I was recently delighted to discover that the Caviar deli at the Waterfront sells duck fat – and at R10 for 250ml of the real stuff (self-packaged, presumably recycled from all their own duck business, as it should be)!.
I’ve also been on a bunny hunt ever since I saw this recipe for grilled rabbit confit (how could I not be, especially after the advice at the bottom of the page that rabbit confit makes the ‘best deep-fried rabbit you’ll ever have’?). So I finally paid a visit to my friendly German butcher Uwe, who indeed had a whole little rabbit for me. Since I was there, and since I was planning to melt copious amounts of fat anyway, I came home with a couple of duck legs too, and three other little birds who looked like they had died just for confit:
(I’ve seen quail confit recipes that use just the “lollipop” drumsticks. But really, why not go the whole bird?).
But before I pressed on with the confit, I had to try some braised rabbit, which I’ve enjoyed once or twice but never made. So I floured, seasoned and seared half the bunny, added to some aromatics (chorizo, onion, rosemary, garlic, coriander seeds, a clove or two), deglazed with a bottle of wine, added a clump of frozen home-made chicken stock and a couple of tablespoons of sweet tangy mustard, returned the rabbit to the pot. After sitting in a low oven for a good number of hours, I de-boned the meat, added some vegetables, cooked some truffled polenta. Dinner was, I believe, a success:
In the meantime the rest of the birds and rabbit had been curing in the fridge, so the next morning I got on with
(There’s nothing to see here but duck legs boiling in their own fat. Ah, but the smell!!)
and of course the three little birds.
Cooked, cooled, submerged in fat, they all now sit in the fridge, and we wait (hoping for maturation rather than spoilage). Which is fine, as tomorrow the Philosophe and I begin our real game plan, which starts with four days in Las Vegas. No point in saying a word until I actually get there. I know what to expect and I don’t. But I do know that if the evil slot machines send me home a poor and bereft woman, I will at least be sucking on confit quail legs, or perhaps a slice of toasted baguette with rillettes while I ready the rabbit for the deep-fryer. The champagne is already chilling in the fridge.