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  Added: Mar 31, 2008  •  Visited (223)  •  Print version Print this recipe (15)  •  eMail recipe eMail recipe (1)  •  Write review  •  Not rated Rate this recipe
Tandoori Game Hens
The tandoori oven has traditionally been built in a hole in the ground. Indian cooks now build such an oven aboveground so that you may stand beside it and reach down inside. The inside looks like that of a great clay urn, and it's covered on the outside with a great deal of insulation. A wood fire is built in one portion of the bottom, and when the temperature hits 900°F the oven is ready. Yes, 900°F, so you can understand that it takes a long time to heat up this device, and one rarely allows the fire to go out.

What You Need:
  • 4 Cornish game hens
  • 1 tablespoon red food coloring
  • 2 tablespoons yellow food coloring

  • 1½ cups Homemade Yogurt or yogurt from the market.
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus additional for basting
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 4 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon peeled and minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Garam Masala
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 2½ teaspoons kosher salt or to taste

  • How To Cook:
    1. With poultry shears or scissors cut the backbones of the hens. Place each hen, open, breast side up, on the kitchen counter. Press down on the breastbones with the heel of your palm to flatten them.

    2. Skin the hens and prick them all over with a fork. Make diagonal slashes, ½ inch deep and 1 inch apart, on the meat, along the grain. Make a slit with a paring knife in the meat between the thigh and the breast.

    3. Secure the ends of the legs through the slit. Put the hens in a large shallow dish. Mix the food colorings in a shallow bowl and paint the hens. Remove them to another plate and reserve.

    4. Combine all the ingredients of the marinade with the remaining coloring in the bowl. Mix thoroughly, then coat the hens with the marinade; push it into the slits, to coat them evenly.

    5. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight (maximum 2 days) or marinate at room temperature for 1 hour. Take the hens from the refrigerator 1 hour before cooking.

    6. Prepare and light a covered charcoal grill or preheat an oven to 550°F. Coat the hens lightly with oil. Place them, breast side down, on a rack and barbecue, covered, with the vents open, turning 3 or 4 times, without further basting, for 25 minutes or until the juices run clear when pierced with a knife at the joint.

    7. Alternately, roast the hens set on racks in a baking dish for 20 to 25 minutes. Serve immediately, with slices of cucumber, tomatoes, and onions if desired.

        An outstanding dish, which can also be made with chicken.
    To Serve: 8
    This recipe is also available in:
    Cuisine » Asia » India
    Main Ingredient » Meat & Poultry » Chicken
    Main Ingredient » Dairy » Yogurt
    Main Ingredient » Vegetables » Ginger
    Dish » Main Courses


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