Rabbit and Artichokes

Carciofi e Coniglio

Rabbit

Alice and I had been expecting a visit from a dear friend, Giuseppe from Florence who we hadn’t seen for over a year. The big news was that he recently became a dad, so we invited him along with his partner Angela and his 2 month old son, Raffaele over for dinner when they were in Turin.  I really wanted to put on a nice dinner for him particularly because I know how tough a critic he is with cooking and I always fish for a compliment from such a tough customer.

Now Alice will always look out for rabbit on a menu, it’s a totally under rated meat generally but in Italy you will see plenty of butchers with rabbits in their windows.  When combined with the rabbit, the artichokes take on a sweetness which is extra ordinary. After a very simple first course of vegetable minestra I focused on a rabbit dish, which had to be the clincher.  I acknowledge the inspiration of Claudia from Butta La Pasta for this recipe. For this dish I got together the following:

Ingredients (serves 4)
1.2kg/ 2.6lbs  rabbit (cut into pieces)
6 Artichokes
3 Garlic cloves
1 Small handful of rosemary leaves
1 Small handful of parsley leaves
1 Lemon
1.5 cups dry white wine
I cupl vegetable stock
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and Pepper

Method

Ask your butcher to chop up your rabbit for you. I got a rabbit, which weighed a little over 1 kg

Heat a little olive oil in a large heavy based pan.

Wash the rabbit pieces and dry them off in a kitchen towel. When they are dry put them into the pan and begin to brown off the meat. You want to get a really nice colour on all sides of the rabbit pieces.

Chopped the rosemary and 2 of the garlic cloves together. (if you are not too keen on garlic, only chop one)

When the meat is sufficiently browned, toss in the chopped rosemary and garlic. Keep an eye on it for a few seconds so the garlic doesn’t burn.

Add 1 cup of white wine and allow to simmer away with a cover on the pan for about half an hour. Allow the wine to reduce and then add the vegetable stock, cooking for a further 20 minutes.

While the rabbit is simmering, prepare the artichokes. Chop them in quarters and put them straight into lemon water. I like leaving a little stem on the choke.

Gently heat a little more olive oil in a separate pan and add the other garlic clove. Once it has browned, remove it.

Drain and dry off the artichokes and now add them to the pan. Fry off until these are golden brown.

Once they have browned nicely add half a cup of white wine and reduce.

When the rabbit meat is nice and tender and a little sauce remains in the pan, add the artichokes to the rabbit and toss together.

Add a handful of roughly chopped parsley and serve.

If you like to serve the two separately, go ahead. You’ll have move more flexibility in presentation that way.

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