14 March 2010

Confit of rabbit leg

I was going to roast a pork shoulder for dinner tonight but my wife and daughters went to see Mamma Mia, making a roast impractical, so I decided to break through the fat protecting my recently made rabbit confit and taste the early results.  After a day outside in the early spring sunshine, not turning on the oven was fine with me. 
Every batch of confit is different, and the changes I made while using rabbit for the first time worked well.  Encasing the legs in a sheath of pig skin, and keeping the oven under 200F for the long, slow cooking really preserved the flavor and lightness of the meat.
Unlike duck or goose legs, rabbits don't have any protective skin that wants crisping, so after I extracted the first two legs that broke free from fat, a brief sizzle in the pan was all that was needed.  Good mashed potatoes, and firm brussels sprouts rounded out the plate. 
I had a glass of a Kante 2005 Malvasia from Italy's Carso DOC, a beautiful dry, minerally white wine. The rabbit legs were given a rub of thyme and juniper berry before they were confited, and the lack of fruitiness in the wine let those seasonings continue, in their now-muted role, to linger.


  1. Looks like another victory for the good guys...!


  2. We've been going through a bunch of brussels sprouts from the garden and it's fun finding things to pair them with so their earthiness complements the overall meal. Haven't tried duck yet but it makes perfect sense.

  3. I'm curious about what breed of rabbit you raise for meat. After doing lots of research, we've heard lots of good things about Florida Whites as meat rabbits. New Zealand whites are supposedly the most popular or commonly raised meat rabbit.

  4. Julie,
    I raise New Zealands, as you suspected. I'm thinking of doing a little crossbreeding, though, and would like to use California or Creme d'Argent, both large meat breeds.

  5. Patrick,
    We saw some beautiful California and Creme d'Argent rabbits at the rabbit show in Austin this morning, among many other breeds. We are getting a trio of Florida Whites on Wednesday, so I will be following your blog with great interest, particularly your rabbit related posts.

  6. I'm jealous! I haven't thought to search out rabbit shows; were you in Austin MN or TX?

  7. Austin, MN. It was a great way to check out the different rabbit breeds up close and personal!