One day the Hodja invited his friends over for dinner. He told them that he was going to prepare a meal with roasted quails. Nasreddin Hodja’s friends, in their unceasing quest to baffle him, thought of a prank and came to dinner prepared.
When the Hodja cooked his quails, he placed them in his old, big, tin serving platter and put the lid on to prevent them from getting cold. He brought the covered platter to the dinner table and went back to the kitchen to bring other things. While he was in the kitchen, the well-prepared pranksters hid the platter with the cooked quails and replaced it with another one that contained live quails.
When Nasreddin Hodja was ready to serve the dinner, he opened the lid of the platter and to his shock; all the quails flew out and about. The Hodja watched the birds in astonishment, darting this way and that way, and eventually flying out the open windows.
“Sublime Allah,” he spoke looking up, “it is very well that you gave life to these cooked birds, but how are you going to reimburse me for the butter, salt and tomato paste I used?”