Kent chef Andy McLeish's Recipe of the Month
PUBLISHED: 14:06 30 January 2016 | UPDATED: 14:06 30 January 2016
Â© Ming Tang-Evans
The chef-patron of Chapter One, Kent Life and Kent on Sunday’s winner of Restaurant of the Year 2015, is embracing the retro trend with his recipe for quail kiev.
There’s been a surge of retro food and drink making a comeback on menus across the country. The past few years has seen a revival of 60s, 70s and 80s classics making an appearance, with such nostalgic favourites as prawn cocktail, Negroni, fondue, vol-au-vents and chicken kievs.
Chefs, including me, have taken these classics and added a modern twist. For example, I serve a quail kiev on the menu at Chapter One. I planned to have this starter for only a month or two but fast forward a year later and it’s still on the menu, as it’s just so popular.
I read recently that one of the (many) new food trends this year will be old/traditional recipes (with a 2016 twist) taking centre stage. Expect to see dishes such as the Bakewell Tart, modernised and featured on menus in the UK.
Maybe this retro revival is continuing to grow because it reminds us of the great, yet simple food we used to love to eat. In fact, maybe consumers want food that’s cooked simply, more traditional without all the fuss and fancy chef tricks?
Whatever the reason, I’m embracing it – a few personal old favourites that I’d love to see in more restaurants would be beef Wellington, jugged hare and treacle sponge. However, some should be left alone like my mum’s Apple Snow we regularly had as kids.
It was a favourite back then but I just cannot bring myself to rave about this apple purée and egg white dessert anymore. How about you? Do you have any classics that you would like to see me modernise? Feel free to tweet me and the most popular request, I’ll feature in my column later in the year.
In keeping with the theme, this month’s recipe is our popular retro starter of quail kiev with roasted leg and a herby mayonnaise. Enjoy.
Quail kiev with herb mayonnaise
Serves four people
2 large quails
Flour, 2 beaten eggs (to pané the quail breast)
200g fresh bread crumbs
1 Belgium endive
100g mature cave-aged Gouda cheese
8 dandelion leaves
12 pieces of flat parsley (for garnish)
FOR THE GARLIC BUTTER
2 garlic cloves
100g butter soft
1 tbsp chopped parsley
Finely chop the garlic and mix into the butter, add the parsley and season with salt and pepper. Place the butter on a tray and refrigerate.
FOR THE HERB MAYONNAISE
2 egg yolks
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
4 tablespoons chopped herbs (parsley, chives, tarragon, chervil)
200ml groundnut oil
In a food processor add the egg yolk, mustard and vinegar. Blend for a few seconds then add the chopped herbs. Blend further gradually adding the oil until the mayonnaise becomes thick, season with salt and pepper and place in a small bowl.
To prepare the quail, remove the legs and breasts. Take the skin off from the breasts and insert your knife in the top of the breast to make a pocket. Cut a piece of the garlic butter and push it into the pocket of the quail breast. Repeat this with all the breasts. Once this is done, you can then pané the breasts in breadcrumbs by dipping in flour, then beaten eggs and finally the breadcrumbs. Place in the fridge until needed.
Next, take the four legs and remove the thigh bone and refrigerate until needed.
Take four small leaves from the centre of the Belgium endive and sprinkle the grated cheese inside each leaf.
Add a little oil in a small sauté pan and roast the quail legs skin side down until golden brown and turn over and lightly colour for a minute. When this is done, turn the heat off but leave the legs in the pan. Meanwhile deep fry the quail breasts in hot oil for three minutes and melt the endive leaves with the cheese under the grill.
To serve, neatly arrange the breast first on a plate with the herb mayonnaise and place the leg on top with the dandelion leaf, and a little drizzle of olive oil and parsley.