Stifado is a dish which has eschalots or very small onions and wine in it. The ratio is always 1 kg meat to 500 g onions. Should you have wild rabbit, it requires longer, slower cooking than this recipe suggests. However, in Australia the most widely available rabbit is farmed, and so is younger and more tender, requiring less cooking.
- 80 ml (⅓ cup) extra virgin olive oil
- 2 red onions, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, sliced
- 1 rabbit, approx 1.25 kg, jointed
- sea salt and pepper
- 50 g tomato paste
- 200 ml red wine
- 425 g (3 medium) tomatoes, finely chopped
- 200 ml light vegetable stock
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 bay leaf
- 5 whole juniper berries
- 6 sprigs rosemary
- 600 g whole eschalots or pickling onions, peeled
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
1. Heat olive oil in large, deep-sided pan over medium high heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened and translucent but not brown. Remove from pan and reserve. Place rabbit (in two batches if necessary) in the same pan, season with salt and pepper and cook until pale gold on both sides. More colour means more flavour. Return onions and garlic to the pan with the rabbit.
2. Add tomato paste, red wine, tomatoes, stock, cinnamon, bay leaf and juniper. Cover and cook for 30 minutes.
3. Add eschalots and 2 sprigs rosemary. Cover and cook over low heat for 45 minutes (longer for wild) or until rabbit is tender and sauce a little thickened.
4. Serve and garnish with extra rosemary sprigs.
• To peel onions, cover with boiling water for 5 minutes or until cool, cut off root end and peel.