Learn how to cook the delicious, traditional Bordeaux main course of roast guinea fowl with figs in a cream sauce, a recipe from Rosi Hanson's book Recipes from the French Wine Harvest.

Roast guinea fowl with figs in a cream sauce:


1 guinea fowl including giblets (feeds 3, or possibly 4, depending on appetite and what other dishes are served),


6-8 figs

beurre manié (a teaspoon of flour or corn flour with a teaspoon of butter worked into it)

150 ml (5 fl oz)crème fraîche



1 glass white wine

300 ml (1⁄2 pint) water

1 onion

1 large carrot

1 stick of celery

1 leek

bouquet garni of parsley, thyme and bay leaf


Preheat the oven to gas mark 6, 400°F, 200°C.

Smear the outside of the guinea fowl with butter and put a lump inside. Place upside down in a roasting tin and roast in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Turn breast side up, baste with the juices and continue roasting for another 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the stock. Cut up all the vegetables and put them in a pan with the rest of the stock ingredients. Bring to the boil and simmer for about half an hour. Strain and taste. It may need to be reduced by fast boiling for about 5 minutes, to concentrate the flavour. Spoon off any fat.

When the guinea fowl is cooked, remove from the oven and keep warm while finishing the sauce. Put the figs into the hot oven to warm through. Pour off any fat from the roasting tin, place the tin over a medium heat on top of the cooker and pour in some of the stock. Scrape the bottom of the tin with a wooden spoon to deglaze. Take the tin off the heat and carefully whisk the beurre manié into the stock and roasting juices and simmer to thicken slightly. When it is incorporated, add crème fraîche.* Keep tasting and decide what seasoning is needed. If you feel the sauce is too thick, add more stock.

Keep the sauce warm while you carve the guinea fowl. Quarter the figs and arrange with the meat on a serving dish. Pour over the sauce and serve.

*If you prefer not to have a cream sauce, instead, at this point add a small glass of Madeira. Another variation is to replace the figs with grapes, same method.

The Wine:

A cool climate Pinot Noir or a red Burgundy such as Beaujolais would compliment and add to this dish.

Ebook and paperback versions of Recipes from the French Wine Harvest are available from lulu.com.  The ebook is also available from amazon.com, apple.com and other usual websites.