Quail with Grapes & Cilantro
Quail meat is very subtle in flavor, something in between chicken and frog legs if you ask me. I like to keep the quail legs pretty medium rare on the inside, keeps the meat very juicy. The legs are very thin so don’t overcook them. I like to pan fry them, it makes the meat on the outside very crisp and nicely golden brown. I often find batches of quail legs here at Lidl in Spain. Love it.
I used white grapes but any kind of grape works here of course. If you are using grapes with seeds inside, slice them open first and remove them. They are quite unappetizing in this grape sauce.
Can’t you find 10 quail legs for this recipe? One whole quail per person also works. Sear the bird in some hot olive oil on all sides and then let it cook over low heat under a lid – put it in a hot oven at 400°F (200°C) for 15 to 20 minutes, depending on how large the quails are.
Love quail? Then also check out another quail recipe of mine: quail legs with white beans, salted butter and whisky!
Quail with grapes or cailles aux raisins, a classic French recipe!
- 10 quail legs
- 2 handfuls white grapes
- ½ cup dry white wine (120 ml)
- ½ tsp dried thyme or herbs
- a handful fresh cilantro chopped
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- garlic powder
- a tiny pinch of caster sugar
- olive oil
Transfer the quail legs, 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the dried herbs to a mixing bowl. Season with pepper and salt.
- Stir the quail legs well until they are coated on all sides with the seasoned olive oil. Put the bowl in the fridge for 30 minutes to marinate. Then pour a good splash of olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan and place it over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the quail legs.
- Fry the legs on one side for 4 to 5 minutes until golden. Then turn them over and lower the heat. Bake the legs for another 4 to 5 minutes.
- Then transfer them to a clean plate. Don’t wipe the pan clean but leave the flavorful oil and browned bits in it for the sauce. Add a fresh splash of olive oil to the pan together with the grapes (deseed them first if necessary). Season with a pinch of pepper, salt and a tiny pinch of garlic powder.
Stir the grapes and let them simmer in the white wine for about 5 minutes until the wine has reduced by half. Then add the unsalted butter to the pan together with the chopped cilantro and the caster sugar.
Stir well. Check the seasoning and add extra pepper, salt or sugar to taste.
- Add the baked quail legs back to the pan and take it off the heat. Let the legs warm through in the sauce for another 3 to 4 minutes. Then scoop the quail with grapes onto deep plates. Drizzle with the remaining sauce. Serve hot.