Buttermilk Fried Quail with Chile-Honey Drizzle

By: Hannah Lee Leidy
Photo by Andrew Thomas Lee

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Serves 4

  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • ¼ cup cayenne-based hot sauce (Satterfield uses Frank’s Red Hot or Texas Pete)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 4 Manchester Farms semi-boneless quail
  • 2 cups flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon fine sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons finely ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne
  • Approximately 5 cups canola oil, depending on the size of your skillet
  • Chile-honey drizzle (recipe below)
  • Special equipment: Deep-fry themometer
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together buttermilk, hot sauce, and kosher salt. Place quail in brine and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, sea salt, black pepper, paprika, mustard powder, and cayenne. Drain quail, then toss in dredge, one at a time, until each is well-coated.
  3. Pour oil into a deep skillet fitted with deep-fry thermometer, preferably a 12-inch cast-iron pan, until it’s filled halfway. Turn heat to medium-low to slowly heat the oil until temperature reaches 350 degrees. Shake off excess flour from one quail. Holding quail by the legs, carefully lower breast of each bird into the hot oil and then gently guide the lower half of the body in, making sure not to splash any oil.  Repeat for each bird until they are all semi-submerged in hot oil. Let the birds cook for 3 to 5 minutes and, using tongs, turn a bird or two to check the underside for color. When the flour coating is golden and crispy, carefully turn birds over and cook on opposite side for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove birds from skillet and set on a paper towel-lined tray to cool. Turn off the heat and let oil cool before handling. Sliced the fried birds in half and stack the halves on 4 plates. Drizzle with chile honey and serve.  

Chile-Honey Drizzle

Makes ¼ cup
¼ cup honey
¼ cup sherry vinegar
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes, or more to taste
¼ teaspoon salt

In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine all ingredients. Bring to a boil and cook until mixture begins to foam across entire surface, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside until ready to serve.

Steven Satterfield

Co-Owner and Executive Chef of Miller Union
Author, “Root to Leaf, A Southern Chef Cooks Through the Seasons”

Steven Satterfield is the executive chef and co-owner of Miller Union, an award-winning, seasonally driven restaurant located in Atlanta’s Westside neighborhood. Since opening in 2009, the restaurant has received various honors on many national lists including Eater, Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, and Esquire. In 2015, Satterfield released his first cookbook, Root to Leaf, to broad critical acclaim. In 2017, after four previous nominations, Satterfield was named Best Chef: Southeast by the James Beard Foundation. Satterfield’s dedication to seasonal cooking and his unwavering support for local farmers is the driving philosophy behind his restaurant and everything he does.

  • From Steven Satterfield, Miller Union, Atlanta

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  • R Ott
    October 7, 2022 at 10:07 pm

    Good Afternoon!
    Your recipe sounds amazing. I can almost taste the cooked quail. I am from SC and just purchased Manchester quail to cook from local grocer, can’t wsirvvyo try your recipe. .