‘Tis the season for rabbits. Whether you’ve just bagged your first thanks to our beginners guide, or you’re an experienced pro with the air rifle – there’s no better way to celebrate a successful shoot than by preparing and eating them. So, we’ve rustled up a list of some of our favourite rabbit recipes for you to choose from.
1) Rabbit Stew
A classic across Europe, rabbit stew is a deliciously warming and hearty meal – particularly recommended with a crusty white roll on the side!
Ingredients: 1 rabbit – diced, 2 celery sticks – sliced, 1 large carrot – sliced, 1 onion – chopped, 200g mushrooms – chopped, 2 springs thyme, 1 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp vegetable oil, 2 tbsp plain flour, 1 ltr chicken stock
Place the butter and oil into a casserole dish over a medium heat until the butter has melted and the oil is hot. Add the onion, celery, carrot and mushrooms and cook until they start to soften. Add a few tablespoons of the chicken stock and stir in the flour until it has disappeared. Add the rest of the chicken stock, diced rabbit and thyme. Bring it all to the boil, then switch to a low heat, cover and leave to cook for an hour – removing the lid on 30 minutes to let the liquid reduce. Check the rabbit is fully cooked and tender before serving.
2) Rabbit & Bacon Pie
Whether it’s a weekend lunch or a dinner party, a rich rabbit pie is just the thing. The tender rabbit contrasts perfectly with the soft, crumbly pastry. Pair with some fresh vegetables for a staple shooting meal.
The mixture that goes into the pie is quite similar to the recipe above, so if you want to use that – just make sure you reduce the liquid further before adding to the pastry case. We’re using pre-made pastry – but if you have the skill, feel free to make your own!
Ingredients: 2 rabbits – diced, 250g bacon – chopped, 1 onion – chopped, 2 springs thyme – chopped, 2 cloves garlic – chopped, 1 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp vegetable oil, 1.5 ltr chicken stock, 1 sheet ready-to-roll shortcrust pastry
Place the butter and oil into a large pan over a medium heat until the butter has melted and the oil is hot. Add the diced rabbit and turn until browned, then remove. Add the chopped bacon and onion and fry until brown as well, then add the rabbit back in. Chuck in the thyme and garlic and fry for a further 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in your chicken stock, turn down to a simmer and leave to cook for 40 minutes. Once cooked, take off the heat and let it cool fully.
Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4/180C.
Cut your pre-made pastry so it fits a good-sized pastry tin, then add your rabbit mixture. Cover with the rest of the pastry, pressing down at the edges to seal the pie and trim off any excess. Stab a few holes in the top with a fork to let steam out. Put the pie in the oven for 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve immediately.
3) Rabbit Burgers
Perhaps the easiest of these recipes to prepare, rabbit burgers are a great way of getting people to try rabbit for the first time. We’re adding a little bit of sausagemeat to make sure they hold together properly, but you can also substitute for a little mince if you prefer. Personally, we’d also add salad and chips!
Ingredients: 350g rabbit – minced, 100g sausagemeat (or alternative) – minced, 1 onion – chopped, 2 sage leaves – chopped, 3 tbsp oil, plain flour
Mix the rabbit, sausagemeat, onion and sage together into one large ball. Divide into two and flatten with the palm of your hand into a burger shape. Roll in flour. Put the oil into a pan. Once the oil is hot, place the two burgers in the pan and turn until golden brown – roughly 3 minutes on either side. Serve with whatever sides and condiments you fancy!
Is your mouth watering already? Heading out into the field to bag some for yourself? Make sure you’re covered by Gunplan’s shooting insurance today.