Tested till perfect Normandy-Style Roast Guinea Hens

Normandy-Style Roast Guinea Hens

A traditional roasting with apples and Calvados and generous amounts of cream and butter bring out the best in a guinea hen.

By The Canadian Living Test Kitchen

Source: Canadian Living Magazine: January 2008

  • rating starrating starrating starrating starrating star
  • Portion size 4 to 6


  • 1-1/2 tsp 1-1/2tspsalt
  • 1/2 tsp 1/2tsppepper
  • 2 2guinea henguinea hens, about 4-1/4 lb/2.125 kg total
  • 2 2bay leafbay leaves
  • 6 sprigs 6sprigsfresh thyme, or 1 tsp/5 ml dried
  • 2 2unpeeled and uncored appleapples, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 1oniononions, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup 1/3cupbutter
  • 1/4 cup 1/4cupCalvados or brandy
  • 1/2 cup 1/2cupsodium-reduced chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup 1/3cupwhipping cream
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Mix salt with pepper; sprinkle about one-third inside hens. Divide bay leaves and thyme between cavities. Mix apples with onion; place handful inside each hen, setting remaining mixture aside. Skewer opening closed; tie legs together and tuck wings under back.

In large ovenproof skillet, melt butter over medium heat; brown hens all over, about 12 minutes. Transfer to plate.

Add remaining apple mixture to pan; top with hens, breast side up. Sprinkle with remaining salt mixture. Roast in 375°F (190°C) oven, basting every 10 minutes, for 1 to 1-1/4 hours or until thermometer inserted in thickest part of thigh reads 185°F (85°C). Untie and add contents of cavities to skillet. Transfer hens to serving platter; keep warm.

Place skillet over medium-high heat; cook until almost no liquid remains. Add Calvados; holding at arm's length away, ignite liquid. Let flames die. Stir in stock; cook until reduced by half. Stir in cream; bring to boil. Strain through sieve, pressing on solids. Serve with hens.

Nutritional Information Per each of 6 servings: about

cal 620 pro 67g total fat 33g sat. fat 14g
carb 8g fibre 0g chol 253mg sodium 890mg

% RDI:

calcium 5 iron 18 vit A 19 vit C 7
folate 6
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