17 Jul2012

An “experimental dish” that yielded mixed results. We first partially deboned about 10 quail and marinated them then quickly seared them in a hot pan, to brown and seal in juices. The quail were set aside. Then into the pan I added 3 kinds of mushrooms (button, oyster and shiitakes, chopped), a bit more olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper. Set the mushrooms aside. Into the same pan, I added olive oil, sauteed some onions and garlic, added some short grain rice, lots and lots of sofrito from my standard paella recipe, here, and deglazed with a hit of red wine. Added the mushrooms back in and then chicken broth. Stirred a bit and let it reach a simmer.

Transfered the rice and broth to a cazuela and tried to evenly spread the rice near the bottom of the dish. Added the quail to the pan and seasoned with salt and pepper again and stuck it in the oven. Realized a few minutes later I forgot to include the enoki mushrooms that were sitting in the fridge, so I quickly opened up the oven and spread the enokis all over the surface of the dish… Let this cook until the rice was done. The rice and mushrooms were superb. The quail were a bit chewy and hard to get at. Nevertheless, the juices and flavor of the quail were definitely in the rice. It was easy enough, but perhaps next time, I will just use some chicken… :)



  1. f says:

    What a coincidence. Laura Calder (don’t you think she’s hot?) featured a similar dish in a tv show aired last night. Was planning to replicate but was worried about how tough small birds can get – your post confirmed my fears.

    Jul 17, 2012 | 7:32 am


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  3. Gregory Guy says:

    You should try experimenting quail and foie gras. I don’t think there could be a better main course combo than that. Breasts stuffed with foie, or a foie and quail terrine.

    Jul 17, 2012 | 7:55 am

  4. Marketman says:

    f, you like that French-Canadian thing going on, a younger Nigella wannabe? Heeheehee. :) Yes, the quail got tough. They were much better when we deep-fried them a few weeks ago. Make the arroz with mushrooms and all and serve the fried quail on the side instead…

    Jul 17, 2012 | 7:56 am

  5. ami says:

    Wow, it must have been a lot of effort to debone the tiny quail.

    Jul 17, 2012 | 8:25 am

  6. pixienixie says:

    Still not a fan of quail, what with the tough-to-get-at meat and the tiny bones… but your dish looks wonderful!

    Not to be nitpick-y, MM, but were you intending to use the word “here” after the phrase “standard paella recipe” as an anchor text / link to another page? You often do that to help us readers, so I figured you forgot to add the link lang this time. :)

    Jul 17, 2012 | 9:02 am

  7. Marketman says:

    pixienixie, you are right, thanks, will fix this… Link to old paella recipe which includes steps for sofrito now in the post. Thanks. :)

    Jul 17, 2012 | 9:18 am

  8. josephine says:

    Try making a stock with the quail bones and use that to cook the rice then serve the fried quail on the side. That way you still get the quail flavor in the rice.

    Jul 17, 2012 | 5:52 pm

  9. kurzhaar says:

    We do a straight paella with quail (not domestic), usually with green beans, occasionally with a bit of chorizo as well. Saute the quail with the garlic (and chorizo if using) first, remove from pan, then proceed with the sofrito as usual. Add the browned quail to the assembled paella for final cooking. Delicious.

    Jul 21, 2012 | 12:33 am


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