Local Food and Seasonal Ingredients

Whelk and Hard Boiled Quail Egg Salad

By Seth Fera-Schanes

We should add up how many articles I write and mention a farmers market in the city.  I can wait if you would actually like to do that exercise.  My guess would be 75%.

The reality is I go to the markets around the city most Saturday mornings and never tire of looking at and purchasing some of these great ingredients.  We are fortunate to live in city with access to such products.  Coming in from the Hudson Valley, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and of course the Long Island Sound and greater Atlantic Ocean.

The close proximity of the farms to the city means chefs can source incredibly fresh ingredients and maintain the farm to table ethos their patrons desire.  Main restaurants around the city do maintain a green menu featuring items that were picked up at the market that morning.

Below is a recipe I put together featuring a few ingredients I found at the market.  The dish has a nice balance of flavors and a fun range of textures.  You can find more of these recipes on The Refined Chef website.

Whelk and Quail Egg Salad

Serving size: 4

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 5 minutes


1/4 lb. Whelks (sea snails) – Pre-cooked

1 small red onion

2-3 celery stalks

6 quail eggs

2 tbsp fresh parsley

Extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper


Hard-boiled Quail Eggs:

Add eggs to a pot of water and bring to a boil.  Once water boils, turn off heat, cover and allow eggs to sit for 4 minutes.  Remove from water and run under cold water. 

Prepare Salad:

Cut red onion into thin strips.  Cut pre-cooked Whelks into think circular pieces.  Peel quail eggs and cut into thin circular pieces.  Cut celery stalks on the diagonal into thin pieces.  Chop parsley. 

On a plate, add one layer of celery.  On top of celery, alternate between pieces of whelk and quail egg.  Lay red onion on whelk and quail egg and then add fresh parsley.  Drizzle a tiny amount of extra virgin olive oil and add salt and pepper to taste.  If you have sea salt or smoked sea salt, that will work nicely. 

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