Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Braised Rabbit w/ Orzo

It's the end of another quarter of culinary school!  Woohoo!  Still rocking that 4.0 GPA, and so READY for these 2 weeks off.  We'll be setting sail on a boat trip in the next couple of weeks with a big group of our friends, so we're definitely looking forward to that.  Pictures will ensue, I'm sure!

In honor or the end of the quarter, I wanted to whip up something special for Andy and myself.  I sent Andy the following text:

Me: Rabbit.  Braised.  For Dinner.
Andy: F yeah! That sounds awesome!
Me: I didn't think you'd complain about that.

And I'm pretty sure he didn't know what it entailed, but the fact that it was something different and unknown, he was all about it.  And neither he or I were disappointed because the first words out of his mouth after taking a bite were "mmmmm."  That's always a good sign right?! 

If you have trouble tracking down some rabbit meat - check your local butcher.  That's where I stumbled across mine!


2 lb. rabbit, cut into quarters
salt and pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
1/4 cup onions, diced
3 garlic cloved, slivered
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, sliced
1 cup red zinfandel 
1 large tomato, concassee (peeled, seeded, roughly chopped)
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 teaspoon fresh sage, minced
2 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 & 1/2 cups orzo, cooked
Shredded Parmesan, for garnish

Heat a large dutch oven under medium high heat.  Add olive oil and heat until shimmering.  Season rabbit pieces with salt and pepper, and in batches, brown both sides.  Remove from pot and reserve.

Add mushrooms, onion, garlic, carrot, and celery to pot and cook until lightly browned. 

Return rabbit to pot and add in sun-dried tomatoes, zinfandel, tomato concasee, thyme, sage, and chicken stock.  Bring mixture to a simmer and cover.  Cook for about 45 minutes, or until rabbit is tender and begins to pull away from the bones.

Remove the rabbit from the pot and separate from bones.  Shred into bite-sized pieces and discard bones.

Strain the sauce, but reserve the vegetables.  Return sauce to pot and reduce by half to thicken slightly, about 10 minutes.  Season sauce with salt and pepper, to taste.  Mount with butter for extra shine and flavor.

Add reserved meat and vegetables back into pot.  Stir in parsley and basil.

Serve mixture over hot orzo and garnish with shredded Parmesan cheese.  Enjoy!

This is definitely a fall comfort meal!  We've got leftovers, but I don't think they'll last very long - I'm thinking about having a big bowl for lunch right now!

Have you ever had rabbit?  What's your favorite way to eat it?


  1. I love orzo, this is another restaurant style dish Peggy.

  2. I looooooooove braised rabbit. Absolutely love it. I figure the cuter the animal, the better it tastes, haha. I think orzo is such a lovely bed for the rabbit. Great dish for fall :-D

    PS Congrats on the 4.0 GPA! I had the same when I went to culinary school. Go nerds!! lol

  3. Congrats on the 4.0! Keep it rocking! I have never had rabbit before, and I sincerely regret it! Something that I should add to my list? F yeah!

  4. Oh my goodness, this sounds SO good. I love rabbit but have never even considered making it myself at home. might be time to finally face the fear + give it a try! Love that you paired it with orzo, too - delicious!