Potato Gnocchi with Asparagus, Rabbit, and Liver
Makes 6 servings This recipe has many steps and ingredients, but the techniques are simple and worth the finished dish! Be sure to read the recipe all the way through to plan your time, since you will need the broth to make the ragú.

Ingredients

Rabbit Ragù 1 whole rabbit (about 2 1/2 lb)…

CIA FOODIES


Potato Gnocchi with Asparagus, Rabbit, and Liver

Makes 6 servings This recipe has many steps and ingredients, but the techniques are simple and worth the finished dish! Be sure to read the recipe all the way through to plan your time, since you will need the broth to make the ragú.

Ingredients

Rabbit Ragù
  • 1 whole rabbit (about 2 1/2 lb)
  • 6 rabbit or chicken hearts, split lengthwise
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, as needed
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 or 3 cups Rabbit Broth, or as needed (recipe follows)
Rabbit Broth
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive
  • Bones and head from trimmed rabbit
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, smashed
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons dry Marsala
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • 1 bay leaf
Rabbit Loins and Livers Sautéed with Pancetta
  • Boneless rabbit loins from trimmed rabbit
  • 2 teaspoon thyme
  • 3 oz pancetta (about 4 slices)
  • 3 rabbit or chicken livers, cut in half
  • 2 tablespoons dry Marsala
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Pan-Steamed Asparagus
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
  • 12 asparagus spears, trimmed, stem peeled, cut into 1 1/2-inch lengths
  • 1 1/2 lb Potato Gnocchi
  • 3 oz (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 6 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus as needed for serving

Directions

  1. Trim the rabbit and cut as much meat as possible from the bones. Remove the rabbit loins in one piece and set aside. Cut the remaining meat into 1-inch cubes for the ragù and reserve separately. Reserve the heart and liver for the ragù separately as well. Reserve the bones to make the rabbit broth.
  2. For the broth: In a large saucepan heat the oil. Season the bones and head with salt and pepper and brown them over medium-high heat. Once nice and brown, add half of the onions and one garlic clove and keep browning until onions are a rich, golden color. Deglaze with white wine, add the Marsala, and the tomato paste and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Cover with water. Add the thyme sprig and bay leaf.
  3. Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook for a couple of hours until the liquid is reduced to a rich broth. Taste and adjust the seasoning, keeping in mind it will be reduce further.
  4. Strain and reserve. If made in advance, let the broth cool and then store in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 6 days.
  5. For the ragù: Season the cubed rabbit meat and the rabbit and chicken hearts with salt and pepper.
  6. Heat the 1/4 cup oil in a deep pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the rabbit meat and hearts and brown, turning as necessary to color evenly, about 6 minutes total. Add the onion and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the onion is a rich, gold color, about 8 minutes. Add enough of the rabbit broth to barely cover the meat and bring to a simmer over low heat.
  7. Cook slowly, covered, until the meat is tender, 2 to 3 hours. Stir occasionally to keep the rabbit evenly moistened. The liquid should reduce to a rich sauce that coats the meat. Taste and season with salt and pepper. If the ragù is made in advance, let cool and store it in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat the ragù over medium-low heat before serving, if necessary.
  8. For the rabbit loins: While the meat is cooking, season the rabbit loins with salt and pepper and some thyme. Lay each loin on top of 2 pancetta slices and roll. Secure with butcher's twine or toothpicks. Season the livers with salt, pepper, and the Marsala. Heat the 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the rabbit loins and sauté, turning until they are a rich golden brown and just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, remove the string or toothpick and keep warm.
  9. In the same pan, cook the livers and the Marsala over medium-low heat until they are just cooked but still slightly pink in the center, about 2 minutes on each side. Sprinkle the livers with thyme and keep warm.
  10. For the asparagus: In a separate sauté pan, heat the 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add the garlic. As soon as the garlic starts frying, add the asparagus and sauté for a few minutes. Add about 2 tablespoons of water to help steam the asparagus, cover the pan, and cook them until just done. Season with salt and pepper and keep warm.
  11. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the gnocchi and cook just until they float to the surface, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the cooked gnocchi to a large bowl and add the 6 tablespoons of butter. Toss to coat in butter. Add the cheese and toss to coat.
  12. Place the gnocchi on heated pasta plates. Cut the loins into 3 pieces each. Top the gnocchi with one piece of loin, one heart, and one piece of liver per serving. Serve immediately. Sprinkle with additional cheese and/or freshly cracked black pepper if desired.

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