• Step 1
    How to carve quail

    Using a small, sharp knife, cut away each leg and thigh from the body, and set aside.

  • Step 2
    Cut down the middle

    Cutting down the middle of the quail and working close to the bone, carve off each breast. When you get to the wing, cut around the joint.

  • Step 3
    Ready to serve

    For each quail you will now have two legs and two boneless breasts, ready to be served.

How to carve quail
Cut down the middle
Ready to serve

Roast quail, tangled leek & potato vinaigrette

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(0 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 30 mins

Skill level

Moderately easy


Serves 2

Former restaurant chef Barney shows how to carve a small game bird - serve it with eggs and a salad, bistro-style

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

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  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 2 oven-ready quail, strings removed
  • olive oil, for rubbing and drizzling
  • small drizzle clear honey
  • 4 quail eggs
  • 3 leeks, trimmed and halved lengthways
  • 8 salad potatoes, like Pink Fir Apple or Charlotte, sliced

For the dressing

  • 2 tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp walnut oil

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Launch step-by-step
  1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Put a thyme sprig in the cavity of each quail. Rub each bird with a little oil and honey, and season generously. Put the quail in a shallow roasting tin and roast for 20 mins until golden, then leave to rest in a warm place.
  2. While the quail are roasting, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Cook the eggs for 2 mins exactly, then scoop out into a bowl of cold water. Peel and set aside. Put the leeks in the boiling water and cook for 10 mins until soft. Scoop them out, put in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil while still hot. Boil the potatoes in the same pan for 8-10 mins until just cooked, then drain and add to the leeks.
  3. To make the dressing, whisk the mustard and vinegar together, then gradually add the oil to make a thick dressing and season. Halve the eggs and carve the quail (see step-by-step images).
  4. To serve, arrange a tangled nest of leeks, potatoes and quail breasts in the centre of each plate. Tuck in the eggs and top with the quail legs. Drizzle the dressing over and dot around the outside of the plate.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, September 2012

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Crumbortwo's picture

I was not impressed by this recipe. The quail was lovely but that was as far as I would go.