Recipe courtesy of Steve Rosen

Roasted Game Hen with Fresh Laurel and Wild Pepper Over Creamy Polenta

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 40 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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4 Cornish game hens

1/2 cup white wine

1 tablespoon wild peppercorns (toasted white peppercorns are ok)

12 fresh laurel leaves or dry bay leaves

1/4 cup olive oil

4 sprigs parsley, cleaned and chopped


1 cup coarse polenta

3 cloves garlic, minced

3 1/2 cups water or chicken stock

2 ounces unsalted butter

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Remove breast and leg meat from the hens. Marinate for 1 hour in white wine, pepper, laurel leaves, olive oil, and parsley.
  2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  3. Roast the hens over the laurel leaves. Salt, to taste. Cook 12 to 15 minutes, skin side up.


  1. Bring stock to boil. Whisk in polenta and cook over low heat 15 to 20 minutes when thick and pulls away from the side of the pan. Saute garlic and butter and whisk into polenta. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook’s Note

For a simple sauce, save the pan drippings and marinade. Bring to a boil, whisk in 2 ounces of butter and strain.

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