Saturday, 20 September 2014

Beer and Barley Bunny Ballyhoo

NAME: _Beer and Barley Bunny Ballyhoo

1 rabbit
2 medium onions
3 medium potatoes
3 medium carrots
4 - 6 kale leaves
1/4 cup barley
1 cup dried swiss brown mushrooms
1/4 cup dry faba beans (or pinto or navy - faba just seem nicer)
370ml (one small bottle) of beer.
beef or rabbit dripping
chicken stock cube

Soak the beans overnight in plenty of clean water, change it and soak some more, depending on the beans you've decided to go with. About an hour before beginning the cooking, open the beer and let stand while doing everything else so it has a chance to go flat. 

Cut the rabbit into fryable sized portions, salt lightly and fry them off until golden in the dripping, then put them in an appropriately sized pot, Slice the onions into really thick slices, fry them and the barley off unti the barley begins to show browning and put in the pot, also the drained faba beans. Deglaze the frypan with 500ml of water and add that to the pot. Add a further 1.5L water and the stock cube, and bring to a boil then simmer for around an hour, remove the rabbit pieces and continue to simmer for another hour until the barley is tender. 

Cut the potatoes and carrots into big (3cm approx) slices and add those, add the dried mushrooms, shred the kale and add that too, let it simmer until the carrots are just tender. By now the liquid should be well reduced so add around half the beer (more or less according to taste, make up the balance with water if necessary) and allow to come to a simmer again. Gradually add a paste of about 4 tsp flour and water and stir in, checking for desired consistency as you go. Don't feel you need to add all the flour, nor that you should only use four teaspoonsful or less. Don't forget it will continue to thicken for a few more minutes. 

Debone the rabbit meat and add it back into the stew, then remove from heat and allow to sit for 20 minutes or so before serving.

Serve as is with crusty bead and butter, perhaps a dollop of sour cream. This sized serving could feed four average appetites or two hungry ones.

I like faba beans, but there's no reason you couldn't use cannelini beans or something similar. Or different mushrooms, come to think of it.


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