Apparently Because they originally come from a lot warmer climate than ours, they evolved to cope without an abundance of water. As such they rarely if ever drink and can survive on the moisture from their food.
As a Rabbit doesn't have much 'free' fluid it rarely has to pee, so the Urea (the bit that turns your pee yellow) builds up in the blood stream. This is what can make a Rabbit taste bitter/funny after taste.
By soaking the carcase in salt water, you draw out the blood from the meat and with it the Urea, dramatically lessening the 'odd' taste that puts so many off eating Rabbit.
Although soaking in milk does work it's not as effective, it's actually the small amount of salt content in the milk that's at work not the milk itself.
I've since started doing this and it works a treat! I never used to be a great fan of the taste of Rabbit and would always mince it or put a strong flavoured sauce on it.
I tried just adding salt to some water and dropping the Rabbit carcase in but when I tried a few plain pieces it didn't work as well as I thought it should.
I then boiled some water with the salt in to dissolve it, cut the meat off the bone and dropped that in the cooled water overnight and BINGO!
Drained it off, patted it dry with kitchen roll then fried up a few plain bits... it tasted lovely!
If your doing a recipe that involves cooking the whole carcase then just lightly score the meat with a knife to allow the blood to be drawn out easier.
If in the past you've enjoyed other Game meats but just couldn't get on with Rabbit then please try this! I can almost guarantee you'll like it.
Edited by bullmastiff, 21 September 2010 - 11:35 PM.