Cocotte de lapin au vin rouge
(Rabbit cooked in red wine)
This recipe for rabbit cooked in red wine is relatively quick – in little more than an hour you can be enjoying this rich and flavourful winter favourite. With all the trimmings of a classic stew, this is French cooking at its simplest and best.
1.4kg (3lb 1oz) rabbit, cut into eight pieces by your butcher
250g (9oz) potatoes, peeled and halved
150g (5½oz) butter
150g (5½oz) button mushrooms, halved
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley crusty baguette, to serve
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 onions, chopped
5 garlic cloves, peeled
2 bay leaves
2 thyme sprigs
1 litre (34 fl oz / 4 cups) Cabernet Franc, or other soft, peppery red wine
Combine the marinade ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Season with a generous pinch of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add the rabbit, ensuring it is covered with the marinade, then cover and marinate overnight in the refrigerator.
The next day, remove the rabbit from the marinade and set aside. Pour the marinade into a hot flameproof cocotte or shallow baking dish over high heat. Bring to the boil and cook for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat, add the potato and cook for another 10 minutes.
Add the rabbit, then cover and cook for 45 minutes, or until very tender and cooked through. Remove the rabbit and vegetables to a warm plate, covering them with foil to keep them warm while finishing the sauce.
Increase the heat to high and cook off the marinade for 10 minutes, or until reduced by half. Add the butter, whisking until it is combined into a shiny sauce. Now add the mushrooms and cook for a final 2 minutes.
Arrange the vegetables and rabbit on serving plates. Spoon the red wine sauce over, garnish with the parsley and serve with crusty baguette.
Recipe from the much-respected, Vietnamese-Australian chef, TV presenter and author, Luke Nguyen’s book France.
Originally published in issue 117 of FrenchEntrée Magazine.
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