I'm settling in to the idea of a different format for my postings. I will not always post an actual recipe. Rather I will share my successes (and failures (as if)) that I deem worthy of your interest. I commented to Peter over tonight's dinner that I had avoided cooking Cornish hens over the years simply because I was never happy with the results (dry stringy little breasts, ok, but chewy legs and thighs). Well, I have completely conquered the little mothers.
I start by cutting down the backbone (not actually removing it) and brining for several hours with salty water and sometimes some other things. It doesn't matter what, because none of you brine anyways. Then, rinse, dry, add paprika, pepper, other stuff if you wish. Melt 1 1/2 tbsp butter in 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet. Put the bird in the pan skin side down until it's nicely browned. Turn it over, add some stock or wine, cover the pan, reduce the heat, and slowly simmer it for about 30 minutes. You will not be sorry.
The other oddment of today's dinner was spaghetti squash. I was well aware that Peter hasn't been crazy about this stuff. The truth is, with him making a few suggestions, we came up with a really savory result. After baking the squash (1 hour at 375 degrees) and scraping out the "sketti," we threw it in a pan with olive oil, butter, chili garlic paste and some pan juices from the Cornish hen. When Peter's happy, I'm happy. Peter was happy.