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This aromatic, spicy curry works well with pheasant, grouse, pigeon, goose, hare, squirrel and wild boar.


Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the cinnamon, cardamom pods and bay leaf and fry for a minute.

Add the onions and the garlic and ginger paste, with a good pinch of salt, and sweat gently for about 10 minutes, until soft.

Add all the other ground spices, except the garam masala, and cook for a few minutes until the oil separates from the spices and they release their aroma.

Squash the tomatoes to a pulp in your hands, or crush with a fork, and add to the pan, along with the black onion seeds.

Add the rabbit and enough water just to cover the meat. Bring to a simmer, turn the heat down low and put a lid on the pan. Cook gently for about 45 minutes or until the rabbit is tender, stirring often.

Stir in the garam masala and check the seasoning, adding more salt and pepper if needed. Serve scattered with red pepper and ginger julienne or coriander leaves.

Ginger and garlic paste

To make a ginger and garlic paste, blitz 50g each of peeled garlic cloves and fresh root ginger and 85ml water in a food processor, or chop the garlic and ginger and pound with a pestle and mortar before stirring in the water. You’ll have more than you need for this recipe; refrigerate the rest in a jar and use within a week.

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  • 3 tbsp sunflower or rapeseed oil
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 4 cardamom pods
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 large onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tbsp garlic and ginger paste
  • 1 tsp each ground cumin, coriander, turmeric, paprika and chilli powder
  • 2 tinned peeled plum tomatoes (or skinned fresh tomatoes)
  • 2 tsp nigella (black onion) seeds
  • 2 rabbits, jointed into 8 pieces each, scored, bones in
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

To finish

  • Red pepper and fresh root ginger julienne (thin strips), or coriander leaves

This recipe is taken from...

River Cottage Game Handbook