Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Day 22

I felt a little like Julia Child in class today... If Julia Child had red hair and a terrible cold. Cooking with a nonexistent sense of smell and incompetent taste buds was rather inconvenient, but I trussed my chicken like a champ and was back in bed by 10am.

Oh, Julia. 

Today I learned how to fabricate a chicken. This was actually pretty simple. We started with the whole chicken. We removed the breasts, wings, legs and thighs, and were left with all the edible parts of the chicken plus the bones for stock making. Amazing. 

cornish game hen with glazed vegetables

Cornish game hen
Mirapoix- celery, carrots, onions
Chicken stock
Bouquet garni- parsley, bay leaf, thyme
Bakers twine to truss
Salt and pepper

Glazed vegetables:
Pearl onions

Begin by prepping the mirapoix. Season the inside and outside of the hen with salt and pepper and then stuff it with mirapoix and a clove of garlic. I also threw in a sprig of thyme. 
Truss the hen. This is a technique using string to tie the chicken in a way that makes it much more appealing for presentation. It can also aid in even cooking. 

Once your hen is trussed, 'poulet' or brown it in a pan with oil over medium- high heat. Once all sides are browned, add mirapiox to pan, put hen on top, and place in the over at 350 degrees to roast until the temperature reached 165 degrees. This will take about 45 minutes to an hour. 

While the hen is in the oven, prepare your vegetables. In class we had to 'tourne' all of the vegetables. I would never in my right mind do this at home. We then glazed them with butter, sugar, and water in a pan covered with a 'cartouch' until tender. 

When the hen is cooked, remove it from the pan and set aside. To prepare the sauce, 'sange' (or sprinkle) the caramelized mirapoix and juices from the pan with flour. Add chicken stock and bouquet garni and reduce to 'nappe' consistency. Strain. Season. Serve as sauce/gravy with hen and vegetables. 

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