Are you looking for a recipe that combines the flavors of the countryside with a hearty protein source? Look no further because I have the perfect recipe for you: Southern Fried Rabbit and Gravy. As a culinary explorer, I know the importance of using fresh, quality ingredients and this recipe does just that.
Fried rabbit has been a staple in Southern cuisine for generations, and it’s no surprise why – it’s delicious! The tenderness of the rabbit meat combined with the crispy crust of the yellow cornmeal and flour makes for a mouth-watering dish. And let’s not forget about the creamy rabbit gravy that pairs perfectly with the fried rabbit.
This recipe is not only flavorful, but it’s also versatile. It can be served as a main dish or as part of a larger spread, making it perfect for any occasion. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or just cooking for your family, this recipe will surely impress.
So get ready to explore your taste buds and experience the true flavors of Southern cooking. Let’s dive into this delicious Fried Rabbit and Gravy recipe!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Hey there, fellow foodies! Want to try a recipe that will make your taste buds dance with joy? Look no further than my fried rabbit and gravy recipe. Trust me; you won’t be disappointed.
First off, let’s talk about the meat. Rabbit meat is juicy, tender, and full of flavor. It’s also a leaner source of protein than chicken or beef, making it a healthier option. When you coat it in seasoned flour and yellow cornmeal and then fry it to perfection in lard, you’re in for one mouthwatering meal.
But the real star of this dish is the creamy rabbit gravy. It’s hearty and savory, with just the right amount of seasoning to complement the meat. The key is to cook butter and a mixture of all-purpose flour and yellow cornmeal over medium heat until golden brown. Then add milk and buttermilk, whisking constantly until the gravy thickens to perfection.
This recipe is perfect for anyone who loves Southern-style cooking or wants to try something new. Plus, it’s incredibly versatile. You can serve it with mashed potatoes, biscuits, or even rice for a hearty meal that will leave you feeling satisfied for hours.
So what are you waiting for? Give my fried rabbit and gravy recipe a try! Your taste buds will thank you.
Before jumping on the cooking process, we need to make sure that we have all of the ingredients we need for this Southern Fried Rabbit and Gravy Recipe. Below is a list of everything you will need:
Southern Fried Rabbit
- 1 rabbit, cut into pieces
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup lard (or butter)
- 4 cups milk
These ingredients will yield a delicious and hearty meal that can feed a family of four. So, make sure to stock up your pantry with them before getting started.
The Recipe How-To
Now, it’s time to get cooking. Trust me, when it comes to fried rabbit and gravy, you’ll want to follow my step-by-step process for the ultimate southern style dish.
- 1 rabbit, cut into pieces
- 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup of yellow cornmeal
- Salt and pepper
- 1 cup of buttermilk
- 4 cups of lard
- 1 cup of milk
- Begin by seasoning the rabbit pieces with salt and pepper.
- In a bowl, mix together the flour, cornmeal, salt, and pepper.
- In another bowl, pour in the buttermilk.
- Dip each piece of rabbit in the flour mixture, then in the buttermilk mixture, then once again in the flour mixture.
- Once each piece is coated well in both mixtures with a slight shake-off; place it on a plate until ready to fry.
- Heat the lard in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until it reaches 365°F (185 C)
- Carefully add each piece of coated rabbit into the pan – making sure not to overcrowd them – as they may not cook evenly if too close together.
- Fry each piece for about 3 minutes (per side) or until golden brown; then remove them from heat and set aside.
- To make the gravy, pour off all but two tablespoons of fat from the pan.
- Turn the heat down to medium-low heat and whisk two tablespoons of flour into these remaining fats left behind by frying.
- Continue stirring as you add one cup of milk in order to prevent any lumps from forming and until smooth – this creates a roux.
- Season with a pinch more of salt and pepper or other seasonings that you prefer.
- Bring your gravy up to temperature until it thickens.
- Cover your fried rabbit with your delicious gravy and enjoy!
Tips for Perfect Results:
- When mixing your seasoned flour mixture with your liquid or egg mixture be careful not to let it get too loose or too wet in order to hold onto coatings while frying without dripping off or sliding off leaving less breading coverage.
- A general amount for how much coating to use per pound is about that half a cup; adjust according if needed!
- Adding dried herbs like basil or thyme could bring out incredible flavors when added onto your seasoned flour batter!
- Use peanut oil instead of lard if you don’t have lard!
- Use red-eye gravy made from ham drippings in place of chicken or beef broth; this will significantly elevate the flavor profile!
Follow these instructions along with my tips for perfect results to give life an iconic southern staple!
Substitutions and Variations
Hey there, friends! Recipe cully in the house with some substitutions and variations for ya! One of the joys of cooking is being able to switch things up and make it your own. So here are some ideas to put your own spin on this fried rabbit and gravy recipe.
