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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Rabbit with Prunes and Armagnac

Pau in South West France is a city we love to visit - it's close to where we live, small enough to see in a few hours, the shops are chic, places to eat and drink plentiful and the view of the nearby Pyrenees is breathtaking. On a recent visit we tried the lovely Basque treasure, Le Goxoki. It is an elegant, upmarket, bistro style restaurant with clean green decor. We were excited to be trying somewhere new and held our breath in anticipation of the food to come. We were not disappointed! The following dish was the plat du jour minus the Armagnac! This is my version:-

Preheat oven to 180C Serves: 4


4 rabbit hind legs, boned - (substitute chicken thighs if necessary)
12 prunes, pitted
flour to dust
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
150ml double cream
150ml Armagnac
Salt & pepper
Parsley to garnish


Soak prunes overnight in Armagnac. Drain prunes and reserve Armagnac.

Use a medium sized hob to oven pan so precious flavours are not lost in the otherwise transfer.

Bone each rabbit leg, stuff with drained prunes, tie up with cooking string and perhaps use some toothpicks to help keep the prunes intact. The boned, stuffed rabbit should resemble small parcels. Lightly dust with seasoned flour. Melt butter and oil carefully, do not allow the fats to burn. Gently brown rabbit parcels on all sides until golden and place in the oven for 40 minutes. Remove the rabbit to another plate and keep warm and return the pan to the hob. Reheat pan but do not degrease it (there will not be very much fat left). Deglaze the pan with the reserved Armagnac then add the cream. Gently bring to the boil and reduce to a thick consistency. Return rabbit to the pan for a few minutes and turn so it is well coated with sauce.

To Serve: Remove the rabbit from the pan with a slotted spoon, strain the sauce and spoon it over the rabbit. Garnish with parlsey.

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