Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wild rabbit meat, which is leaner and tastier than the farmed variety, has a fabulous subtle, gamey flavour (very different from richly flavoured hare). It is available throughout the year but you're more likely to find the best sized rabbits from July to December.


The rabbit is a member of the family Leporidae, which includes the hare. Rabbits are gregarious and nocturnal animals that feed on grasses and herbaceous plants but will also eat bark when grass is not available. Rabbits are highly efficient at converting plant proteins into animal proteins (their conversion rate is double that of cattle, for example).


Rabbit meat is relatively low in fat and high in protein. It is a good source of niacin, iron, phosphorus, and vitamin B12.


Unlike much of Europe, rabbit is rarely seen in UK supermarkets, but is available from many butchers and food markets. It is also available by mail order from a number of suppliers, such as Graig Farm Organics or Alternative Meats.

Select rabbits by size; they should be large enough to yield a decent amount of meat, but not too large. Wild rabbits much larger than 1kg are prone to be tough. Younger, smaller animals will be more tender and better suited to quick cook methods such as roasting or barbecuing. Larger, older rabbits will have more flavour but may be less tender and so better suited to slower cooking.

Fresh rabbit will keep in the fridge for several days (or longer if vacuum packed). Freezing is not recommended as this can make the meat too dry.

To joint a rabbit: cut the hind quarters away from the body and separate the legs. Halve the leg joints. Cut the body (saddle) horizontally through the backbone into two or three portions, stopping at the rib cage. Cut lengthways through the breastbone and divide the ribcage section in half.

As rabbit meat is very lean, care should be taken to prevent it from drying out during cooking. Marinading or barding (covering in a fat or wrapping in bacon) can help moisten the flesh during roasting or barbecuing.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    My grandfather used to raise rabbits too. Used to kill them with his bare hands.

    I still can't look at rabbits and not see food. To me they're not pets at all.
    3169 days ago
    My grandparents raised rabbits on their farm in Normandy (France). My mother as well but I had to kill and gut them as she could not do it herself. I love the meat but now that I live in Canada it's not as easily available in supermarkets over here plus my kids only see the cute bunnies not the very healthy protein source they are... emoticon
    3172 days ago
    I haven't had rabbit for many years now. But I'm going to go to my butcher's this weekend and buy one.

    Then I'm going to slow cook it . . .
    3175 days ago
  • ROX525
    I don't know if I want to try rabbit, however, I do get angry when they get into the garden. Thank you for the nutritional info. and recipe in case I want to try it. Have a great day. P.S. I couldn't eat horse either.
    3175 days ago
    We used to eat rabbit, but it became very expensive in our local stores. Of course, we have several living in our garden, the the children have named them...
    3175 days ago
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