Heat the olive oil, in a flame proof casserole over medium high heat.
Season the quail and add to the pan, brown on each breast side, about 2 minutes per side, and then brown the backs.
Remove the quail from the pot and set aside.
Tie the herbs and bay leaf together with kitchen twine to make a bouquet garnish. Using the same pot, lower heat to medium; add the leeks, and cook until the leeks begin to soften, stirring, about 5 minutes.
Add the chopped dates, the bouquet garni, and the cider. Cook for a further 3 minutes, and add the chicken stock and the quail.
Bring the liquid almost to a boil, cover, and turn the heat down so the cooking liquid is barely simmering, poaching the quail for about 15 minutes. Remove quail and keep warm. Reduce cooking liquid until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
Serve the quail with the leeks and pan juices, dusted with fresh parsley.
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