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Advice for Grilling Cut-up Quail


gulfporter
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I bought some cut-up bone-in quail.  Never cooked it before. 

 

My go-to method for most protein is grilling.  

 

Normally I put a rub on poultry before grilling, rather than marinate.  Any suggestions on which method better suits quail.  Also, should I brine it?  

 

I've eaten quail in restaurants and have sometimes found it too dry, probably from overcooking is my guess as it's not very fleshy (and generally I find many restaurants overcook poultry for my taste).  I have googled and found rough estimates of cooking times by quail parts, but will check meat as I grill for doneness.  

 

If anyone has hands-on experience grilling quail, I'm all ears. 

 

TIA.

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I love quail in all forms - but it is necessary to not overcook it, otherwise the succulent meat turns grey and dry.

The quail is a pretty subtle flavor, so whether you rub or marinate, just make sure it's not too strong as to overpower it.

Both breast and thigh section will cook very quickly - it's very hard to gauge with a thermometer since the meat is so thin, so I usually judge by feel. In any case, it won't take more than a few minutes - by the time it gets some color from the grill, it should be done.

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I concur on the cooking....it cooks faster than you think so be ready.  

 

I wouldn't brine it.  I brine my chicken, but quail have such a great flavor that I like to taste just that.  We usually do just a light poultry seasoning rub on them. 

 

I hope you post pictures :)

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My thoughts only..

 

My technique is cook side one.. flip and as soon a blood pushes through on side two in about the 1/3 thickest spot take out and rest

 

should be close to medium rare

 

Good luck 

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Its good to have Morels

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I like quail a lot.  Especially shopping for them.

 

P1010060.JPG

 

As noted above the flavor is subtle and it's easy to overcook and dry them out.  I typically cook wild or store bought birds on the grill.  Recently I've brined them briefly in Keller's poultry brine - I'm sure others would work as well.  I typically don't marinade them so as not to overpower the flavor but will glaze them with honey as they are  finishing.

 

Don't know why I left thghs on the back below - must have had a blonde moment.

 

Plated Quail.jpg

 

When I'm putting on the Ritz I'll cook the legs or  thigh quarters seperatley and serve them as a hands on appetizer, usually with a spicy dip.  Then plate the breasts with noodles or polenta and veg.

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Success!

 

I brined the quail for 2 hours.  Dried off, then rubbed with olive oil, s&p.  

 

I spatchcocked them.  Grilled 4 minutes skin-side down.  Then about 90 seconds after a flip; let rest 8 minutes. 

 

They were very tender and quite good; served with a chipotle-cherry dipping sauce and a mango salsa on the side.  

 

Thanks to all for the advice!

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