cinnamon roast quail with smoked bacon lentils

The pancetta and the flavoured butter stuffing ensure these tasty mocels stay nice and moist'

Serves 4


For the quail

  • 4 oven-ready quail
  • 2 tbsp olive oil Good pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 25g/1oz butter, softened
  • 1 tsp chopped rosemary
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 8 slices of pancetta

For the lentils 1

  • 00g/4oz Puy lentils
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped carrot
  • 175ml/6fl oz chicken or beef stock
  • 1 tsp light muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp tomato purée
  • 100g/4oz smoked bacon lardons, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Place the quails in a non-metallic dish and rub with olive oil. Rub a little cinnamon into each quail then cover with clingfilm and chill in the fridge overnight.

Preheat the oven to 180°C, 350°F, Gas 4.

Rinse the lentils then place in a medium saucepan, cover with water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 25 minutes until just tender. Drain and refresh under cold water.

In a bowl mix together the butter, rosemary and onion and season. Stuff the quail cavities with this mix then wrap the crown of each bird in 2 slices of pancetta. Arrange in a small roasting tin and roast for 25- 30 minutes until cooked through and tender, with the top crisp.

Meanwhile, heat a medium saucepan over a low heat and add the cooked lentils. Add the chopped carrot and stock and cook for about 8-10 minutes or until the lentils absorb almost all the stock. Add the sugar, balsamic and tomato purée, stirring well to combine, then keep warm over a low heat.

Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and sauté the lardons until golden then stir into the lentils with the parsley and season to taste. Spoon the lentils on to 4 warm plates and top with a quail.

Latest comments

Please note, all comments are those of readers and do not represent the opinion of reserves the right to remove comments it considers offensive or not relevant
Please focus on the topic