Second Draft

Guinea Fowl Weather

Posted in Food by Jill Snider Lum on Monday, February 15, 2010

It’s grey outside today. It’s been grey outside for the last few weeks.  We don’t really have any snow just now; only cold, dampish greyness.  My brain is in a kind of damp grey paralysis as a result.  I don’t feel like writing fiction, or even thinking about writing fiction.  I don’t feel like doing much of anything.  Except maybe eating.

Well, at least this is great weather for eating guinea fowl.

I first tasted guinea fowl at the River Cafe in Calgary.  They served it roasted and sliced into juicy morsels, with a cranberry reduction and wild rice.  It tasted like childhood Christmas, like turkey ought to be but isn’t, like chicken wishes it could be but can’t.  If you’ve never tried it, you ought to.  Here is a good way to cook one, developed from two other recipes that I merged together.  It’s not quite as good as the River Cafe’s version, but I think I’d need sous-chefs for that.  Don’t omit the wine, or the double layer of tinfoil; they keep the bird moist while it’s roasting.

Guinea Fowl with Garlic, Lemon and Rosemary


1 guinea fowl

10 cloves garlic, or more if desired, unpeeled (approx. 1 head or more)

1 clove peeled garlic

1 Tablespoon butter

3 Tablespoons olive oil

4 sprigs fresh rosemary

1 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves

1 lemon, cut in half

10 oz white wine

Salt to taste


Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.

Wash and dry the guinea fowl.  In a casserole large enough to hold all the ingredients, melt the oil and butter on the stove.  Brown the guinea fowl on all sides in oil and butter.  Remove it from the casserole.  Toss the unpeeled garlic and 3 of the rosemary sprigs into the casserole and stir-fry briefly.  Replace the guinea fowl.   Put the fourth rosemary sprig and the clove of peeled garlic inside the bird.  Squeeze one lemon half over guinea fowl, then place inside the bird; the un-squeezed half may be put in also if desired.  Sprinkle the chopped rosemary over the guinea fowl.  Pour the wine into the casserole and bring to a simmer.

Place a double layer of foil over the casserole and put the lid on top.  Bake the guinea fowl for 1 hour.  Remove the lid and tinfoil.  Bake 10 more minutes to re-brown.  Remove the bird to a platter and let it stand ten minutes before carving.

Strain remaining wine and juices from casserole and make  gravy (cornstarch gravy goes well here).  Discard rosemary sprigs.  Serve the garlic cloves with the guinea fowl.  Goes well with green beans and mixed rice.


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