The rabbit is poached in wine, as opposed to being poached on a great estate! I think the barley goes very well to complement the earthiness of the rabbit. If you have never cooked barley or for that matter eaten it, then you should give it a go as variety in our diets is a good thing. It does take a good hour of cooking but don't let that put you off. Alternatively if rabbit is a no-no, then chicken could be used too! There is no fat or dairy, yet it tastes good!!
Dinner for four
5 legs of rabbit (or a whole one)
350 ml / 0.75 pint white wine
2 litres/ 4 pints water
250g / 1 cup whole grain barley
1 organic vegetable stock cube (or dices vegetables)
to finish two tablespoons of grainy mustard
Put the wine in a large pan (with a lid) and put in the rabbit (or skinned chicken legs). Bring to the boil and let simmer turning the legs after about 5 minutes, cook for a further 5 minutes so as to reduce the wine by half. Add in the water and bring to the boil and put in your barley. Cook this for an hour on a low heat. Always check the water has not boiled away and stir occasionally. Remove the legs and strip off the meat. The barley can take up to another 20 minutes (alternatively you can pre-soak the grains to speed this all up). Once you are happy with the texture, add the meat back in and warm through. I aim for it to be like a risotto with a little juice, but you can add in as much liquid as you wish just season to taste. Off the heat, I add in the mustard which just dresses the dish beautifully. I served it with a side of steamed broccoli. I hope you try it!