Harvest Style Quail

I’m still working away trying to use up all the quail we have in the freezer. My dad has another hunt this weekend and has been informed that he is NOT allowed to bring home anymore birds until we eat the one we already have. As a result I have been charged with the task of making one game bird meal a week. I decided to just make something up on the fly last night and it was one of the better game bird dinners I have made in a while. There was so much flavor and the orzo was AMAZING! I will have to remember this one for the next time the boys at the hunt club are looking for recipes!


Ingredients:

  • 7-10 Whole Quail (butterflied)
  • 7-10 Slices Peppered Bacon (one slice for each bird)
  • 1 Tube Jimmy Dean Sage Pork Sausage
  • 2-3 Cloves Garlic (minced)
  • 1 Yellow Onion (small dice)
  • 2 T. Fresh Rosemary (chopped)
  • 1 T. Fresh Thyme
  • 1 Lemon (juiced and divided in two)
  • 3 T. Butter (diced)
  • 1 Small Box Orzo (uncooked)
  • 3 C. Chicken Stock (+1.5 cup for basting birds)
  • 6 oz. Sliced Baby Bella Mushrooms

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Spray a large cast iron skillet with cooking spray and heat over a medium flame on your stovetop.
  3. In skillet brown sausage with onion, garlic, rosemary and thyme.
  4. Add 1/2 the juice from your lemon to the sausage mixture.
  5. Rinse birds and pat dry.
  6. In the bottom of a large casserole dish combine orzo, mushrooms, 1/2 the juice from your lemon and 3 cups chicken stock.
  7. Fill each birds cavity with sausage mixture.
  8. Using your fingers stretch bacon.
  9. Wrap each bird shut with bacon using a toothpick to keep bacon in place.
  10. Blace the birds cavity up in the casserole dish on top of the orzo.
  11. I sprinkled any remaining sausage I had around the birds.
  12. Scatter diced butter around the casserole dish.
  13. Bake in the oven for about 90 min.
  14. At the 45 min mark pour remaining 1.5 cup of chicken stock over the birds.
  15. Serve and enjoy!

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