Rabbit Casserole with Onions and Wine Vinegar (Comlek)

An Albanian traditional rabbit dish. Rabbit is a meat that has many bones and little meat, that if cooked with patience can be very tender and tasteful. We are often reluctant to eat animals that are presented on the bone and whose parts we can easily distinguish; this is a result of the industrial food system that has taken us further away from our natural hunting habits and has deprived us of a  direct relationship to our food.

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1 rabbit 750g cut in pieces
4 medium-sized tomatoes or 2 tbsp tomato paste
2 bay leaves
4 tbsp red wine vinegar
150 ml olive oil
1 tsp sugar
4 cloves garlic, whole
300 ml hot water
small piece cinnamon stick
salt & black pepper
4 whole allspice berries
700 g small onions
1 sprig of rosemary
1 small glass of dry red wine


  • Peel the onions but leave them whole
  • Marinate rabbit in vinegar and bay leaves overnight in the fridge or a couple of hours before cooking it.

1. Remove rabbit pieces from marinade, pat them dry and fry them in half the olive oil until golden-brown on both sides.
2. When all rabbit pieces have been fried, place them back in the saucepan. Add garlic cloves, bay leaves, spices, rosemary and wine.

3. Then add the tomato puree or tomatoes, sugar and the hot water. Season, cover and cook for about 1 hour.

4. In the meantime, heat the remaining olive oil in a frying pan and gently fry the onions. Stir them occasionally, in order to make sure they turn golden all over, for about 15 minutes.

5. Add the contents of the frying pan to the saucepan, and shake it so that the onions spread evenly. Then cover and simmer for a further 15 minutes.

6. Serve with fried potatoes or plain white rice and a green salad.

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