Game agnolotti

Serve Theo Randalls tasty little pasta morsels with a glass of full-bodied Chianti - perfetto
By Theo Randall
Game agnolotti
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes plus 1 hour marinating time
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp marsala
  • 1 tsp thyme, leaves
  • 1 rabbit, skinned, cleaned and jointed
  • 1 grey squirrel, skinned, cleaned and cut into quarters
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 75 g pancetta, finely chopped
  • 1 small carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 stick celery, finely chopped
  • 65 ml white wine
  • 100 g freshly grated parmesan
  • 6 x 12 cm rolled sheet of uncooked pasta
  • 75 g unsalted butter

Tips and Suggestions

You'll struggle to find grey squirrel meat in the supermarket, so try your local butcher instead. Alternatively, look for it online - the Wild Meat Company is one of many meat specialists that sell squirrel.

If you fancy making your own pasta, give this recipe a go.

Method

1. Put the marsala and thyme into a non-reactive dish, add the rabbit and squirrel pieces and leave to marinate for 1 hour.

2. Preheat the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5.

3. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-based, ovenproof casserole and fry the meat until lightly browned coloured on all sides. Remove the meat from the pan and put it on one side.

4. Add the pancetta, carrot, onion and celery to the casserole and cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly softened, then return the meat to the dish and add the white wine. Cover with the lid or with tinfoil, transfer the dish to the oven and cook for 1 hour until the meat is tender.

5. Remove the meat and vegetables from the dish and chop finely. Drain all the cooking liquid that remains in the pan, and reserve.

6. Mix the chopped meat and chopped vegetables in a bowl. Add the parmesan, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and add enough of the reserved cooking liquid to moisten the mixture, taking care not to make it too wet.

7. Cut the pasta sheet in half lengthways, then cut 6cm sections crosswise, giving 6cm squares. Put a heaped teaspoon of the game mixture in the centre of each square, then brush the edges with water, and pinch 2 opposite diagonal corners together, forming a diamond shape. Repeat the process with the remaining edges, so all sides become sealed together and there is no excess air inside. The agnolotti should look a bit like a Chinese paper lantern. Put the completed agnolotti into the fridge as you make them so the mixture does not soak into the pasta.

8. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil, add the agnolotti, cook for 2-3 minutes, then drain.

9. Melt the butter in a frying pan, add the drained agnolotti and toss to coat them in butter so they have a shiny, buttery appearance.

10. To serve, divided the agnolotti between serving bowls and add a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper.

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