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Apart from eating food for nourishment, food is a way of communication. We can all recall hearing the stories and recipes our grandmother used to make. It seems fitting as a way to pass on culinary traditions especially during holidays.

 

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, can one recipe stand out from the rest as being the best? I like to think that no one recipe makes a great Thanksgiving dinner. It is an orchestra, the sum of all the parts. Each dish provides the right note, right texture and the right balance making the entire meal a success.

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In keeping things a little lighter, I made a simple apple juice glaze for the game hens. It worked out very well, even better the second time. Though the glaze is not sweet, it makes a wonderful golden bird with a light, crisp skin.  

Apple Glazed Game Hen Recipe

 

2-24 ounce game hens

 

½ cup apple juices concentrate

½ cup chicken stock

2” piece of cinnamon stick

3 whole cloves

1 star anise

½ teaspoon black peppercorns

 

Preheat oven to 375°F.

 

1. Truss chicken and season with salt and black pepper.

2. Combine remaining ingredients in a sauce pan and bring to a simmer.

3. Reduce by half and strain into a small bowl.

4. Brush glaze over game hens and roast for 20 minutes.

5. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F and baste hens with more glaze every 15 minutes until juices run clear.

6. Stop applying glaze so skin crisps just before it in finished.

 

Apple & Sage Wild Rice Recipe

 

1 cup wild rice

3 cups water

¼ teaspoon sea salt

 

½ cup basmati rice

¾ cup chicken stock

¼ teaspoon sea salt

 

3 Tablespoons olive oil

1 small yellow onion, finely julienne

2 large Fuji apples, peeled, cored and chopped

6 large sage leaves, finely chopped

Sea salt to taste

 

½ cup sliced almonds, toasted

¼ cup pomegranate seeds

 

1. Cook wild rice with water and salt until tender, drain off any remaining water.

2. Place basmati, chicken stock and salt in a saucepan and bring to a simmer.

3. Reduce to a gentle simmer and cook covered until water is absorbed.

3. Sauté onions in olive oil on low until translucent.

4. Add apples and continue to cook until just tender.

5. Stir in sage and season to taste with sea salt.

6. Combine rice, apple mixture, almonds, and pomegranate seeds.

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