A few weeks ago I noticed in the freezer of a shop some boxes with guinea fowl (guinea hen) birds.
I never had them, or better, I think I had some of them and I was just curious how they are and how they can be prepared. This weekend I decided that it was time to have a try and my husband suggested to prepare it with cranberries. In the internet I did not find recipes with cranberries so I adapted one recipe for Turkey and it was really delicious.
I’m really glad that my family enjoy experimenting and I can prepare all kind of food for them! My children asked me what kind of birds… here a short answer.
Guinea fowls are originally African birds but today they are largely grown all around the world.
The taste of their meat is slightly “wilder” than chicken (gamey flavor), but is milder than pheasant.
Guinea fowls are smaller than chicken and usually one bird feeds only two people. In our case this was the right portion for the four thanks the delicious and rich filling.
This African bird makes a lovely alternative to chicken for a special Sunday lunch or holiday; a real feast! If you don’t have this bird… no problem, this recipe will work with chicken as well!
Roast Guinea Fowl with Walnuts and Cranberry Stuffing
- 1 guinea fowl, about 1kg
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1 kg small potatoes, peeled and halved
- About 2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
For the stuffing
- 60 g walnuts, halved
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoon olive oil butter
- 60 g breadcrumbs, homemade
- 60 g dried cranberries
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh savory or thyme, chopped
- 80 ml white wine
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 medium egg, beaten with a fork
- Heat the oven at 180°C/350°F and when the temperature is reached toast the walnuts for about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool down, then chop them roughly. Don’t switch off the heat.
- In the meantime wash and wipe out the inside cavity of the guinea fowl. Combine 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt and pepper and rub the guinea fowl outside and inside of the cavity. Set aside.
- For the stuffing: heat olive oil in a pan and fry onions until golden. Switch off the heat, add bread crumbs, walnuts, cranberries, savory (or thyme), wine. Season with salt and pepper. Add egg and mix until combined.
- Place the guinea fowl in the middle of a baking mold (mine was about 25 X 40 cm).
- In a bowl mix potatoes with one tablespoon of olive oil salt and pepper. Place potatoes around the bird. Pour the water around and bake at 180°C/350°F for about 40 50 minutes. When the upper part is done and golden (at this time the water should be almost gone. Turn the bird, increase heat to 200°C/400°F and bake until the underside is golden as well. This takes about 10 minutes. Turn again, reduce heat to 180°C/350°F and bake shortly. Theoretically the guinea fowl is ready when by piercing the inside of the thigh with a knife and making sure the juices are clear but I prefer to cook it about 15 minutes to be sure the stuffing is cooked through as well.
- With a big spatula transfer the bird in the center of a platter and arrange potatoes around it until serving. Cover with foil to keep warm until serving.
- For the gravy add flour to the baking mold and whisk to combine everything. Place the mold on top of the cooker on a medium heat. Once the flour has soaked into the cooking juices, add the broth and whisk to thicken on a low heat. Pour into a bowl, allow to settle and if you wish with a spoon remove the excessive fat. Season with salt and pepper if necessary.
- Serve with vegetables or salad.