Hot Quails On Johnny Cakes

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They like it hot down south. this famous southern dish is inspired by Nashville’s famous Hot Chicken.. its Hot!! the really spicy hot! We wanted to use a different bird than chicken and decided to use quail for this dish. Try this delicious Southern recipe the next time you cook quail. You have been warned!


For the Quails

  • 1 tbsp. fresh ground pepper (will be portioned)
  • 3 tbsp. kosher salt (will be portioned)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tbsp. your favourite hot sauce
  • 1/4 cup dill-pickle juice
  • 4 quail, whole
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • Canola oil

Nashville-Style Hot Sauce

  • 4 tbsp. cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp. dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. chile powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 cup duck fat

For the Johnny Cakes

  • cup white cornmeal
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Bacon drippings
  1. Whisk a tablespoon of the pepper, 2 tablespoons of the salt, eggs, buttermilk, hot sauce, and pickle juice. Add the quail and marinate overnight (or at least for a few hours).
  2. Assemble Johnny cake batter in a medium bowl, place cornmeal and salt.
  3. In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring water to a rapid boil; remove from heat. With the saucepan in one hand, let the boiling water dribble onto the cornmeal while stirring constantly with the other hand. Then stir the milk into the mixture (it will be fairly thick, but not runny).
  4. Generously grease a large, heavy frying pan (I like to use my cast-iron frying pan) with the bacon drippings and heat. When pan is hot, drop the batter by spoonfuls. Flatten the batter with a spatula to a thickness of approximately 1/4 inch. Fry until golden brown, turn, and brown on the other side (adding more bacon drippings as needed). set aside in a warm place.
  5. In a separate bowl, combine flour, 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and the rest of the salt.
  6. Heat two inches of oil in a cast iron skillet (350 degrees). Dip the quail into the flour mixture, then the marinade, and then back into the flour. Fry for about five minutes on each side.
  7. Combine all the dry ingredients for the hot sauce. Slowly whisk in the duck fat.
    Whisk all the ingredients together. Refrigerate for an hour before using for dipping sauce.
  8. Put the quail in the Nashville hot sauce and soak generously. Serve on Johnny Cakes with dill pickle slices and the Rosemary Maple Syrup drizzled on top.

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