Red wine in the marinade tenderizes and colors the squabs, so they emerge brown, crisp-skinned and juicy. Cory Schreiber adds honey to the mix to offset the wine's acidity. Try this marinade with any kind of poultry or game bird. If using squabs, have your butcher cut out the backbones and remove the breastbones; cut larger birds into serving pieces before marinating.
Plus: More Chicken Recipes and Tips
1 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons Dijon mustrad
1 tablespoon honey
1 cup Pinot Noir
Four 1-pound squabs, butterflied and breastbones removed
2 medium yellow squash, cut into 1-inch rounds
2 medium zucchini, cut into 1-inch rounds
1 pound white mushrooms, stemmed
2 red bell peppers, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 red onion, halved and sliced lengthwise
2 teaspoons finely chopped thyme
1 teaspoon finely chopped sage
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
How to Make It
In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, mustard and honey. In a small saucepan, boil the Pinot Noir until it is reduced to 1/4 cup, about 7 minutes. Gradually whisk the hot wine into the dressing; let cool. Pour half of the marinade into a large, sturdy resealable plastic bag and add the squabs. Let marinate, refrigerated, for 2 hours or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 425° and position a rack in the upper third. In a large bowl, toss the vegetables and herbs with the remaining marinade and let stand for 15 minutes. Transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet, season with salt and pepper and roast for about 30 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Drain the vegetables in a colander for a few minutes, then return them to the baking sheet and roast for about 5 minutes more, or until tender. Transfer to a large platter, cover loosely and keep warm.
Remove the squabs from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Heat the vegetable oil in a large heavy skillet. Season the squabs with salt and pepper and add them to the skillet, skin side down. Cook over moderately high heat until the skin is dark brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer the squabs to a baking sheet, skin side up, and roast for 10 minutes for medium rare. Arrange the squabs on the vegetables and serve immediately.
Game birds and Pinot Noir are a time-honored pairing. Eyrie Vineyards' Yamhill County Pinot Noir displays an amazing range of tastes, including strawberry, tea and dried cherries, yet is subtle enough to allow the flavor of the squabs to come through.
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