Roasted Quail with Leek, Fig and Mushroom Stuffing
Pairs Well With
12 semi-boneless quail
Stuffing (recipe below)
Prepare quail for stuffing by rinsing and patting dry. Stuff breast with mixture until plump. Fold legs underneath quail and place in roasting pan. (The birds can be lightly touching each other but use a sufficiently large pan to avoid packing them in tightly.) Brush all with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Place in oven at 425°F for about 20-30 minutes until the skin is light gold, but the meat is still juicy and tender. After plating, sauce with pan juices.
3 medium leeks, white part only, finely chopped
8 ounces Trumpet Royale mushrooms, finely chopped
8 ounces Maitake mushrooms, chopped
3 cloves garlic, mashed
3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for coating birds
1 tablespoon vermouth
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup bread crumbs, preferably fresh
6 fresh black figs, coarsely chopped
Sea salt and ground pepper
Sauté leeks and Trumpet Royales in olive oil until wilted, then add the more delicate Maitake mushrooms and the garlic. Continue to cook until all ingredients are tender and dry. Add vermouth, cook for one minute and then remove from heat to cool in a bowl. Add butter to pan and then bread crumbs, toasting lightly for about 3 minutes over medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs to mushroom-leek mixture.
For a special dinner, Merry created a sumptuous dish of Roasted Quail with Leek, Fig and Mushroom Stuffing to pair with her 1999 Olivet Lane. The combination of earthy ingredients sets off its full fruit aroma. The balanced acidity of the wine counterbalances the richness of the dish. Serve with steamed fresh, tiny Nickel Filet green beans. As a first course, Merry made a salad of garden fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, peaches and pears dressed with a light vinaigrette composed of rice wine, sherry vinegar and olive oil. If you don’t have a 1999 in your cellar, any vintage of Olivet Lane Pinot will go nicely!