This velvety purée with crisp grilled guinea fowl on top is most delicious and quick to prepare.
Get your butcher to remove the breast and leg joints from a guinea fowl, or cut them off yourself as you would for a chicken (keep the carcass, as it makes good stock). Trim the fennel and discard any damaged parts. Save any feathery fennel leaves for later. Cut the fennel into small pieces.
Peel the garlic and put it into a saucepan with the fennel, olive oil, butter and wine, then cover and cook at a gentle simmer until the fennel is very soft. This stage will take 30â€“40 minutes. Meanwhile, gently toast the pine nuts in a small, dry pan over a low to medium heat, moving them continually so that they donâ€™t burn, until they are golden brown.
Remove the lid from the fennel pan and turn up the heat under the pan. Simmer hard until the wine has evaporated by half. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and season with salt and black pepper. Blitz in a food processor or with a stick blender until as smooth as possible; if you feel it is too thick, let it down with a little milk. Adjust the seasoning and stir in the chopped fennel leaves and the toasted pine nuts. The purÃ©e can now be reheated when needed. Preheat the grill to high. Brush the skin of the guinea fowl generously with sunflower oil, and salt liberally.
Lower into a flameproof frying pan over a medium heat so that when the meat enters the pan it sizzles immediately. Cook the guinea fowl (the breasts should be skin-side down) for 4 minutes until deep golden, regulating the heat so as not to burn it. Turn the breasts and legs over in their pan and immediately place under the grill for a further 8â€“10 minutes until tender but cooked. Remove from the heat. The skin should be crispy and a skewer inserted into the fattest part of the leg should seep clear juices. Spoon the purÃ©e on to 2 warmed plates. Slice the breasts on a diagonal and place on top of the purÃ©e with the legs. Eat at once.