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  < Back to Table Of Contents  < Back to Topic: Blue Collar Recipes and Cooking Methods

article number 412
article date 01-13-2015
copyright 2015 by Author else SaltOfAmerica
Bird and Game Recipes of 1881
by Maria Parloa, Principle, School of Cooking, Boston

From the 1881 book, Miss Parloa’s New Cook Book and Marketing Guide.

EDITORS NOTE: This article is decorated with drawings from the “Kitchen Furnishing” chapter.

To Clean and Truss Poultry.

First singe, by holding the bird over a blazing paper. It is best to do this over the open stove, when all the particles of burnt paper will fall into the fire.

Next open the vent and draw out the internal organs, if this has not been done at the butcher’s. Be careful not to break the gall bladder. Wash quickly in one water. If there are large black pin-feathers, take out what you can with the point of a knife, (it is impossible to get out all).

Cut the oil bag from the tail. Be sure that you have taken out every part of the wind-pipe, the lights and crop.

Turn the skin back, and cut the neck quite short.

Fill the crop with dressing, and put some in the body also.

With a short skewer, fasten the legs together at the joint where the feet were cutoff. [Be careful, in cutting off the feet of game or poultry, to cut in the joint. If you cut above, the ligaments that hold the flesh and bones together will be severed, and in cooking, the meat will shrink, leaving a bare, unsightly bone. Besides, you will have nothing to hold the skewer, if the ligaments are cut off.]

Run the skewer into the bone of the tail, and tie firmly with a long piece of twine.

Now take a longer skewer, and run through the two wings, fastening them firmly to the sides of the bird. With another short skewer, fasten the skin of the neck on to the back-bone.

Place the bird on its breast, and draw the strings, with which the legs were tied, around the skewers in the wings and neck; pass them across the back three times, and tie very tightly.

By following these directions, you will have the bird in good shape, and all the strings on the back, so that you will avoid breaking the handsome crust that always forms on properly basted and roasted poultry.

When cooked, first cut the strings, then draw out the skewers. The fat that comes from the vent and the gizzard of chickens, should be tried out immediately and put away for shortening and frying. That of geese, turkeys and ducks is of too strong a flavor to be nice in cookery.

To clean the giblets: Cut the gall-bag from the lobe of the liver, cutting a little of the liver with it, so as not to cut into the bag. Press the heart between the finger and thumb, to extract all the blood.

With a sharp knife, cut lightly around the gizzard, and draw off the outer coat, leaving the lining coat whole. If you cannot do that (and it does require practice), cut in two, and after removing the filling, take out the lining.

When the poultry is to be boiled, and is stuffed, the vent must be sewed with mending cotton or soft twine. Unless the bird is full of dressing, this will not be necessary in roasting.


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Fowl and Pork.

Clean and truss, pin in the floured cloth and put into water in which one pound of rather lean pork has been boiling three hours.

The time of cooking depends upon the age of the fowl. If they are not more than a year old an hour and a half will be enough, but if very old they may need three hours.

The quantity of pork given is for only a pair of fowl, and more must be used if a large number of birds be cooked.

Serve with egg sauce. The liquor should be saved for soups.

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Boiled Fowl with Macaroni.

Break twelve sticks of macaroni in pieces about two inches long; throw them into one quart of boiling water, add a table-spoonful of salt and half a table-spoonful of pepper. Boil rapidly for twelve minutes; then take up, and drain off all the water.

Season with one table-spoonful of butter and one teaspoonful of salt.

After the fowl have been singed and cleaned, stuff with the macaroni.

Truss them, and then pin in a floured cloth and plunge into enough boiling water to cover them. Boil rapidly for fifteen minutes; then set back where they will just simmer for from one and a half to two and a half hours. The time of cooking depends upon the age of the birds.

Serve with an egg or Bechamel sauce. The quantity of macaroni given is for two fowl. Plain boiled macaroni should be served with this dish.


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Larded Grouse.

Clean and wash the grouse. Lard the breast and legs.

Run a small skewer into the legs and through the tail. Tie firmly with twine.

Dredge with salt, and rub the breast with soft butter; then dredge thickly with flour.

Put into a quick oven. If to be very rare, cook twenty minutes; if wished better done, thirty minutes. The former time, as a general thing, suits gentlemen better, but thirty minutes is preferred by ladies. If the birds are cooked in a tin-kitchen, it should be for thirty or thirty-five minutes.

When done, place on a hot dish, on which has been spread bread sauce. Sprinkle fried crumbs over both grouse and sauce. Garnish with parsley.

The grouse may, instead, be served on a hot dish, with the parsley garnish, and the sauce and crumbs served in separate dishes. The first method is the better, however, as you get in the sauce all the gravy that comes from the birds.

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Larded Partridges.

Partridges are cooked and served the same as grouse.

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Larded Quail.

The directions for cooking and serving are the same as those for grouse, only that quails cook in fifteen minutes. All dry-meated birds are cooked in this way.

The question is sometimes asked, Should ducks be larded? Larding is to give richness to a dry meat that does not have fat enough of its own; therefore, meats like goose, duck and mutton are not improved by larding.

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Boiled Turkey with Celery.

