Rabbit Baked in Clay With Wild Mushrooms and Sour Cream (Pecheny

"Most of us into Mexican cooking just happen to have clay pots in our inventory of cookware. The following is a recipe from Byelorussia which can also be made with either chicken or goose. They serve this with their world famous Potato Pancakes."
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Ready In:


  • 6 dried wild mushrooms, well rinsed (your choice)
  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 2 (3 -3 1/2 lb) rabbits, each cut into 6 serving pieces
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 medium size onions, coarsely chopped
  • 1 parsnip, peeled and cut into julienne
  • 2 cups chicken stock (or canned broth)
  • For Bouquet Garni

  • 8 sprigs parsley
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb fresh wild mushroom (boletes, chanterelles, morels, or portabello)
  • 14 cup heavy cream (or whipping cream)
  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 14 cup dry vermouth
  • chopped fresh parsley (to garnish)


  • Soak the dried mushrooms in ½ cup water for 1 hour. Drain, pat dry with paper towels, chop fine, and set aside. Reserve the soaking liquid for another use.
  • In a large skillet, fry the bacon over medium heat for about 5 minutes. When it has rendered its fat, remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside to drain on paper towels.
  • Add the rabbit, a few pieces at a time, to the bacon drippings and brown on all sides over medium heat. Transfer the browned pieces as they are done to a large unglazed earthenware casserole with a lid.
  • Wipe out the skillet and melt 4 Tablespoons of the butter in it over medium heat. Add the onions, parsnip, and dried mushrooms, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened and lightly colored, about 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Combine the ingredients for the bouquet garni in a cheesecloth bag and add the bouquet garni and the stock to the skillet. Bring to a boil, and boil for 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Add the sautéed vegetables and stock, the reserved bacon, and salt and pepper to the casserole with the rabbit. Bake uncovered, for 45 minutes.
  • Wipe the fresh mushrooms clean with a damp paper towel. Separate the stems from the caps, if the mushrooms are large, and slice both not too thin.
  • Wipe out the skillet again and melt the remaining 2 Tablespoons butter in it over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté until they throw off and reabsorb their liquid, about 12 minutes.
  • Check the rabbit and, if it’s tender, remove the pieces to a heated platter with a slotted spoon. Do not turn off the oven.
  • Remove the bouquet garni from the sauce and discard. Press the sauce through a sieve or pass through a food mill. Transfer to a saucepan and heat over medium low heat for 2 minutes. Combine the heavy cream and the sour cream in a small bowl. Whisk a little of the sauce into the cream mixture, then whisk the cream mixture into the sauce in the pan. Whisk in the vermouth and cook for 5 minutes more, without allowing it to boil.
  • Return the rabbit to the casserole and stir in the sautéed mushrooms and the sauce. Bake, uncovered, for 7 minutes more.
  • Serve the rabbit directly from the casserole, sprinkled with a little parsley.

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  1. Ashfork
    I was a bit confused with what to do with the vegetables used to flavor the broth. I through them back in with the rabbit for the last 7 minutes of cooking...the meal would not have been complete with out them. This was a very good recipe and I will be making it again!


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