I first had Hare Ragu as an alternative to Spaghetti Bolognese at a local restaurant a few years ago and just knew I had to have a go at making it at home. My recipe stays fairly true to the traditional roots of an Italian ragu and I challenge anybody to prefer the bastardised bolognese style tomato sauce after trying this.
If you’ve never tried hare before, don’t be put off by images of fluffy bunny rabbits; hare is a meat just like any other, with the added ethical value that it has lived an entirely wild life. Its season runs from August to the end of February and it should be available at any good butcher.
This post is also my entry into the “In The Bag” seasonal food blogging event for November, where the subject this time around was game. There’s still time to enter, as the closing date is the 4th December – so hurry up!
Recipe: Hare Ragu
An altogether more satisfying ragu than the typical English “spag-bol”. Has to be tried!
- Meat from 1 hare, de-boned and cut into 1cm dice
- 200g finely chopped bacon
- 1 finely diced onion
- 1 finely diced carrot
- 1 finely diced stick of celery
- 40g triple Concentrate tomato purée
- 1/2 glass dry red wine
- 200ml Whole Milk
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tbsp olive oil, for frying
- Handful of chopped parsley, to decorate
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- Start by frying your bacon in a pan over a medium heat. When it releases most of its fat turn up the temperature and add the hare, browning on all sides, then set aside.
- In a pot (such as the one pictured) begin to gently fry the vegetables over a low heat until the onion begins to soften and turn translucent; this will take approximately 10 minutes. When you get to this stage add the hare / bacon and stir well, cooking for another 5 minutes approximately.
- Add the tomato purée and wine and stir well. Leave for just a couple of minutes to absorb, then add the milk slowly over a low heat while stirring constantly. When all the milk is added, add the oregano and bay leaf and stir well.
- This will take approximately 3 hours to cook, so cover with a lid and set on your smallest hob over a low heat; you’re looking for a simmer, no more. Stir regularly during the cooking time, and add a little more milk if it begins to dry out. When ready, the sauce will be rich tasting and the hare will be soft.
- Serve with a flat ribbon pasta such as pappardelle, fettuccine, or tagliatelle. Sprinkle over parsley and parmesan before serving and enjoy!
Preparation time: 15 minute(s)
Cooking time: 3 hour(s)