1. Meat: If you can’t find rabbit meat, you could substitute it with chicken or even braised beef. However, rabbit meat has a distinct flavor that really adds depth to the dish.
2. Cornmeal: Yellow cornmeal gives the fried rabbit a crunchy texture that’s hard to beat. But if you don’t have any on hand, you could use all-purpose flour instead.
3. Milk: If you’re looking for a creamier gravy, you could substitute milk with heavy cream or half-and-half.
4. Buttermilk: I love using buttermilk in this recipe because it helps tenderize the rabbit pieces and adds a tangy flavor to the crust. If you don’t have buttermilk, you could make your own by mixing 1 cup of regular milk with 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice and letting it sit for 5 minutes.
5. Spices: Use your favorite spices to season the rabbit pieces before dredging them in the seasoned flour mixture. A little paprika, garlic powder, or cayenne pepper can take this dish to a whole new level.
6. Smothered Rabbit: For an extra saucy dish, try making smothered rabbit by cooking the fried rabbit pieces in a creamy gravy made with butter, flour, milk or cream, and seasonings like garlic powder and poultry seasoning.
7. International Flavors: Try adding international flavors to this Southern classic; Middle Eastern inspired fenek bil gravy (rabbit cooked in tomato sauce) serves as an exotic addition to any meal while Maltese influences can be seen in using brown gravy alongside deep fry techniques on the rabbit meat.
That’s all from me for now folks! Hope these ideas inspire you to create your own unique version of this classic recipe!
Serving and Pairing
When serving fried rabbit and gravy, the dish pairs well with a variety of sides that can bring out its flavors. I like to serve it with mashed potatoes that are made with cream and butter until they’re velvety smooth. If you’re not in the mood for potatoes, a side of roasted vegetables such as carrots, mushrooms or brussels sprouts will do the trick.
This hearty Southern fried rabbit recipe is quite filling on its own, but you can also serve it alongside some warm biscuits or cornbread to soak up the creamy rabbit gravy. These additions give the dish a touch of nostalgia, taking you back to family dinners in grandma’s kitchen.
For a Maltese twist on this dish, try serving the fried rabbit and gravy with fenek bil gravy. This Maltese rabbit recipe involves deep frying the rabbit before braising it in a tomato-based sauce to create a mouthwatering meat stew.
When pairing drinks with your fried rabbit and gravy, I recommend going for something bold to match the intensity of flavors. An IPA or stout beer pairs nicely with this dish or if you want to switch things up, try adding a splash of sherry vinegar to a glass of Pinot Noir wine.
No matter which side dishes or drinks you choose, my recipe for fried rabbit and gravy will provide plenty of comfort food goodness that is sure to satisfy your cravings.
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Now, this is the part we all dread. What do you do with your leftovers? And how can you make this recipe work for you if you’re planning something special in advance? Well, I’m here to help.
If you’re looking for the perfect way to get ahead when it comes to this recipe, then look no further than the fact that it actually improves over time. You can make the fried rabbit and gravy recipe well in advance, let it cool down to room temperature and refrigerate or freeze it.
To prevent the fried rabbit from becoming soggy, store it separately from the gravy in airtight containers or zip-lock bags. When storing leftover gravy separately from the fried rabbit pieces, it is best to keep them both in different storage containers too. This makes reheating each of them easier without affecting their texture or flavor.
When reheating the fried rabbit pieces or the gravy, place them in a preheated oven at 300°F for about 10-12 minutes if frozen or 5-7 minutes if refrigerated, until warmed up throughout. Alternatively, you can reheat on the stove-top by placing a small amount of lard or butter in a pan and warming your pieces over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to overheat and dry out your meat.
Remember that gravy tends to thicken when stored in the refrigerator so just add a tablespoon of water or milk when reheating to thin it out.
With these tips, you’ll be able to enjoy your fried rabbit and gravy recipe again with minimal fuss. So don’t fear leftovers – embrace them!
Tips for Perfect Results
Now that you’ve got the recipe down pat, here are some tips to ensure your fried rabbit and gravy comes out perfect every time. Trust me, these tips come from experience and failure, and I’m here to help you avoid the same mistakes I made.
1. Tenderize the Rabbit: Rabbit meat can be tough if not prepared correctly. The best way to tenderize is to soak the rabbit in buttermilk for a few hours before cooking. The acidity in the buttermilk breaks down the muscles, resulting in a more tender meat.
2. Seasoned Flour and Cornmeal: Adding spices to your flour and cornmeal mixture before dredging the rabbit will give it extra flavor. Don’t be shy with salt and black pepper.
3. Use a Cast Iron Skillet: A cast-iron skillet retains heat better than any other pan and is perfect for frying rabbit evenly without burning it.
