Chef Eric Cook of Gris Gris shares his Mississippi Rabbit Fricassee
1 ⅔ pounds rabbit
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
3 Tablespoons oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
4 green onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 Tablespoons flour
1 cup red wine
2 cups dark chicken stock
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
Hot sauce to taste
Cut the rabbit into serving size and season with salt and black pepper.
Preheat a heavy pot with oil to medium-high heat.
Carefully place seasoned rabbit in oil, laying the pieces away from you to not splash hot oil in your direction.
Brown rabbit on both sides.
Remove the meat and set aside in a bowl to reserve liquids.
Add onions, celery and bell pepper to pot. Using a wooden spoon, stir the mixture being sure to scrape all the good stuff off the bottom of the pot. Once the mixture is cooked down, about 5-6 minutes, add minced garlic.
Cook for another minute to toast garlic.
Slowly sift flour into pot and stir continuously to incorporate the mixture.
Turn heat down to low and slowly add half of the red wine, stirring to incorporate. Be sure there are no clumps.
Add half of the chicken stock and mix slowly, checking for consistency in thickness.
Place the browned meat with the liquid that has settled in the bowl back into pot.
Add remaining wine and stock to just cover meat.
Return heat to medium-high.
Add bay leaves and bring mixture to a boil. Once a boil is reached, lower heat to simmer and cover. Cook for 1 and a half hours, checking occasionally and stirring. Do not allow to come back to a boil – slow and low is the key to success.
When rabbit is tender, remove pot from heat. Check for seasoning. Serve over cooked Louisiana rice. (Chef’s Note: I like to serve some hot corn bread with this dish.)
Gris-Gris, 1800 Magazine St., 272-0241, GrisGrisNola.com