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A Squab is a young pigeon that has never flown and is the oldest domesticated poultry. Known by its more common names of the Pigeon, or Dove, this bird has been featured prominently in cuisines for centuries dating as far back as Bronze Age Mesopotamia (2400-1500 BC). And throughout history, cultures have been enamored with the species. Noah released a Dove from his ark, which returned to him with the olive branch. The goddess Aphrodite was represented by a Dove. In Christian iconography, the dove represents the Holy Spirit, while in China the Dove represented fidelity and longevity.
In the United States, squab are raised primarily in central California and South Carolina. Farm-raised pigeons must be raised naturally, having the same food year-round and nests that can not be disturbed. For this reason, squab can only be raised in small quantities and without the commercial techniques used in chicken farming..
Squab’s universal appeal is its distinctly flavored delicate and succulent meat which is unlike that of any other bird. Squab has dark-meat, yet the meat is not as fibrous as other poultry, rendering it far more tender. Squab is normally served medium-rare. These succulent birds make a feast fit for a king!
The flavor profile of this recipe is similar to B’stilla (pronounced Pas-Tee-Ya), which is a Squab pie popular in Marrakech (Pronounced Pas-Tee-Ya). Also known as Pastilla, Bastilla, Bisteeya, the dish is a spiced poultry pie enriched with scrambled eggs and decorated with ground almonds, sugar, and cinnamon; typically served at weddings and other festive occasions. The recipe is believed to come from Andalusia, the part of Spain occupied by the Moors for 1,000 years, until forced back into North Africa. The word pastilla that refers to the fine dough used to make this dish.
Since making a traditional B’stilla is labor intensive, this Squab recipe is a deconstructed version. The Squab will be coated with Ras El Hanout and roasted along with Couscous with summer vegetables (piquillo peppers and squash). The dish is finished with a sauce made from Medjool Dates. We are providing Andalusian Crackers (Torta de Aceite) to provide the crunchy texture and sweet element in this dish normally provided by the Phyllo dough covered with confectioner's’ sugar. We also will be offering a Cornish Game Hen substitute for those not interested in Squab.
Time to Cook: 45 min.
Cook by Day: Friday
Items included (serves 2)
Ras el Hanout
Aromatics (Shallots, parsley, cilantro)
Torta de Aciete
*Menu items subject to slight variation based on the availability of fresh ingredients; Picture is not necessarily representative of final dish
Meal Contains (including add-ons): Milk, Tree Nuts (Walnuts in Salad). We store, portion, and package various meal kits containing all eight (8) major allergens (milk, wheat, egg, soy, fish, shellfish, peanuts, and tree nuts) and cannot guarantee that cross-contamination will not occur between kits.
Add-on Checkout Items
Extra Cornish Game Hen