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Lucious, leaping, lapin á la moutarde


“What the heck is that?” the un-Frankophonetic of you may be asking. Rabbit in mustard sauce is the short answer. That’s right, this meal features fuzzy forest friends! Now typically I’m not big on farm raised game, but I’m pretty sure this critter was shot locally (not much consolation for you vegetarians out there). We had a couple nice bottles of Cabernet at home so I went to Calandro’s, a local specialty grocery for an inspirational protein. There I found the bunny, as well as some veal livers for a later meal.


The supporting dishes were as follows (recipes posted below):

  • Yukon Gold smashed potatoes with Gorgonzola and fresh herbs
  • Grapefruit braised red cabbage with string beans
  • Arugula salad with a mustard citrus vinaigrette and rye croutons
  • Port and ginger poached pears with a balsamic whipped cream


The result was a terrific meal I’m pretty proud of. I’ve included some pictures so you can get an idea of the process as well as the pitifully small kitchen we work in!


Lapin á la moutarde (Rabbit in mustard sauce)


(My recipe varies significantly from the traditional dish, my modifications will be in bold)

1 Rabbit–butchered including internal organs (ours only yielded about 8-12 ounces of meat) Traditionally the head and all are meant to be roasted in the sauce, alas ours was headless at purchase.

1/3 cup dijon mustard  or — 1/3 cup spicy brown or deli-style mustard + 1 tsp horseradish

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp rosemary

1/4 cup red onion or shallots

1 1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock

1/2 cup dry white wine or — 3/4 cup grapefruit juice

1/2 cup malbec red wine

1/2 cup heavy cream (optional) or—-1/2 cup Greek yogurt

salt and pepper to taste

Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a cast iron pan with a lid. Add red onion and cook till transparent.


Combine mustard, horseradish, thyme, and rosemary in a small bowl.

Salt and pepper rabbit. Dredge rabbit pieces in mustard sauce. Add to iron pan and sear both sides 3-5 minutes. Remove rabbit from pan.


Add to mustard sauce in pan: vegetable broth, grapefruit juice, red wine, and yogurt. Cook down for about 5 minutes, scraping sides of pan to remove browned rabbit bits. Add rabbit back to pan. Cover.

Bake at 300 degrees for 20-30 minutes until rabbit is fully cooked but still soft.

Remove from oven. Pull rabbit out again and add a bit more grapefruit juice and salt and pepper to the sauce. Reduce sauce on stove to about 2 cups total liquid. Pour over rabbit to serve.


Yukon Gold Smashed Potatoes

1 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes cut into 1 inch cubes  (reds or whites will work too, but Yukons have a yellow flesh and rich, buttery flavor)

1/2 cup Greek yogurt

1 T cilantro cut fine

2 T fresh dill minced

1/2 cup red onion

Salt and pepper

Boil potatoes till just soft. Drain. Add the other ingredients and blend with hand mixer or stick blender.

Serve with rabbit mustard sauce.


Red Cabbage and String Beans


3 cups thin cut cut red cabbage

1/2 cup red onion

2 cups string beans, stemmed and cleaned

1 cups grapefruit juice

1 tsp cayenne pepper

Salt and pepper to taste


Add all ingredients in a hot wok or large braising pan with 2T olive oil. Braise until cabbage and beans are just crisp.


Arugula Salad

2 cups fresh arugula

1/4 cup red onion

1/2 cup cubed rye bread


1/4 cup grapefruit juice

1T mustard

1T fresh dill

1T cilantro

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

salt and pepper to taste

2T olive oil

Toast rye in 300 degree oven tossed with garlic sauce and olive oil. Bake 10 minutes.

Toss arugula with dressing and croutons.


Ginger Port Poached Pears

1 1/2 T fresh ginger, thin sliced

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup port

2T lemon juice

2 whole anjou pears

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan with 2 cups water. Cook on medium heat, turning pears occasionally, about 20 minutes. Remove pears,  reduce sauce till about 3/4 cups total liquid. Pour over pears to serve.


1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar

1/2 tsp Garam Masala

Whip all ingredients together until cream forms stiff peaks. Serve over pears.


Our studio, living quarters, sleeping quarters and dinning facility:

Oh, and University Office for three local colleges (note the student work on the couch.)

3 thoughts on “Lucious, leaping, lapin á la moutarde”

  1. Pingback: Veal Livers with Onions, Beet Sauce, Cranberry Port & Prune Reduction with Horseradish Butter Muffins and Green Beans « Orange Barrel Industries

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