Prep 40 mins
Cook 1 hr
- 50g butter , softened
- small handful parsley and tarragon leaves, chopped
- 1 small garlic clove , crushed
- grated zest ½ lemon
- 2 rabbit legs (see tips below)
- 10 slices pancetta from a pack
For the mustard sauce
- 3 tbsp crème fraîche
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp grain mustard
- lemon juice
- steamed, peeled new potatoes , to serve
- Mash the butter with the herbs, garlic and lemon zest, then chill. This can be done up to a day in advance. Use a small sturdy knife to scrape the meat away from the thigh bone part of the rabbit leg. Try and create a pocket around the bone rather than cutting into the actual meat. When you get to the joint, cut or snap the bone away.
- Halve the butter, roll into two logs, then stuff into the cavity of each rabbit leg. Wrap the slices of pancetta around each leg so that they join underneath. The rabbit can be prepared up to a day ahead and kept in the fridge.
- Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Place the rabbit on a shallow roasting tray and roast for 20-30 mins (see tip below), then leave to rest for 5 mins. While the rabbit is cooking, make the sauce. Heat the crème fraîche with both mustards and simmer for 2-3 mins until thickened slightly. Season to taste, then add a squeeze of lemon juice and set aside.
- To serve, spoon some sauce onto each plate and carve the rabbit into thick slices. Arrange the rabbit on top of the sauce with some steamed new potatoes on the side.
Tip – Types of rabbit
The type of rabbit available is what separates the home from the professional kitchen. Restaurants generally use a larger farmed rabbit leg for this recipe. However, most butchers and supermarkets sell smaller, gamier wild rabbit, so that’s most likely what you’ll be cooking with. When using wild rabbit, look for the biggest legs possible and roast them for 20 mins.
Tip – Buying rabbit
If you can’t buy the legs separately, buy a whole rabbit and remove the back legs or ask your butcher to do it for you. Freeze the rest of the rabbit for another recipe like the Rabbit cacciatore (see ‘Goes well with’ section).
352 kcalories, protein 27g, carbohydrate 1g, fat 27 g, saturated fat 14g, fibre 0g, sugar 1g, salt 1.78 g