I first made this dish with smoked garlic, which I found in my local market; however, it is not readily available so use the natural. A good mixture of tastes from the four corners of the earth.
Take a small flameproof casserole that will fit the birds snugly. Put a tbsp of olive paste and a good squeeze of lemon into each cavity. Heat the olive oil in the casserole and brown the poussins all over, turning from side to side. Add the peeled cloves of garlic and allow to cook gently for a minute or two. Pour in the vermouth (Sainsbury’s Italian has a good flavour and is reasonable). Season well with salt and pepper, and tuck in a couple of bayleaves. Brush the birds liberally with some black bean sauce.
Cover the casserole with its lid and cook in a preheated oven at 190°C/375°F/Gas 5 for about 45 minutes until tender. Baste every 15 minutes.
Good served with rice.
© 1996 Jennifer Paterson and Clarissa Dickson Wright estate. All rights reserved.