Meat & poultry | Traditional Spanish Recipes

Cargols & Conill i Romesco – Snails & Rabbit and Romesco sauce

In my house, a casserole dish always means healthy and comfort food. It also means slow cooking food, steamy windows, and the thing I like the most: Mom, is there anything left in the casserole? The answer should always be… Yes darling, go help yourself :D
Why is this a healthy and family favourite dish?

Here you have some of the main reasons: First, we love rabbit and snails (it’s a catalan tradition to have both together in the same dish). Second, rabbit is one of the most healthy meats… it’s white, non greasy, and very tasty (great for diets). Third, romesco is such a wonderful sauce… think about the ingredients: garlic, tomatoes, ñoras, hazelnuts and almonds, olive oil… what on earth could be healthier than that combo?
Why am I giving you all these health tips? Well, I’m sending the dish over to Meeta from What’s for lunch honey? and her Monthly Mingle. Many dishes came to my mind for her Healthy Family meals, but Snails & Rabbit and Romesco Sauce won the first place!!! So, here you have it Meeta :D. The hostess for this month’s event is Michelle from What’s Cooking Blog.

Wouldn’t you lick these snails and suck all the sauce in them? Well, we do! Wouldn’t you use your bread to clean the plate? Well, we do! Wouldn’t you use your fingers to eat the rabbit and snails and leave the plate with just the bones and shells, as if Tim Burton would use it for a new movie? Well… we do!!!

Really, you don’t know how good is this dish if you don’t try it!!! Just buy the Rioja wine, light some candles and get your beloved in front of you, open the bottle and have it for Valentines day… help the world population grow bigger :D :D :D.

Do you love Rabbit and Snails? Want more recipes?

Rabbit and Noodles casserole
Snails done in Garlic and Mint
Rice with Snails and Veggies


Ingredients for 4 servings: 8 rabbit pieces + the liver, 1 kilo of fresh snails, 2 medium onions, 4 garlic cloves, 4 tablespoons of romesco sauce (home made is my choice), 1 guindilla (small red chili pepper), flour, salt, black ground pepper, 2 glass water and olive oil.

To cook the snails
 you will need: patience, some branches of thyme, half a garlic head, water and salt.

Buy the snails alive. Have them fasting for at least a week. Clean them throughout one by one and rubbing the shells under tap water. Put in a strainer and rinse them under water for several times. Have them in cold water and those that don't come out of the shell put in a recipient with hot water. Those not coming out of the shells should be discarded.

Prepare a deep big pot with cold water, the thyme and the garlic. Put the snails inside, cover with the lid and have at low heat. When the snails feel the heat will come out of their shells (this is the way to cheat them and have the bodies out of the shells to eat them easily). Once they are dead and the water starts boiling, take the foam away and add some salt. Boil for 20 minutes, strain and reserve.

Start the dish:

  • Get some olive oil in a big casserole, while it heats up, clean the rabbit, dry, add salt and pepper over it and coat in flour. Fry in the casserole's hot oil. Just at medium heat. Reserve when golden.
  • If the oil didn't get too dirty from the flour, add the two chopped onions and stir at low medium heat until they get some colour, then add the chopped garlic. Stir until fragrant add the chili and finally the snails. Stir at low heat for 10 minutes. If the oil was full of burnt flour, strain it and add some new one to start with the ingredients.
  • Get the rabbit back to the casserole and pour the 2 glasses of water over it. Shake the casserole and simmer with the lid on for 15 minutes.
  • Use the rabbit's liver now. Chop it and add to the casserole, stir and shake for a while until the liver is cooked. Cover with the lid for another 10 or 15 minutes. Stir now and then.
  • Add the romesco sauce and shake the casserole so that all ingredients mix. Have at low heat for another 5 minutes.
  • This dish is better the day after or if you cook it in the morning will be perfect for dinner. Enjoy!


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01/27/2009 · 10:14 h by Peter M

No “commentarios” yet…I get to kick off!

There’s a saying, “what grows together, goes together” and that’s true here…snails, rabbit and nuts…all delicioso in my world.

01/27/2009 · 10:27 h by Peter G

Nuria, your philosophy about casseroles is very true…it certainly brings a feeling of home and comfort. I’ll have some casserole too please…just leave the snails behind!

01/27/2009 · 14:53 h by Bellini Valli

I’m sure that when all of the flavours are combined this makes for a a very special dish as well as a family favourite Nuria!!

01/27/2009 · 14:58 h by History of Greek Food

A superb dish from the land of casseroles!!! Nuria, thank you.

01/27/2009 · 15:41 h by Joan Nova

I’ve never had the combination but it sounds delicious. You don’t have to tell me twice to lick the snails and mop the plate with bread.

01/27/2009 · 16:15 h by StickyGooeyCreamyChewy

This looks just wonderful to me! I love both snails and rabbit, but both are difficult to find where I am. My mouth is watering!

