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braised rabbit with peas and cremini mushrooms

In Italian, cacciatore means “hunter.” Usually made from chicken or rabbit, a traditional cacciatore often includes onions, tomatoes, bell peppers, and herbs.

Cacciatore is a traditional Italian dish similar to a stew, made with whole pieces of boned rabbit meat. It is a popular recipe that often includes bold flavors such as rosemary, garlic, to complement the distinct taste of rabbit meat. Best served with polenta or potato puree




  • 1 rabbit, cut into 6 pieces
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • Kosher Salt and freshy ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 large garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • 1 cup cremini mushrooms, stemmed
  • 1/2 cup freshly shucked English peas
  • 1 (8- to 10-ounce) package fresh pappardelle pasta


  • In a large bowl, toss the rabbit pieces with the flour, 1 tablespoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a medium Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, brown the rabbit pieces, in batches, until a golden crust forms on all sides. 
  • Transfer the browned rabbit to a plate.
  • Reduce the heat to medium. Add the butter and, when it melts, the onions. Cook, stirring frequently, until browned, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to cook, stirring, until browned, about 5 more minutes.
  • Add the chicken stock and the rosemary sprig, increase the heat back to medium-high, and bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Once liquid is gently bubbling, return the rabbit to the pot. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the rabbit is very tender, about 1 hour.
  • Carefully remove the rabbit from the pot and transfer to a plate. Bring the liquid left in the pot to a rapid simmer over medium-high heat. Continue to simmer rapidly until the liquid has thickened into a pasta-coating sauce, about 10 minutes. Set aside, covered, to keep warm.
  • While the braising liquid is simmering, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
  • Once you’ve got the water on, heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the mushrooms and peas and cook, stirring frequently, until the peas are well-blistered and the mushrooms are browned, 5 to 7 minutes. (Some of the peas may jump from the pan; be careful!) Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • When the braising liquid is reduced, add the rabbit back to the pot, along with the mushrooms and peas. Keep warm over low heat.
  • Drop the pasta in the boiling water and cook just until al dente, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain well, and then add to the pot with the rabbit and vegetables. Stir gently to coat everything in the sauce. Serve.

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