knew his place.

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I've seen them called both Rock Cornish Game Hens and Cornish Game Hens. I haven't made these in a while so I had to dig out the Recipe. This was one of my father's first recipes given to me. They don't taste anything like game, but this particular recipe is quite good.

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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Ah, all is clear now. The are either 'Cornish Game' (called 'Indian Game' in Cornwall and the rest of Britain) or a cross-between Cornish Game and Plymouth Rock Chickens. Both are large-ish breeds, so they must kill them young for the table. Cornish Game are very square looking chickens, so I guess the carcass will look more compact and plump then regular chickens, otherwise I can't think of a reason why poussin sized chickens of a different breed would be used.

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Poussins are smaller than game hens....we sell them both where I work. A game hen can feed two people....poussins only one. We carry poussins for people who need to eat things with names that they cannot pronounce. I think it is a status thing.

You English egulleteers should be able to enlighten us about the Cornish thing...why are they called Cornish? Are they from Cornwall?

And speaking of Cornwall, does anyone except myself remember a radio show in England in the 60's where some character would just jump in and mouth,'Cornwallllllll"?

Am I insane?

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I am an Australian, but I can help (The English know sweet fanny Adam's about farm animals and birds, it's an enclosure thing).

In Britian and Australia 'Cornish' game are known as 'Indian' game. The 'game' bit is because they (or some of the breeds that they are derived from) were at some point bred for cock-fighting, rather then 'game' birds like pheasant and partridge, where they are shot for sport/game.

Oh, yes, they were bred in Cornwall.

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Nothing like a Perdue Cornish game hen, with its own pop up timer.

I love these, roasted and stuffed with LOTS of garlic cloves, rubbed with EVOO, lemon and herbs. Or with a stuffing of wild rice/jasmati rice, sweet Italian sausage, currants and caramelized onions. Or with a stuffing of sausage and jalapeno cornbread, corn niblets, red and yellow peppers. Or with a stuffing of serrano ham, long-grain rice, smoked turkey, chipotle chiles and roasted garlic. (this is one of the few times I will dare to consume turkey.)

Might make this for dinner this weekend. :wub: Thanks, Adam!

Soba

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Rock Cornish game hens were created in 1965 by Donald Tyson, because he wanted a specialty poultry item he could charge more money for. They are a cross between the White Rock and Cornish breeds, but the significant point is that they're killed very young (they come to market in 28-30 days, as compared with 42+ for regular chickens). Basically, then, we're talking about the veal of the chicken world.

(info from the Food Chronology by James Trager)

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They are a cross between the White Rock and Cornish breeds

(info from the Food Chronology by James Trager)

Thanks for that, I forgot to correct my earlier mistake of a Plymouth Rock to White Rock.

So in other words how to make chicken even more tastless? Invent the Rock Cornish game. No offense to eaters of Rock Cornish game obviously.

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For those of us in the US provinces, rock cornish hens always seemed like a treat. It was something fancier than chicken, cost more and was treated with more care (hence, the frequent wild rice stuffing). It is also something a single guy with no skills can make to impress a woman and wherever that might lead (later she learns that and burgers and steaks are all he can make). Plus the size of the birds lends itself to eating by hand with all the Tom Jones potential for lust. So, it's not all bad. Also, they've got these cool little wishbones.

Now that I think about it, I think the first time I ever had a cornish hen was at the Court of the Two Sisters in New Orleans where it was served on the dimly lit courtyard wrapped in gold foil with shimmering sparklers sticking out of it. Ah, showbiz...

Edited by hollywood (log)

I'm hollywood and I approve this message.

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One more bit of Rock Cornish Game Hen trivia:

The comedian Victor Borge supposedly made a fortune raising the little cluckers.

I've seen recipes for Doro Wat (an Ethiopian chicken-and-egg stew) that call for one of those birds to feed 4 or more people. Well, at least that will add some flavor.

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Ah, well in that case, if the chicks dig it then I'm all for them. Is wild rice sexy? I had never really though of it as such. When I was in Morocco I got a spice blend that contained Spanish fly, next time I am in the States I will post you some to go with the Rock Cornish Game. :wink:

See revised post. Thanks for the offer. Had I only had the Spanish fly mix (but then I'm sure you've heard the urban legend about the fly, the girl and the stick shift)! Today, I think the stakes have been raised and the ole cornish hen ain't quite the chick magnet it used to be.

I'm hollywood and I approve this message.

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I just like them because they are tidy little entrees. I brine mine as soon as I get them home. When ready to cook, I rinse, slather with orange marmalade mixed with soy sauce and sherry and pop them in the over. I like nibbling their little bones, so it's a treat for me.

However, I won't serve them to guests anymore: just family. I feel like an Neanderthal when I eat them!

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Sparklers in a Chicken is crime against humanity.

Spanish fly are these really pretty shiny beetles, in Morocco they sell them mixed with hash resin and opium. If I took about 20 of these, it still wouldn't make chicken and sparklers right.

Hey, to a 16 year old who'd never seen anything flambe, it seemed ...ah...hot. And sparklers sorta fit the N.O. ambience.

Edited by hollywood (log)

I'm hollywood and I approve this message.

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Sparklers in a Chicken is crime against humanity.

Spanish fly are these really pretty shiny beetles, in Morocco they sell them mixed with hash resin and opium. If I took about 20 of these, it still wouldn't make chicken and sparklers right.

Hey, to a 16 year old who'd never seen anything flambe, it seemed ...ah...hot.

:biggrin: Ah, the first time is always memorable. I think I will make Crepe Suzette this weekend.

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My father hates Cornish Game Hens because he dislikes eating with his hands (some people are too fastidious for their own good). I once played the smartass and served him game hens that I'd deboned, stuffed with spinach and preserved lemon, and rolled into neat lttle packages. It impressed him, but it took all the fun out of eating for me. Game Hens are an excuse to make your plate look like Hannibal Lecter's compost pile, dammit!

A jumped-up pantry boy who never knew his place.

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One more bit of Rock Cornish Game Hen trivia:

The comedian Victor Borge supposedly made a fortune raising the little cluckers.

Ah... any time you can link something to Victor Borge, you've ensured a groan from your audience. :biggrin:

I've had Doro Wat, but I wasn't aware that it was made from these creatures.

Jon Lurie, aka "jhlurie"

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I've had Doro Wat, but I wasn't aware that it was made from these creatures.

I don't know that Doro Wat is made exclusively from game hens. I've always had it made from the plain ol' run-of-the-mill chickens.

The one time I made Doro Wat myself, the recipe I was following called for one roaster-sized bird... to feed 6, I think.

A jumped-up pantry boy who never knew his place.

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Most of the recipes I have for Doro Wat actually call for regular chicken -- anywhere from 2 pounds to 2 kilos -- but it struck me that one recipe called for one itty bitty bird. And I'm pretty sure that when I've had it in restaurants, such as the late lamented Abbysinia, they used regular chicken.

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I appreciate the cuteness factor of so-called Cornish hens, but the proof's in the pud and to me they are irredeemably, palate-coatingly chalky. A small chicken, while never AS small as a so-called Cornish hen, is SO much better-tasting.

Priscilla

Writer, cook, & c. ● #TacoFriday observant ●  Twitter    Instagram

 

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