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Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-82) U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher.

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This simple to make orange sauce may be used on chicken as well. It is packed with flavor and works very well as a basting sauce while roasting.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes prep plus roasting time    Serving Size: 2

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate
  • 1 large navel orange: zested, zest chopped, and 1 tablespoon juice
  • 2 tablespoons orange marmalade
  • 2 fresh Cornish hens
  • Prepared long grain and wild rice mix, optional
  • kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper
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To prepare the sauce, melt butter in a heat proof bowl using the microwave. Stir in 4 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate. Add the zest and marmalade and stir. Stir in the fresh orange juice. Allow to sit while preparing the rice and hens, reheating the mixture in the microwave as necessary to keep it liquid.

Heat oven to 350°. Prepare your favorite long grain and wild rice mix using package directions. As soon as it is done, spread on a baking sheet to allow it to cool. Rinse the hens and pat dry, inside and out. Salt and pepper the cavities and then stuff with the cooled rice mixture. Spoon in a little of the orange sauce intermittently with rice while stuffing. Use butcher's twine or skewers to bind the legs closed. Salt and pepper the outside of the hens and place on a roasting rack.

Use a brush to spread the orange sauce mixture all over the outside of the hens. Roast until the rice inside the hens registers 180° and the hens are cooked through, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Baste the hens with the orange sauce every 15 minutes or so while roasting. Allow to rest for 15 minutes before serving. Remove twine or skewers and serve on individual plates. Remove some of the rice from the cavities and spread on the plate for serving. Steamed and buttered Brussel sprouts make an excellent side dish.

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