Rabbit Tournedos with Barley and Broad Beans, Tomato and Green Olive Salsa, Mushroom Fricassée, Yuzu and Parsley Purée
Recipe by Nicholas Cuomo, Executive Chef at Emirate Golf Club, Dubai, UAD, 2016
Barley and Broad Beans
Tomato and Green Olive Salsa
Tomato Confit (prepare one day in advance)
Make a slit across the tomatoes, blanch for 30 seconds, then plunge into iced water. Peel then cut into quarters and deseed. Place the tomato into a bowl and mix with the sugar, garlic, thyme and sea salt. Place the mixture evenly on a baking tray, then put into the oven at 80°C for 10 hours. Place in a jar and cover with the extra virgin olive oil. Set aside until needed.
Lay the rabbit on its back. Using kitchen shears, cut the breastbone to split the rib cage. Rest the rabbit on its side. Holding one hind leg, cut above and around the bone where it attaches to the body. Pull the leg toward you and continue cutting along the joint to help release the leg. Sever the flesh to detach the leg. Repeat to detach the other hind leg. Find the space where the backbone meets the pelvis. Slice through the flesh there, and use both hands to twist and detach the pelvis from the rest of the body. Starting at the top of the rib cage, run your knife down one side of the rib cage to detach the upper rib bones from the breast. Continue cutting downward to separate the fleshy loin that runs alongside the upper backbone. To detach the more deeply embedded lower ribs from the flesh, find each rib with your fingers and use your knife to release the ribs one by one carefully. Repeat on the other side of the rib cage. With the rabbit's rear facing you, butterfly the fleshy tenderloin surrounding the lower backbone to expose this part of the backbone. Keeping the tenderloin attached to the rabbit, cut along the backbone on each side to connect with the cut you've already made along the upper loin.
Follow the backbone with the knife to release the tenderloin, but do not cut all the way through. Repeat down the other side. Rotate the rabbit so that the forelegs are facing you. Starting at the base of the backbone, run the knife under the backbone toward you, vertebra by vertebra; use the other hand to pull the backbone away from the flesh as you go. Sever each foreleg from the rabbit by slicing at the shoulder joint.
Blanch the baby leeks for 2 minutes, then plunge into iced water. Season the rabbit. Add the tomato confit, blanched baby leeks, and wild mushrooms. Roll the rabbit from left to right and tighten it by pulling it under with your fingers. Wrap in cling film and roll into nice tournedos. Seal the end with a tight knot. Cook in a water bath at 63°C for 35 minutes, then plunge into ice water. Remove the cling wrap from the rabbit tournedos and gently place them into a hot pan with some clarified butter and color until the other side of the flesh turns a nice golden brown color. Turn off the heat and keep it in the pan to stay warm.
Barley and Broad Beans
Wash the barley over until the water gets clear. Place the barley into a pot, then add the chicken stock, lemon zest, rosemary, olive oil, and salt to taste. Bring to a boil, then cook for 15 minutes until the barley is soft—strain and set aside. In another pot, place the broad beans and boil them in lightly salted water. Strain, then dice the beans into small cubes, about 1cm x 1cm. Take the barley and broad beans and sauté them lightly in olive oil until hot. Set aside. Cut off the top part of the baby asparagus and cook the heads in boiling water until soft. Set aside.
Tomato and Green Olive Salsa
Make a slit across the tomatoes, then blanch for 30 seconds and plunge into iced water. Peel, then cut the tomatoes into quarters and deseed. Cut the quarters into cubes, then place into a bowl with the olive oil. Cut the green olives into equal-sized cubes, then mix them into the tomatoes. Add salt to taste. Cook in a water bath at 63°C for 35 minutes.
Cut the wild mushrooms into 2cm pieces. Place the mushrooms into a hot pan with the clarified butter, then sauté until tender. Mix in the parsley, then add salt to taste and set aside.
In a pot, place the juice of the yuzu and bring to a boil. Add the sugar and arrowroot powder, stir over heat for 2 minutes, and let it cool. Blend in a blender to obtain a smooth texture. Place into a squeeze bottle and keep refrigerated until needed.
Blanch the parsley for 30 seconds, then plunge into iced water and strain. This process will retain its bright green color. Blend until smooth with a little water and arrowroot powder. Place into a squeeze bottle and keep refrigerated until needed.
Starting from the plate's left side, run a straight line from 1 end to the other of the tomato and green olive salsa. With a pastry brush, brush a line of tomato concentrate beside the salsa. Place a line of wild mushrooms and 3 asparagus heads on top of the mushrooms. Divide the space between the asparagus heads evenly. Dot the parsley and yuzu purée around the blank space on the plate, alternately the parsley and yuzu purée and seen in the image. Place a 5cm x 15cm rectangular mold on the plate. Spoon the barley and broad beans into the mold and spread evenly to achieve a 1cm height rectangular form. Finally, cut the rabbit tournedos into 4 slices about 1½-cm thick and place on top of the barley, then garnish with pea shoots.
Sidonio de Sousa Garrafeira Bairrada, Portugal