Cutting Rabbit

…a “break” from tradition…

Rabbits are not traditionally butchered by neatly separating the joints, as you would a chicken.  They are broken into forequarters (shoulder-foreleg), hindquarters (hip-hindleg), and a saddle (backbone, with surrounding loins, tenderloins, and belly) by cleaving right through the bones.  In a rustic preparation, all these parts, with bones, would be thrown into a stew.

Chefs often bitch about the tedium of cutting rabbit, “especially since there’s practically no meat on them.”  Their words.  Not mine.

The problem with cleaving is that you’re bound to splinter the bones.  I’ve bitten down on a fragment of rabbit bone in restaurants more than once.  Taking the time to properly butcher the rabbit by cutting through the joints and not breaking the bones minimizes the chances of choking someone.  It also shows that you care about your ingredients and take your job seriously.

Anyways…Below, from top left: hindlegs, suet, kidney, heart, liver, tenderloins, forelegs with shoulder attached, and finally loin with belly attached.

 

A fully separated rabbit carcass
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