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Grilled Quail Salad

1/2 c Orange juice
1 Lemon; juiced, and cut into quarters
2 Bay leaves
1 Lemongrass stalk; crushed to release its oils
2 Star anise -; (to 3)
2 tb Molasses
2 tb Soy sauce
2 Whole Chili pepper pods (or 1/2 tspn crushed chili peppers)
2 Garlic cloves; peeled, crushed
1 tb Grated ginger
8 Whole Quail; breast bone removed, preferred
2 c Mesclun salad mix (or use your own mix of tender salad greens)
2 tb Dijon mustard
3 tb Rice wine vinegar
2 tb Honey
1/2 c Fragrant extra-virgin olive oil
1 Papaya; pitted, peeled, and sliced
1 Mango; peeled, pitted, and sliced
1/2 c Shelled pumpkin seeds; toasted, salted


Combine the orange and lemon juice, bay leaves, crushed lemongrass, star anise, molasses, soy, chili, garlic and ginger and marinate the quail for several hours, or overnight, covered, in the refrigerator. To make the dressing for the salad, combine the mustard, vinegar and honey and whisk in the olive oil to create an emulsion. Remove the quail from the marinade and grill over an outdoor barbecue for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, or cook over medium heat in a cast-iron skillet for 10 to 12 minutes, turning frequently to avoid burning. Remove from the heat and let the quail rest for several minutes before serving. Toss the salad greens with the dressing and divide among 4 plates. Top each salad with 2 quail for a main course and garnish each with several slices of papaya and mango and sprinkle with toasted pumpkin seeds. This recipe yields 4 main course or 8 appetizer servings.


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