Susan’s Roasted Pecan-Encrusted Quail with Fruit Stuffing

A flash-fried kale nest under each quail serves as a nice counterpoint to the sweet fruit. Look for this and other quail recipes in The Field to Table Cookbook by Susan L. Ebert (Welcome Books / Rizzoli New York), March 2016.
By / Photography By Susan L. Ebert | January 19, 2016

Instructions

Preheat oven to 450° F.

Rinse the quail, pat them dry with paper towels, season with salt and white pepper on all sides and place them in a lightly buttered baking dish. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the peaches, plums and figs and stir until the butter is absorbed and the fruit is softened. Stir in the brandy and remove the pan from the heat. Using a teaspoon or melon baller, fill the cavities of the quail with the fruit mixture. In a small bowl, stir the pecans and rosemary into the remaining butter and, with your fingers, press evenly over the quail. Roast for 8 to 10 minutes, then tent loosely with foil and let rest for 5 minutes.

Ingredients

  • 6 whole quail
  • Sea salt
  • White pepper
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • ⅓ cup dried peaches, diced
  • ⅓ cup dried wild Mexican plums, diced
  • ⅓ cup fresh, dried or preserved honeyed figs, diced
  • 1 tablespoon Mexican brandy, your choice brand
  • ⅓ cup pecans, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 6 kale leaves, ribs cut out and flash fried, for plating nests
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