Lemon Pepper Quail with Caviar and Herby Ranch

By Cacey Madden

Lemon Pepper Quail with Caviar and Herby Ranch by Miles Robbins

For us, fried chicken and ROE is a classic pairing already. The lemon pepper glaze adds a dimension of flavor that balances really well with the salty, briny flavor of the caviar. Makes four servings

Prep time: 4-24 hours


For the Quail:

4 Boned Quails (ask your butcher to bone for you if they didn’t come that way already)

1 cup All Purpose Flour

1 cup Sweet Potato Starch

1 cup Rice Flour

4 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning

2 cups Whole Milk

1 cup Buttermilk


For the Ranch:

2 tablespoons Buttermilk

2 cups Sour Cream

2 cups Mayonnaise

¼ cup chopped Dill

1/4 cup chopped Parsley

1/4 cup sliced Chives (save some for the end!)

1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt Juice and zest of one Lemon

1 Tablespoon Pepper


For the Glaze

2 Tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning

4 cloves grated Garlic

2 Tablespoons Chili Paste

1 teaspoon Salt

3 Tablespoons Black Pepper

The juice and zest of four lemons

¼ cups White Sugar

1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

4 Tablespoons very cold butter to finish


To Prepare The Quail: For the quail, season on both sides with Old Bay Seasoning and let sit overnight or as long as you can in the fridge on a wire rack. When ready, mix flours evenly with 1 tablespoon of Old Bay Seasoning. Separately, mix the buttermilk, whole milk and one tablespoon of Old Bay Seasoning evenly. Once both mixes are done, dip quail one at a time into the milk mixture, and then flour. Set aside on a wire rack. When you are ready to fry, choose a heavy bottom deep pan or pot for optimal results.

Heat your neutral oil to 400°, and then fry the quail for 3-4 minutes. Pull out and place on a wire rack before glazing.


To Prepare the Ranch: Mix buttermilk, mayo, sour cream, lemon juice, herbs, salt and pepper with a whisk and set aside.


To Prepare the Glaze: For the glaze, simmer the spices, salt, pepper, lemon zest, garlic and chili paste in olive oil for about five minutes on medium to low heat until simmering and all liquid is evaporated and spices are fragrant. From there, add the lemon juice and sugar and reduce until thick (about the consistency of maple syrup). Set aside until ready.


The Assembly: Warm the glaze on the stove, adding butter until shiny. From there, glaze the quail by brushing it on all sides. Add a spoonful of ranch to the plate and make a dollop in the center of the ranch. Add quail and a small spoonful of caviar on each dish. Top with chives.