Rabbit rice with rosemary and almonds

Samuel and Samantha Clark's flavourful rabbit paella offers a delicious taste of Spain, great for dinner parties
Rabbit rice with rosemary and almonds
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
  • Prep Time:
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

Main

  • 1 large rabbit, good quality farmed, approx 1.2kg in weight
  • 1 lemons, cut into wedges
  • 1 pinches sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the rabbit stock

  • 1 onions, halved
  • 2 carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 tomatoes, halved
  • 1 heads garlic, halved
  • 3 bay leaves, preferably fresh
  • 1.5 litres water
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 2 dried noras peppers, broken open, or 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • 75 ml white wine
  • 1 handfuls stalks parsley
  • 1 pinches salt
  • 1 pinches strands saffron, about 20 threads

For the rice

  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large Spanish onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green peppers, finely chopped
  • 3 dried noras peppers, seeds and stalks discarded, or 1 ½ tsp of sweet paprika
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, cored and roughly chopped
  • 100 g whole almonds
  • 250 g paella rice, ideally calasparra
  • 150 ml fino sherry

Method

1. Get the butcher to remove the legs and shoulders of the rabbit, and to fillet the saddle. Cut the saddle meat into 2cm cubes. Keep the carcass, head and liver. Cut the liver in half. 2. To make the stock, place the rabbit carcass, including the head, legs and shoulders, in a large saucepan along with the onion, carrot, tomato, garlic, bay, peppercorns, dried peppers or paprika, white wine and parsley stalks. Cover with the water and place on a high heat. When it boils turn down to a gentle simmer and cook for 1 hour, skimming the top occasionally when scum collects. 3. Cover the stock from the heat, strain, then season with a little salt. Add the saffron and let it infuse for 10 minutes. Set aside. 4. Save the legs and shoulders, but discard the rest. When they are cool enough to handle, pull away the meat from the bone and shred in medium pieces. Set aside. 5. When you are ready to cook the rice, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a 30-40cm paella pan or frying pan over a medium to high heat. When the oil is hot and just beginning to smoke, add the pieces of saddle and liver and stir-fry until sealed on all sides but fractionally undercooked in the centre. Pour the saddle and any of its juices into a bowl and put to one side. 6. Wipe the pan clean with kitchen paper and put back on the heat. Add the remaining olive oil and, when it is hot, the onion and peppers, and cook for 15-20mins, stirring every so often. 7.Turn down the heat to medium, add the chopped garlic and rosemary and cook for a further 5 minutes. Add the tomato and almonds, and cook until the garlic and onion have some colour and are sweet. 8. Now add the rice to the pan and stir for 1 minute to coat with the vegetables and oil. (Up to now everything can be done in advance and you need only continue 20 minutes before you wish to eat.) 9. Put the heat to medium high and add the white wine or fino sherry to the pan, followed by the hot stock and season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Do not stir the rice after this as it affects the channels of stock, which allow the rice to cook evenly. Simmer for 10 minutes or until there is just a little liquid above the rice. 10. Spread the shredded meat of the leg and shoulder and cubes of saddle evenly over the rice along with their juices. Push each piece of rabbit under the stock. 11. Gently shake the pan to prevent sticking and turn the heat down to low. Cook for 5 more minutes or until there is just a little liquid left at the bottom of the rice. Turn off the heat and cover the pan tightly with foil. Let the rice sit for 3-5 minutes before serving with wedges of lemon.

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