Saturday, January 16, 2010

The best whimsical hors d'oeuvres - Mini pancakes and eggs {Olive oil blinis with quail eggs}

Here's the 3rd in my January series of whimsical hors d'oeuvres: the mini pancakes and eggs!  The idea came from the cartons of quail eggs I continually pass in the Vietnamese markets near my house.  They're one of those things you just need the right excuse to buy... and here it is!

In Chicago, Chinatown and Little Vietnam are great places to find fresh quail eggs.  You can also sometimes find them at gourmet, specialty or various Asian grocery stores.  There's not a huge flavor difference, in my opinion, between quail and chicken eggs - perhaps a bit gamier, but nothing off-putting to be sure.  The yolks are plump and rich, the whites fry up nicely.  I'd say the biggest thing to be aware of is that the membranes on the eggs are usually pretty thick.  Couple that with their tiny size and cracking them are a little bit more of a challenge... though I have freakishly doll-sized hands so it's not really so much of an issue for me!

Gaaaah!  Mini hands!!!

Recipe: Mini pancakes and eggs {OR} Olive oil blinis with quail eggs

What you need to get...

For the blinis (makes approx 12):
1/2 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 egg
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon olive oil
Butter for frying

6 fresh quail eggs

Optional toppings: caramelized onions, bacon crumbles, fresh salsa, fresh dill, creme frache

What to do with it all...

Heat your griddle or non-stick pan on medium heat
Combine the blini ingredients (except the butter) and mix until blended
Melt enough butter to just coat your frying surface
Pour about 2 tablespoons of batter onto your cooking surface for each blini
Cook on each side for about 1 minute on each side, or until golden
Set aside in a stack and keep in a warm place, such as unheated oven
Add a little more butter to fry your eggs, cracking each individually
Fry for about 3 minutes, or until whites are set
To serve: Stack 2 blinis on individuals plates, top with one fried quail egg, accompany with one or more toppings on the side (optional)

Makes 6 pieces


  1. Quail eggs are so nutritious and delicious! However, I have never had pancakes made with quail eggs, must give it a try!

  2. That is one perfectly fried egg there young lady. I've been looking for an excuse to buy quail's eggs and now i've found it!

    ps: mini hands are waaaaay better than man hands. For sure.

  3. Love quail's eggs.................But have never fried them. Great starters this would make and love your LAMBingtons!!!!!!!!!!

  4. I too have freakishly small hands, by the way! And love quail eggs. I bought some on a whim a while ago - and they're great...just mini eggs, really. Love the blinis and eggs combo!

  5. I was looking at your blog shortly before I went to bed and I had the craziest dreams about these little eggs, then I slept through the alarm. This post obviously made an impression! Now I'm just going to have to buy some and try this adorable recipe.

  6. @Angie - Quail eggs rock. Thanks for reading!

    @Erika - Yes, I love that Seinfeld!

    @Butterfly - You could make the eggs... then serve them to the Lambs! Yes? ;)

    @Tasty Eats - We can be hand twins and do all kinds of mini hand twin activities, like trying in vain to grip basketballs!

    Rachel - That's hilarious... I'm really glad I didn't post something like, you know, Dracula Brownies or something that might've given you nightmares! :)

  7. a very different appetizer ... haven't had quail eggs in a while but I do remember they taste different than regular eggs, a stronger taste if I remember ... like your topping suggestions

  8. Thanks Drick - yes, toppings make the appetizer, they say ;)

  9. Never have had these - will be on the lookout - not that Minnesota is a haven for quails. Well, actually lots of qualis up north - so I take that back. Curious now. Very, very curious. And your toppings are perfect.

  10. whole foods carries them... so lovely.. you almost don't want to crack them/ but they look awfully good on the blinis...

  11. Those eggs are amazing, and what you created with them is wonderful. Time for tea in the doll house.

  12. I love your whimsical hors d'oeuvres! They are so cute, I would almost hesitate to eat them. (Almost!)

  13. Just found your blog and I'm very excited! You've got some great recipes... can't wait to browse! -Mini Baker
    ps. These pancakes and quail eggs look DELISH!

  14. Your edible experiments are amazing! I'd probably end up eating way too much of this!! ;)

  15. Your creativity, innovation and photography is so inspiring! Love this blog!


Thanks for commenting - I'm always happy to hear from you!


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