The lime leaves do double duty, infusing the quail with subtle fragrance and protecting it from overcooking.
- 2 tsp white peppercorns
- 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 80 ml each lemon juice and lime juice (⅓ cup)
- 26 kaffir lime leaves
- 12 butterflied quail
Herb and lychee salad
- ½ cup each Vietnamese mint and coriander (loosely packed)
- ¼ cup bean sprouts
- 2 spring onions, thinly sliced, placed in iced water to crisp, then drained
- 6 lychees, halved
- 1 tbsp grapeseed oil
- 2 tsp each lemon juice and lime juice
- 1Dry-roast peppercorns until fragrant (1 minute), then finely grind in a mortar and pestle. Combine half the pepper in a non-reactive container with oil, garlic and half the juices. Finely shred 2 lime leaves, add to mixture, then add quail, cover and refrigerate, turning once, to marinate (30 minutes).
- 2Meanwhile, for herb and lychee salad, combine herbs, bean sprouts, spring onion and lychees in a bowl, toss to combine, cover and refrigerate until required. Just before serving, add oil and juices, toss lightly to combine and scatter with fried shallots.
- 3Preheat a barbecue or char-grill pan to high heat. Remove quail from marinade and season skin with sea salt. Barbecue, skin-side down, until golden (1-2 minutes). Place two lime leaves on each quail to cover breasts, turn and barbecue until just pink (1-2 minutes). Discard lime leaves, transfer quail to a platter. Combine remaining pepper, remaining juices and 1 tsp salt in a bowl and serve with quail, with herb and lychee salad.
Fried shallots are available from Asian grocers.
This recipe is from the January 2012 issue of
Drink Suggestion: Fragrant gewürztraminer. Drink suggestion by Max Allen