Grilled Quail Salad with Summer Fruits

Yield Serves 4
RECIPE Ingredients
  • 1 pack Semi-Boneless Quail
  • 3 teaspoons Dijon mustard, divided use
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest
  • Olive oil, as needed
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mixed herbs, we used tarragon, chives, thyme, and chervil
  • 1 teaspoon honey, plus more to taste
  • 1 head leaf lettuce, like green Oakleaf or Lolla Rossa
  • 1 cup sugar snap peas, cut in half
  • 1 large ripe peach, pitted and cut into 8-12 slices 
  • 1 generous handful ripe blackberries
  • ½ cup best quality whole milk ricotta, we used Bellwether Farms basket ricotta
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped chives
Recipe notes
In this easy recipe, grilled quail is served on a salad of juicy peaches, sweet berries, sugar snap peas and creamy ricotta with a tart French vinaigrette.
RECIPE Preparation
  1. Pat quail dry with paper towels. In a large bowl, whisk together 1 teaspoon of Dijon, half of the lemon juice and zest, and about ¼ cup olive oil. Stir in mixed herbs. Add quail, turning to coat in the mixture. Cover and set aside for about 15 minutes. (The quail can be marinated for up to 4 hours if desired, just cover and refrigerate until ready to cook. Bring birds out of the fridge about 20 minutes before grilling.)
  2. Preheat a lightly oiled grill or grill pan to medium-high. Place the quail on the grill breast side down, a few inches apart. Grill for about 3 minutes then carefully turn over and continue to grill until birds are just cooked through, about 3-4 minutes more. Remove to a platter to rest for 5 minutes.
  3. To a medium bowl, add the remaining 2 teaspoons of Dijon; season with salt and pepper. Add remaining lemon juice and zest; whisk together until smooth. Add about ¼-½ cup of olive oil in a thin stream while whisking constantly until emulsified. Whisk in honey. Taste for seasoning – if the dressing is too sharp, add additional olive oil. Add honey, salt, and pepper to your liking. Set aside.
  4. Arrange lettuce on a large serving platter. Arrange snap peas, peaches, and blackberries evenly over the lettuce. Drizzle about half of the dressing over the top. Set aside.
  5. Cut the wings off the quail and discard (or add to your stock bag). Cut the legs off the quail and cut each breast in half. Arrange the boneless breasts and drumsticks evenly over the lettuce; dot ricotta evenly over the salad. Garnish with chives. Drizzle the remaining dressing over the top or serve on the side.