Game hens in chocolate sauce

Yield: 4 Servings

Measure Ingredient
Stephen Ceideburg
4 Game hens
Salt, pepper to taste
Olive oil
4 Garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon Red wine vinegar
3 cups Chicken stock
½ cup Dry vermouth
2 White onions, coarsely chopped
2 Not-too-ripe Bosc pears, peeled, halved, cored
12 To 16 whole chestnuts (prepared, from ajar)
2 ounces Bitter chocolate, grated
8 Triangles of fried bread (see note)
Raisins, chopped parsley for garnish

This recipe was inspired by one using partridges that appeared in "The Taste of Spain," by Camilla Jessel.

Season hens with salt and pepper. Heat a bit of oil in a large heavy pan and brown the birds in it on all sides. Add garlic to pan and stir until it takes on a pale color. Add vinegar, 2 cups of the stock, the vermouth and onions and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover tightly and cook gently until birds are very tender, about 1 hour.

Heat remaining cup of stock in a pan large enough to hold the pear halves. Add pears and poach until barely tender; remove with a slotted spoon and keep warm. Add chestnuts to poaching liquid and simmer until heated through; remove and keep warm.

Remove birds to a heated serving platter or plates. Strain cooking liquid, return to heat and add grated chocolate, stirring until it is a good sauce consistency. Pour over birds and garnish with pears, chestnuts, the fried bread, a few raisins and some chopped parsley.

Note: To make fried bread, cut crusts from 4 slices of white bread, then cut slices diagonally to make 8 triangles. Fry quickly in a little hot oil until golden on both sides. Drain and keep warm.

PER SERVING: 1,090 calories, 86 g protein, 52 g carbohy- drate, 58 g fat (17 g saturated), 249 mg cholesterol, 367 mg sodium, 3 g fiber.

Jayne Benet writing in the San Francisco Chronicle, 3/18/92.

Posted by Stephen Ceideburg

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