On the ‘Up and Up’ and Stuffed Spatchcocks

Archie’s no longer unemployed.  His circumstances apparently, are on the ‘Up and Up’.

Stuffed Poussins

I don’t know how it happened and I have no idea who’s behind it, but Archie, in his very small fish bowl, is becoming sought after.  It came as something as a shock when the phone rang and it was someone wanting to book Archie to sing at their wedding.  Hurriedly accepting this offer of ‘work’, Archie’s resume now includes, ‘Wedding Singer’.  And hot on the heels of his highly paid gig singing at a country wedding, came a request for him to sing at a 50th birthday party, somewhere in the Blue Mountains, about an hour and a half from where we live.  ‘Mum, it’s on a country property, they’re paying me, I’m doing a 45-minute set, then I might do something else, I’m taking my swag and I’ll set it up between two trees and can I take your car?’

I was so excited that his financial situation was changing from ‘permanently broke’ to ‘might have a little cash in my pocket’ that I blurted out, ‘Yes, you can take the car; I’ve filled it up with petrol’.

Roasted for 45 minutes

And as he took off to his ‘place of business’ I remembered I was having 10 people over for lunch and wanted to cook a rolled loin of pork.  But with no car I couldn’t get to the free-range butcher.  Forced to change plans I remembered there’s a good poultry shop close to home that I could walk to.  I switched from pork to spatchcocks.

And the guests loved them.  Everything always seems to work out for Archie!

Each Poussin can be served as a half or a whole. I served mine whole.

Stuffed Poussins

Serves:   2

Degree of Difficulty:  2/5

Cost:  Poussins are surprisingly inexpensive

  • 1 cup cooked white rice (I used organic quinoa)
  • 2 tbs toasted pinenuts
  • 1/4 cup (50g) raisins
  • 1 tbs chopped mint
  • 1 tbs chopped dill
  • 2 (about 500g each) Poussins, cleaned
  • 8 small desiree potatoes, halved
  • 1 red onion, cut into wedges
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges
  • 1 red capsicum, seeded, coarsely chopped (I used yellow)
  • 2 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
  • 1 cup (250ml) chicken stock
  • 2 tbs extra virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 200°C.

Combine rice, pinenuts, raisins, mint and dill in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Rinse the cavities of the Poussinss and pat dry with kitchen paper. Spoon rice mixture among each cavity. Place in a roasting pan.

Arrange the potato, onion, lemon and capsicum around the Poussins. Sprinkle with garlic and drizzle with stock and oil. Bake, basting occasionally with pan juices, for 40 minutes or until Poussins are golden brown and the juices run clear when tested in the thickest part. Remove from oven and loosely cover with foil. Set aside for 5 minutes to rest.

Use a large, sharp knife to cut down the centre of each Poussins to halve.   Arrange the Poussins and vegetables on serving plates. Drizzle with pan juices and serve immediately.

Each Poussin will serve 1-2 people

This recipe is from Taste.

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  1. Ooh yum! I’ve never tried cooking spatchcocks before, great idea for dinner parties! Good on ya Archie for your first job, that’s exciting 🙂 I remember mine..a check out chick at Priceline and good ole Mum was always happy to drive me there and back.. What would we do without our parents? 😀

  2. I am going to give this recipe a go. I just hope the local providore in Bombala stocks spatchcock. I will send you and update and photos.

  3. Jennifer Cullen says:

    Way to go Archie!! I love to read good news early on a Monday morning.

  4. Norma Chang says:

    Congratulations to Archie, you must be so proud.
    You are so capable and flexible, your parties are always smashing successes. Congratulations to you too.
    Norma Chang, http://gardentowok.com/

  5. Congratulations to Archie, two bookings so quickly!
    The spatch cocks look lovely although I’ve not heard of this type of bird, or it must be a naming thing; I’m going to search around for it now.

  6. Jenny @ Ichigo Shortcake says:

    Oh I’m so happy for Archie!! Getting work like that much have been such a thrill for the both of you. 😀 I’ve admitted never had spatchcocks, but chicken I’ve had plenty. Would love to try your recipe out! I know of a good butcher that sells them. 🙂

  7. Every family should have a Wedding Singer! 😉 The dish looks great!

  8. Carol, Simply Gluten Free says:

    Lovely recipe – I am guessing that a spatcock is similar to a game hen?

  9. Karen (Back Road Journal) says:

    I would have loved being a guest at your dinner table.

  10. Well good for Archie, it is hard to get paid gigs, i have a son with a band too .. they have a great time at ban practice and the occassional gig in a dark bar!! lovely little chickens c

  11. Way to go, Archie! Hopefully he won’t be asking you for food and money any more 😉 Also, your roast spatchcocks look amazing! I really need to figure out how to roast poultry without burning my house down…

  12. Minnesota Prairie Roots says:

    This is great news. Always the best to see your children (even if they’re adults) succeeding.

  13. IronWhisk says:

    Those spatchcocks look amazing! I’d love to eat those while hearing a song 🙂

  14. Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes says:

    What an interesting recipe – I’ll have to give it a try sometime! I’m glad Archie got a job!

  15. I am glad to hear this news too dear Charlie, Good Luck for him. The photographs seem so delicious again as always 🙂 Thank you, love, nia

  16. A spatchcock?! I have never known a spatchcock in my time. Excited for you on all accounts!

    • hotlyspiced says:

      Hi Skylor, the correct name for these birds is Poussin and they weigh around 500g each. Spatchcock is a term for preparing the bird that involved butterflying and removing the backbone. (I’ve just always called these little birds ‘spatchcocks’ but have been advised that’s incorrect!)

