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three herb roasted chicken with maple and honey glaze

You know what we did last weekend..we cooked this – see below the pic…two Cornish hens roasted in oven and glazed with maple and honey. This was kind of some kitchen experiments for us, as we never cooked a whole chicken before. The idea of cooking a whole chicken never seems to me too appealing, but then perspectives changes with time and there is always a first time for everything.  It not only brings us out of our comfort zone but also pushes ourselves to new limits, and we are glad that we did it.

It all started with our New york trip to my SIL’s place, she has roasted a whole chicken for us which took a good 2-3 hours time, and as she was explaining me the concept of cooking a whole chicken, the idea of new recipes from the leftovers clicked for me. There she mentioned something called ‘Cornish hens’, we had no idea about it, except that it would be a hen, 🙂 but when we found the packaged Cornish hens in a supermarket, on a whim, we happily picked it up. And the next best thing I did was to pick up a packet of herbs for poultry, it has rosemary, thyme and sage..wow ! Rosemary I have used before in the chicken, it has a wonderful aroma and perfect for poultry dishes, fresh thyme I have never used, only the dried ones and sage…no..never in any form. And I knew this one is going to throw some challenges.

What followed next was to ping a dear friend Devaki of weave thousand flavours for a good recipe of Cornish hens and a long distance call to NY to my SIL.

Devaki has forwarded me a wonderful recipe (she calls it devils chicken) of oven roasted chicken that she has cooked a while ago, the recipe calls for a generous dose of jalapeno chile oil, and that is something I can’t go for as my DH has a low-level of spice tolerance. But her step by step photos explained me well, the nitty-gritty of cooking a whole chicken and her cooks note are really very helpful, where she has shared some good tips too.Thanks, Devaki, you and your recipes rocks !!!

In between the loads of work, my SIL has taken time to answer all my queries, and gave me a load of suggestions like stuffing the chicken, lining the roasting pan with sliced potatoes and some veggies, basting the chicken after every 15 minutes to keep it moist etc. Thanks Sash, you are really a wonderful person.

Since I am not following any particular recipe, I was on my own, so instead of preparing any sauce for it, I thought of glazing the chicken as I did before for the chicken breast. So I prepared a honey and maple syrup glaze with generous drizzle of lemon and herbs.

So here we go, with two cornish hens, well seasoned and infused with the three herbs – rosemary, thyme and sage all exuding wonderful aroma as it slowly get roasted in the oven with a highly appetizing honey maple glaze which gives some gorgeous sheen to the chicken and served along with fried brown rice and roasted / steamed broccoli with garlic-lemon and green beans with toasted almonds and there off course was this good chardonnay to accompany us on this fabulous meal.

rosemary thyme sage

Read below the recipe for roasted Cornish hens to know how I went about it:

three herb roasted chicken with maple and honey glaze
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Roasted Cornish hen infused with the wonderful aroma of three herbs, rosemary, sage and thyme and glazed with maple syrup and honey.
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Serves: 3
  • Cornish hens : 2
  • Packet of herbs for poultry : it has rosemary, thyme and sage (3-4 twigs of herb each)
  • Olive oil : ½ cup
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • Maple syrup : ¼ cup
  • Honey : ¼ cup
  • Chilli flakes : ½ tsp
  • Juice of lemon : ¼ cup
  • to stuff inside the chicken like garlic and onion; and to line the roasting pan like sliced potatoes and carrots etc
  1. Pre heat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Finely chopped the rosemary, thyme and sage. This should yield at least 2-3 tbsp of mixed herb.
Preparing the chicken:
  1. I have used the perdue Cornish hens, and it was well cleaned. Just wash the chicken in cold running water.
  2. Stuff the chicken with some roasted garlic and quarts of lemon along with some red onions. It does not only enhance the flavour but also keeps the meat moist.
Seasoning the chicken :
  1. In a small mixing bowl, add a tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle some salt and cracked black peppers, add one tablespoon of lemon juice along with the chilli flakes. Mix it well and add 1 tablespoon of mixed herbs.
  2. Rub the chicken well with these seasoning inside out.
  3. Next line the roasting pan with sliced potatoes and carrots or onions. This will prevent the juice coming out of the chicken from sticking to the pan.
  4. Arrange the seasoned and stuffed chicken in the roasting pan side by side. Roast in a pre heated oven for 45 minutes or till the juice from thigh runs clear.
Preparing the glaze:
  1. In a mixing bowl add the honey and maple syrup, whip it up a little and add the 1 tablespoon of oil, 2-3 tablespoon of lemon and 1-2 tablespoon of mixed herbs. Mix it well and baste the chicken with this glaze after every 10-15 minutes.
  2. Once done, let it cool for 5 minute before start carving it.


