Wednesday, 24 August 2011


I think I had Jugged Hare once as a child, but my mother put me off when she described the recipe.

I was watching Saturday Kitchen whist eating my poached eggs on toast and swigging my Orange juice & pint of tea. During this bland episode, I was somehow inspired to quickly get some good quality meat and cook it very slowly for a Sunday supper.

So off we cycled to Topsham and headed to Darts Farm, where the food hall is seriously good, unfortunately the restaurant is not in the same league (in a bad way).  Darts Farm also boasts a good fish 'n' chip shop, so we grabbed a couple portions of cheeky chips, and watched the Llamas do some spitting. The chips were hand cut potatoes, perfectly cooked, good stuff.

Anyhow, as I passed the butcher's block I saw a rare sight, Hare. Hares are uncommon in our fields never mind in our butchers. This creature was shot on Darts Farm for eating all the strawberries, I had to buy it.

Even the recipes are on the internet were rare, so I turned to Hugh's trusty Meat Book (highly recommended to any carnivore). If you would like to read his version click here.

Like any adventurous cook I never stick to someone else's recipe, so I did my own Oliver's twist.

1 Large Brown Hare
1 Botty Red (Something good, as it is the main liquid in the dish)
2 Large Onions
2 Stock Cubes (I like the Knorr Stock Pots)
2 blocks of dark chocolate  (optional)
1 spoon of red currant jelly (or to taste)
1 handful of Rosemary or Thyme or both
1 handful of Chopped flat leaf Parsley (again, if you want) 

1. Skin and gut the Hare and portion the into pieces (the butcher should do this for you),Soak the Hare in a bottle of seasoned red wine overnight.
2. Drain the wine and put to one side and leave the pieces of Hare to dry for a few minutes.
3. Whist this is happening, sweat off your onions or what ever veg you want to stew.
4. If you like, coat the pieces of meat in flour and fry off in a pan until golden brown.
5. Put the Hare, veg, wine, stock and herbs in a big flame proof pan and cook on a very low heat (120°C) for 5 to 6 hours.
6. If you want a thicker liquid you can add a Beurre manié (roux), but instead I would recommend a reduction by transferring some liquid into a really hot pan and boil away the water. At this point you can add some fruit jelly. I was tempted by a Strawberry jelly due to the Hare's last supper, but stuck to Red Currant, add this to taste.
7. Serve with potatoes (as you like them) and maybe some green veg.
8. I gave mother a call and she came over for some Sunday night scoff.

This meat was something special, other than watching this magnificent animal run riot around a field, I can't think of a better way to enjoy a Hare. Seriously, I gave this animal the upmost respect which it deserved, this is a glorious being so I wasn't going to wolf it down for the sake of hunger, I spent hours understanding how best to cook the meat, gain the best combination of flavours and preparing all the ingredients. I feel it was worth this animal dying for the pleasure myself, and fellow eaters gained from the meal. And if anyone feels my food was unethical in anyway please don't hesitate to get in touch, so we can resolve the matter. The sort of people who disagree with shooting wild animals for food are severely moronic idiots and should spend a bit more time on farms which use intensive methods to rear their livestock. They should also visit an abattoir and see how livestock are slaughtered, then ask the question; was it worth that pig existing for me to enjoy this poorly texured excuse for pork inside my flaccid Richmond sausage?

Or watch this -

Vegetarians should just keep walking in their leather shoes and shut the door behind them.

No comments:

Post a Comment