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Recipe

Roasted Squab With Orange Rice

  • Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients

  • 6 squab (about 1 pound each)
  • FOR THE SAUCE:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onions
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 4 cups water
  • FOR THE RICE:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onions
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 medium-size navel oranges, peeled, white pith removed, and chopped, with their juice (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 pound long-grain rice (about 2 cups)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions or scallions (green part only)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • FOR THE BIRDS:
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions or scallions (green part only)

Directions

  • Trim the birds, removing the heads, feet, and first joints of the wings. (If your birds come without heads and feet, ask for them from your butcher.) Remove the livers and hearts from the cavities and discard. Rinse the birds well under cool running water. Set the birds aside.
  • MAKE THE SAUCE: In a medium-size saucepan over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the bird trimmings along with the salt and black pepper and cook, stirring, until well browned, about 15 minutes. Add the onions, carrots, celery, bay leaves, and thyme and cook, stirring to loosen any brown bits from the bottom of the pan, for 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste, stir to mix, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the wine, stir, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the water, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for 1 hour. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into another saucepan or a gravy boat. Skim off any fat that rises to the surface. Keep warm.
  • MAKE THE RICE: In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the onions, salt, and cayenne and cook, stirring, for 4 minutes. Add the oranges and their juice, the bay leaves, and rice and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the water and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until all the water is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the green onions and parsley, and stir gently to mix. Remove the bay leaves and let stand with the lid on for 10 minutes before serving.
  • Meanwhile, make the birds. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Rub the birds with the olive oil and season with the salt and black pepper. Put the birds breast side down on a rack fitted over a baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes (and the internal temperature is 150°F). Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes. To carve, cut each bird lengthwise, in half, then cut out the backbone.
  • To serve, arrange an equal portion of the rice in the center of each serving plate, put half a squab on top of the rice, and then drizzle with about 2 tablespoons of the sauce.