Spiced quail with cous cous, quince paste and pistachios (pictures by www.davidxgreen.com)
I’ll probably do a couple of quail recipes on this blog, as am a big fan. This would work well as a light lunch or starter.
1 garlic clove
1 heaped teaspoon ras el hanout moroccan spice mix
A pinch of cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons of olive oil
A small handful of pistachio nuts roughly chopped
Salt and black pepper
3 tablespoons quince paste (you can buy this from Italian and Spanish delis)
A pinch of salt and pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon olive oil
A squeeze of lemon
sea salt and black pepper
A few dried rose petals, if you have them
150g of cous cous
1 medium onion
Handful each of fresh parsley and mint leaves
Extra virgin olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice to dress
For the quail:
Preheat the oven to 200˚C
Take the breasts and legs off the quails and put them in a bowl.
Mash all the marinade ingredients together in a pestle and mortar (or using a bowl and back of a spoon) and then pour over the quail, rub in well and make sure each piece is covered. Marinate for at least 15 mins but 2 or 3 hours is even better.
When ready to cook put the legs on a baking tray on the top self of the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until they’re cooked and nicely brown n crisped at the edges.
Season the breasts with a little more salt and pepper and then fry them in a hot pan with a splash of olive oil. They’ll need about 3-4 mins on the skin
side (to get it nicely golden) and then about 2 mins on the other side. Rest under foil for 5 minutes or so.
For the sauce:
Scatter a few dried or fresh petals over and some roughly chopped pistachios.
For the Cous cous:
Slice the onion in to half moons and cook in a tablespoon of olive oil until golden-brown and soft (about 10 mins). Cook the cous cous according to packet instructions, season with salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste. Stir through the herbs and fried onion.
Give each plate two breasts, two legs, a pile of cous cous and a good spoonful of
the quince sauce. Finish by scattering around the chopped pistachios (and, if you like, a few herb sprigs).