- 1 whole rabbit (2 1/2 to 3 pounds)
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Flour, for dusting
- 2 cups onions, finely diced
- 2 cups leeks, finely diced
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons rosemary, roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon crumbled dry porcini mushrooms, soaked in warm water to soften, drained and finely chopped
- 8 ounces cremini or portobello mushrooms, thickly sliced
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1 cup chopped canned tomatoes, or home-preserved, if possible
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 1 cup unsalted chicken broth
1- Cut the rabbit into 9 pieces (or ask your butcher to) as follows: with a sharp cleaver, cut the saddle (center portion) into 3 pieces, leaving the kidneys attached. Cut the front portion (front legs) in half through the backbone. Chop each hind leg into 2 pieces. Reserve the liver and heart to sauté as a snack.
2- Heat .25 inch of olive oil in a Dutch oven or deep, wide heavy skillet over medium heat. Season the rabbit pieces with salt and pepper, then dust lightly with flour. Lightly brown the rabbit for about 3 minutes on both sides, working in batches. Drain on kitchen towels, then transfer to a baking dish in one layer. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
3- Pour off the used oil, wipe out the pan and add 2 tablespoons fresh oil. Heat to medium-high, add the onions and cook till soft, about 5 minutes. Add the leek, garlic, rosemary and mushrooms. Season generously with salt and pepper, and add red pepper flakes to taste. Cook for 2 minutes more, stirring.
4- Add the chopped tomatoes and wine, and let the mixture reduce for 1 minute. Add the broth, bring to a simmer, taste and adjust seasonings.
5- Ladle the mixture evenly over the rabbit. Cover the dish, and bake for 1 hour. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.