Broiled Quail with Braised Fennel

Author: Canadian Living

With rich flavour and plump breasts, quails are delicious and best eaten by hand. For a formal table, you might want to provide finger bowls of warm water with a slice of lemon for each guest. Instead of broiling, you could also grill the birds over medium-high heat. Serve with rice accented with a bit of saffron.

  • Portion size 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 8 jumbo quail or 12 regular quails (4 lb/2 kg total)
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons brandy
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano or 1 tsp/5 ml dried
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 8 lemon wedges
Braised Fennel:
  • 2 fennel bulb
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup sodium-reduced chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine optional
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Method

Holding each quail breast side down and using scissors, cut along both sides of backbone and remove bone. In large bowl, sprinkle quails with garlic, oil, lemon juice, brandy, oregano, fennel seeds, salt, pepper and cayenne; toss to coat insides and outsides evenly. Cover and marinate in refrigerator for 4 hours. (Make-ahead: Refrigerate for up to 24 hours.)

Braised Fennel: Meanwhile, cut stalks from fennel, reserving handful of fronds. Cut each bulb into 6 or 8 wedges. In large skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat; fry fennel, turning often, until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Pour in stock, 1/2 cup (125 mL) water, wine (if using), salt and pepper; cover and simmer over medium heat until tender, about 15 minutes.

Uncover and cook over high heat until liquid is reduced enough to cling to fennel, 6 to 8 minutes; keep warm. Sprinkle with reserved fronds before serving.

Arrange quail, skin side up, on greased rack on baking sheet; broil about 5 inches (12 cm) from heat until golden, about 5 minutes. Turn and broil until juices run clear when quail is pierced and just a hint of pink remains at centre, 5 minutes for regular quail, 6 to 8 minutes for jumbo. Turn and broil until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve with fennel and lemon wedges.

Nutritional facts Per each of 8 servings: about

  • Sodium 484 mg
  • Protein 41 g
  • Calories 457.0
  • Total fat 29 g
  • Cholesterol 145 mg
  • Saturated fat 9 g
  • Total carbohydrate 5 g

%RDI

  • Iron 55.0
  • Fibre 0.0
  • Folate 10.0
  • Sodium 0.0
  • Sugars 0.0
  • Calcium 6.0
  • Protein 0.0
  • Calories 0.0
  • Total fat 0.0
  • Vitamin A 15.0
  • Vitamin C 18.0
  • Potassium 0.0
  • Cholesterol 0.0
  • Saturated fat 0.0
  • Total carbohydrate 0.0
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Broiled Quail with Braised Fennel