February 3, 2014

Rabbit and dumpling stew

Warm, rich broth filled with vegetables, rabbit, and light, buttery dumplings - this is a rich and comforting dinner for a cold winter evening. I used this chicken and dumplings recipe from Fearless Homemaker to create a rabbit version of this classic dish. Surprisingly, this the the third rabbit recipe I've shared on my blog now. I never thought I would love to eat rabbit, but hey, now I do. 

Today my husband and I went to look for a snowy owl. He saw this snowy owl a few times and it's been in the same field for a couple of weeks. I was really excited (and hopeful), but we didn't spot it. I am pretty bummed because this is not the first time I've attempted to see an owl in the wild and been skunked --- I've yet to see one. I've heard them, but not seen them... We aren't huge birders, but I do keep a life list and enjoy trying to see new species. After being outside in the winter looking for owls, or doing any other activity, you need a stick-to-your ribs meal like this stew!

Rabbit and dumpling stew
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 rabbit, about 2-1/2 lbs., cut into quarters
sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
3 stalks celery, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1-1/2 tablespoons freshly chopped thyme leaves, divided
2 teaspoons minced rosemary
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3/4 cup buttermilk

Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven or soup pot. Season the rabbit with salt and pepper and add to the pot. Brown the rabbit on both sides and then remove and set aside on a plate. 

Add the celery, carrot, onion, rosemary, and 1 tablespoon thyme to the pot. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables begin to soften, Stir in the garlic, a good pinch of salt, and a couple grinds of black pepper and cook for another minute. Return the rabbit to the pot along with the bay leaves and 10 cups of water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook until the rabbit is cooked through and tender, about 35 minutes. When the rabbit is cooked, remove it from the pot and place it on a cutting board. Remove the meat from the bones and shred. Return the shredded meat to the pot and discard the bones. Discard the bay leaves.

Whisk together 1/2 cup flour along with two cups of the cooking liquid in a medium bowl. When smooth, slowly whisk it into the pot and cook until slightly thickened, about 8 minutes. Taste the broth and season with salt and pepper.

Whisk together the remaining 2 cups of flour, baking powder, baking soda, remaining thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Whisk in the butter and buttermilk until combined. Grab about two tablespoons of the dough at a time and drop it into the pot. Repeat until all dough is used. Cover and continue to simmer until the dumplings are cooked through, about 15 minutes. Serve hot.


What was I cooking one year ago?: chicken taco soup


  1. hhhmmmm, look so good, i almost feel and smell the aroma, let me have that bowl :D

  2. This looks perfect for a chilly day like today! I'd love to try cooking with rabbit.

  3. Dear Amy, I do like a good dumpling soup for this very cold weather. Blessings dear. Catherine

  4. Looks like a very comforting stew. Too bad you didn't see the owl. I've eaten rabbit at rabbit at restaurants, but I've never cooked it. Some day :)

  5. This is great for the cold windy days. Yum!

  6. When we lived in Florida, for a few months we'd sometimes have a baby owl roosting in one of our trees. Very fun -- we'd look up, and he (or she) would be just two feet over our heads! Anyway, love this stew! Rabbit has such a nice flavor. Really good stuff - thanks.

  7. We have an owl in the neighborhood...I love to hear it's hoots at night. My daughter has spotted it, but not me!

  8. I have 6 indoor, very spoiled pet bunnies (all but one from rescue situations), and I'd feel the same way eating them as most people would feel about eating dog or cat. No judgment at all from me of course about what you like to cook. Regardless, this recipe looks awesome and I plan to try it with bone in chicken breasts or thighs! Love the fresh herbs and the buttermilk in the dumplings.

  9. The perfect stew for a cold winter's night. Looks delicious!


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