4 quail, dressed and split down the backbone
1 pinch salt
1 pinch freshly ground black pepper
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed
4-6 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pint fresh strawberries, washed, stemmed and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 head, baby Frisee lettuce, cut, washed and dried
1 cup parsley leaves, washed, dried and torn into pieces
1 bulb fennel, trimmed and cut into very thin julienne slices
2 ounces Marcona almonds, roasted and salted
1 In a shallow baking dish add 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, 1 pinch cayenne pepper, 1/4 teaspoon fennel seed, 1 tablespoon aged balsamic vinegar and 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil. Stir to combine.
2 Press the quail on a cutting board with your hand to flatten the birds. Add the birds to the baking dish and evenly coat the quail with the mixture. Let marinate for about 1 hour turning once or twice.
3 Place the remaining vinegar and oil in a small bowl. Add the strawberries and a pinch of salt and pepper. Let marinate for 1 hour.
4 Heat the grill. The fire should be moderately hot.
5 Lift the quail out of the marinade and pat dry. Brush the grill grates with a small amount of cooking oil. Grill the quail, breast side down, for about 3-4 minutes. Turn the quail and finish the cooking, about 3-4 more minutes. If the quail are getting too dark, move them to the side of the grill so they do not burn. Let the quail rest while making the salad.
6 In a salad bowl place the Frisee, parsley leaves and fennel. Add 2-3 teaspoons of the strawberry balsamic mixture and toss well to dress the salad.
7 Divide salad greens among 4 plates. Remove the strawberries from marinade and arrange them around greens. Place a quail on the greens and drizzle with a little more balsamic dressing-marinade. Sprinkle with roasted almonds.
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