Warning/Attention/Achtung: there will be no photos in this post. Nothing cute (or otherwise) ahead to look at except for my prose (which, unfortunately, is not even purple).
I return after a long time away to provide a cautionary message – should you own a pet rabbit, take precautions to make sure s/he keeps safe.
Why? … you might ask? The answer: because when I went to my local large chain grocery store (I won’t identify the shop except to say that the name starts with S and ends with y…) this afternoon, I was shocked and horrified to see that they had two rabbits (fur and skin off and splayed out in a plastic container) for sale… for $23 and $24 respectively.
All this to say that my shock and horror was not at the fact that S***y’s were selling butchered bunnies. I was, however, astonished at the price.
Rabbit, when I was growing up in the wilds of Kingston, Ontario, was cheap ethnic food (just ask my mother about having to cook and eat “lagos (rabbit) me (with) skorthalia(walnut garlic sauce) ” – a dish that my father remembered fondly from “the Greece” and that his mother used to cook. When his mother actually came to stay with us in Kingston and cooked this dish, it wasn’t quite how he remembered it – I think we can all relate to childhood favourites which don’t taste as we remember them once we are adults.
But I digress. When I first moved to Toronto as a student, I did buy rabbit and cook it for myself. Why? Because it was cheaper than chicken, and (I was told) healthier.
I had moved away from my rabbit years for some time,. So, right now I can’t understand why anyone would pay $23-$24 for a bunch of rabbit meat on the bone which weighs less than a whole chicken (which, even at an organic shop, would cost less that $15).
Why am I ranting about this issue? I’m not sure. I suspect that I’ve found myself at the end of the “cheap meats are no longer cheap” road, and that I’m frustrated by that. I mean… flank steak, brisket, pork shoulder… all of the cheap cuts that my mother (and many other people’s mothers and grandmothers) relied on are now more expensive than the “choicer” (and leaner) cuts.
As an example, last week at the same store where I saw the rabbit today, I bought two kilos of pork tenderloin for under $10. Yet, a rabbit (which was just about 1 kilo) cost $24.
So, does this mean that the wealthier amongst us are eating the cheaper meats, while the poorer are eating the “better” meats? This is really the only conclusion I can draw, especially when I see what some Toronto restaurants are charging for serving organ meats.
More power to those restaurants, I have to say…they have hit a niche market. And if the consumers are really that stupid… I’m planning to set up a business where I make traditional greek tripe soup (it’s called patsa, but I’ve got to find a better name for it… hey, how about “menudo???”) and sell it for $7-8 per bowl.
I also make a lot of other good soups for which I’d be happy to charge $7-8 per bowl. Anyone have a name for my business? I like “Souper Trouper”… but people who are not ABBA fanatics might not get the reference.
Really, I’m just trying to avoid bad Bugs Bunny jokes. However, with the appropriate high-end and monied sponsor, I’d be happy to develop a very lovely rabbit soup (without walnut paste, and with lots and lots of carrots).
Wishing you all the best,