February 26, 2007
Living in Southwest France is living in an audio cookbook. A recipe here, a ‘truc’ there, and after 19 years later, I have accumulated a repertoire of very traditional and very personal recipes. This week, direct from the mouth of Marthe Delon, renowned Kiki trainer and long time truffle cook at the Lion d’Or in Lalbenque, a Lapin aux Truffes recipe- a straightforward braised rabbit in white wine perfumed at the last minute with a handful of sliced truffles. Back on the Gascon ranch, it was delicious simple recipe prepared with a meaty farm raised rabbit from the Wednesday market at Le Passage. The next day, I made it my own by transforming the leftover rabbit, truffled sauce and puréed potatoes into a sort of shepherd’s pie. I think Marthe and Kiki would have approved.
Truffled Rabbit Pie
Remove the meat from a leftover braised rabbit which was cooked with thyme, bay, white wine, leeks, and carrots, salt, pepper and truffles.
Transfer the liquid from above braise into a bowl.
Make a basic light béchamel sauce (butter, flour, milk).
Add the rabbit meat and braising liquid to the béchamel and heat together over a low flame. Season as needed.
In the meantime, take 2-3 cups leftover pureed potatoes, separate 2 eggs- add the yolks, salt and pepper, nutmeg and more truffles to the potatoes. Whip the whites fairly stiff and fold into the puree mixture.
When meat and sauce are hot, pour into a ovenproof dish ( I used a cassoulet bowl) and top with the potato puree. Place in hot oven (around 425’F/250’C) until potatoes have souffléd slightly and turned golden brown.
Serve hot with a nice winter salad of bitter greens dressed with a sharp vinegar dressing and glass of chilled Cote de Gascogne.
Eh voila! Gascon Leftovers.
(inspired by Diva. Thanks Judy!)