4 Cornish Hens
May 24th, 2003
First time cooking Cornish hens on an old style large Big Green Egg. I soaked 4 Cornish hens, each less than 2 lbs. each in the following brine:
1 cup of gourmet/kosher salt in 1 gallon of water.
1 tablespoon each of the following:
I left the hens in the brine for at least six hours, if not more. I did not do that on purpose, that is just the way it turned out.
I fired up the Egg, and got it to a dome temperature between 225-250 degrees.
I first put all four hens in, on a rack that is used for smoking whole birds like large turkeys. I had them side by side and nose to tail, wings up legs down.
I smoked the hens in this way for an hour, and then checked them. The top two(the two towards the hinge on the egg) were crispy crunchy looking on the bottom of the birds, while the bottom two hens were very pale in color on the bottom. I decided to remove the rack and laid them all directly on the grill at this point and place them apart for maximum heat and smoke flow around each hen. This is probably what I should have done to start with.
After the better part of another hour, I took the top two off as they were done first. Then I smoked the remaining two for another 10 minutes.
The hens were very juicy and tender. The meat pulled right off.