Rillettes can be used as a canape or cold starter. We often serve a combination of small bowls of rillettes, toast, cornichons and salad when guests first sit down. It all makes for a happy exchange at the table.
- Firstly, joint your rabbit into 8 pieces or ask your butcher to do this. Mix together the salt, peppercorns, herbs, garlic and lemon peel.
- Generously rub this mixture over the rabbit. Pack snugly into a container with your pork belly, refrigerate overnight.
- Curing adds to the flavour, although watch out for curing the rabbit for too long and making everything too salty. Twelve hours is the optimum.
- Pre-heat the oven to 160 degC. Clean off all the salt, leave the herbs and garlic.
- Place the meats in a large and deep roasting pan and cover with duck fat.
- Cover with tin foil. Poach the rabbit and pork submerged in the fat.
- Generally this takes four hours. The meat is ready when it is collapsing away from the bone.
- Leave to the side until cooler enough to handle.
- Shred both meats together, discarding the bones and herbs. Squeeze the garlic, discarding the skins and season.
- Strain the duck fat. Once you have a bowl of finely shredded meats, mix together with the warm duck fat.
- Store in the fridge and remove a few hours before serving. Serve on toasted sour dough with cornichon.
- Pack any leftover meat loosely into sterilised kilner jars, with approximately a half fat to meat ratio.
- You won't need all the fat, you can use this to roast potatoes in.