Rabbit in White Wine

A tasty rabbit slew with a white wine sauce, Rabbit in White Wine is a perfect main dish for a dinner party. Serve with pureed potatoes, buttered French beans and Tomato Salad for a marvellous meal. A zuell-chilled white Burgundy wine, such as Meursault, would complement the dish well.

2×3 lb. rabbits, cleaned and cut into serving pieces

2 oz. butter

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 large onions, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, crushed

3 medium-sized carrots, scraped and cut INTO 1-inch lengths

2 celery stalks, trimmed and cut INTO 1-inch lengths

8 fl. oz. chicken stock

2 fl. oz. dry white wine bouquet garni, consisting of

4 parsley sprigs,

1 thyme spray and

1 bay leaf tied together

2 teaspoon dried rosemary

2 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

5 fl. oz. dry white wine

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium-sized onion, thinly sliced 1 large carrot, scraped and thinly sliced 1 celery stalk, trimmed and thinly sliced

1 large garlic clove, crushed

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 teaspoon dried rosemary

2 bay leaves

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoon black pepper

First make the marinade. In a large, shal-low bowl, combine all of the marinade ingredients, beating with a fork until they are thoroughly mixed. Place the rabbit pieces in the marinade and set aside to marinate at room temperature for 8 hours or overnight, basting occasionally.

Remove the rabbit pieces from the marinade and pat dry with kitchen paper towels. Reserve the marinade.

Preheat the oven to moderate 350CF (Gas Mark 4, 180°C).

In a large flameproof casserole, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the rabbit pieces and cook, turning them occasionally with tongs, for 8 to 10 minutes or until they are lightly and evenly browned. With tongs or a slotted spoon, transfer the rabbit pieces to a plate.

Add the vegetable oil to the casserole and heat it over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the onions, garlic and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until the onions are soft and translucent but not brown.

Add the celery and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes.

Pour in the stock, wine and reserved marinade and add the bouquet garni, rosemary, salt and pepper. Bring the liquid to the boil. Return the rabbit pieces to the casserole.

Cover the casserole and place it in the oven. Cook for 1 to ½ hours or until the rabbit meat is very tender when pierced with the point of a sharp knife.

Remove the casserole from the oven and remove and discard the bouquet garni and bay’leaves.

Serve-at once.

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