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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Hibiscus Quail

Seasonal Recipe of the Week
Here is a terribly exotic recipe for Hibiscus Quail from Mark Miller’s Coyote Café Cookbook. We used to do this at Dakota restaurant in London and it simply wowed the people. Here in Santa Fe, getting dried Hibiscus blossoms is easy — in London it was quite the challenge. If quail are too small and fussy for you, use chicken.

8 quail for 4 servings
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Ingredients for the marinade
1 bottle Sauvignon blanc (I use Trader Joes cheap stuff)
1 cup dried Hibiscus blossoms
2 cloves garlic
1 bunch cilantro tied together
1 slice lime

Ingredients for the glaze
1 cup water
1 cup of reserved marinade
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 pineapple finely diced
4 jalapeños seeded
Juice of 1 lime

To make marinade, bring the wine and blossoms to a boil in a stainless steel pan. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until 3 cups remains — you started with 5. Allow to cool and strain out blossoms. Now add garlic, cilantro, and lime slice. Have your butcher remove backbone from quail. I buy them that way! Add quail to cooled marinade, refrigerate, and let soak 3 hours, turning every hour. Remove quail and save 1 cup of marinade, discard the rest. Let quail get to room temperature before simply grilling or broiling them. Season with salt and pepper and cook 5-6 minutes on either side.

To make glaze, combine water, 1 cup saved marinade, brown sugar, pineapple, and jalapeno in a saucepan. Cook till water evaporates and mixture looks like a thin glaze. Now puree this mixture in a food processor and add lime juice. Brush on quail the last 30 seconds. This can be served over a fresh salad with a hint of citrus.