Cooking with Rabbit

On Wednesday, November 5th Cooking with Rabbit class changed this skeptic into a fan.  Six enthusiastic learners gathered at the Labor of Love Food Pantry & Nutrition Center in Eastport.  Scott Graeber and Jennifer Yandow of Tenth Village Farm in Red Beach have a magical farm and are amazing cooks.   They shared some interesting facts about rabbit meat. Rabbit meat is an all white meat with the highest percentage of protein and a lower percentage of fat than chicken turkey, beef or pork.   The USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) has stated that domestic rabbit meat is the most nutritious meat for human consumption and research shows that rabbit has been recommended for special diets including heart disease patients, elderly, low sodium and weight reduction diets.  Rabbit meat is a delicacy at gourmet restaurants in New York City and is a regular part of a European diet.  Due to its versatility rabbit can be used in stews, shredded for tacos or pulled pork (pulled rabbit with BBQ sauce) or makes a savory Indian or Thai curry.    

Scott instructed everyone in the proper way to cut a whole rabbit, sectioning it into 5 pieces including two front quarters, the saddle and two rear quarters (the hind leg portions) which are the pieces one finds in gourmet restaurants.  These all fit nicely into a roasting pot. He then coated the meat in oil and chipotle spices to simmer slowly before adding beans, onions and other spices.  Since the key to cooking was to cook it slowly, Scott and Jen  had a dish already prepared for us to try.  Everyone then learned the art of corn and flour tortilla making using a tortilla press and then cooked them in a dry skillet.  The group worked together to make tortillas, fold the cooked rabbit into the tortillas and then fry them in oil to make scrumptious chimichangas.  Everyone enjoyed this with a  homemade guacamole and lemon yogurt sauce to ease the heat of the dish.  The group was given leftovers and a wonderful handout filled with recipes for rabbit including,  Sweet and Sour Rabbit Salad, Grilled Rabbit, Parmesan Rabbit, and Noodles and Rabbit Casserole were shared.  

In Washington County rabbit will cost an average $5.00 per pound.  Not a bad price for something so nutritious and locally sourced. Tenth Village Farm plans to be licensed commercially by summer, 2015 to process and sell rabbit and poultry to the public.   If you are interested in learning more about cooking with rabbit contact Scott and Jennifer at: 454-4317 or email labyrinth.sg@gmail.com  If you are interested in learning more about cooking classes offered at the Labor of Love in Eastport call 853-0812 and leave your name and phone number and state it twice or email laboroflovekitchen@gmail.com  This class and other events at the Labor of Love are made possible through GEECA (Greater Eastport Ecumenical Churches Association).  All proceeds support the work of the food pantry and nutrition center.