I eat a lot of things that are considered iffy or even downright questionable here on the west coast. I'm not particularly squeamish or sentimental about food or animals, although I prefer that any animals that are rasied for food are raised and killed under humane conditions. If you think that rabbits make better pets than dinner, you may want to skip this post.
I like French food. Thus, I am ever drawn to dishes than include things like foie gras, and happy to eat steak tartare (from a reputable source, of course), and my enthusiasm for duck is well documented. Another favourite has got to be rabbit. My usual preparation for rabbit is Lapin Dijon, which is baked in a sauce featuring white wine, shallots, and of course Dijon mustard. It is a dish that goes particularly well with freshly roasted asparagus, and to me is suggestive of spring, although I'm not ruling out some unhealthy connection with Easter running through my ragged little brain.
I am fortunate in that Palle shares my culinary partialities, because while I know some couples who have wildly divergent dietary preferences are able to overcome the hurdle and live happily ever after, I don't know that I could do the same thing. I certainly wouldn't want to have to. Not only is he interested in eating good food, however, he's also interested in cooking it.
Armed with a copy of Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles Cookbook, he set about making Lapin aux olives, a dish where the olives are so plentiful as to count as a vegetable rather than a garnish. This recipe also marked a first-foray into the world of demi-glace - the using thereof, rather than the making - and the resulting dish is entirely his. My main contribution was to dig out the instructions that I had made for him on the way to cook a perfect pot of jasmine rice, and to ask him if the tiny green picholine olives had come pitted; they had not. Fortunately, there was enough lagtime in the simmering process to give him time to get to work with on the olives, but it was certainly time well spent.
The recipe called for the hind legs only, and served four. Therfore, two rabbits were called for, and the remaining rabbit pieces are currently sitting in the freezer while we dither over whether to try the luscious-looking recipe from Book A, or the simple elegance of the one from Book B. At the moment, the forerunners are my new book Bones by Jennifer McLagan, and the always- wonderful D'Artagnan's Glorious Game Cookbook. I'll keep you posted with the winner, as always.