Pickled Quail Recipe



8 quail, cut into quarters

2 tbsp. (30 ml) olive oil

2 lbs (1kg) of mixed pearl onions (red, white boiler, cippolini)

1 lb (500gr) carrots, peeled and cut into sticks

1 lb (500gr) fresh asparagus or green beans, trimmed

1 lb (500gr) mushrooms, well washed. (I prefer the crimini variety)

1 lb zucchini (500gr) washed and cut into sticks


1 ½ cups olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 sprig oregano

salt and pepper to taste

¾ cup (175 ml) red wine vinegar


Heat 2 tbsp. (30ml) of olive oil in a 10” (25cm) skillet. Brown the quail in the skillet until they are golden, about 5 minutes on each side. Remove the quail from the skillet, and cool.

Fill a medium saucepan with water, and bring to a boil. Add the unpeeled pearl onions, and boil for 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, remove the onions form the boiling water, and set aside to cool. Cut the root end of the onion off, then peel by slitting the skin of the onion with the tip of a knife. After boiling the onions, discard the water, and refill the saucepan with clean water.

Once the water has come to a boil, add the carrot sticks, and simmer for 3 minutes. Remove the carrots from the water using a slotted spoon. The asparagus, mushrooms and zucchini must be blanched in the same fashion, but only for 1 minute. Remove the vegetables from the boiling water, and cool in a shallow pan. Place the cooled quail, onions and vegetables in a large zipper seal bag.

Whisk together the dressing ingredients, and add the dressing to the bag. Seal the bag, and store for 24 hours in your refrigerator. Turn the bag over occasionally so that the dressing evenly coats all the quail and vegetables. When ready to serve, remove the quail and vegetables from the bag using a slotted spoon. Arrange the onions and vegetables on a large platter, and place the pickled quail in the middle.

Appetizers for 12 Tip: You may want to change the water when blanching your vegetables, in order to preserve each vegetable’s vivid color. I prefer to marinate foods in zipper seal bags. It is easier to turn the foods in the dressing, so that they absorb the flavors evenly.

If you want a hotter pickled quail, add a 7 oz can of sliced pickled jalapeños to the marinating bag.