I can never decide which day is more lovely to me- the first day of Autumn, or the first day of Spring. Today, Spring is winning out big time. Not that winter has made much of a showing over here this year.To be honest, we’ve kind of cut it out altogether this time. We did have one pretty major sounding rain event. We called it HellaStorm, and it was, uh all we got really. And it was not “hella” anything.
Still, today makes it official. It’s Spring. If you are digging your way out of the remnants of actual wintry precipitation, your light at the end of the tunnel has arrived. And if that tunnel happens to be made of snow, please send some this way, because this drought is awful, and getting effing scary.
Spring, though! Bright, tart, light, lean flavors- I am so ready!
I am putting a bunch of my favorite Spring-y foods all on one plate for this one- green garlic, leeks, English peas, and rabbit.
If you cannot find rabbit loin in your neighborhood you can use another lean white meat, but rabbit is where it’s at.
Prosciutto-Wrapped Rabbit Loin with Spring Vegetables in Brodo
1 c. yellow eye or cranberry beans (dry)**
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 rabbit loins, trimmed
4 slices of thinly sliced prosciutto
1 stalk green garlic, thinly sliced (about 1/2 c.)
1 large leek, green part trimmed off, thinly sliced (about 2 c.)
1-2 young carrots, sliced thin on a bias (about 1/2 c.)
1 cup fresh English peas, shucked
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
Salt & pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp white wine
1 cup chicken or vegetable stock
Cook those beans until they are tender and creamy. Season with a little salt. Once they are well cooked, drain them and toss gently with the olive oil.
Line the prosciutto slices up on a cutting board, overlapping them a little. Place the loins together on top of the prosciutto, season with salt and pepper, and tightly roll the prosciutto around the rabbit. Wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375F.
Sear the rabbit in a lightly oiled pan on all sides, about a minute per side. (Searing prosciutto can produce a bit of smoke, so make sure the fan is on!) Put the loin in the oven and cook until the internal temperature is 165F. Remove from heat and allow to rest 10 minutes. Slice into 1/2″ slices.
In a tall-sided pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the garlic and leek and saute until they start to become translucent. Add the carrot, peas, salt and pepper, and white wine. Continue to cook over medium heat until the wine cooks almost all the way down. Add the stock and simmer for one minute.
On a deep plate or in a bowl, ladle some beans in. Top it with the veggies and rabbit, then pour a bit of the broth on top.
** Yellow eye beans look like a larger, lighter-colored version of black eyed peas. They are delicious, and well worth seeking out. I get mine from ranchogordo.com, a most fantastic little company bringing all the heirloom varieties of beans back.
These cook up plump and luscious, and as creamy as can be. If you cannot find them, cranberry beans work really well, too.