Though I was obviously already a huge Big Green Egg fan, I have to say that these grilled quail won me over even more. We are lucky enough to have a few packages of quail in the freezer each year, but I've always found it difficult to make quail really taste good, as it's so easy to dry them out if you're not careful. But keeping foods moist is what the Egg does best, and these quail were no exception! I found the recipe over on Field and Stream's blog, but as luck would have it, it's actually from a cookbook by Chris and Idie Hastings of Hot and Hot Fish Club, a popular upscale restaurant here in Birmingham. I have to admit that I didn't even have time to marinate the birds overnight like the recipe calls for, but they were still incredible!
The Perfect Grilled Quail
6 6-ounce semi-boneless whole quail
1/4 cup olive oil
1 small garlic clove, smashed and peeled
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh sage, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh parsley, chopped
Clip and discard the last two segments of both wing tips on the quail. Rinse the quail under cold running water and pat dry. Place the quail in a large glass bowl with the olive oil, garlic, thyme, sage, and parsley. Toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least two hour or up to overnight.
Preheat the grill to medium-high heat (350-400 degrees) Remove quail from the refrigerator and marinate at room temperature for 20 minutes.
Remove the quail from the marinade and season both sides with salt and pepper. Place quail on the grill and cook for 5 to 6 minutes on each side or until golden brown and cook through (like most small birds, you do NOT want to overcook). Remove the quail from the grill and set aside to keep warm until ready to serve.