Nowadays Imnarja is celebrated in and around the historic town of Rabat and features an agricultural fair with local produce on sale, livestock competitions, marching bands and horse racing in the afternoon. The most traditional and folkloric part of the festival takes place in woodland at Buskett, near Rabat, where people from all over the island flock to enjoy folk music and singing. Beneath the trees, people linger until late at night, tucking in to rabbit stew (il-fenkata) which is a Maltese speciality. If you think of rabbits as pets rather than good food providers, I suggest you skip this meal. Many people, however, enjoy this traditional Maltese meal.
The fenkata has now become the national dish and is promoted on tourist menus. A Fenkata today is best described as a kind of rabbit outing or celebration where a family or group of friends goes out into the country to eat a dish of spaghetti and rabbit. The rabbit, marinated overnight in wine, garlic and bay leaf, is lightly browned with a very delicious sauce made up of garlic, wine, curry, carrots and peas and tomato sauce, then simmered for several hours, ideally in a terracotta casserole. Restaurants usually serve it with chips (the ubiquitous British legacy), and crusty local bread to soak up the rich sauces. Traditionally rabbit stew is served on spaghetti.