4. Keep Oil Temperature Consistent: Maintaining a constant temperature of around 350 degrees Fahrenheit when frying is crucial to obtaining crispy skin without drying out the meat inside.
5. Let Excess Flour Fall Off: Before placing the rabbit into hot oil, shake off any excess flour to avoid clumps on the meat.
6. Serve with Country Gravy: The creamy richness of country gravy goes perfectly with fried rabbit, and it’s easy to make by using the leftover drippings from frying.
7. Let It Rest Before Serving: As tempting as it may be, don’t serve fried rabbit straight out of the pan. Give it five minutes or so to cool down and let juices redistribute throughout the meat.
Follow these tips, and you’ll have juicy-fried rabbit with flavorful breading and creamy gravy every time – perfect for impressing dinner guests or just treating yourself to something special.
As with any recipe, it is normal to have doubts and questions that arise along the way. So I’ve put together this list of frequently asked questions to help clarify any doubts you may have while preparing this recipe. Let’s dive into them together and clear up any lingering uncertainties!
What do you soak rabbit in before cooking?
For maximum tenderness, I recommend starting with a straightforward brine solution comprising 1/4 cup kosher salt and 4 cups of water, which will be ample seasoning for the rabbit later on. Immerse the rabbit in this brine solution for about 8 hours; this step ensures the meat stays moist after cooking. Although brining may not be necessary for domesticated rabbits, if you choose to do so, it’s best not to exceed 4 hours of brining time. This method was suggested on Oct 15, 2014.
How is rabbit best cooked?
When cooking rabbit, it is typically prepared through roasting, baking, or braising in a stew or casserole to maintain the tenderness of the meat. Its distinctive gamey taste is commonly used in dishes such as terrines, pâtés, and rillettes. For a mouth-watering pasta sauce, rabbit ragu is the way to go.
What’s the best way to tenderize rabbit?
If you want to make rabbits and squirrels succulent and delicious, then you should definitely try braising or stewing them. First, coat the sliced portions of the meat in flour that has been seasoned with spices. Then, slightly brown them in a skillet or a strong Dutch oven. After that, cook the meat slowly with aromatic vegetables and herbs until they become soft as butter, using only a fork to cut them.
How do I make my rabbit taste good?
One way to keep rabbit meat moist and flavorful is by using a buttermilk brine infused with a blend of fresh herbs and dried spices. This mixture includes ingredients such as mustard, paprika, and pepper that provide a subtle smoky heat, while onion and garlic powders add a well-rounded and savory flavor. Additionally, fresh thyme and rosemary elevate the overall taste of the brine.
Well, there you have it, folks! A recipe that will warm up your heart and tantalize your taste buds – Fried Rabbit and Gravy. I hope you’re feeling as inspired as I am to head straight to the kitchen and get cooking!
Prepare for some of the most delicious, scrumptious fried rabbit and gravy you’ve ever had. It’s no wonder that this dish has become a Southern staple – it’s simple, hearty, and downright delicious.
I encourage you to give this recipe a try – it is one of my all-time favorite meals. And don’t forget to experiment with variations and substitutions to make it your own!
So what are you waiting for? Grab your ingredients and get cooking. Trust me; you won’t regret it! Once you’ve tasted this Fried Rabbit and Gravy recipe, you’ll understand why it’s a classic.
Fried Rabbit and Gravy Recipe
- 2 young rabbits
- 2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup flour
- 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup lard
- 1 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- Wash rabbit and thoroughly disjoint.
- Combine yolks and buttermilk, gradually add 3/4 cup of the flour, cornmeal, and salt.
- Beat until smooth.
- Heat lard in a frying pan to 360 degrees.
- Dip rabbit in batter and fry in lard, 7 minutes on each side.
- Reduce heat to 275 degrees and cook, turning frequently, until rabbit is tender, about 30 more minutes.
- Remove rabbit and drain on brown paper.
- Pour off all but 2 teaspoons of lard in pan.
- Over medium heat slowly stir remaining 1/4 cup of flour into lard, scraping up pieces of crust from bottom of pan.
- When smooth, gradually stir in milk.
- Bring to a boil and cook, stirring constantly, until gravy is smooth and thickened, about 3 minutes.
- Add a little more milk if gravy seems too thick.
- Remove from heat, add pepper, then salt to taste.
- Serve with rabbit.
Your Own Notes
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Mishra Vikas is a digital nomad who loves to explore the world and learn about its cultures. As a programmer, backpacker, and cook, he enjoys sharing his adventures and cooking up delectable dishes. Writing about his experiences, creating tasty recipes, and discovering new places are some of his favorite activities. He’s an avid traveler and passionate chef, always on the lookout for an exciting new journey.