12-hour rabbit bolognese

Rabbit Bolognese

Serves 12

  • Makes enough sauce to serve 12

  • olive oil

  • 3 rashers higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon, roughly chopped

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary

  • 1 whole rabbit, skinned, including offal

  • 1 bulb garlic, left whole, white skin peeled away

  • 2 leeks, washed, topped and tailed

  • 2 carrots, washed, topped and tailed

  • 2 sticks celery, washed and trimmed

  • 2 red onions, skin on, washed

  • 20 g dried porcini mushrooms

  • 2x400 g tinned chopped tomatoes

  • 500 ml light smooth beer/ale

  • 2 tablespoons tomato purée

  • sea salt

  • ground pepper

  • 1 whole nutmeg

  • ½ lemon

  • a few sprigs of fresh thyme

  • Optional serving method: serves 6

  • 500 g dried pasta, optional

  • Parmesan or Cheddar cheese, optional

  • extra virgin olive oil, optional

  • a few sprigs of fresh thyme, optional

Preheat the oven to 110°C/225°F/gas ¼. Put your largest casserole-type pan on a medium heat and add a lug of olive oil and the chopped bacon. Once it's lightly golden, add the bay leaves and rosemary sprigs and lay the whole rabbit and the offal on top. Drop in the whole garlic bulb, leeks, carrots, celery and onions, then add the dried mushrooms, tinned tomatoes, beer, tomato purée, and just enough water to cover everything (roughly 1 litre). Bring to the boil, and season generously with loads of black pepper and a few pinches of salt. Finely grate in half the nutmeg, put the lid on, then pop the casserole into the oven and leave to cook for 12 hours.



Once cooked, let the stew cool down a little, then get yourself a big pair of clean Marigold gloves and another large pan. This is where you make it a pleasure to eat, so pick through small handfuls of stew at a time, taking out any bones or vegetable skins. Discard the herbs, and flake the beautiful meat off the bones and into the clean pan. Scrunch the vegetables and offal in your hands as you go and break them into smaller pieces. Pour any juices left behind into the new pan, then go back in and have another rummage to make sure you haven't missed anything. Have a taste and correct the seasoning. Finely grate in the zest of half the lemon and pick in a few thyme tips to brighten up the sauce. Divvy the sauce up between sandwich bags and either freeze them, or keep in the fridge.



When you want to make your rabbit bolognese, simply reheat a small ladle of sauce per person in a pan over a medium heat and cook around 80 grams of pasta per person. Spaghetti and penne are favourites of mine for this. Boil according to packet instructions in salted water, then drain, reserving some of the starchy cooking water. Toss with your sauce and a little splash of the cooking water to make it silky then add a nice handful of cheese. Taste and check the seasoning then serve immediately with another good sprinkling of cheese, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and some fresh thyme tips.

Nutritional Information

12-hour rabbit bolognese

Deliciously rich and comforting

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0 foodies cooked this
It may cook for 12 hours, but this beautiful Bolognese recipe only takes minutes to get in the oven
Serves 12
12h 30m
Not too tricky
Method

This is a wonderful evolution of that humble meat sauce we all love. You can create around twelve incredible-tasting portions of bolognese out of one little rabbit, so it's beyond cheap to make. And most importantly, you can knock it together in around three minutes flat, then just allow the oven to turn it into a heavenly and delicious bolognese. Once it comes out of the oven you've got a rustic sauce that you can portion up and freeze for all sorts of beautiful meals in the days and weeks to come. If you aren't a lover of rabbit meat, I urge you to try this. It's cheap, it's tasty, and it's easy ... Are you convinced yet?

Preheat the oven to 110°C/225°F/gas ¼. Put your largest casserole-type pan on a medium heat and add a lug of olive oil and the chopped bacon. Once it's lightly golden, add the bay leaves and rosemary sprigs and lay the whole rabbit and the offal on top. Drop in the whole garlic bulb, leeks, carrots, celery and onions, then add the dried mushrooms, tinned tomatoes, beer, tomato purée, and just enough water to cover everything (roughly 1 litre). Bring to the boil, and season generously with loads of black pepper and a few pinches of salt. Finely grate in half the nutmeg, put the lid on, then pop the casserole into the oven and leave to cook for 12 hours.

Once cooked, let the stew cool down a little, then get yourself a big pair of clean Marigold gloves and another large pan. This is where you make it a pleasure to eat, so pick through small handfuls of stew at a time, taking out any bones or vegetable skins. Discard the herbs, and flake the beautiful meat off the bones and into the clean pan. Scrunch the vegetables and offal in your hands as you go and break them into smaller pieces. Pour any juices left behind into the new pan, then go back in and have another rummage to make sure you haven't missed anything. Have a taste and correct the seasoning. Finely grate in the zest of half the lemon and pick in a few thyme tips to brighten up the sauce. Divvy the sauce up between sandwich bags and either freeze them, or keep in the fridge.

When you want to make your rabbit bolognese, simply reheat a small ladle of sauce per person in a pan over a medium heat and cook around 80 grams of pasta per person. Spaghetti and penne are favourites of mine for this. Boil according to packet instructions in salted water, then drain, reserving some of the starchy cooking water. Toss with your sauce and a little splash of the cooking water to make it silky then add a nice handful of cheese. Taste and check the seasoning then serve immediately with another good sprinkling of cheese, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and some fresh thyme tips.

Nutritional Information Amount per serving:
  • Calories 490 25%
  • Carbs 56.1g 22%
  • Sugar 6.0g 7%
  • Fat 13.9g 20%
  • Saturates 4.7g 24%
  • Protein 32.0g 71%
Of an adult's reference intake

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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.

When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.

For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:

Marine Stewardship Council
http://www.msc.org/

Fish Online
http://www.fishonline.org

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