Simply scrumptious! You may or may not have noticed that I cook very few recipes that use cream or for that matter much cheese. I try to focus on the good for you fats, olive oil and nuts, and avoid the saturated ones. But sometimes you just have to go for the splurge. And this one is so worth it. Rabbit in a real Dijon mustard and crème fraîche sauce. Ingredients difficult to find in the US, they all come together in Burgundy, the home of Dijon style mustard, much spicier than the ones sold on the US market. The recipe itself is quite simple and easy to prepare. Just sit back and enjoy the flavors of Burgundy.
Based on the recipe Lapin à la moutarde (sauté) in Recettes de tradition by Françoise Bernard
1 rabbit cut into pieces
Oil for browning rabbit pieces
Flour for dusting rabbit pieces + 1 T flour
1 T butter
1 cup stock, chicken or veal
3 cloves, pierced in the onion
Bouquet garni – bay leaf, sprig of thyme and a couple of sprigs of parsley tied together
2 T crème fraîche
1 T Dijon style mustard, forte!
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 325° if you want to finish cooking the rabbit in the oven rather than stove top.
Season some flour with salt and pepper and dust the rabbit pieces. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat and brown the rabbit pieces. Best done in batches to avoid crowding. Remove the rabbit pieces to a platter and set aside.
Adjust heat to medium and add the butter. Melt and stir in the flour. Cook for a minute or two, stirring constantly. Whisk in the stock a bit at a time to avoid clumping and bring to a simmer.
Return the rabbit to the pan along with the onion pierced with the cloves, bouquet garni, and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and gently simmer over low heat (or place in a 325° oven) until the rabbit is tender, about 45 minutes.
When the rabbit has finished cooking, remove to a platter and tent to keep warm. Discard the onion and the bouquet garni.
In a small bowl combine the crème fraîche and mustard. Add to the rabbit sauce over low heat. Do not let the sauce boil. When combined pour over the rabbit and serve with potatoes or noodles.