Spice-Rubbed Poussins

Ma Cuisine, in a small square in Beaune, Burgundy, is one of the world's great neighborhood restaurants. It also has a remarkable Burgundy-centric wine list; chef-owner Fabienne Escoffier's menu is, of course, wine-friendly and delicious. She coats her poussins with a mix of spices, including a pinch of curry powder, and then roasts them until they're browned and juicy. If you can't find poussins, substitute Cornish hens or 2 small chickens and adjust the cooking time.

Slideshow:More Poultry Recipes

  • Active:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4
  • Time(Other): Plus overnight marinating

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  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 2 teaspoons chopped thyme
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Four 1-pound poussins, backbones and wing tips removed
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

How to make this recipe

  1. In a bowl, combine the shallot, thyme, paprika, curry, ginger, nutmeg, white pepper and cloves. Stir in the oil and season with a large pinch of salt. Set the <em>poussins</em> on a rimmed baking sheet, breast side up; press down to flatten the birds. Spread the spice paste all over, then refrigerate overnight.

  2. Preheat the oven to 425&#176;. In a small saucepan, boil the white wine, garlic, soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce over high heat until reduced by a third, about 5 minutes.

  3. Season the <em>poussins</em> with salt and roast for 10 minutes. Increase the oven temperature to 450&#176; and baste the <em>poussins</em> with the wine mixture. Roast for about 20 minutes longer, basting 3 more times with the wine mixture, until the birds are nicely browned and the inner thigh juices run clear. Let the <em>poussins</em> rest for 10 minutes, then serve.

Suggested Pairing

These birds go well with a light red or a rich white. Domaine de L'Arlot, in Burgundy, makes fabulous versions of both.

Contributed By Photo © P-A Jorgensen Published April 2011

504220 recipes/spice-rubbed-poussins 2013-12-06T23:50:41+00:00 Fabienne Escoffier roasting|dinner-party|easter|french|4 april-2011,Fabienne Escoffier,ma cuisine,poussins,cornish hens,french recipe recipes,spice-rubbed-poussins 504220

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