February 11, 2011

Rabbit tortellini, Jerusalem artichoke Puree and Rabbit Broth

rabbit tortellini2

To be honest, I made this recipe a little while ago. After eating at Sarti I was inspired by the flavours in their rabbit tortellini with Jerusalem artichoke puree, so of course me being me I decided to recreate the dish. I actually made the dish back when Jerusalem artichokes were in season. They grow in my garden and at the moment the plant is well above my head ready to burst out into its floral prettiness. Anyway back to the dish, since its Chinese new year and it’s the year of the rabbit, I thought what better time to post this recipe than now.

jerusalem articoke plant

Jerusalem Artichoke plant

I love all the flavours in this dish, the nuttiness from the hazelnuts, the richness from the broth and the subtle gamy flavour from the rabbit all work so fantastically together. I’m actually very proud of my effort, and without tooting my horn too loudly I actually think my dish turned out better than the one I had at Sarti.

rabbit tortellini

The whole recipe is pretty straight forward, the only difficult part is folding the pasta so it looks pretty, I’m getting better but by no means am I perfect yet. As a kid, my mum never had the patience to fold all her tortellini properly, they were usually plain half moon shaped so I’ve had to learn the art of tortellini making as an adult. The other piece of advice I would offer is to really invest some time and effort into producing a good quality rabbit stock, it’s really the star of the dish and any hard work put in the preparing stage will pay off when it comes to the eating. So without any further delay, here is the recipe.

jerusalem articoke puree

Rabbit Tortellini Filling

1 medium sized rabbit
2 egg whites
2 small golden shallots, peeled cut in half
2 cloves garlic, peeled cut in half
2 tablespoons of double cream
Salt and pepper


1. Debone the rabbit, make sure to remove as much meat from the rabbit as possible. Set the bones aside, you will need these to prepare the rabbit stock.

2. Roughly cut the rabbit meat into small pieces and place in a food processor. Pulse the meat until it has been roughly chopped by the food processor, this step helps to get the whole process underway.

3. Add the shallots and garlic and processor further. Then add the eggwhites and cream, not forgetting to season well with salt and pepper, process the mixture until you get the consistency of sausage meat. Once this is achieve place in the fridge until needed.

Rabbit Broth
This can be flavoured any way you want. If you like it plain it can be just the rabbit bones and some simple white wine, if you like it herb infused you can go mad with plenty of different herbs. I’ll give you the ingredients that I used which resulted in a subtle but rich flavour.


1 rabbit carcass (left over from rabbit tortellini filling)
4 golden shallots
4-5 garlic cloves
100mL dry white wine
2 bay leaves
4-5 large sage leaves
10 whole black peppercorns
1 tablespoon butter
Olive oil


1. In a large stock pot add a splash of oil olive and heat over medium heat. Add the rabbit bones and sear until the rabbit bones and any meat left on them turn a deep golden colour. This is a very key step, a big portion of your flavour will come from the browning of the bones, so take your time here. Don’t do it too fast because you’ll just burn your bones and add a bitter flavour, however a nice golden colour will add a caramelised flavour.

2. Add the shallot and garlic to the pan and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Add the white wine to deglaze the pan. Cook until the alcohol in the wine has evaporated, 2-3 minutes. Add the bay leaves, sage leaves, pepper corns and enough cold water to cover the bones, and a little salt to season. Allow the water to come to a simmer and leave it to gently simmer for at least 45 minutes. The longer the better.

3. Allow the broth to reduce down to a ¼. Once at this stage strain the bones and transfer the broth to a small clean saucepan. Add the butter, check the seasoning – adjust if necessary and set aside until needed. Before serving, reheat the broth.

Jerusalem Artichoke Purée
500g Jerusalem artichokes, peeled
500ml whole milk
30g butter
One small potato, peeled
1-2 tbsp double cream

1. Cut the Jerusalem artichokes into pieces along with the potato, ensure that all the pieces are roughly the same size so that they cooked evenly. Place in a pan with the milk. Bring the milk to a simmer and cook the artichokes for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are very soft.
2. Remove the artichokes and potato from the milk, do not discard the milk as it may be required later. Place the artichokes and potato in a food processor bowl.
3. Add the butter and process until a puree is achieved, you may need to add some of the reserved milk to achieve the right consistency. At this point you may be left with a few lumps in you puree, to remove the lumps pass the puree through a fine sieve. Transfer the puree to a pan and add the cream and season well with salt and pepper. Set aside for later, before serving re-heat puree.

Spinach Pasta with Semolina Flour


1/4 cup very finely ground semolina flour
3/4 cup plain flour
2 egg yolks (room temperature)
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups of spinach leaves

1. Remove stems from spinach leaves and blanch in boiling water for 2 minutes. Remove from water and rinse in cold water to quickly cool the spinach. Squeeze as much water out of the spinach leaves as possible. In a blender or food processor, blitz spinach to get a smooth puree.

2. In a food processor, combine the egg yolks and spinach puree and mix until combined, this will only take a few seconds

3. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until a firm dough is formed. If the mixture seems a little dry then add a few drops of lukewarm water until the mixture comes together.

4. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for a few minutes, just to make sure that everything is incorporated evenly. Wrap the dough in some glad wrap and Put aside to rest for 10-20minutes.

5. After resting, roll the pasta out thinly and put together the rabbit tortellini. Since I always have trouble with my tortellini (sometimes they get a little soggy before I get them into the boiling water) I give my self a little insurance. As I make the tortellini, I place them on a freezer tray and snap freeze them. That way they stay exactly as I made them and are easier to handle come cooking time. This also means I can make my pasta well in advance. Just make sure to adjust your cooking time according to the state of your tortellini.

6. Cook tortellini in boiling salted water until the pasta is al dente. I won’t give a cooking time because it depends on too many factors, thickness of your pasta, the temperature of your tortellini, the quantity of tortellini that go into the pan and so on. The best way to judge is to taste test, always an excuse for a sneaky nibble right?
To garnish -

A few spinach leaves
A few roasted hazelnuts
Place a big tablespoon of puree on the plate. Add a few of the tortellini and sprinkle the spinach and hazelnuts on top. Spoon a few tablespoons of the broth over the entire dish and enjoy.

rabbit tortellini4


penny aka jeroxie said...

This is a very pretty dish and I can imagine all the earthy tastes.

Forager @ The Gourmet Forager said...

Love the colour of your tortellinis.. and er.. did you have any of the well-documented side effects of Jerusalem artichoke?

Hannah said...

You know what I really like about this dish? It's so pretty with the green and the broth and the nuts and the pretty that it makes me forget about my cute bunny rabbit Heidi from when I was a kid! :D You're like a magician, M!

Agnes said...

Toot toot! All aboard the Maria bus! :D

Looks so delicious - and your pasta looks super pretty!

Angie said...

Wow, that looks delicious! Not sure where I would get the rabbit though... but I suppose you could subsitute it.

JT @areyouhungary said...

That pasta looks great, I love the use of semolina!