01/27/2009 · 20:48 h by Nathan

Very interesting dish, I’ve never had snails or rabbit before, but I am always open to new ideas and things. :)

01/27/2009 · 21:36 h by JennDZ - The Leftover Queen

Wow, what lovely photos Nuria! I really need to make Romesco sauce more often, it looks awesome!

Love your new banner picture!

01/27/2009 · 22:44 h by Núria

Hola Peter! Yes, you are right… no comentarios… sometimes commenting gets too hard, I was just a bit lazy and trying to get things back in place. Thank God the horrible wind has gone!

Ok Peter, no snails for you :D

Si Valli, really good :D

My pleasure History! ;D

I wish I could send you a plate Fed Express, Joan!

He, he… you are welcome for our next dinner Susan!

Hola Nathan! Having an open mind is so important in life :D. Chico, you should try this one!

Thanks so much Jenn! The banner is a gift from Mallory… I love it too!!

01/28/2009 · 2:45 h by Maria

I’ve had snails many a time as my paternal grandmother loved to make them. She made them in a similar tomato sauce (without the almonds, however). As children, we ate them quite often with her.
Rabbit I tasted for the first time this summer in Kerkyra and it was delicious. I have never ventured to make either yet–although I very well should!

01/28/2009 · 3:51 h by Vij

A true comfort n healthy food. Rabbit n snails : A new combo for me. I would love to try this soon.

01/28/2009 · 12:23 h by Ning

I have tasted rabbit, I have tasted snails but not together. These ingredients are difficult to find here though. This recipe looks interesting and if you say it’s healthy, then it must be goood!

01/28/2009 · 12:51 h by Núria

Ok Maria, then it’s high time to try your own casserole :D. Romesco sauce is one of the best sauces ever!!!!

Hola Vij! Welcome to Spanish Recipes :D. Yeah, I guess this is new to many people… but here we are so used to these ingredients… it’s a question of culinary culture :D

Hola Ning! I adore your name, sounds like a bell :D

Too bad you cannot find the ingredients where you live… maybe you want to try it with chicken and romesco and something else?

01/28/2009 · 19:58 h by onlinepastrychef

This is an entirely new dish for me–it’s for gems like this that I pan the river of the Internet:D

I love the sense of humor here, too–the fast rabbit and the slow snails together!

Lovely photography as well!

01/28/2009 · 21:36 h by Jen of A2eatwrite

This looks sooooo delicious, Nuria! I love rabbits, snails and romescu!

I’m allergic to snails now, though. It’s very sad. ;-(

I had no idea that Rabbit and Snails were a Catalan tradition – how fascinating!

01/28/2009 · 21:50 h by pigpigscorner

This looks amazing! I love casseroles esp during the winter.

01/28/2009 · 21:57 h by Marc @ NoRecipes

I think I’ve only had snails once, and it wasn’t a very good experience. But I’m always willing to try things a couple times before I give up on them. This does look delicious. I’ve only had rabbit a few times, but I’ve been thinking I need to find a place here in NY I can get it because it is such a tasty meat.

01/29/2009 · 4:31 h by Dragon

I’m not sure I’m brave enough for this dish. :) You do make it look lovely.

01/29/2009 · 5:35 h by Navita

great great recipe…n hve to try rabbit meat..never done tht .

my first time here n i m glad i visited.
u hve a great place.

01/29/2009 · 7:00 h by Ivy

Oh Nuria, this dish sounds delicious. I love rabbit and snails. I can find rabbit easily but snails I’ve never seen them around. Maybe I should visit the central market but still I doubt if I’ll find any.

01/29/2009 · 10:10 h by Núria

Hola OnlinepastryChef! Welcome to Spanish Recipes and thanks for commenting :D

Hey! I didn’t think of that!!!! Fun… you are so right :D. Will visit your blog in short too.

Jen, how sad you are allergic! I’m using romesco in all my dishes this days ;D

Welcome to Spanish Recipes Pigpigscorner and thanks for commenting :D. So glad you like the dish!

Marc… you have to cook snails before trying ;D He, he… just kidding :D. Good to try things twice to make sure!

Thanks Dragon :D

Welcome Navita! Hope is not the last time ;D. I will visit your blog too in short :D

Sure you find some in the central market Ivy! My advise is wait until mid Spring… thats when they are more savory :D

01/30/2009 · 1:16 h by glamah16

I like both rabbit and snails. I have never had them togethr. Cassreroles are comforting indeed.

02/09/2009 · 11:21 h by Laurie Constantino

We are always in Greece during rabbit and snail season and generally have an abundance of both. It never crossed my mind to combine them, but now I can hardly wait for September to come around. Catalans are very clever!!

11/28/2011 · 0:41 h by Eulalia (Lali) Benejam Cobb

Hola Nuria, em recordes les cargolades de la meva avia!

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