The Teflon Diamond Standard Awards


Quail, Parsnip Puree, Blackberry Jus & Savoy Cabbage with Pancetta

" 2 quails are a perfect portion for a main course. The blackberries compliment the richly flavoured quail. Savoy cabbage has a nutty flavour and is a winter vegetable. The dark green leaves add colour to the dish as well as being full in antioxidants and vitamin C, low in calories and high in fibre. The crispy texture and saltiness of the pancetta works well with the cabbage. The starch within parsnips change to sugar naturally which gives it its sweet flavour which also compliments the rest of the dish."


  • 1/2 pound parsnips, peeled, thinly sliced

  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

  • 60ml double cream

  • 60ml whole milk

  • 14g unsalted butter

  • Salt

  • 1 Savoy cabbage (approximately 500g), finely shredded

  • 200g pack smoked back bacon lardons

  • 2 × whole quail

  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

  • 30g unsalted butter

  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

  • 150ml beef stock

  • 2 tbsp redcurrant jelly

  • 1 garlic clove, chopped finely

  • 85g fresh blackberries


1.  Add parsnips, garlic, cream, milk, and butter to a saucepan and bring to the boil. Cover the saucepan and turn the heat down and simmer for 10-15 minutes until parsnips are very soft. Uncover and cook until liquid is reduced by half (usually about 5 minutes}. Season with salt. Purée in a blender until a smooth consistency is reached.


2. Shred the savoy cabbage. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and add the shredded cabbage. Cook for about 1 minute. Drain and run the cabbage under cold water immediately to stop the cabbage cooking any further. This also helps it to keep its green colour. Heat the bacon lardons in a pan for 3 to 4 minutes over a medium heat until golden brown. Add the drained cabbage and stir-fry for 2 minutes until the mixture is heated through and then season.   

3. Remove the wish bone from the neck of the quail. Pull the skin up towards the breast meat to expose the wish bone, slice down either side of the bone and release it with your fingers until it snaps out. Remove the breasts from the quail. Slice down the breast bone with a sharp knife. Keep the knife next to the breast bone and continue to slice the breast meat away until it comes off in one piece. Do the same on the other side and set the meat aside. Remove the legs. Pop out the thigh bone and slice down between the ball and socket. Slice underneath the leg and around getting as much meat as possible. Remove the upper thigh bone by pushing your thumb and index finger underneath it and slide it along to release the bone, then simply snap it off. Repeat this for all the other legs and again set aside with the breast meat.


4. Heat the oil and butter in a frying pan over a medium heat. When the butter has stopped fizzing place the breasts and legs into the pan, skin side down. Cook them for 2 minutes until they are golden brown, then turn only the breasts over. Cook them for a further minute before turning the legs over. After another minute take the breasts out and continue to cook the legs for a further minute. (the breasts should be cooked for 2 minutes on each side and the legs should be cooked for 3 minutes on the first side and 2 minutes on the second side) Remove the breasts and legs from the frying pan and place them onto a clean plate to rest for 5 minutes before serving.  


5. Add the balsamic vinegar to a pan, then pour in the stock, redcurrant jelly and garlic. Stir over a high heat to blend everything together. Add the blackberries and carry on cooking until they soften. Press through a sieve.