If you are squeamish about consuming game meats, then this post will not be for you. While I love to have you here, it is not my intent to offend anyone. So if you think meat comes from the grocery store, then please stop reading here and wait for the next post which will be all about lettuce.
Speaking of lettuce, I had a horrible time with things eating down my spring produce. I had at least two flats of cabbages munched down to the ground. Almost 40 feet of beets eaten down to the ground along with pepper plants and some tomato plants.
Now I usually do not mind planting a little extra for the bunnies. Usually by the end of the season the coyotes or the hawks have gotten them all. This year, we had an over abundance of the the cute little fur balls all over the place. But after about the third planting of things and watching the season march ruthlessly toward summer I asked my hubby to declare war on them.
It had been a long while since I had prepared a wild rabbit so I pulled the “old” cookbooks out and my new French book (after all the Europeans eat all kind of things that Americans would consider with disdain). Well, I am not a French cook, too complicated, too many dishes to wash up after the fact, but I gleaned some ideas and went back to my original “stewed rabbit” recipe from the “old” books.
Because this was wild game and not farm raised (unless you consider it being my farm) I soaked it in water for about three hours, this helps to draw out the blood. After soaking, I cut the rabbit into quarters.
I used my iron bean pot for this recipe because it is the most practical–one pan to clean instead of two!!
I put a good layer of lard in the heated bean pot and browned the meat. I removed the meat, put 2 tablespoons of butter in the pan and cooked a pile of onions (3-5 depending on the size) and a box of mushrooms. Once done, I added a quart of chicken stock and a heavy splash of white wine. (Actually mine is a homemade wine made out of my leftover kefir whey. Nasty stuff to drink but makes a fine cooking wine!)
To this I added, several carrots and a couple of stalks of celery. At this time I tossed in a handful of dried Shitakes. (A mixture of mushrooms would give it that “old world” flavor but I used what I had on hand and what was most cost affective.) It is my opinion that a rutabaga would be very good in this in place of the carrots but I did not have one.
No old world food would be complete without two or three large cloves or garlic and some kind of green herb. I used fresh sage. And of course salt and pepper.
I put this in the oven to bake at 325 for about an hour and then turned it down to keep it warm until we were ready to eat it a couple of hours later. You want the meat to be almost fall off the bone done. So you will need to check it after about an hour to judge the time needed.
One could use GAPS approved thinking and blend up the carrots and onions to make a thickening agent.
Of course this can be made in a crock-pot without all the browning of the meat and onions. More than likely it would come out tasting about the same….I am just partial to my old bean pot.