Mark's Balsamic and Herb Crusted Game Hen

Simple to make, outstanding flavor! You can substitute fresh herbs if you have them - just double the measurement. You can also stuff some wedges of oranges or lemons in the cavity. The glaze here produces a deep brown color; if you find your hens are getting too dark, tent with a bit of foil. This recipe is also great on the grill: Cut the hens down the backbone and lay flat before coating with the glaze. Grill over medium or indirect heat until done, approximately 30 minutes, turning every 5 minutes. Watch for flare-ups! Goes great with Joanna's Jeweled Barberry Rice.
Yield 4 servings
Ingredients

2 games hens, 1-1/2 pound each, (or 1 hen per person if less than 1 pound each)
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1-1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1-1/2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano


1 Preheat oven to 375°F.
2 Pat hens dry and season all over with salt and pepper. Sprinkle onion and garlic powders over hens.
3 In a small bowl, whisk together mustard, honey and balsamic vinegar. Spread mixture all over hens, then sprinkle with the herbs. Place breast side up on rack in shallow roasting pan.
4 Pour 1/2 cup water in bottom of roasting pan. Roast hens, basting occasionally with pan juices, for 45 minutes, or until juices run clear from thigh when pierced with a fork. The color should be deep, deep brown, but not black. Tent with foil if browning too quickly.
5 Cut each hen in half and arrange on serving platter. Skim fat off pan liquid. Spoon some of the juices over the pieces.

notes This can be made with chicken if game hens are not handy.
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