Maltese Roasted Rabbit with red wine, potatoes, onions, and bread. A classic and elegant entree of Maltese cuisine.
Maltese Roasted Rabbit Recipe-
- 1 whole rabbit, chopped into large serving sized pieces
- 1 large onion, peeled and rough chopped
- 2 large russet potatoes, peeled and chopped into big chunks
- 2 large zucchini (or summer squash), chopped into big chunks
- 6 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- 3 bay leaves
- 3 tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 pint lamb broth (or lamb stock cube, dissolved in 1/2 pint water)
- 1/2 pint good quality red wine (suggest a Merlot or a Cabernet Sauvignon)
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 2 tsp. Jamaican Jerk seasoning, divided
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tbsp. freshly ground black peppercorns
- vegetable cooking oil
- slices of thick, hearty bread, for serving
- fresh basil, for garnish
- The day before you want to prepare your Maltese Roasted Rabbit, marinate the meat. In a large mixing bowl, combine the soy sauce, red wine, minced garlic, 1 tsp. Jerk seasoning, ground cinnamon, grated nutmeg, and freshly grated black peppercorns. Place the rabbit meat into the mixture and toss, turn, stir them well to ensure even coating. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge overnight.
- The next day, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Using a large skillet over medium high flame, heat some oil. Drain the rabbit meat in a colander placed over a clean bowl (you want to retain the marinade), then put it in the skillet and fry the rabbit pieces on all sides, to brown and seal them. Do not cook all the way done yet.
- Take the meat out of the skillet and place them in a clean bowl, and set aside.
- Using the same skillet, fry the onions and potatoes with 1 tsp. of Jerk seasoning and the bay leaves. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for a few minutes. If the frying onions and potatoes seem dry, stir in a little of the marinade.
- When the potatoes have browned some, and the onions are fragrant and translucent, take the skillet off the burner.
- In a suitably sized baking or casserole dish, put all the rabbit meat, onions, and potatoes, then mix 1 cup of the reserved marinade with the pint of lamb broth and pour this mixture over everything.
- Bake for about 45 minutes, uncovered (you want the liquid to reduce and thicken some), or until the rabbit meat is fork tender. After 30 minutes, add the zucchini chunks into the dish, stirring them in well to coat with the liquid. If the liquid is reducing too much, either add some more liquid (1/2 marinade & 1/2 water, mixed), and/or cover the baking dish with its lid or some aluminum foil.
- To serve your Maltese Roasted Rabbit, remove the bay leaves; place a couple pieces of rabbit meat, zucchini and potato chunks in each serving bowl (or a high-walled plate), then drizzle some of the cooking juices over everything and garnish with a sprinkling of chopped fresh basil. Give each person a couple thick slices of bread to sop up the sumptuous juices.
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