FUSILLI WITH BRAISED RABBIT — ISCHIA STYLE

 

When preparing rabbit, ask your butcher to cut the rabbit into pieces or do it yourself with a boning knife or other sturdy, thin- bladed knife.

 

Instructions:

 

Place the rabbit pieces in a bowl with the vinegar-water mixture and marinate for 1 hour. Then drain and dry thoroughly with paper towels.

 

In a pan large enough to hold all the ingredients, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium-high heat. Season the rabbit pieces well with salt and pepper and brown 2 at a time on both sides, about 5 to 7 minutes per side. As they brown, remove the pieces and set aside. When the rabbit pieces are all browned, lower the heat to medium-low and stir the onion slices into the pan. Cook until the onion is limp and golden, but don’t let it brown. Add the wine to the pan, bring to a boil, lower the heat to a simmer, then add the rabbit pieces, nestling them among the onions, and cook, covered, for about 30 minutes

 

In a 12 to 14 inch saucepan, add olive oil until just smoking. Add pancetta and render for 10 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste. Gradually add the water to the pan and simmer very slowly, stirring to combine the tomato paste. Simmer for at least one hour, or until the sauce has thickened.

 

Once the rabbit pieces are cool enough to handle, shred the meat and add the tomato paste mixture. Return to heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

 

Bring about 6 quarts of water to a boil and add about 2 tablespoons salt.

 

Drop the fusilli into boiling water and cook according to package instructions, until tender but still al dente, 7 to 9 minutes. Drain the pasta well and add to the pan with the rabbit sugo. Place over medium heat and toss the pasta and sauce until well coated, about one minute. Pour onto a heated serving platter and serve immediately.