Nourished by the rich undergrowth deep in the lush forests that line the countryside, the wild game in Maremma is unlike anywhere else. In this traditional pasta dish the bold full-bodied flavour of the hare is matched with a unctuously rich tomato and red wine sauce.

From the Maremman Table with Love: A selection of authentic recipes from the heart of the Southern Tuscan countryside.

For: 4 people
Preparation time: 35 min + 12hrs 3o min inactive prep time
Cooking time: 1 hr 20 mins

Ingredients:
1 packet of fresh pappardelle pasta

For the sauce:
1 600g hare with liver and spleen if possible
350g canned tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic
1 bay leaf
Parsley
Tomato concentrate
1 bottle of red wine vinegar (to marinate the hare in)
Glass of red wine
Grated Parmesan (to serve)
olive oil

Method:

  1. Clean the hare and cut into bit sized pieces. If you want to remove some of the overpowering gaminess of the hare leave it to soak in a mixture of vinegar and water overnight. Rinse before continuing
  2. Peel and chop the garlic with a large handful of parsley leaves. Add to a pan with 5 tablespoons of olive oil and fry at medium heat until golden.
  3. Add chopped liver and spleen if using. Cook for 6 minutes.
  4. Add the rest of the meat, the wine and lift the heat to high to cook off most of the wine.
  5. Lower the heat and slowly simmer the hare for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and add the canned tomatoes.
  6. Cover and cook for half an hour, adding extra water if necessary to stop the sauce from sticking.
  7. After half an hour add a tbsp of tomato concentrate and half a cup of water. Partially cover and simmer for another half an hour.
  8. While the sauce is cooking, boil the pappardelle according to the instructions on the packet.
  9. Add sauce to cooked pasta, mix and serve with grated Parmesan cheese.

Chef's tip: Pappardelle are broad wavy-edged strips of pasta that works very well with rich sauces. Always try to buy fresh pasta rather than dried versions as it tastes far more 'homemade'.

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