Roasted Baby Bat (Stuffed Quail on Dusky Rice) Daniel Bonnot
Stuffed quail is wrapped in “bat wings” (cabbage leaves) and served on a bed of wild and brown rice. Slices of andouille sausage — a smoked sausage — are used to create “ears” on the “baby bats.” Delicious, and fun. The stuffing can be prepared ahead of time and kept refrigerated until ready for use.
- Cabbage Leaves - 4
- Unsalted Butter - 2 tablespoons
- Celery - 1-1/2 stalks, deribbed and diced
- White Onion - 1, diced
- Green Bell Pepper - 1, seeded, deribbed, and diced
- Red Bell Pepper - 1, seeded, deribbed, and diced
- French Bread - 1/2 loaf, day old, cubed
- Milk - 1-1/4 cups
- Veal - 1 pound, ground
- Egg - 1
- Oysters and their liquor - 8, small
- Green Onions - 4, green part only, chopped
- Garlic Cloves - 3, minced
- Salt - 3/4 teaspoon
- Black Pepper - 3/4 teaspoon, freshly cracked
- Quails - 4, deboned
- Bacon - 8 slices
- Celery - 4 stalks, deribbed and finely diced
- Carrots - 2, finely diced
- White Onion - 1, finely diced
- Dry white wine - 1 cup
- Thyme - 8 sprigs
- Bay Leaves - 8
- Tomatoes - 2, skinned, seeded, and diced
- Veal Stock - 1 cup
- Green Onions - 8, whole
- Andouille Sausage - eight, 1/2-inch-thick slices (alt. other smoked sausage)
- Rice Bed
- Wild Rice - 2 cups, pre-cooked and cooled
- Unsalted Butter - 1 cup
- Pecans - 1 cup
- Coriander - 2 teaspoons, ground
- Green Onions - 1 to 2, green part only, chopped
- Salt - 2 teaspoons
- Black Pepper - 1 teaspoon, freshly cracked
- Pan Sauce
- Pan juices (from above)
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Unsalted Butter - 2 tablespoons
Bring 4 cups of water and a tablespoon of salt to a boil. Immerse the cabbage leaves in the boiling water for 1 minute, then remove and place in ice water. Set aside.
To make the stuffing: In a saute pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter and saute the celery, onion, and bell peppers for 3 minutes, until softened. Set aside and let cool. Soak the bread cubes in the milk, then drain. Squeeze out all the excess milk and place it in a mixing bowl. Mix in the ground veal, one part bread to 3 parts veal. Stir in the egg, then add the oysters and oyster liquor. Mix well. Add the green onion, garlic, salt, and pepper, and combine thoroughly.
To prepare the quails: Preheat the oven to 375 F. Stuff the quails, making sure an oyster goes inside each one. Wrap each quail in a cabbage leaf, placing the seam on the bottom and allowing the legs to stick out one end. Secure the cabbage with 2 slices of bacon wrapped around the outside.
In a large, deep pot, place the celery, carrot, and onion. Set the wrapped quails on top of the vegetables. Pour in the wine and add the thyme and bay leaves. Place over high heat an bring to a boil, then lower the heat, add the tomato and veal stock, and cover. Place in the oven and cook for 35 minutes.
To prepare the garnishes: Slit the whole green onions lengthwise and soak in ice water for at least 30 minutes to cause the strips to curl up. Bring a small pan of water to a boil and drop the andouille slices into the water. Return to a boil and cook 1 minute. Drain, pat dry, and saute over medium-high heat until lightly browned. Set aside and keep warm.
To prepare the rice: In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter and add the pre-cooked rice, pecans, and coriander. Stir together and heat the rice. Remove from hat and stir in the green onions, salt, and pepper.
To prepare the sauce: Remove the quails from the oven. Take the quails from the pan. Strain the pan juices and place them back in the saucepan over high heat for 15 seconds. Add salt and pepper to taste, then remove from heat and stir in butter until melted. This forms the sauce.
To serve: Make a bed of rice on the bottom of each plate. Set a wrapped quail on each bed of rice. Pour the sauce over the quail. Place the andouille slices between the rice and quails to form “ears.” Garnish with curled green onions.