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1½ teaspoons salt

Four 1¼-pound Cornish game hens

1 pound chicken wings, separated into joints

1 cup coarsely chopped yellow onion

½ cup coarsely chopped carrot

2 garlic cloves, smashed

1 tablespoon tomato paste

½ cup red wine

1½ cups low-sodium chicken broth

1 tablespoon cornstarch

½ cup evaporated skim milk

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

Ground black pepper

Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a small bowl, combine the sage, thyme leaves, lemon zest and salt. Very carefully separate the skin from the meat on the breast and thighs of each hen, lifting it lightly from the meat without removing it. Rub a quarter of the herb blend directly onto the breast and thigh meat (under the skin) of each hen. Cover and chill the hens. This step can be done up to 8 hours ahead.

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