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Emily Roux's Spatchcocked Poussin with Morels, Spring Onions and Wild Garlic

Although spatchcocking requires a little technique and knife skill, the crispiness of the skin easily makes up for the time spent removing the bones. There is also the advantage of serving and portioning equally for your guest. Everyone around the table can enjoy the crispy poussin without needing to carve or having to choose their favourite parts (thigh, drum and breast). This deboning and cooking technique can also be used for many different birds; why not try it with pigeon or chicken (although cooking times will vary depending on the size of the bird).

Emily Roux's Spatchcocked Poussin with Morels, Spring Onions and Wild Garlic

Easter not only brings its fair share of chocolate, it also heralds the arrival of some of my favourite ingredients: wild garlic and fresh morels, a match made in heaven. These delicious tasting mushrooms are available for just three months of the year, as is the wild garlic so you must make the most of them while they last.

When I made this dish for my father, he liked the recipe so much he decided to cook it with his students this spring. So although some of you already know it, I really think this recipe is too good not to share.


About this recipe

Preparation Time 40 – 45 Minutes
Cooking Time 30 Minutes
Serves 2 People
Emily Roux's Spatchcocked Poussin with Morels, Spring Onions and Wild Garlic Emily Roux's Spatchcocked Poussin with Morels, Spring Onions and Wild Garlic


  • 1 Poussin
  • 120g of fresh morels (or 40g dried morels)
  • 4 spring onions
  • 50ml of Vin Jaune (alternatively use a dry sherry)
  • 50ml double cream
  • 100ml chicken stock
  • 1 finely chopped shallot
  • a couple of wild garlic leaves
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • salt and pepper



Placing the poussin breast side down cut through the middle of the bird from front to rear with a sharp knife.


Taking care not to pierce the skin, carefully follow the bones all the way round until you have removed the carcass, cutting through the thigh and wing joint. On a bird this small you can leave the wings attached.


You should be left with a boned poussin (preferably without any holes in the skin). Season the chicken flesh with a pinch of salt and pepper.


Heat a tablespoon of olive oil on a low to medium heat in a large non-stick frying pan. When the oil is hot place the chicken in the pan, skin side down. Place a sheet of greaseproof paper, cut out to the size of the pan, over the chicken and then cover with a heavy pan (of a slightly smaller shape and size) to weigh down and flatten the bird. Leave to cook for 30 minutes checking occasionally on progress.


Remove the weight from the chicken and check that the thighs are cooked through and the skin is golden and crisp. Remove from the heat and set aside to rest for at least 5 minutes.


Inspect the fresh morels for dirt and debris and clean carefully. Rehydrate the dried morels in warm water for at least 15 minutes. Drain and check that no grit remains, rinsing under cold water if necessary.


Heat a tablespoon of olive oil on a medium heat in a large frying pan. Add the chopped shallots to the pan and then the morels. Stir and season to taste and cook until the shallots are translucent (approximately 3 minutes).


Now add the butter to the pan and leave the mushrooms to crisp up for a further 3 minutes.


Once the morels have completely absorbed all the fat, deglaze with Vin Jaune. As soon as the alcohol has evaporated pour the stock into the pan. Leave the stock to simmer for 5 to 10 minutes (depending on the size of your pan) until the liquid has reduced by two-thirds.


Finely, finish the sauce off by incorporating the cream and bring to the boil for a couple of minutes. Check the seasoning once again before plating up.


Trim and wash the spring onions under cold water. Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil and blanch for 30 seconds, then refresh in iced water.


Heat up a small frying pan and brush with a little olive oil before pan searing the onions, cut side down. Once tender and delicately charred remove from the heat.


Cut the poussin in half and plate up with 2 spring onions per person. Generously spoon over the morels in their sauce and scatter the fresh wild garlic on top.

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