Mmm yeah, so I haven’t posted anything in a long time. I have good reason, but I won’t get into it here. Let it be enough to say that the past two weeks have been the worst of my life, and not even my kitchen has convinced me that the show must go on. And I know the show must go on. It’s just bloody difficult. Anyway, the following is a recipe with a lot of meaning to me – because it’s rabbit. But I won’t get into the melancholic details. One thing worth mentioning though, I made this about 10 days ago, on the day this very horrible streak of bad things began happening, but always with a silver lining; I came home (all puffy-eyed and exhausted from crying) with two very meaningful rabbits in my hand. My mom found me, and since she is such a wonderful mom, abstained from asking any questions and instead proceeded to have a cooking fiesta with me; we each took a rabbit, to be cooked in different ways. Now, this doesn’t sound like such a shiny silver lining, but my mom and me in the kitchen at the same time??? Never heard of before. We’re usually in each others way and always en up fighting because I have no tolerance to her every-two-minute remarks of how I should modify whatever it is I am cooking. But this rabbit is different, because it was a lot more about her being there for me, without questions, without trying to change me, (or my recipe!) and just keeping me company in a moment where probably nothing else could have saved me. After the rabbits, we also made salsa, and two apple cakes. And believe it or not, that day, a whole day in the kitchen, even being exhausted, was just what the doctor had prescribed.
This recipe is really easy, and it’ll take you no time to make (That is, if you’re not butchering your rabbit yourself, as I did). It does take long to bake though, so keep that in mind. It’s absolutely worth it though, the apples and potatoes melt in your mouth after having been in there with rabbit for almost two hours. Recipe after the jump.
Lapin en cocotte – Rabbit “en cocotte” with apples and potatoes
1 rabbit, cut into pieces.
1 cup red wine
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup olive oil
Freshly ground salt and pepper
1/2 cup sliced red onions
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
2 large shallots, in halves
1 apple, peeled, cored and chopped in cubes (you can increase the apple amount if your baking dish is bigger)
1 cup cubes of potatoes, with skins
3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme, for after baking
Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
Place in a bowl the wine, vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Whisk energetically until incorporated. Add the shallots, onions, apples and potatoes and cover everything evenly. Let sit for about 30 minutes. Place in your cocotte a little bit of this mix, then place the rabbit pieces inside and pour over them the rest of the mix. Bake for about 1 hr 45 minutes, or until the rabbit is very tender when touched. (You can poke it with a fork, but wait until you’re almost sure it’s done. Ovens vary, and since ceramic dishes take up a lot of the heat, your rabbit might take more than two hours to be done. Be patient!)