Quail: Quick & Delicious!
For best taste, field dress quail as soon as possible. Because of their small size, quail are easy to do. For a video refresher course, see Rob Olson’s site.
Skin or Pluck?
Quail can be plucked or skinned. However, more flavor and moisture are retained in the meat if you leave the skin on the bird.
Freeze the meat immediately if you don’t plan to serve the quail the next day. Using quality vapor & moisture-proof wrapping or containers means the food may be stored in the freezer for 9 to 10 months (at 0 degrees, or lower).
Two More Tips
1) A friend (with freezer space) opens 1/2 gallon paper milk cartons, adds the birds (a meal’s worth), adds water to reach the 3/4 mark — and freezes the closed cartons. With this freezing system, he never has freezer-burned birds!
2) Thaw frozen quail in container or package — in the refrigerator — for 12 to 24 hours. Our county extension nutritionist says this is a great way to tenderize the meat.
Roasted Quail with Mushrooms
4 slices bacon
1 Tbsp. butter or margarine
Juice of half a lemon
1/2 cup hot water
1 small can of mushrooms, drained
Wipe quail inside and out. Wrap a slice of bacon around each quail. Put birds into a buttered pan and roast at 350 degrees, basting occasionally — about 30 minutes, or until tender.
Remove birds and add butter or margarine, water and lemon juice to the drippings in the pan, stirring to make a gravy. Add mushrooms.
Serve the birds on toast with gravy poured over them.
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