Buttered Quail with Hominy, Giblet and Black Trumpet Ragout

Adapted from The Blackberry Farm Cookbook.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 c. cooked and drained hominy
  • 4 oz. black trumpet mushrooms, trimmed and coarsely chopped
  • 2 leeks, white and light-green parts, halved lengthwise and chopped
  • 3 t. French Sea Salt
  • 3/4 t. freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 oz. frozen fowl giblets, chopped
  • 1 c. chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 t. fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 t.fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 T. unsalted butter
  • 4 quail, boned

To make ragout, in large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add hominy, mushrooms, leeks, 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally for 10-12 minutes, until leeks are golden brown. Add giblets and cook another 3-4 minutes until just seared. Add stock, thyme and bay leaf; bring to boil, lower heat and simmer 8 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated and mushrooms are tender. Remove from heat, discard bay leaf and stir in lemon juice and 1 1/2 teaspoons butter. Set aside.

Brush quail with remaining tablespoon of oil and sprinkle with remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Place a medium skillet over medium-high heat; when very hot, add quail, breast side down. Cook until skin is lightly browned, then turn quail and sear them, about 2 minutes on both sides. Add remaining tablespoon of butter to pan. When it melts, begin basting the quail with butter every minute or so while cooking another 4-5 minutes, until breast meat is slightly resistant when you poke it with your finger and juices run clear if thickest part of the thighs is pricked with the point of a paring knife. Remove quail from pan and reheat ragout if necessary, divide it among 4 serving plates and top each serving with quail. Yield: 4 servings.