we had dinner at 9.30 last night. I tried to keep them happy by saying it would be the best meal I'd ever cooked for them. Turns out it wasn't, but they did say it was the best rabbit they'd ever eaten. I think we are FINALLY over the "rabbits are pets and we can't eat them" phase (sorry, vegetarians!).
I jointed the rabbit and used the curing method from the Zuni Cafe Cookbook, which involved covering the legs and loin in rock salt for an hour, then rinsing well and immersing in milk for 1 1/2 hrs, then rinsing again. Next time I'd salt for longer (overnight) and put herbs in the salt.
I took a lot of the rest of the meat off the bones, browned bones in the oven and then the frypan, and made a glaze by adding chicken stock, onion, carrot, celery and simmering right down. This is the Zuni method and it was fabulous, although a bit salty, presumably from the stock (commercial - I actually had chicken stock simmering on the stove all night too).
I roasted the rabbit with thyme and parsley, puting the biggest bits in first. I'd kept some pork fat in the freezer, cut from a roast some time ago, so i thawed some and put it on top to stop the meat drying out. The roast was OK but it didnt really brown, so next time I'd do that before or after I roasted it. Either that or add a glaze in the oven.
I then minced the reserved rabbit meat bits along with a chicken breast and a piece of the pork fat, thyme & rosemary, 5 cloves garlic confit, 1 tsp paprika, i tbsp tomato paste, pepper and salt and made tiny rissoles, which I fried. I also fried up some smoked bacon which I cut into chunks.
Walnut pieces were warmed in the oven for 5 mins and then chopped coarsley (easier to chop when warm). I'd bought about 300 gms fresh cherries which we pitted, and then I put them in a saucepan on medium-high heat with 1 tbsp water for about a minute, so they were still crunchy.
Served the rabbit with glaze on the roast, cherries beside, and the rissole s& bacon beside, potato mash with a little truffle oil in it, and a sprinkle of walnuts.
Pretty darn tasty...