Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish HensApricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens
(This recipe is part of  “Home for the Holidays Experience”)

In Need of a Good Workout after Thanksgiving

This past couple of weeks have been a blur to me. Between traveling to Minneapolis and attending a food photography workshop with Pinch of Yum, grocery shopping for the holiday, and cooking the “feast,” my body has been highly neglected. The over-indulgence of rich food and the lack of activity have left me quite in need of a good workout at the gym.

Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

The Urge to Catapult the Beeping Alarm

When that alarm went off at 5:30 this morning, the urge to catapult that beeping phone across the room was quite compelling. I refrained because I’m probably gonna need the other functions of this annoying device sometime today. The desperate longing to pull the down comforter back over my head and get a few more zzzz’s had to be squashed if I was going to be somewhat productive.

Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

The Consequences of Enjoying Good Food

So here I am at the gym with my muscles screaming at me, “What the heck were you thinking?” They will eventually appreciate my willpower winning over, but it probably won’t be until this dang workout is DONE! Ugh … the consequences of enjoying good food a little too much.

Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

Since we’re on the subject, let’s talk about food, mainly Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens. These beauties are the perfect recommendation for your Christmas dinner coming up in a few weeks. It is both impressive and practical. Each guest is provided their own personal little bird dressed with a wild rice stuffing. It will automatically bring a “wow” affect to your table. Not only do these birds come out of the oven with a gorgeous orange hue because of the apricot glaze, they are absolutely succulent.

Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

Wild Rice Stuffing

The Wild Rice Stuffing adds a nice texture to the Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens. When you add dried fruit (apricots and cranberries), you have both savory and sweet which is a wonderful compliment to the entree. I had more than enough rice to stuff each hen and plenty left over for a side dish. Make sure and throw the extra in the oven for the last 15-20 minutes while cooking the cornish hens to ensure the stuffing is nice and warm.

Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

I garnished the platter with fresh sage, whole dried apricots, and fresh cranberries. It makes a beautiful presentation for a Holiday table.

Home for the Holidays

Home for the Holidays Experience
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Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens
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Two Elegant Side Dishes for Your Holiday Table - Roasted Brussel Sprouts with blue cheese and dates.
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Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

Apricot Glazed Stuffed Cornish Hens

This dish is the perfect alternative to your Holiday turkey. Each guest has their own individual bird. The apricot glaze adds a nice dimension of flavor along with the wild rice stuffing which has dried apricots and cranberries.

  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
  • Yield: 4 Cornish Hens

Ingredients

Wild Rice Stuffing

  • 2 tablespoons Butter
  • 1 Large Sweet Onion, chopped
  • 1 cup Celery, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 4 large Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 4 cups Cooked Wild Rice
  • 8 oz Dried Apricots, chopped
  • 8 oz Dried Cranberries
  • 4 tablespoons Slivered Almonds

Cornish Hens

  • 4 Cornish Hens
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 tablespoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 tablespoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons each Sage, Rosemary, Thyme, chopped
  • 2 cups Wild Rice Stuffing (above)
  • 18 oz Apricot Preserves
  • 1/2 cup Triple Sec

Instructions

  • Melt butter in a large skillet, sauté onions and celery over medium heat until they are soft, approximately 10 minutes. Add salt and pepper as they cook. Add garlic and cook for one more minute.
  • Combine wild rice, apricots, cranberries, almonds, and veggies in a medium-size bowl. Set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 400° F. Rinse Cornish hens inside and out and dry with paper towels. Rub the olive oil on all sides of the hens. Generously salt and pepper both inside and out. Rub the herbs on the hens. Fill each cavity with 1/2 cup of the wild rice stuffing. Tie the legs of each bird together and tuck the wings under. Place breast side up on a rack in a shallow pan.
  • Mix together the apricot preserves and triple sec. Baste each bird and cook for 80-90 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 165° F in the thigh. While the birds are cooking, continue to baste every 15-20 minutes with the apricot glaze. If they start to burn, tent foil over them. Remove the foil for the last 15 minutes of cooking. At this time place the remaining stuffing in an ovenproof pan and place in the oven to warm.
  • Remove from the oven and tent more foil over the top and let them sit for 10 minutes.
  • Serve with the remaining wild rice stuffing.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 Cornish Hen w/ 1/2 cup stuffing
  • Calories: 1484
  • Sugar: 84 g
  • Sodium: 2240 mg
  • Fat: 77 g
  • Saturated Fat: 16 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 34 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 138 g
  • Fiber: 12 g
  • Protein: 73 g
  • Cholesterol: 399 mg