Serves 4

A fragrant Earl Grey tea is used here to add a subtle bitter note to the dish. Watercress salad is a great accompaniment.

For the aromatic pilaf

2tsp Earl Grey tea leaves 40g/13/4oz sultanas 2tsp of olive oil 3 shallots, finely sliced 3 cardamoms 2 cloves 20g/3/4oz pine nuts 300g/10oz Basmati wild rice 600ml/20fl oz chicken stock 3tbsp chopped parsley

For the roast quail

8 oven-ready quail
Juice of one lemon
A handful of thyme sprigs
50g/2oz butter
Salt and black pepper

Pour 100ml (31/2fl oz) boiling water on to the tea. Leave to brew, strain and add the sultanas. Leave for two hours.

Heat the oven to 200C/400F/ Gas 6. Place the quail in a roasting tray. Rub them in lemon juice and thyme. Smear on the butter and season.

Heat some oil in a pan and fry the shallots, cardamoms and cloves for about five minutes.

Add the pine nuts and fry lightly, then mix in the rice. Sauté for two minutes, then add the stock and drained sultanas. Season, cover and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the rice is tender.

Roast the quail for 25 minutes, basting occasionally. Remove from the oven and allow to rest. Mix the parsley into the rice and serve with the quail and their buttery, lemon juices.