Maggie Beer

Rabbit with Pancetta, Prunes and Onions

For more recipes like this, Join Maggie's Food Club

Step 1: Preheat oven to 230C.

Step 2: Remove the front and rear legs from the rabbits and set them aside, then do the same with the livers, leaving the kidneys intact. Using a boning knife, strip all the sinew from the saddles. Set aside.

Step 3: Remove the leaves from the thyme and rosemary sprigs and chop them, then place in to a mixing bowl with the Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Verjuice or lemon juice and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste, mix together well.

Step 4: Rub the pieces of rabbit, including the livers and kidneys, with herb and Olive Oil mixture.

Step 5: For the best flavours, transfer the rabbit and offal to a tray and leave for 1 hour at room temperature.

Step 6: Place a large non stick fry pan over a low heat, add the two tablespoons of butter and once this has melted gently fry the saddle (with kidneys still intact) and seal both sides.

Step 7: When the saddle is sealed, transfer to a large baking tray that will hold the meat in a single layer without crowding. Add remaining butter and gently seal the legs and liver. Put liver aside and add legs to saddle. Check to see if legs are cooked (and take out) and turn saddle over and return to the oven for a few minutes more. Different pieces have different cooking times.

Step 8: On a separate shallow sided tray lay out the slices of pancetta and put in the oven at the same time until crisp. When cooked, drain the pancetta onto kitchen towel or baking paper.

Step 9: Whilst rabbit is in the oven, add the onions to the pan add the Verjuice and Chicken Stock and cover with lid and cook until onions are cooked through – about 20 minutes. Take lid off and reduce juices. Add prunes.

Step 10: After resting, cut the saddle into three pieces depending on size, but don’t cut into pieces before you cook it because it will dry out. Add the rabbit to the onions, prunes and juices to warm a little. Flash pancetta to warm.

Step 11: Place rabbit portions and pancetta on a large serving plate. Finish with some fresh parsley and serve.


  1. 3 sprigs thyme
  2. 2 sprigs rosemary
  3. 60ml 3 tbspn Verjuice for sauce, optional
  4. To taste salt flakes
  5. 4 tbspn unsalted butter
  6. 12 slices pancetta
  7. 12 pickling onions peeled and par cooked
  8. 20ml 1 tbspn Verjuice for marinade
  9. 500ml 2 cup Chicken Stock
  10. A small handful flat leaf parsley chopped to serve

Rabbit with Pancetta, Prunes and Onions appears in

Add to your favourites

Looking for delicious recipe inspiration? Sign up to the Food Club and receive weekly seasonal recipes delivered to your inbox