I don’t know about the rest of you, but I have a freezer chock full of meat that I bought and never got around to using. If you, like me, managed to find yourself with an extra rabbit in there, this is a perfect recipe for a chilly day. The rabbit is from the Athens Farmers Market – it was much easier to prepare than I thought it would be, and the result was a hearty stew that I could very easily see myself making again.
Rabbit, Mushroom and Tarragon Stew
recipe from the We Are Never Full blog
What you need:
* 3 rashes of bacon, cut into pieces
* 1 small onion, diced finely
* 3 cloves garlic, minced
* 1 box of button mushrooms, cleaned and sliced lengthwise
* 1 whole rabbit, cut into pieces
* 3 sprigs of tarragon – 2 with tarragon leaves removed and chopped and 1 left whole, bruised by back of a chef’s knife
* 2 1/2 cups of white wine
* 2 heaping tablespoons of dijon mustard
* 1 1/2 cups of chicken stock
* 1/2 cup light cream
What to do:
1. Heat heavy-bottomed pan/pot to medium-high and cook bacon pieces until almost crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
2. Pour bacon fat into a bowl and, starting with one tablespoon, add the fat back to the pot. Cook onion, garlic and mushroom in the bacon fat until medium-soft (about 5-6 minutes). Remove and set aside in the bowl with the bacon.
3. Season the rabbit pieces with salt and pepper. Add a bit more bacon fat (or butter if you’d prefer) back to the heavy-bottomed pan and add your rabbit pieces. Sear the outside on all sides of each piece until they are nice and golden brown (about 6 to 8 minutes). Remove to a plate for a moment.
4. I know, I know… lots of removing of food from the pan. They’ll be back soon. Deglaze the bottom of your pan with wine – keep heat up to medium and scrape all the bits from the bottom of the pan. After about a minute or so, add your chicken stock, tarragon, bruised tarragon sprig and mustard. Stir.
5. Now, add back everything – rabbit, mushrooms, bacon, onions, garlic, etc. – to the pan. Bring to a boil and then lower to medium/medium-low and simmer, covered for 30 minutes. After that, continue to simmer the dish uncovered for another 20 to 30 minutes. It will cook down to a thicker sauce.
6. Finish by stirring in the cream and fishing out the loose tarragon sprig. Enjoy!