I came back from running to find four rabbits left by Jim, our neighbour. It’s been a bumper year for rabbits. He had thoughtfully gutted the little beasts but I skinned them with difficulty, (tough bunnies) and decided to fry them. I used the legs and saddle and discarded the rest as the fore feet and ribs are too bony to bother with. To ensure tenderness simmer the pieces in a big pot of salted water with a couple of peeled onions, a stick of leafy celery, and three chopped carrots. After an hour and a half, take them off the heat, let the pot cool and drain the liquid for soup stock. Rabbits have chunky thighs and the saddle falls from the spine in two meaty chunks so it is simple to de-bone them. Next, marinate the pieces in –
250g Greek yoghurt
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1 tablespoons onion salt
1 teaspoons oregano
3 cloves of crushed garlic
½ teaspoon chilli powder
The marinated pieces taste good before frying so if you are really hungry you could reheat them and serve with rice. However, we wanted a fry up.
When ready, prepare two bowls filled with –
3 beaten eggs
A mixture of 250g flour, a handful of rough breadcrumbs and 2 teaspoons of salt.
Using tongs, dredge the pieces, one at a time, in egg followed by breadcrumbs and place on a platter. When finished, wash the tongs to remove the gunk.
Heat a deep, heavy frying pan filled with an inch of vegetable oil until it smokes. Add the coated rabbit pieces with tongs to fill the pan with plenty of room between the pieces. I fried three batches.
Fry for 1-2 minutes each side or until golden brown.Remove with tongs, drain on kitchen paper and keep warm until all the batches are done.
Sprinkle the finished pieces with more paprika and season to your taste with salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon. Serve with your favourite condiments (zingy yoghurt tzatzigi, green chilli sauce and ketchup, in our household) and a crisp green salad.