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Cinnamon and Sumac Roasted Poussin

Slofoodgroup Team March 03, 2021

Tender Roasted Poussin with Cinnamon and Sumac

A delicious and non-conventional way to use  cinnamon in your cooking

Poussin, or coquelet, is a young hen or rooster, usually not older than 28 days. The meat tends to be gamier than regular chicken, but since they do not reach maturity, it is still very tender and juicy. One poussin chicken usually weighs around 1 pound/450 grams and it is considered to be a single serving, as compared to the average store-bought roasting chicken, which is grown out to about 8-12 weeks and weighs around 5 pounds.. It pairs wonderfully with just about anything but we strongly recommend this unexpected fusion of sumac and cinnamon as a spice rub for this delicate poultry variety. The tanginess from sumac balances the fattier taste of the meat while the cinnamon contributes the depth of flavor..

I thought cinnamon was just for baking?

Cinnamon has been commonly used throughout the ages for both baking and non-baking culinary applications.  Long before cinnamon was ever used in the first cinnamon roll, it was a common ingredient to spice lamb and chicken throughout the middle east. It is also commonly used in teas and considered by some people to have a tremendous amount of health benefits.

So let's get back to the roots of cinnamon and use it to enhance this oven-roasted poussin! 

Oven Roasted Coquelet with a Cinnamon and Sumac Spice Rub

Serves: 2

Prep Time: 15‘

Cooking Time: 30-40’

Additional Time: 10’ 

  • 2 poussin chickens, approx. 1 pound/450 grams each
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • Knob of butter
  • 125 grams/4.5 ounces bacon, cubed
  • 1 cup fresh Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 2 tablespoon sumac
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 rosemary twigs, fresh 
  • 2 teaspoons Fleur de Sel salt 
  • 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 180C/356 F, no fan;
  2. Add the olive oil and the knob of butter and allow to melt;
  3. Liberally season the poussin chicken with salt and pepper and fry on all sides in the pan until golden brown;
  4. Transfer the birds, together with the Brussels sprouts and bacon to an oven safe dish; sprinkle the sumac on top and add the cinnamon stick to the tray;
  5. Cover the tray with aluminum foil and bake at 180C/356 F, no fan for 30 minutes;
  6. Remove foil, increase temperature to 220 C/428 F and cook for 10 more minutes or until deep brown in color.