  17. That’s fantastic, congrats to Archie 😀
    Love your spatchcooks first time seen them 🙂

    Choc Chip Uru

  18. The Café Sucré Farine says:

    You are a brave soul, feeding 10 for lunch. Wish I could have been there, it looks wonderful!

  19. My Kitchen Stories says:

    Fantastic news that some of that hard work is paying off for Archie. The only trouble is sounds like its going to be harder for you if he keeps getting gigs…re the car. I love spatchcocks… just working on a couple of recipes with quinoa!! myself

    • hotlyspiced says:

      Hi Tania, I have always called these little birds ‘spatchcocks’ but the correct name for them is Poussin. Spatchcock refers to a method of preparing the birds where they are butterflied and the backbone is removed.

  20. Could I do this with cornish game hens? I’m assuming (maybe wrongly that they are at least similar?) This looks delicious!! 🙂

    • hotlyspiced says:

      I’m not sure if Cornish game hens are the exact same thing but Poussins weigh around 500gms so any bird of a similar size would be entirely suitable.

  21. Jackie Brown says:

    Awesome that Archie will have some funds now lol…. never tried spatchcock, not sure if I want to, they look to cute and small to eat lol

    • hotlyspiced says:

      Hi Jackie, they’re actually called Poussins – I’ve always called them spatchcocks but apparently that is a term for butterflying birds and removing the back bone!

  22. Monet@anecdotesandapples.com says:

    Hilarious and so so good. Thank you for sharing another delicious recipe and delightful post, my friend. I hope you have a wonderful week full of ample plates of good food!

  23. yummychunklet says:

    Good for Archie!

  24. Jed Gray (sportsglutton) says:

    Good for Archie and get improv by you Charlie. Looks fantastic!

  25. InTolerant Chef says:

    What a yummy meal, and thank goodness Archie is becoming more financially self sufficient!
    I love little spatchcocks, I always used to roast one whole for my littlej when we were having a roast chicken. I would serve it with dutch carrots and other tiny veggies and she would have it all served on a platter as a feast 🙂

    • hotlyspiced says:

      Hi Rebecca, someone has just corrected me that these aren’t actually spatchcocks, they’re Poussins because ‘spatchcock’ is a term used to describe butterflying a bird and taking out the backbone and clearly, I did neither!

  26. Shall definitely try that spatchcock recipe in my own kitchen: I can taste it now 🙂 ! And may one success > another for Archie!! Congrats, Mom 🙂 !

  27. Wonderful that things are looking up for Archie. Never heard of spatchcocks, but they certainly look tasty, and your first picture is alive with colour

  28. Barb Bamber says:

    I think everything always works out for you as well.. you’re an excellent mom. I wonder if your blogging has brought Archie to the attention of many others? I bet he is so talented, I love to hear a concert of his!

  29. Nothing makes a mother more proud than seeing her child get paid for doing something they love. I’d have loaned him my car too. 🙂

    I can’t wait to try this recipe – it looks delicious in that pan!

  30. Claire @ Claire K Creations says:

    Well done Archie!
    I love spatchcock. My mum has a delicious recipe for butterflied birds. Your version looks delicious… very Mediterranean.

  31. YAY! I am so happy for Archie and also you Charlie 🙂 I bet it’s an amazing feeling to see Archie do so well! WOO HOO!!! Wow you are so clever to immediately change your plans and i’ve never ever cooked or even had spatch cock but hehe they look amazingly tender because they’re so tiny ~

  32. Now that’s some good news for Archie! And of course you lent him the car. What proud parent wouldn’t? I hope this is the start of great things for him.

  33. justonecookbook says:

    You are amazing – busy life with children yet still invite 10 people for this amazing meal!!!! And congrats to Archie! It’s wonderful that he can make money off from what he likes and enjoys. Best wishes to him!

  34. Oh yay! So glad to hear that Archie’s getting a few gigs. He must be stoked. Looking forward to hearing how he goes 🙂

  35. Mandy - The Complete Cook Book says:

    I would get into a wild flap if I had to change my menu at the last minute – bood on Archie getting work though!
    🙂 Mandy

  36. Congratulations to Archie! What fantastic news. And congratulations to you on this meal! What an impressive looking dish.

  37. That boy of yours really does seem to have wings on his feet, doesn’t he? I’ve read yesterday’s post and this one straight after, and I still haven’t gotten over him trashing your house. But today he has two jobs, and got the car. You’re right. He does indeed seem to have the touch! 🙂

  38. What great new for Archie. Thats really good that he’s wanted. As for your impromptu dinner, looks amazing! No one can guess that you planned something else. They look delicious.

  39. mjskit @ mjskitchen.com says:

    WOW! What a great looking baking dish of poussin! I loved seeing the raisins and pine nuts in the recipe. Sounds delicious and what a meal! Congratulations to Archie for getting some gigs back to back like that! That’s exciting!

  40. Is a poussin like a game hen? Looks delicious! I had to crack up when you said you were so excited because Archie went from “permanently broke to might have a little cash in my pocket”. You are hilarious. I always love your blog! 🙂

  41. Sweet Posy Dreams says:

    Looks wonderful. Perfectly roasted and golden.

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