Caroline came back from the market at Santa Marta with a rabbit. But not just any old rabbit : a boned rabbit.
I took a look at it. It looked, basically, rabbit-like. Only floppy. Clearly, proper work had gone into it. And so, I felt obliged to put a similar amount of work into cooking it.
One boned-out rabbit
Three good sausages
200g of thinly sliced pancetta
50g grated parmesan
Chopped herbs : I used rosemary and sage. Oregano wouldn’t hurt. You decide.
Two large glasses of white wine / prosecco
Salt & Pepper
- First, bone your rabbit.
2. No. Do not do this. Get someone else to do it. Your life will not be the less for not boning out a rabbit. Get a boned rabbit from a butcher.
3. Congratulate yourself on being sensible. Put some music on. This recipe takes a bit of time, but not a whole opera. I chose George Harrison’s “All Things Must Pass”, along with miscellaneous Beatles with occasional Stones/Who/Yardbirds on the side.
4. Make the stuffing. Scrape the meat out of the sausages into bowl, and add the parmesan. Finely chop the mushrooms and herbs, and add them to the mix with a good grinding of salt and pepper.
5. My rabbit came with its liver and some rather tough white meat. Chop this up finely and add to the mix. Give it a good scoosh together with your hands and form it into a big ball. Or, if you prefer, a long sausage shape.
6. Take your boned-out rabbit and lay it out flat. Take your stuffing and, well, stuff your rabbit like this :-
7. Roll up your rabbit and secure it by wrapping the pancetta around it. Yes, you could use cooking twine for this. But it’s more fun using bacon, surely?
The Great Beast should now look something like this :-
8. Stick it in a roasting tin, and pour a glass of white wine or prosecco on top. Drink the other glass.
9. Cook for 90 minutes on gas mark 4. The temptation will be to stick it on a higher hear to crisp up the pancetta – if you do this, the bacon will shrink too quickly and the end result will look a little sad. A longer, slower cook is better.
10. After 90 minutes, it should look like this…
11. Carve into slices, and serve with some greens. But let’s be honest, green things are not the main event here. Hopefully, it will look something like this :-
I made this for two. There will be cold cuts and sandwiches for a couple of days to come. It would make a cracking dish for a dinner party. If you are worried that, perhaps, you are not getting enough protein in your diet, I can think of no better dish!