Cornish Hens with Wild Mushroom Dressing
|Cornish hens||5 Pound, trimmed of excess fat and giblets discarded|
|Ground black pepper||To Taste|
|Celery||1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs), sliced|
|Onions||1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs), chopped|
|Defatted reduced sodium chicken broth||1 Cup (16 tbs)|
|Wild mushroom dressing||1 Tablespoon|
|Dried porcini mushrooms||1 Ounce|
|Hot water||1 Cup (16 tbs)|
|Olive oil||1 Teaspoon|
|Button mushrooms||6 Ounce, finely chopped|
|Celery||1⁄3 Cup (5.33 tbs), chopped|
|Chopped italian parsley||2 Tablespoon|
|Dried rosemary||1⁄2 Teaspoon, crushed|
|Dried thyme||1⁄2 Teaspoon|
|Madeira/Nonalcoholic white wine||1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs)|
|Day old italian bread||4 Cup (64 tbs) (Preferably Semolina)|
|Egg white||1 , beaten|
To make the hens: Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Grate 1 teaspoon rind from the lemon into a large bowl; set aside to use in the dressing.
Slice the lemon.
Sprinkle the hen cavities with the salt and pepper and stuff each with half of the lemon slices, 2 rosemary sprigs, and 1 bay leaf.
Set the hens in a roasting pan.
Sprinkle the celery and onions around the hens and pour the broth into the pan.
Bake for 30 minutes.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and bake, basting occasionally, for 30 minutes, or until crispy and the internal temperature reads 165°F to 170°F on an instant-read thermometer.
To make the wild mushroom dressing: While the hens are roasting, place the dried mushrooms and water in a small bowl.
Let soak for 20 minutes, or until softened.
Remove the mushrooms and chop.
Strain the water through a coffee filter to remove any grit.
Reserve the liquid.
Warm the oil in a medium no-stick skillet over medium heat.
Add the onions, button mushrooms, celery, parsley, rosemary, thyme, and the chopped mushrooms.
Cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 to 8 minutes, or until the onions are soft.
Add the wine and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the liquid has evaporated.
Transfer the vegetables to the bowl with the lemon rind.
Add the bread and toss to combine.
Stir in the reserved mushroom broth, 1/3 cup at a time, until the stuffing is moist but not soggy.
Stir in the egg white and season with the salt and pepper.
Spoon the dressing into a 1-quart baking dish and cover with foil.
Place in the oven with the hens 30 minutes before the hens are due to be finished.
Remove the foil for the last 5 minutes of baking time.