Greg Baker, chef-owner of The Refinery in Tampa, Florida, is a 20-year kitchen veteran, having worked in Portland, Oregon and Austin before opening his James Beard Award–nominated restaurant in 2010.
I visited Paris for a couple of days this summer, mostly for fun, but I snuck a little research into the deal. Brasseries were my main focus, as I wanted to drill down and see the food of everyday working people. While hoping to find some great new revelation, what I found was that Parisians eat like I cook at home, so there was no fantastic new thing to bring home.
Thinking back, the simplicity of this pot-roasted guinea fowl just stuck with me. It’s fun to just drop back and re-evaluate the basics. It’s sort of like an experienced musician revisiting something as simple as "Louie Louie." What nuance can be grasped by re-examining an old standard? In the end, it’s still a simple dish, but made stronger by questioning the details.
- 1 guinea fowl, trimmed of excess fat, cut into breasts, legs and thighs
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 bunch fresh thyme, tied in a bundle with butcher twine
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1/2 cup sauvignon blanc
- 1 cup good chicken stock
- kosher or sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh peas
- 2 carrots, cut into batons
- 6 spring onions
- 1 tablespoon cultured butter
For the guinea fowl:
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Pat the fowl pieces dry with a paper towel.
- Sprinkle both sides liberally with salt.
- Heat a roasting pan over medium heat and add the olive oil.
- Working in batches if necessary, add the guinea fowl pieces, skin side down, to the roasting pan in a single layer.
- Allow the skin side to brown and crisp nicely, about 3-4 minutes.
- Turn the pieces over and brown the flesh side, about 3-4 minutes longer.
- Remove the pieces and place on a plate lined with paper towels.
- Repeat the browning process, as needed.
- Deglaze the roasting pan with the Sauvignon Blanc, scraping the bottom of the pan and the corners to release all of the brown, crispy bits.
- Allow the wine to reduce in volume by half and add the chicken stock, garlic and thyme.
- Dust the guinea fowl pieces with black pepper and add to the roasting pan, skin side up.
- Place the roasting pan in the oven and roast for 20-25 minutes, until the juices run clear when sticking the thickest part of the leg with a paring knife.
- Remove the guinea fowl from the roasting pan and allow to rest for 5 minutes.
- Strain the liquid from the roasting pan and allow the fat to settle to the top.
- Skim fat and pour the cooking liquid into a medium saucepan.
- Bring the liquid to a boil and allow it to reduce by half of its volume to intensify the flavor. Set aside.
For the vegetables:
- Heat a large pot of boiling, well salted water.
- Working in batches, blanch the onions, then carrots, then peas in the boiling water, just until tender.
- Remove each round of vegetables from the boiling water and shock in a bowl of ice water.
- When cooled thoroughly, remove each vegetable from the ice water and place on a paper towel lined plate to dry.
- Bring the reduced guinea fowl cooking liquid back to a rapid simmer, and stir in the butter to emulsify.
- Add the vegetables to the sauce pot just to heat through.
- Arrange the guinea fowl on a plate and top with the vegetables and cooking liquid.
Find more French birds on Food Republic: