Roast Hen with Yassa Marinade

Joseph “JJ” Johnson, the chef at The Cecil in Manhattan’s Harlem neighborhood, loves how juicy and flavorful Cornish hens can be. Here he seasons them with a West African yassa-style marinade, which includes onion and lemon as well as tamari, herbs and Dijon mustard.

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  • Servings: 4

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  • 1 1/2 cups tamari

  • 1 1/2 cups grapeseed or 
canola oil 

  • 1/4 cup mint leaves with stems

  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  • 1 fresh Thai bird chile with stem

  • 1 tablespoon finely grated 
lemon zest

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 teaspoon thyme leaves with stems

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning

  • Four 1 1/4- to 1 1/2-pound Cornish game hens

How to make this recipe

  1. In a blender or food processor, pulse all of the ingredients except the hens until chunky.

  2. In a large bowl, season the hens with salt. Add the marinade and rub it all over the hens and in the cavities. Cover 
and refrigerate for 1 to 3 hours.

  3. Preheat the oven to 375°. Set a rack over a large rimmed baking sheet. Arrange the hens on the rack, leaving some of the marinade in the cavities. Roast for about 1 hour, or until 
an instant-read thermometer inserted in the inner thighs registers 165° and the juices run clear. Transfer the hens to 
a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Make Ahead

The marinade can be refrigerated for 3 days.

Contributed By Photo © John Kernick Published December 2016

1093933 recipes/roast-hen-yassa-marinade 2016-11-07T14:36:33+00:00 Joseph Johnson december-2016 recipes,roast-hen-yassa-marinade 1093933

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