With the rabbit as 2023’s zodiac animal, most restaurants have taken inspiration from the shape of bunnies or its Chinese character, and have woven it into the designs of Chinese New Year dishes. However, they have stopped short of cooking rabbit meat, which is considered an exotic protein in Singapore.
According to the Singapore Food Agency, rabbit meat from Hungary is allowed to be imported into Singapore. They are available in frozen, processed and canned formats.
Some people might get squeamish over eating rabbits, which are more closely associated as cute furry animals here than an ingredient stirred in casseroles.
However, the rabbit has been a staple protein in cuisines in Europe, including Italy, Spain and France. For generations, nonnas have been whipping up Italian ‘hunter-style’ rabbit stew (or Coniglio alla cacciatora), a hearty dish of rabbit meat cooked in red or white wine, tomato sauce and herbs, and served with potatoes and seasonal vegetables. The dish originated from the island of Ischia, which is off the coast of Naples.
In Malta, the rabbit stew, or stuffat tal-fenek, has been elevated to the national dish of the small island-state in the Mediterranean. The stew, which dates back to ancient times, is a potpourri of red wine, tomato, onions and bay leaves, with a copious amount of olive oil.
We hop around Singapore to scout for some restaurants that serve rabbit meat.