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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Sausage Stuffed Game Hens on the Grill

This is one of my favorite ways to cook a game hen or any poultry. Sausage under the skin adds sooo much flavor and moisture. You can use your favorite kind of sausage, mine is smoked sausage but this time I used an italian sausage recipe.

I brined the game hens for two hours in a mixture of...

1 gallon of cold water
1/4 cup salt
1/2 cup sugar
2 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic sliced
some sliced onion
a cayenne pepper (optional)
thyme sprigs
you can really add any herbs that you like .

Made a batch of italian sausage ( use store bought sausage if you want)
Mix together...
1 pound ground pork
1 medium onion -- finely chopped
1 small garlic clove -- crushed
Then mix the spices together..
1/2 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon ground thyme
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper -- optional
Then combine the spices into the pork mixture

Fry a small sausage pattie to taste the seasonings... make adjustments if needed.

Stuff the sausage under the skin of the hen....

then cut two holes in the skin at the bottom of the bird to tuck the legs in.

Place the right leg into the left hole in the skin...

place the left leg across the right leg and insert into the hole..
OR you can just tie them together with butchers twine. :)

then I fold the tips of the wings under the bird...

I like to add liquid to the drip pan. Either water, beer, apple juice or whatever with a few onions and some dry rub...

Rub the bird with butter and season with salt and pepper. Place the pan in the center of the grill with both side burners lit for indirect heat.

The sausage adds so much flavor and the birds are moist and tender. My favorite sausage is smoked but this italian sausage was nice for a change.


Caribou said...

Those look great!
I love the way you made little stirrups for the legs, too. ;)

Sid said...

That looks seriously tasty! Sticking the legs through the skin instead of twine never crossed my mind. I'll have to try that! Another wonderful meal. You rock. A. Chris

Frugal Canadian Hermit said...

Looking like a pretty tastey bird Jeanie.

Big Dude said...

I've always just done the basics for them, but I love everything about your method and will have to give it a try soon. I like the step-by-step shots

panthers76 said...

Again, another winner Jeanie.

Very good. Can you stuff some in an envelope and mail ASAP?

cowgirl said...

Thanks Carolyn! :)
I hadn't thought to call them "stirrups"... seems to fit! :)

cowgirl said...

Chris Thanks! It's nice to see ya. Hope you are having a great spring! :)

cowgirl said...

Thanks Mark! Hope all is well with you. I know you are probably keeping busy! :)

cowgirl said...

Larry thanks! I like them with just butter salt and pepper too. :)
Hope all is going well with you.. I imagine you're getting a lot of use out of your awesome dock now! :)

cowgirl said...

lol Bill.. I'll do that! Thanks.. :)

JazzCat said...

A Beautiful Bird Jeanie!
Hoping your Easter weekend is OUTSTANDING!

cowgirl said...

Thank you JazzCat!! I loved the pics of your PIGvilion... great set up!! Your yard looks beautiful too..
Hope you have a wonderful weekend. :)

Chris said...

So clever and I bet the flavor rocks.

cowgirl said...

Thanks Chris, the italian sausage was a nice change. :)