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Grilled Herbed Poussins

['1/4 cup chopped basil', '1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped rosemary', '1 tablespoon thyme leaves', '2 fresh bay leaves, finely chopped', '3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil', '2 small garlic cloves, chopped', '4 poussins (1 to 1 1/4 pound each) or small Cornish hens', 'backbones cut out and birds split in half']

Blend together herbs, oil, garlic, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a blender until finely chopped, then rub all over poussins.
Prepare grill for indirect-heat cooking over medium-hot charcoal (medium-high heat for gas); see Grilling Procedure .
Oil grill rack, then grill poussins, skin sides down first, directly over coals, turning once, until well browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Move poussins to area with no coals underneath and grill, covered, until just cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes more. Transfer poussins to a platter and let stand 10 minutes.

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