Spatchcocked Cornish Game Hens With Lime, Garlic And Cilantro

Spatchcocked Cornish Game Hens With Lime, Garlic And Cilantro
4.5 from 2 ratings
Cutting it close on meal prep? Spatchcocked Cornish game hens with lime, cilantro and garlic will rescue you. No marinade necessary with these beauties, and the spatchcocking makes the little birds cook in just 20 minutes. Figure one whole bird to a customer, and use any leftovers in a light, bright chicken salad, its smoky flavors complemented by a peppery mayonnaise dressing.This recipe is by Robin Mather, author of "The Feast Nearby" (Ten Speed Press, 2011), a collection of essays and recipes from a year of eating locally on a budget. This recipe was originally published in the Chicago Tribune.
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Spatchcocked Cornish Game Hens With Lime, Garlic and Cilantro recipe - The Daily Meal
Total time: 50 minutes
  • 4 cornish game hens
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or pureed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  1. Spatchcock the 4 Cornish game hens by turning them breast side down and using a sharp pair of kitchen scissors to cut on either side of the backbone. Remove backbone; reserve for use in stock or discard. Turn the birds over; flatten them by pressing on the breast bone with the heel of your hand.
  2. If you wish to skewer the birds, run the birds through with two skewers, one from one thigh through the opposite breast to the wing, the other skewer crossing X-wise to do the remaining side. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and freshly ground pepper. Set aside at room temperature while you prepare the composed butter (recipe follows) and the grill.
  3. Place the hens skin side up over direct heat. Cover; cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Turn the birds over; cook until golden brown and a thermometer in the thickest part of the breast registers 145 to 150 F, about 15 minutes. Move the birds to cooler parts of the grill if they start to burn.
  4. Remove from grill, placing birds on a platter. Put 2 pats of composed butter on each bird to melt while they rest for 5 minutes before serving.
  5. In a bowl, combine 1/2 cup softened butter, the zest and juice from 1 whole lime, 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro, 2 cloves grated or pureed garlic and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  6. Using waxed paper, shape the composed butter into a roll. Place in the freezer while you grill the hens.