I am cooking rabbit in a way that is just made for picnics: updating the classic sausage roll. Don’t be put off – wild rabbit can be amazing. It will be aromatic, delicious and look very groovy. I serve these in the restaurant as little amuse bouches, but they work brilliantly in their large format.

Wild rabbit rolls
Makes 12 good-sized rolls

2 large shallots
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
500g (1lb) wild rabbit meat
50g (2oz) smoked bacon
50g (2oz) pork sausagemeat
1 bunch lemon thyme, chopped
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
Salt and pepper
1kg (2¼lb) puff pastry
Beaten egg for seal and wash
Several long spears rosemary

Start by chopping the shallots and garlic finely and sweating it off in the olive oil until very soft. Now put the rabbit and bacon in a processor and pulse it until you have a coarse sausagemeat. Mix with the pork sausagemeat by hand. Add the shallots and garlic, thyme and mustard. Season and chill.

Roll out the pastry into 4in-wide strips about 2ft long. Lay the sausagemeat down the middle and brush the sides with beaten egg. Roll up the pastry and cut into 3in lengths. Place them on a baking tray, push a 4in length of rosemary skewer through each and wash with egg thoroughly. I like to criss-cross the tops before baking to give me a pattern on the finished article. Bake for 20 minutes at 375ºF/190ºC/Gas Mark 5.

The picnicker should pull out the skewer before consuming the roll, which will be gloriously scented by the herb stick.

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