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A native of North Africa and the Iberian Peninsula, particularly Spain, the rabbit is now eaten around the world, both as rabbit, and its larger darker fleshed—and always wild—cousin, the hare. Rabbit was originally an expensive meat, and still is in places without feral populations. Now, most rabbit is farmed, and has a milder flavour than wild rabbit. Most recipes for rabbit and hare call for it to be stewed, as the meat tends to be dry. Rabbits should be eaten young when their flesh is still pale and tender; older animals need to be marinated to help tenderize them. Rabbit can be treated like chicken and recipes are often similar. When roasting rabbit, the meat should be barded with fat or bacon to keep it moist. Buy rabbit as joints or whole and ready skinned and gutted. Whole rabbits should come with their kidneys (to indicate freshness) and do not need to be hung.
Rabbit goes with — cream, garlic, herbs, mushroom, tomato