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You'll need

2 tbsp olive oil 1 rabbit (about 1.5kg), jointed, offal, ribcage and excess fat discarded (see note) 2 chorizo, coarsely chopped 1 Spanish onion, finely chopped 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped 1.5 litres (6 cups) chicken stock 300 gm (1½ cups) Calasparra rice (see note) 1 lemon, finely grated rind and juice only 2 tsp smoked sweet paprika, or to taste 6 piquillo peppers (about 70gm), drained and torn lengthways (see note) ½ cup (loosely packed) flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped

Method

  • 01
  • Heat olive oil in a 32cm-diameter (top measurement) caldero (see note) or large deep-sided frying pan over medium-high heat. Add rabbit and turn occasionally until crisp (5-7 minutes), then transfer to a plate and keep warm. Add chorizo to pan, stir until golden (3-5 minutes) then add to rabbit. Reduce heat to low medium, add onion and garlic to pan and sauté until soft (7-10 minutes). Add stock, bring to the boil, add rabbit and return to the boil, then reduce heat to low and cook until rabbit is tender and falls from the bone (20-25 minutes). Remove using a slotted spoon and set aside.
  • 02
  • Add rice to pan, scatter over chorizo, lemon rind, paprika and season to taste. Return rabbit to pan and cook over medium heat, without stirring, until rice is tender and stock is absorbed (35-40 minutes), adding extra stock or water if liquid dries out. Remove from heat, scatter over peppers and stand for 5 minutes. Drizzle with lemon juice, scatter with parsley and serve immediately.

Note Rabbit is available from select butchers, but may need to be ordered ahead. Ask your butcher to joint it for you. The ribcage can be roasted and used to make stock for paella. Calasparra rice is a short-grain Spanish rice and piquillo peppers are Spanish sweet peppers that have been roasted over open fires, peeled and preserved. Both are available from Spanish delicatessens, David Jones food halls and select delicatessens. A caldero is a paella pan, available from Casa Iberica, Torres Cellars and Deli and Pennisi Distributors.


It's become a gastronomic cliché, reworked countless times in half-baked Spanish tapas bars around the world - paella washed down with fruity pink wine - but it's a well-worn cliché for a reason because, when both paella and wine are good, the combination is spectacularly delicious. Rabbit works particularly well with rosé wines; I find the delicacy of the meat's flavour can be overwhelmed by a red wine, and whites can often seem too sharp for that succulence you get in perfectly cooked bunny. Add the quintessential Spanish flavours of garlicky chorizo, smoky paprika and sweet roasted red peppers and you can see why pink made in Spain, or from Spanish red varieties such as tempranillo - pink wine, in other words, with a certain rustic savour to it - works so well with this dish. - Max Allen


At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

Featured in

Oct 2008

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