Brunswick Stew 3

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Based on Bill Neal’s Southern Cooking

This is the third version of Brunswick Stew served at my Super Bowl Party. It is unique in that it includes rabbit, carrots, celery and cabbage, as well as the “usual ingredients.”

Finding a rabbit was a bit of an adventure. I checked Safeway and Whole Food—no rabbit—so I asked myself, “Where do I look next?” In Chinatown, of course. I went to Little City, a well-known Chinatown meat store where English is spoken. “No fresh rabbits today, maybe next Tuesday.” That won’t do. I went to a Chinese meat place up the street. I looked around; I’m a head taller than anyone else in the store. The signs are all in Chinese and the cases are filled with carcasses of the bird and small animal kingdom, unrecognizable for the most part. “Do you have a rabbit?” I ask a woman behind the counter. She smiles and gives me a blank stare, I make hopping motions with my hand. She hurries off to get a guy in the back. “Rabbit?” He looks at me quizzically. I make rabbit ears with my fingers. He smiles, nods his head, says something in Chinese and pulls a frozen-stiff animal out of the case. Looks like a rabbit, it’s big, five pounds, recipe calls for a ‘two pound rabbit,’ no matter. Once home and thawed, I hack it into quarters and use both the leg parts.

Recipe: Brunswick Stew 3
1 chicken 4 lbs
1 rabbit 2 lbs
All giblets
4 oz pork side meat, finely chopped [I used bacon]
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup carrots peeled, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
2 cups finely sliced cabbage
2 cloves garlic chopped
3/4 tsp. thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
1 1/2 pound canned tomatoes, chopped with juice
1 1/4 cups shelled baby limas
2 cups baking potatoes cut into 1/2 x 1/2 x 3/4 inch pieces
2 cups double-cut corn [I used frozen corn and chopped it by hand]
7 cups stock and all the fat from the chicken
salt and pepper
1 1/2 cups okra

Put chicken and rabbit in a pot with all giblets, except liver, add cold water to cover. Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for about an hour. When done, drain and reserve stock. When cool, bone chicken and rabbit, and chop the meat into 1-inch squares. Dice giblets, and reserve all meats in a bowl, covered. Reduce stock to 7 cups, skimming off impurities, but saving the fat.

Render the finely chopped side meat in the bottom of a large stockpot over medium heat. Add onion, celery, carrot, and cabbage and cook until tender. Add garlic, thyme, bay, and red pepper flakes. Stir in the tomatoes with their juice and bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes. Add limas, potatoes, and corn. Return to the boil and stir in the chopped meats and giblets with the stock and fat. Bring to the boil again, and then simmer until the stew thickens, stirring frequently to prevent scorching. This will take about an hour.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add okra, during the last 5 minutes of cooking.

That made a lot. I’ll let you know if it freezes well.

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