This gorgeous, chicken-like dish is perfect for a special dinner with friends
- A 750ml bottle of full-bodied red wine (eg Saint Emilion)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 750g (1½lb) rabbit portions (6-8), oven-ready
- 200g pack smoked bacon lardons
- 12 shallots, peeled but left whole
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- Handful of thyme sprigs
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 300ml (½ pint) chicken stock
- 250g (8oz) chestnut or cup mushrooms, wiped cleaned, halved or thickly sliced
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Baguette, sliced, or mash, to serve
Pour the wine into a pan, bring to the boil and boil for 5-7 minutes, or until it’s reduced by around a third.
Heat oil in a large pan. Add the rabbit and fry for 6-8 minutes until skin is browned, turning it every so often. Take out with a draining spoon and set aside.
Add the bacon and shallots and fry for 4-5 minutes until lightly browned, then stir in the flour and cook for another minute.
Put the rabbit back in the pan, along with the garlic, herbs and reduced wine and stock. Bring to the boil, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the rabbit is cooked.
Add the mushrooms and cook for another 10 minutes. Season. Serve with bread or mash.
This dish is best cooked the day before, then reheated before serving. Add the mushrooms when you reheat. To freezecool before adding the mushrooms, pack into a plastic container, seal, label and freeze. Use within 2 months. Thaw in the fridge. Reheat until piping hot, adding the mushrooms.