I’ve been told that I need to start blogging again. This is partially because I now have a twitter account and apparently am being followed by people I’ve never met. This is really fascinating, because I now have twitter performance anxiety and hope I am putting on a “good show” without overtweeting.
I sometimes overanalyze, if you hadn’t guessed.
So this week I decided to use the Guinea Fowl I got from my CSA last month. I’ve never had guinea fowl, and wasn’t quite sure what to do. There aren’t a lot of recipes and some are a bit strange. That said, it is poultry, and about the size of chicken, so that’s probably a good starting point (Cafe Zuni … wahoo!).
In my recipe search I ran across many that involved mascarpone cheese. Those recipes from Italy put the cheese in the cavity and sealed the skin. Generally, they involve cooking the entire bird in a pot on the stove. I understand that this can be done, but it seems like a lot of work to me. Further, wouldn’t cheese in the cavity just melt out?
I decided to use this in conjunction with the Zuni recipe. I prepped the bird overnight with a dry brine (after getting rid of many find feathers). Then, while the oven was preheating I mixed some mascarpone with a bit of salt, garlic, and thyme. I dropped about a tablespoon under the skin over the breasts and thighs and then proceeded to roast as directed by Zuni.
In the end, there was a lot of fat in the pan, and some charred cheese on the breast (I can only imagine that this would have been worse in the original recipe) but still the bird was beautiful. The cheese under the skin gave a nice creamy flavor to the meat. The meat itself is definitely one step gamier than chicken. The breast was like chicken thigh. The thigh was like turkey leg.
I had this with butternut squash. Overall everything was delicious and I look forward to working with Guinea Fowl again.