Hare ragù with pappardelle
and aged parmesan

Rabbit stew with nettle dumplings

Mike Robinson

2 hares, about 2kg each, jointed
2 tbs flour
200g butter
500g fine mirepoix of celery,
carrot, onion & garlic
1 bottle red wine
500ml passata
2 tbs beef glace (or heavy stock)
Bouquet garni of thyme, rosemary
& bay
100g panko breadcrumbs
36 month aged parmesan
Fresh pappardelle
Black truffle


Serves 16

Wild hare is a lovely ingredient. Historically a royal animal of the hunt, the hare has always been much prized for its amazing dark meat and strong flavour. It’s also big; with a good sized hare giving at least 8 portions of this amazing pasta dish. As opposed to the tradition of leaving them ungutted I like my hares to be gutted and bled in the field, as this gives them a mild, sweet flavour. We source our hares from land where there is a surplus of them, and only take what the local area can support.

This will serve 16, so adjust accordingly.

Flour the hare sections and melt the butter in a big pressure cooker (best thing for it). Brown the hare well and remove. Sweat the mirepoix, put the hare back in and deglaze with half the red wine. Add the passata, beef glace and bouquet garni. Check the liquid level is above the meat, if not add more red wine. Put the lid on the pressure cooker and cook on a simmer for an hour and 20 minutes. When the lid is removed the hare should be falling off the bones. If not, cook for 30 minutes more.

Remove the hare from the liquor, pick the meat off the bones in big shards (don’t mush it up!) and put aside. Reduce the sauce to a thick and unctuous consistency and season to taste. Fry the panko crumbs to golden in olive oil.

Mix the sauce with the meat and cook the pappardelle. Toss the two together in a pan and add the breadcrumbs. Serve in a hot bowl with parsley, a grating of parmesan and a good amount of truffle. Truly game at its best!