Featured in Feast 44 – March 2020
SERVES FOUR AS A STARTER
1 Granny Smith apple
150g of hazelnuts, toasted in the oven for ten minutes
300ml of apple juice
1 chicken leg
2tsp of English mustard
Salt and pepper
1tsp of thyme leaves
1tsp chopped chives
2tbsp of flour
100g of Panko breadcrumbs, blitzed in a food processor until fine
400ml of apple juice
3g of agar
2g of citric acid
200ml of milk
25g of kuzu
Rape seed oil for deep frying
For the rabbit saddles
Take the meat off the saddles of rabbit, rub with half the mustard, sprinkle with black pepper, and leave to marinate for an hour. Just before serving the dish, pan fry the saddles on a medium heat for three minutes on each side, and then let them rest for two to three minutes before slicing each into four pieces.
For the rabbit confit leg bonbons
Put the rabbit hind legs and the chicken leg in a pan and just cover with duck fat. Cook over a low heat for three hours. Remove the legs from the fat, and while still warm, shred the meat into a bowl – be careful to remove all of the bones. Add the rest of the mustard and some salt, and the herbs, and a teaspoon or two of the duck fat. Form the meat into balls of approximately 2cm diameter, adding a little more duck fat if they are not binding together – the mixture must be moist. Put the balls into the fridge for an hour to set. Now roll each ball first in the flour, then the beaten egg, then the Panko breadcrumbs. Deep fry in rape seed oil until golden.
For the kohlrabi
Cut the kohlrabi into three large rings, then cut out cylinders of about 1cm diameter. Put a little rape seed oil into a frying pan, and then add a knob of butter. Gently fry the kohlrabi cylinders for about five minutes each side. You are aiming to soften them rather than colour them. When cooked, sprinkle with a little thyme.
For the apple
To make the gel – boil together 300ml of the apple juice and the Agar, then cool and refrigerate. Once set, blitz the gel to give a smooth, stiff liquid, which you can pipe onto the plate. Slice the apple in half. Peel one half, and then make small cubes from the flesh. Warm the remaining 100ml of apple juice, and put in the apple cubes, along with the citric acid. Immediately take off the heat, and cool for half an hour. Cut the other half of the apple into matchsticks, with which you will garnish the dish.
For the hazelnut gnocchi
Warm up the milk with 100ml water. Drop in the hazelnuts, and then blitz in a food processor while still warm, and pass through a fine sieve. Cool the mixture to room temperature. Blitz the kuzu to a fine powder and mix into the hazelnut mixture. Now cook this on a low heat, stirring constantly – you are aiming for a custard-like consistency, which should take about ten minutes. Take off the heat, and put it into a piping bag. Cut off the end of the bag, and pipe out two or three sausages of the mixture, about 1cm in diameter. Allow to cool, then cut into ‘gnocchi’. When ready to serve, warm these up in the oven for about four minutes. Bash the remaining 50g of hazelnuts with a rolling pin, to give you coarse pieces (rather than a powder).
Arrange one bonbon, two pieces of saddle, the kohlrabi cylinders and the small apple cubes on a plate. Dot the apple gel on the plate, and garnish with the apple matchsticks and the toasted hazelnuts pieces. Garnish with parsley.