Roast Quail stuffed with Prunes in Armagnac

  • 20 minced shallots
  • 8 branches fresh thyme
  • 8 garlic cloves, prepared in confit (see Garbure recipe)
  • 3 cups duck demi-glace or enriched stock
  • 2 cups Armagnac
  • 24 seedless grapes
  • 8 quail
  • 21 pitted prunes marinated in Armagnac for 3 weeks, liquid reserved
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

To make the sauce: Heat a baking pan over medium heat. Add shallots, garlic confit and thyme and cook until the shallots wilt, about 5 minutes, scraping the any bits in the bottom of the pan all the while. Add veal and duck demi-glace and stir. Deglaze the skillet with the Armagnac and scrape any bits from the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat and cook for about 1 hour, until the liquid becomes syrupy. Strain, taste and season with salt and pepper if necessary. Add grapes.

To make the quail: Preheat oven to 475F to 500F. Season the quail inside and out with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stuff the quail with 2 prunes each and close the cavity with a toothpick. Place quail in a baking pan and roast for 12 minutes. If they look dry, baste them with a little of the Armagnac/prune juice.

To serve: Place a puddle of the sauce on each of 4 warm plates and place two quail on each.

Published on June 24, 2010
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