Old-fashioned roast guinea fowl with lentils & bacon

Old-fashioned roast guinea fowl with lentils & bacon

15 mins
Cooking time
60 mins
Deidre Rooney

You may have a chunk of protein here but the lentils really make this dish – it’s such a classic pairing. Braised lettuce is lovely on the side.

From the grocer


Quantity Ingredient
40g butter, slightly softened
2 tablespoons olive oil
400g puy lentils, drained and rinsed
2 dried bay leaves
600ml light chicken or vegetable stock, or water
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

From the greengrocer

Quantity Ingredient
1/2 onion, very finely chopped
1 celery stalk, diced
1 large carrot, diced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 thyme sprigs
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
watercress, to serve (optional)

From the butcher

Quantity Ingredient
2 guinea fowls
200g smoked lardons


  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Season the insides of the guinea fowls and rub them all over with some of the butter. Gently lift the skin on the breasts, push some more butter underneath and season the outside. Roast the birds for 1 hour; they are cooked when the juices between the thigh and breast run clear.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a saucepan over a medium–low heat and gently sauté the lardons until golden.
  3. Reduce the heat, add the onion, celery, carrot and garlic, and cook until the onion is soft but not coloured. Add the lentils, mixing them through the pan juices. Drop in the thyme sprigs and the bay leaves, pour on the stock and season lightly with salt and pepper.
  4. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer uncovered until the lentils are just tender and the stock has been absorbed, about 20–30 minutes. Fish out the thyme sprigs and the bay leaves. Check the seasoning and gently stir through the vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil.
  5. Gently reheat the lentils and add the parsley. Tip the lentils onto a warm platter and place the guinea fowls on top, or serve the lentils in a warm bowl and the guinea fowls on a separate platter with clumps of very fresh watercress (if using). Serve with the cooking juices from the birds.
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