Preparation / Directions:
MIX all the ingredients for the marinade and evenly rub the quails with this mixture. Reserve for at least an hour.
Mix all the ingredients for the filling and divide into eight portions. Stuff the quails with a portion of the filling from the tail end, then double up the legs, ensuring that drumsticks cover the opening through which the filling was stuffed and tie firmly with a string Gently twist the winglet bones to make the birds more stable when they are placed on the plate at the time of service. Crush the saffron with a pestle or the back of a spoon, soak in water and then make a paste.
To prepare the garnish, soak the saffron in a little lukewarm water and when the water turns saffron, soak the almond flakes in it to enable them to acquire a saffron hue.
Heat ghee in a pan. Season with black cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and bay leaf, stir over medium heat for a few seconds.
Add garlic and sauté until it begins to change color. Add onions and fry until light golden. Add ginger and stir-fry until the onions are golden. Add coriander powder and chile powder (dissolved in two tbs. water), and stir-fry until the moisture evaporates. Then add tomatoes and salt, and stir-fry until the ghee floats on top. Remove the pan from heat, stir-in curd, return the pan to heat. Stir-fry over medium heat until specs of fat begin to appear on the surface. Add almond paste, stir-fry until the ghee floats on top. Add about one liter water, bring to a boil, reduce to medium heat, add quails and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, but carefully, until the quails are almost cooked. Uncover, increase to medium heat and cook until the gravy is of medium-thick sauce consistency. Sprinkle cardamom powder, cinnamon powder, clove powder and mace powder. Stir well. Add saffron, stir and remove from heat. Adjust the seasoning.
To serve: Place two quails on each of the four individual plates. Garnish with almond flakes and cover with silver varakh. Serve with bread of your choice.