Saturday, July 16, 2011

Lapin Rôti (Roasted Rabbit)

While Hubby and I were in France last year, we got a chance to try a lot of different kinds of food, from horse to escargot to fresh chevre to fois gras. One of the meals that stood out the most to us (and the one we thought we had the most success of recreating) was my dish of roasted rabbit at Le Florentin in Bayeux, Normandy. This was our dinner after spending the day at the D-Day beaches and we were emotionally and physically drained. And starving. My beautiful rabbit thigh came out perfectly roasted, moist, and delicious. We decided we had to try making this dish at home.

And today, we finally did it! We picked up a rabbit at our local butcher shop, which came whole without the head and feet. Hubby found a video online that showed how to butcher it (see link further down) and we browned, then roasted the delectable little morsel. And it was SO good! This is a simple recipe with simple flavors, and it really allows the flavor of the rabbit to shine. If you're wondering what rabbit tastes like, well try the recipe!

(If you're still wondering, it's a cross between the dark meat of chicken and turkey. It's incredibly lean, which means it's good for you too!)

Lapin Rôti (Roasted Rabbit)
*Adapted from Cooks Recipes

3-4 tablespoons olive oil
1 rabbit (look for a young rabbit, between 1 1/2-3 pounds)
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 cup white wine
1 teaspoon rosemary
2 tablespoons chopped parsley (we didn't use any)
Salt and pepper

First, butcher your rabbit. Here's a helpful video: How to Cut Up a Rabbit.

Add cut pieces to a bowl of salt water.

Heat oven to 350º. In a large, heavy skillet heat olive oil over medium heat until shimmering. Pat dry rabbit and season with salt and pepper. Add to skillet and brown on both sides for 4-5 minutes or until golden. Prepare your other ingredients and have them ready to go (mis en place).

Place rabbit in a shallow baking dish. Add your chopped onion to the remaining oil in the skillet and stir. Cook on low heat for 10 minutes, stirring constantly, or until onions have softened. (Ugh, check out the oil mess on my stove. Splatter screen Stephanie! Go put it on your grocery list! Geez.) 

Add crushed garlic and stir. Cook for another 2 minutes. Add wine and rosemary, stirring well. 

Pour the sauce over the rabbit and season again with salt and pepper.

Bake for 45 minutes. Serve sprinkled with chopped parsley and enjoy!