Before I show you this recipe, I thought I should mention that if you like exotic meats like Wagyu Beef, Venison, Elk, Lamb and Bison, I’m giving away an organic Exotic Burger Collection from Fossil Farms on my Facebook Page, so be sure and enter!
Now for the recipe…
I just finished a mini road trip through the South. From Texas to Oklahoma to Arkansas to Tennessee to Louisiana and back to Texas. I ate many wonderful things, from alligator compound butter (you heard me), to a chicken dish that was a stew of sorts, cooked until the chicken fell from the bone and blended with peaches and whiskey. The chicken dish was made by my friend Ree Drummond, better known as The Pioneer Woman, and she fed it to me after an evening herding cattle on horseback at her expansive Oklahoma ranch. When I finally got to Arkansas, my hunting friends mentioned that they had six rabbits in the freezer waiting to be cooked. What was I going to make with them? I had an idea.
I used the lingering memory of Ree’s recipe to guide me at the grocery store in a remote corner of Arkansas, butchered the six rabbits, and made this dreamy sweet and tangy stew which was so delicious that we had it for breakfast the next morning. And the next morning after that. If you have any rabbits, or game birds, or even chicken in your freezer, I think you’ll enjoy this recipe tremendously. It’s versatile, inexpensive, and once the ingredients are in the pot, you can walk away for hours and come back to results that taste like you have been working tirelessly in the kitchen. It’s the best kind of recipe.
To start you will need: olive oil, butter, rabbit quarters (or chicken or other bird quarters), onion, whiskey, barbecue sauce, chipotle peppers in Adobo sayce, Worcestershire, peaches, kale (or collards or your other favorite leafy green), and peach preserves (optional).
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. And start by seasoning the rabbit with salt and pepper generously and browning the quarters in a Dutch oven and some butter over medium high heat.
Turn them over and brown on the other side. All of the brown bits are good because that is where the flavor is. You may need to do this in batches and transfer the browned pieces to a plate before putting more in the pan to brown. This will ensure that you don’t overcrowd the pan and steam the rabbit rather than brown it.
Once you have all of your pieces browned and transferred to a plate, add more butter to the pan.
Dice your onion.
And drop it in the pan and get it nice and brown. You should have some gooey brown bits left over from the rabbit. Season the onions with salt to help release the juices.
Once the onions are soft and translucent, pour in your whiskey to deglaze the pan and scrape up those brown bits with a wooden spoon. Reduce it by half.
Add your barbecue sauce.
Add the Worcestershire.
Add your chipotle peppers for a little kick.
Then add the water and the rabbit pieces.
Then add your peaches, cover the pot and pop it in the oven for about 2.5 hours (or the meat is falling off the bone) and go about your business.
When the rabbit is falling off the bone, lift the lid and drop in your favorite chopped leafy greens.
Stir it until slightly wilted and taste your stew. Season for salt and pepper and if the peaches haven’t added quite enough sweetness for your tastes…
Add a few tablespoons of this. Amen.
This recipe works so well with many types of meat, and is so simple to make. Serve it with rice, mashed potatoes, or crusty bread.
Here is the handy printable for you to use at your leisure:
Inspired by the book "The Pioneer Woman Cooks: food from my frontier"
- 4 tablespoons olive oil or butter
- 6 rabbits, quartered
- Salt and pepper
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 ½ cups whiskey
- 2 cups barbecue sauce
- 2 chipotle peppers in Adobo, chopped
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 4 -6 cups fresh peach slices
- 2 cups water
- 1 bunch kale, collards or other leafy green, roughly chopped
- 2 TB peach preserves (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed Dutch oven and brown the rabbit quarters for about 4 minutes on each side. Season each side with salt and pepper as you go. You will need to work in batches so as not to overcrowd the pan, so transfer the meat to a plate once it is well browned and add new meat.
- Once the rabbit is all transferred to a plate, add the diced onion to the pot. Cook over medium heat, stirring until translucent.
- Pour in the whiskey and reduce to about half. Add the barbecue sauce and chipotle pepper and stir.
- Add the rabbit quarters to the pot, then the peaches. Cover with foil or a lid and place in the oven for at least 2.5 hours, or until the meat is tender and falling off the bone. In the last 10 minutes, add the greens and peach preserves and stir.
- Serve with mashed potatoes or rice. It is delicious the next day for breakfast too!