roasted chicken

Sides to go with this three herb oven roasted Cornish hens:

Fried Brown rice ( 2 cups of cooked rice ) : Cook the brown rice as per the package instruction. Heat some oil in a pan, and add one medium chopped onion, saute for a while and then add 1 tablespoon of ginger cut into Julienne. Fry for sometime and add the chopped tomatoes about a quarter cup. Mix it well and cook till the tomatoes release their juices, add a dash of soy sauce and season it with salt and pepper. Add the cooked brown rice and mix it well, fry for couple of minutes and take off from the heat. Serve it as a side to the oven roasted Cornish hens.

Steamed broccoli and green beans with toasted almonds: As the name suggested, steam the florets of broccoli and the green beans with their stalk removed. I love the roasted or burnt smell of broccoli, so I fried the broccoli along with the green beans and few cloves of minced garlic in a little olive oil and sprinkle some salt and pepper over it. Mix it well with the toasted almonds. You can also go for pine nuts.

Wine pairing : We paired it with white wine Chardonnay which goes very well with the full flavoured roasted chicken dishes, and it also helps to cleanse the palate that leaves the sense of taste clear and ready to enjoy the next bite.

cornish hen


Sharing this recipe of three herb roasted chicken with honey and maple glaze with the event : Weekend herb blogging 297 @ Mele cotte

Hope you have liked our adventures in kitchen….more to follow soon, so stay tuned till next post.

Have a wonderful day



  • Reply
    Anita Menon
    August 17, 2011 at 12:10 pm

    All the photos look absolutely stunning. There is a first time to everything – like you said. Only then would we introduce ourselves to new flavours.
    Good going, the chicken looks really really yummy

  • Reply
    August 17, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Looks like you had a great feast! I have seen quite a few roasted chicken on the web recently, this is one of the best out there !

  • Reply
    August 17, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    Yummy looking chicken. Delicious preparation.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  • Reply
    Vijitha Shyam
    August 17, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    Gorgeous clicks! Perfectly roasted chicken and loving the glaze. Yum!

  • Reply
    Devaki @ weavethousandflavors
    August 17, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    Hi Sukanya – Thanks for the kind mention and I am glad you found the recipe and tips helpful. Looks like you needed little help as these chooks look like they were cooked by a pro! Brava 🙂

    chow:) Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

  • Reply
    August 17, 2011 at 8:55 pm

    I have never roasted cornish hens..You did a wonderful job with all the fresh herbs and the maple glaze! I m sure you enjoyed this feast after all the hard work!

  • Reply
    August 17, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    An eye catchy and a drool worthy chicken. The combo of honey and maple with herbs seems so captivating sukanya.

  • Reply
    August 18, 2011 at 1:12 am

    Stunning photos & love flavor in it..thanks for sharing..

  • Reply
    August 18, 2011 at 1:28 am

    I dont eat chicken but that first picture just makes me wanna cheat and eat some 😉

  • Reply
    August 18, 2011 at 4:11 am

    Flavourful chicken roast, wonderful and inviting..

  • Reply
    August 18, 2011 at 4:46 am

    Chicken looks so tempting and flavorful..

  • Reply
    August 18, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    aromatic looking chicken looks wonderful

  • Reply
    August 22, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    I never made a full chicken .. still a little intimidated with the idea. Recently a friend of mine placed this special request and very soon I am going to just to do it 🙂 This looks perfectly done and well done for your first time!

  • Reply
    August 24, 2011 at 9:25 pm

    Dinner time and this looks so flavorful and good and well done.

  • Reply
    September 3, 2011 at 6:55 am

    This was yum. It looks, reads and I am sure will be delicious. 😀 How do you think of these amazing recipes?

  • Reply
    September 14, 2011 at 3:37 am

    Oh Sukanya ! I came to your blog looking for a roast chicken recipe.
    I am off fb so don’t meet you so much 🙁
    It is not clear that the stuffed seasoned thing is to be covered in foil or not ? Otherwise won’t it stay tough?
    And do we keep reopening the oven to baste it ?
    And do we turn it over ??
    I tried roasting once before and ended with tough partially cooked thing in 45 minutes :((
    can you possibly cc the reply to my mail :vtiwary2 AT gmail DOT com.

  • Reply
    October 31, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    Thankyou everyone for wonderful feedback.

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