Easter is all about that bunny right? In our case, we served it for dinner. It’s actually a much more sustainable meat source than factory farm honeyed ham which is a common Easter Dinner. To get a rabbit in the US it is likely to be coming from a smaller producer and may even have been humanely raised, which is a perk that we don’t often see in meats we can get in a store. It is also delicious. The preparation is rather important though for maximum tastiness and tenderness. Here is how I did it. Full time lapse of the cooking process will be available on the Patreon page soon.
Easter Rabbit Recipe:
In preparation: Brine the meat for at least a few hours in salt water. A little black pepper and red pepper is good in the brine too. Use cheap salt because it will soon go down the sink.
A note on cooking times:
I cook rabbit the same way I would cook a chicken — about an hour at 375-400 covered with tinfoil, followed by another 30 minutes at 450 with no tinfoil at the end to get it nice and crispy / golden on the outside. The tinfoil will be lightly stained and can be reused; Rather than cleaning it ( which will likely destroy it), I often just fold it up and put it in the fridge for later use as a heat shield.
-Source rabbit from local farm
-Add a little lard on the bottom of the bake pan
-Thinly slice sweet potatoes to create a bed so the meat doesn’t directly touch the pan.
-Stuff the rabbit with rice (already soaked and cooked), pine-nuts, and butter (I used a local rice raised from an African rice variety by a small farmer in Kingston)
-Top the skin with a sauce you mix up in a small sauce pan, using: Thai sweet chili sauce, butter.
-Bake like you would a similarly sized chicken; my general tactic is about 45 minutes – 60 minutes at 350 under tinfoil, followed by a final 30 minutes or so (watch the skin) at 450 with no tinfoil.
-Just before the skin starts to get golden brown add a sauce to the pan of old sake and/or apple cider to really tie the room together, and allow the drippings to lift from the pan. This step serves a few functions. It deglazes the drippings, freeing their flavor from going to waste as burnt pan crust. It also adds steam and humidity to the final portion of the bake, which makes for a less dried out roast. If you want, you can even pour off the deglazed drippings into a sauce pan, and make them into a gravy — highly recommended.
-Serve with a salad of your choice. This Easter, I did a grapefruit/daikon salad.