Chef Maxwell's recipe for Madeira Island rabbit

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This recipe was prepared by Chef John Maxwell on Real Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau’s weekly television program.

Maxwell, a certified executive chef, culinary educator and member of the American Academy of Chefs, shares delicious seasonal recipes in a Real Virginia segment sponsored by Virginia Grown, a program of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

Madeira Island Rabbit

1 cup sliced chorizo sausage
½ cup sifted flour
salt and pepper to taste
1 whole rabbit, cut 8 ways
1 cup roughly chopped yellow onion
6 cloves garlic, smashed
1 cup sliced fennel
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup Madeira
8 ounces small turnips, halved
8 ounces baby carrots
1 bay leaf
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 quart chicken or rabbit stock
¼ cup finely chopped parsley

Brown the sausage and reserve for later. Season the flour with salt and pepper. Toss the rabbit parts in the flour, and shake off excess. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat a small amount of oil (not olive oil) to medium. Add the rabbit pieces, and lightly brown them on both sides. Remove the browned rabbit, and reserve. Add the onion, fennel and garlic, and cook until lightly browned. Add tomato paste, and pince. Deglaze the pan with Madeira, and reduce by half. Add the rabbit, sausage turnips, carrots, bay leaf, thyme and stock. Gently simmer for 45 minutes to one hour. Garnish with parsley.

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