I made this dish up as sort of a joke—albeit a joke with a point. In the fall of 1990,1 prowled around Scotland for a time at the behest of the now-defunct British edition of Metropolitan Home, looking for good contemporary Scottish cooking. I found a great deal of more-than-competent French food, but disappointingly little that I thought made smart use of both local raw materials and traditional Scottish recipes. I was looking for, say, a Scottish Larry Forgione or Mark Miller, I guess, and didn’t find one. Just for fun, then, I invented a few recipes of the sort I imagined some young Scottish equivalent of those chefs might have come up with. This was one of them.
It might be noted that curry is an old Scottish tradition—Scots have been eating curry for longer than Americans have been eating hamburger—and that the curry portion of the recipe below is closely adapted from The Scots Kitchen (1929) by
Orange marmalade is a Scottish specialty, of course, said to have been invented by one
Gently melt marmalade in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly, until liquefied. Put into blender or food processor with salt, chili flakes, ginger root, garlic, and lemon juice and process until well mixed. Stir in pine nuts.
Allow chutney to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate in covered container for at least 4 hours. About 2 hours before beginning curry, remove from refrigerator and bring to room temperature.
Mix flour, sugar, and pepper together thoroughly. Work butter into flour mixture with your hands; dough should be crumbly, but will hold together when squeezed.
Divide the dough evenly among 6 standard-sized ungreased muffin cups and press it evenly on the bottoms and up the sides of the cups. Prick the bottoms with a fork.
Allow shortbread to cool, then remove from molds. Shortly before serving, fill each cup generously with room-temperature chutney.
Dredge rabbit pieces in flour seasoned with salt and pepper to taste. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the oil and butter. Add the rabbit and turn frequently until pieces are golden brown on all sides. Remove from pan with slotted spoon or tongs and set aside to drain on paper towels.
Add onion, celery, and mushrooms to pan and continue cooking until vegetables are soft. Dust mixture with curry powder, turmeric, cayenne, and
Meanwhile, in another skillet, fry bacon until lightly browned, then drain on paper towels.
To finish sauce, lower heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened. Return rabbit to sauce and cook, turning pieces frequently, for about 5 minutes longer. Stir in bacon and add salt to taste.
Serve over plain boiled white rice, accompanied by orange marmalade chutney in a peppered shortbread cup.
© 1992 Colman Andrews. All rights reserved.