Grilled Rabbit and Sausage Skewers

Impress your friends and family at the next family cookout with this Italian favorite

Grilled Rabbit and Sausage Skewers
Grilled rabbit and sausage skewers prepared "Conigilo alla Molisana". (Reuters/Clifford A. Wright photo)
Print Recipe

As warm weather tempts Americans to launch our annual outdoor-cooking adventures, most of us are too content with traditional American fare for the grill. Steaks and burgers are fine, but to wow the crowd consider some Italian classics well-suited for the All-American grill, including a rabbit recipe from the region of Molise.

Rabbit has lost some of its mid-century popularity, but it used to be eaten much more by Americans who were of the Greatest Generation, the generation that served in World War II.

Memorial Day is not merely the American holiday that honors the men and women who died in service to their country in the U.S. military. It's popularly thought of as the opening day to the grill season. This year you can try something a bit different than hamburgers.

Here's a recipe from the region of Molise in Italy, which may be familiar to some Italian-Americans.


It's quite easy and always a surprising hit. I'd serve it with some grilled vegetables and a nice spring salad made with fava beans, asparagus, artichoke, peas and lettuce, for example, simply dressed with a vinaigrette.


Rabbit
Rabbit for coniglio alla molisana. (Reuters/Clifford A. Wright photo)

Rabbit once an American staple

The preparation is called coniglio alla Molisana, grilled rabbit and sausage skewers in the style of Molise. There are all kinds of recipes in Italy for rabbit, wild rabbit and hare. In Sicily, they grill wild rabbits with a marinade of olive oil, garlic, vinegar and oregano.

Grilling suits an Italian classic

In central Italy, hare is spit-roasted with olive oil and flavored with bay leaves, parsley and cloves. Sometimes the grilled hare is served with a sauce made from the liver and blood of the hare and chopped onions, stock, wine and lemon juice.

In Sondrio in Lombardy, a preparation called lepre con la crostada is a spit-roasted hare that is then stewed in cream and crushed macaroons. Calabrians like to marinate the hare in vinegar and scallions overnight and then skewer the meat with pancetta and bay leaves before grilling. This is the version popular in Molise.


Rabbit
Grilled rabbit and sausage skewers. (Reuters/Clifford A. Wright photo)

Grilled Rabbit and Sausage Skewers (Coniglio alla Molisana)

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour
Total time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients:


  • Several handfuls of fresh or dried rosemary, oregano and marjoram twigs
  • 1 rabbit, 3 pounds
  • 1 pound mild Italian sausage, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 12 paper-thin slices prosciutto (about 1/4 pound)
  • 12 large fresh sage leaves
  • Four 10-inch wooden skewers
  • Olive oil for basting

Directions:

1. Prepare a low charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill for 15 minutes on low. Toss several handfuls of mixed dried or fresh herb twigs onto the fire or use the receptacle for that purpose provided with gas grills.

2. Because there is not an abundance of meat on a rabbit, slice the meat very close to the bone, using a boning and paring knife and trying to keep the pieces as large as possible. (Save the bones for the rabbit stock.) Put the rabbit and sausage pieces in a mixing bowl and toss with the parsley and rosemary, salt and pepper to taste.

3. Lay a piece of rabbit on a section of a paper-thin prosciutto slice and roll up. Skewer the rolled-up rabbit with a sage leaf and a sausage piece, in that order, until all the ingredients are used up.

4. Place the skewers on the grill and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, about 1 hour. Baste with olive oil during grilling.

Variation: Alternatively, instead of rolling the rabbit pieces in prosciutto, cut the prosciutto into 1/8-inch thick squares of 1 inch and skewer with the rabbit and sausage.

Add a spring salad for a seasonal hit.

(Copyright 2016 Clifford A. Wright via Zester Daily and Reuters Media Express)

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

13 Fishing Omen Black Baitcasting Rod

13 Fishing Omen Black Baitcasting Rod

Multiple time FLW Costa winner Jessi Mizell is no stranger to catching big Florida bass on a popping frog. As he tells OSG's Lynn Burkhead, with the new 13 Fishing Omen Black baitcasting rod, the job just got easier.

MLF BPT angler and former Classic champ Casey Ashley has been with Costa del Mar sunglasses his whole career. At ICAST 2019, he shows OSG writer Lynn Burkhead some new products and talks how to pick the right lens color for the water.

Costa

Costa's Award Winning Waterwoman Sunglasses

Costa's Amanda Sabin tells OSG's Lynn Burkhead about all of the great features that made the new Waterwoman frame a big winner at the 2019 ICAST show as well as out on the water.

Mustad

Mustad's Saltwater Jig Lineup

Russ Whisler shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead the innovative features and great color schemes in Mustad's voluminous lineup of saltwater jigs introduced at ICAST 2019.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

North Dakota Game & Fish Department said the 16-9 walleye doesn't qualify for record. Walleye

Record-Sized Walleye Was Foul-Hooked, Agency Says

G&F Online Staff

North Dakota Game & Fish Department said the 16-9 walleye doesn't qualify for record.

We found 10 secret (and proven) catfish baits that have the staying power to attract catfish time after time. Catfish

10 Secret Catfish Baits You Didn't Know About

Anietra Hamper

We found 10 secret (and proven) catfish baits that have the staying power to attract catfish...

Want to test the outer limits of your shooting skill? There's more to successful long-range Ammo

10 Best Long-Range Cartridges Ever Made

David Hart - January 14, 2015

Want to test the outer limits of your shooting skill? There's more to successful long-range

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish. Records

Upon Further Review: 70-Year-Old Catfish Record Voided

Game & Fish Digital Staff - May 22, 2019

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish.

See More Trending Articles

More Wild Game

This colorful and protein-rich recipe mixes morel mushrooms, bacon and duck eggs into a fresh green salad. Wild Game

Morel Mushroom, Bacon and Duck Egg Salad Recipe

Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley

This colorful and protein-rich recipe mixes morel mushrooms, bacon and duck eggs into a fresh...

If you haven't grilled fish or wild game on a wooden plank before, it's easy to do. Here are some tips on how to prepare a plank for the grill, along with some cooking options. The Grill

Tips for Plank Cooking Wild Game on the Grill

Tiffany Haugen

If you haven't grilled fish or wild game on a wooden plank before, it's easy to do. Here are...

From deer and elk to bear and boar, this sweet and tangy marinade recipe will tame any wild game. Wild Game

Go-To Wild Game Marinade Recipe for Grilling

Tiffany Haugen

From deer and elk to bear and boar, this sweet and tangy marinade recipe will tame any wild...

Simple to make and grill, these BBQ Venison Burgers are the ultimate food to serve at your next backyard bash. The Grill

BBQ Venison Burger Recipe

Nikki Boxler

Simple to make and grill, these BBQ Venison Burgers are the ultimate food to serve at your...

See More Wild Game

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now