BRAISED RABBIT WITH PRUNES (LAPIN AUX PRUNEAUX)
Braised Rabbit with Prunes (Lapin aux Pruneaux) is a great classic dish from the French repertoire. Delicate rabbit meat gets braised in white wine with salty bacon and sweet prunes to create a deliciously rich, thick and slightly sticky sauce.
Take the rabbit pieces out of the fridge at least 2 hours before you cook them, to allow them to get close to room temperature.
For the white wine, I recommend you choose one that is dry and crisp, such as Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Gris or Pinot Blanc.
For better enjoyment while eating this dish, I recommend using pitted prunes.
3 pound rabbit, cut into 6 to 8 serving parts
Extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
3 to 4 large shallots, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup dry white wine (or chicken stock with a tablespoon of vinegar)
Freshly ground black pepper
7 ounces pitted prunes (dried plums)
Fresh thyme, handful
1 bay leaf
1 rabbit liver (optional, should be sold with the rabbit)
1 tablespoon vinegar
Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large Dutch oven on medium-high heat.
Add a tablespoon of butter. Pat dry the rabbit pieces, sprinkle all over with salt, and working in batches. Place rabbit pieces and brown on all sides in the pan.
Remove the rabbit pieces from the pan. Add the sliced shallots, reduce the heat to medium, and cook for 2 minutes.
Add the minced garlic clove and cook for 30 seconds more.
Add the white wine and increase the heat to high. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Let the wine boil, until reduced by at least a half.
Lower the heat to low. Arrange the rabbit pieces, prunes, thyme, and bay leaf in the pan. Sprinkle with black pepper to taste.
Cover tightly and let cook for 45 minutes.
Using Rabbit Liver:
Purée the rabbit liver with 1 tablespoon of vinegar. Remove the rabbit pieces, prunes, thyme sprigs, and bay leaf from the pot (discard thyme and bay leaves) to a serving dish.
Whisk the puréed liver vinegar mixture into the sauce in the pot and cook for another 10 minutes.
(If the sauce is still too thin, you can thicken further with corn starch or flour.) Then drizzle the sauce over and around the rabbit and prunes.
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MAN SHALL NOT LIVE BY BREAD ALONE,BUT BY EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDETH OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD.kjv