Sometimes, just sometimes one gets carried away with oneself ... yes indeedy!!!
Friday night we were watching Australian Masterchef and they were doing a Masterclass. I love Masterchef, whatever nationality it is and I'm so glad it has come to Irish shores - the calibre of cooks on the show is extremely high. I don't watch much TV but I could happily watch cooking programs all day long and in truth often did on a rainy Saturday or Sunday in single days.
On a Saturday Billy and I generally cook something a bit more complex than the usual after work fare and we were contemplating doing Jason Atherton's Eastern Spiced Quail again but nothing had been finalised. So we were relaxing watching the aforementioned Australian Masterchef and George was preparing a rabbit dish with ingredients the contestants had received in a mystery box challenge earlier in the week. We seriously liked the look of the dish and as we had a wee bunny in the freezer courtesy of my last trip to the English Market we decided this would be Saturday night's dindins!
Saturday was one of those days that just didn't go to plan, when Billy got home he had to powerhose the concrete area of the backyard so dinner preparation was left to me for the dish which to give it it's official title is
Cannon of Rabbit, Garlic Custard and Rabbit Consomme
In comparison with George's bunny mine looked like some sort of famine victim, or else George's fellow went on steroids before the show!
First of all Bugs had to be jointed, filletted and his rack had to be french trimmed. The meat had to be removed from his legs. I was like an eejit running from the kitchen to the TV with remote control in hand to make sure I was doing it ala George!
Play, rewind and pause....
His bones went to make a stock.
Veggies had to be turned, carrots and turnips, I also threw in a couple of spuds to keep himself happy.
A "raft" (WTF!!!) had to be made to add to the stock to clarify it.
A paste of olives and mustard fruits had to be made - could NOT find mustard fruits in Tralee so decided to make my own version of same with limes, sugar, white wine vinegar, water and pears and English mustard powder, I kinda threw together elements from a couple of online recipes I found. No idea if the end result was remotely like what mustard fruits are supposed to taste like but it served my purpose well enough.
The paste was used for the rabbit cannon and back straps and these were wrapped in pancetta and rolled into a cylinder and cooked in the oven.
A garlic custard had to be made.
At this stage I was contemplating giving it all to the dog and ordering from Domino's Pizza!
The rabbit belly had to be cut into pieces, coated in semolina and fried twice - but I forgot that part!!!!
The french trimmed rack of rabbit, his liver and kidneys were fried.
And then it was time to plate up....
This is what emerged having taken a lot of my sanity with it!
By the way this took me all of about 3 and a half hours!
(A note - my late mother often told us she regularly ate rabbit as a child - I'm damn sure her Stepmother who reared 5 stepkids and 9 of her own didn't spend 3 1/2 hours making dinner, even for all of them!)
In fairness it was delicious, the consomme was full of flavour and absolutely clear. The garlic custard tasted ok, but I think the consistency was wrong. Obviously my veg turning skills are a bit slack!! The french trimmed rack of rabbit was nice - stayed succulent. The star of the show for me was the cannon of lamb with olive and mustard fruits stuffing wrapped in pancetta - worth all the prep and cooking time!
If anyone wants the link to the recipe and the way it should look have a gander here