Pappardelle with Rabbit and Pistachio Ragù

1 November 2022

I used farmed rabbit but if you like a leaner cut of meat, get wild rabbit. The red wine I used in this recipe was a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon. I like to use fresh pappardelle but really, it goes well with any pasta.

2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra
1 farmed rabbit, jointed into 8 pieces
½ fennel bulb, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
80g pancetta, finely chopped
½ cup pistachio, roughly chopped
2 sprigs rosemary
2 sprigs thyme
250ml red wine
500ml veal stock
400g can peeled plum tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 tsp sugar
1 ½ tsp chilli flakes

In a large casserole dish, heat olive oil in medium-high heat. Season rabbit pieces with salt and pepper then cook, making sure all sides are brown (you may have to do this in batches) and adding more olive oil if required. Once browned, remove rabbit pieces and set aside.

Add pancetta to casserole dish and cook for 2-3 minutes. Then add fennel, carrot, celery, onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes. Add pistachio, rosemary and thyme, and cook for another minute.

Deglaze with red wine then add veal stock and chopped tomatoes. Once mixture starts to boil, add sugar and chilli flakes. Return rabbit pieces into the casserole dish. Allow to simmer for 2 hours.

Remove rabbit pieces and allow to cool. Shred rabbit meat and add to ragù. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook pappardelle according to packet instructions or until al dente. Serve with a generous amount of ragù, topped with shaved pecorino.