Rabbit ragu, a delicious lighter meat “sauce” that is slowly braised in white wine before being shredded and finished with cherry tomatoes.
This recipe is just as good stirred through pasta as it is spooned over polenta or even a baked potato.
Braised Rabbit Ragout
For those that have never tried it, please give it a go.
It is a wonderfully versatile meat. In most places very affordable and makes a wonderful change from chicken.
Rabbit is a beautifully subtle meat that works well with Italian influences like this rabbit cacciatore.
This recipe slowly braises a whole jointed rabbit in white wine rather than the red wine typically associated with this type of meat sauce.
This is done to ensure that the relatively subtle flavour of the rabbit stays the focus of this delicious recipe.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I cook this in an Instant Pot or on the stovetop?
I personally prefer to cook this on the stovetop, but it works just as well in the Instant Pot. I have provided instructions for both.
Do I have to use anchovies?
No, but I would urge you to give them a try! They add a rich umami flavour to the sauce and do not taste like the bold anchovy flavour that you would get if you put them on pizza.
Can I make this in advance?
Yes, it will store in the fridge for 2-3 days and will freeze for up to 3 months with no problems. Just bring them back to temperature in a pan with a lid over a low heat.
It is also a rare dish that serves more than two, don’t fret because I have alternative serving suggestions a little further down.
Rabbit ragu is glorious with pasta and I usually serve my first serving with something like orecchiette pasta as pictured here.
However, it would work equally well with pappardelle or tagliatelle.
We do have that second portion if you are cooking for two as I usually do and you can get all sorts of creative with leftovers.
I have even used it on a sandwich made with a crispy French baguette.
You could even use it as an alternative filling for my rabbit pie!
None of the equipment used is specific to a brand unless otherwise stated.
- Medium (24cm or 10″) saucepan with a lid or an Instant Pot. You could use any pressure cooker but I do not have the timings tested.
- Measuring scales or spoons and cups.
- Sharp kitchen knife.
- Chopping board.
- Long-handled tongs.
- Wooden spoons or stirring spoons.
This rabbit ragu is a reminder of what a wonderful, cheap and sustainable meat rabbit can be in this rustic and wonderfully tasty dish. I have included instructions to cook this recipe on the stove top and in an Instant Pot.
- 1 (600-700g) Whole Jointed Rabbit
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil (The oil from a jar of sun dried tomatoes is even better)
- 50g (⅓ Cup) Carrot
- 30g (1 Stick) Celery
- 75g (½ Cup) Onion
- 2 Garlic Cloves
- 2 Sun Dried Tomatoes
- 4 Anchovy Fillets
- 175ml (⅔ Cup) Dry White Wine
- 125ml (½ Cup) Chicken Stock
- 2 Sprigs Rosemary
- 100g (6-7 Whole) Cherry Tomatoes
- ½ Tsp Salt
- ¼ Tsp Black Pepper
- Peel the onion and cut it into a 2-3mm dice.
- Cut the celery and carrot into a 2-3mm dice
- Chop the garlic as finely as you can.
- Cut the sun-dried tomatoes into a 3-5mm dice.
- Season the rabbit with the salt and pepper.
Stove Top Instructions:
- Heat a medium pan (24cm) over a medium-high heat and when it is hot add the oil.
- Sear the rabbit off in the oil until golden, do this in 2 batches.
- Turn the heat down to low and add the anchovy fillets, carrot, celery and onion and cook for 20 minutes, stirring every 3-4 minutes.
- Add the garlic and diced sun-dried tomatoes and cook for a further minute stirring constantly.
- Pour in the white wine and chicken stock and stir everything together.
- Nestle in the rabbit and sprigs of rosemary then add a lid, turn the heat down to very low and cook for 90 minutes, or until the rabbit is very tender.
- Remove the rabbit from the pan and shred the meat, discarding the bones.
- Return the shredded meat to the pan and add the sliced cherry tomatoes and simmer on low for 15 minutes.
Instant Pot Instructions:
- Heat your instant pot on saute mode and when hot add half the oil and brown the rabbit until golden on all sides, do this in three batches. Remove the rabbit and set aside.
- Add the anchovy, onions, celery and carrots and saute for 5 minutes stirring occasionally.
- Add the garlic and sun-dried tomatoes and cook for 1 minute.
- Turn off saute mode and pour in the wine and stock and give everything a good stir.
- Add the rosemary and nestle in the rabbit and add the lid, cook on high pressure for 30 minutes with a natural pressure release.
Remove the lid from the instant pot and take out the rabbit and shred it.
- Whilst shredding you are shredding the rabbit flip the instant pot over to saute mode, add in the cherry tomatoes and reduce the sauce by half.
- Add the meat as you finish shredding it.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 527Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 166mgSodium: 571mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 60g
Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.