Italian Style Braised Rabbit

1 rabbit (about 2 1/2 pound), dressed, cut into serving size pieces

salt and fresh ground black pepper as needed
1/4 cup olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 celery rib, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup chopped tomato
2 cup stock or broth
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

Season rabbit pieces generously with salt and fresh ground black pepper. In a large Dutch oven (or other heavy pot), heat the olive oil over medium-high flame. When the oil is hot, brown the rabbit well on all sides (in batches, if necessary). Reserve browned rabbit, and add the onions, celery, garlic, and 1 tsp salt. Reduce the heat to medium, and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
Add the wine and vinegar, and stir to scrape any browned bits from the bottom. Boil wine mixture for 2 minutes; then add the tomato, chicken broth, rosemary, thyme, and oregano. Add the rabbit back in, and stir to combine. Turn off the heat, cover tightly, and place the rabbit into a preheated 350 degree F. oven for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until the rabbit is fork tender. Remove and stir in the fresh parsley. Taste the broth for salt and pepper, and adjust. Allow to rest covered for 20 minutes before serving.  Serve the rabbit topped with the remaining braising liquid and vegetables.


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