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Old 01-18-2008, 08:40 PM   #1
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Quail Confit

Okey Dokey...

I've got 4 frozen quail and a jar of chicken fat just lying around. I was given the quail by a hunter and I bought the fat on a lark awhile back.

I'm really tempted to try seperating the legs from the quail and doing a confit in the chicken fat. I know that one doesn't normally use chicken fat to confit and that one also doesn't normally confit quail, but can anyone think of any good ideas why this wouldn't work?

I figure I have more than enough fat to, when rendered, submerge 8 tiny quail legs.


If this sounds like a bonehead idea, someone please tell me.

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Old 01-18-2008, 10:28 PM   #2
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It should work fine. Go for it.

What do you plan for the rest of the quail?
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Old 01-19-2008, 12:41 AM   #3
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It will work fine, but the flavor probably won't be what you expect. Duck confit, the usual confit culprit, is so lucious because duck fat is just packed with copious amounts of flavor. Chicken fat on the other hand, is not. I would recommend adding some powerful flavoring agents to your cure before you immerse the legs into the fat.
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Old 01-19-2008, 12:55 AM   #4
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Sounds good, but I think the yield would be about 3 small bites worth, a lot of work for little reward, imo.

just how big are these quail?
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Old 01-19-2008, 02:44 AM   #5
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Why not do tghe whole quail? I think that would work well.
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Old 01-19-2008, 05:39 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by college_cook View Post
It will work fine, but the flavor probably won't be what you expect. Duck confit, the usual confit culprit, is so lucious because duck fat is just packed with copious amounts of flavor. Chicken fat on the other hand, is not. I would recommend adding some powerful flavoring agents to your cure before you immerse the legs into the fat.
mmmm.... duck fat
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Old 01-19-2008, 08:30 AM   #7
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Just to answer all the questions:

1.) I'm not doing the whole quail because I don't have enough fat to immerse all 4 quail, but I have enough for the 8 legs. I'm going to either roast or pan-sear the rest of the birds.

2.) I know the flavor won't be quite right. I've already tried some of the chicken fat on potatoes, and while it ain't duck fat by a stretch, it isn't bad either. Any recommendations for flavoring agents would be greatly appreciated.

3.) I know it's a lot of work for little reward, but that tends to be the case with quail in general. Quail, however, is what I've got in the freezer, so I'm going to work with it. I've also got a 3-day weekend with nothing whatsoever else to do.


Thanks for all the input so far, much appreciated. I don't have a ton of experience with quail, so please feel free to chime in and let me know what I should do with the rest of the birds, etc.
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Old 01-19-2008, 08:44 AM   #8
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I have only done quail the once as I found it too much effort for the gain, which is not my way to cook as a rule. Not to say that I wouldn't do it again but the meal would have to be right - like a NYE dinner.

I butterflied the quail, and then put them in a pan with some chicken stock (not a lot) and then finished under the grill. I served them on a bed of couscous that had also been cooked in chicken stock and had, I think asparagus mixed through it. It was quite a while ago and I can't recall all the details. I do remember that the quail came out very tasty and moist. I kept the flavourings rather basic (1) cos I was serving my mother and (2) I wanted to get the flavours from the quail to be the stand out taste. There would have been garlic, parsley and chives in there somewhere.
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Old 01-19-2008, 12:33 PM   #9
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I've never made them myself, but did buy some in Montreal They were delicious!! 6 small legs cost me a fortune, but I'd buy them again anytime. Good luck!!!
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Old 01-20-2008, 02:50 AM   #10
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Well I've never had quail myself, so I can't say for sure what flavors you should use in your cure. If the flavor is similar to duck, I'd say to cure it in kosher salt, sugar, a little bit of cracked pepper, crushed bay leaf, thyme, and whole juniper berries.

Try to find yourself some classic recipes for quail, or even any quail recipes that you enjoy and try to work those flavors into your cure.
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