Chop half a head of celery very fine. Mix with it one quart of bread crumbs, two scant table-spoonfuls of salt, half a teaspoonful of pepper, two heaping table-spoonfuls of butter and two eggs. Stuff the turkey with this; sew up and truss.

Wring a large square of white cotton cloth out of cold water, and dredge it thickly with flour. Pin the turkey in this, and plunge into boiling water. Let it boil rapidly for fifteen minutes; then set back where it will simmer. Allow three hours for a turkey weighing nine pounds, and twelve minutes for every additional pound.

Serve with celery sauce. The stuffing may be made the same as above, only substitute oysters for celery, and serve with oyster sauce.

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Boiled Turkey.

Clean and truss the same as for roasting. Rub into it two spoonfuls of salt, and put into boiling water to cover. Simmer gently three hours, if it weighs nine or ten pounds, and is tender. If old and tough it will take longer.

Serve with oyster, celery or egg sauce. Pour some of the sauce over the turkey, and serve the rest in a gravy boat.


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Roast Turkey.

Proceed the same with a turkey as with a chicken, allowing one hour and three-quarters for a turkey weighing eight pounds, and ten minutes for every additional pound.

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Roast Turkey with Chestnut Stuffing and Sauce.

Clean the turkey, and lard the breast.

Throw fifty large chestnuts into boiling water for a few minutes; then take them up, and rub off the thin, dark skin. Cover them with boiling water, and simmer for one hour; take them up, and mash fine.

Chop one pound of veal and half a pound of salt pork very fine. Add half of the chestnuts to this, and add, also, half a teaspoonful of pepper, two table-spoonfuls of salt and one cupful of stock or water.

Stuff the turkey with this. Truss, and roast as already directed.

Serve with a chestnut sauce. The remaining half of the chestnuts are for this sauce.

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Potted Pigeons.

Clean and wash one dozen pigeons. Stand them on their necks in a deep earthen or porcelain pot, and turn on them a pint of vinegar.

Cut three large onions in twelve pieces, and place a piece on each pigeon. Cover the pot, and let it stand all night.

In the morning take out the pigeons, and throw away the onions and vinegar.

Fry, in a deep stew-pan, six slices of fat pork, and when browned, take them up, and in the fat put six onions, sliced fine.

On these put the pigeons, having first trussed them, and dredge well with salt, pepper and flour.

Cover, and cook slowly for forty-five minutes, stirring occasionally; then add two quarts of boiling water, and simmer gently two hours.

Mix four heaping table-spoonfuls of flour with a cupful of cold water, and stir in with the pigeons. Taste to see if there is enough seasoning, and if there is not, add more. Cook half an hour longer.

Serve with a garnish of rice or riced potatoes. More or less onion can be used; and, if you like it so, spice the gravy slightly.

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Pigeons in Jelly.

Wash and truss one dozen pigeons.

Put them in a kettle with:
- four pounds of the shank of veal,
- six cloves,
- twenty-five pepper-corns,
- an onion that has been fried in one spoonful of butter,
- one stalk of celery,
- a bouquet of sweet herbs
- and four and a half quarts of water.

Have the veal shank broken in small pieces.

As soon as the contents of the kettle come to a boil, skim carefully, and set for three hours where they will just simmer. After they have been cooking one hour, add two table-spoonfuls of salt.

When the pigeons are done, take them up, being careful not to break them, and remove the strings.

Draw the kettle forward, where it will boil rapidly, and keep there for forty minutes then strain the liquor through a napkin, and taste to see if seasoned enough. The water should have boiled down to two and a half quarts.

Have two moulds that will each hold six pigeons. Put a thin layer of the jelly in these, and set on ice to harden. When hard, arrange the pigeons in them, and cover with the jelly, which must be cold, but liquid.

Place in the ice chest for six or, better still, twelve hours. There should be only one layer of the pigeons in the mould.

To serve: Dip the mould in a basin of warm water for one minute, and turn on a cold dish. Garnish with pickled beets and parsley. A Tartare sauce can be served with this dish.

If squabs are used, two hours will cook them.

All small birds, as well as partridge, grouse, etc., can be prepared in the same manner. Remember that the birds must be cooked tender, and that the liquor must be so reduced that it will become jellied.


Boned Turkey.

Get a turkey that has not been frozen (freezing makes it tear easily).

See that every part is whole; one with a little break in the skin will not do.

Cut off the legs, in the joints, and the tips of the wings. Do not draw the bird.

Place it on its breast, and with a small, sharp boning knife, cut in a straight line through to the bone, from the neck down to that part of the bird where there is but little flesh, where it is all skin and fat.

Begin at the neck, and run the knife between the flesh and the bones until you come to the wing. Then cut the ligaments that hold the bones together and the tendons that hold the flesh to the bones.

With the thumb and fore-finger, stress the flesh from the smooth bone.

When you come to the joint, carefully separate the ligaments and remove the bone. Do not try to take the bone from the next joint, as that is not in the way when carving, and it gives a more natural shape to the bird.

Now begin at the wish-bone, and when that is free from the flesh, run the knife between the sides and the flesh, always using the fingers to press the meat from the smooth bones, as, for instance, the breast-bone and lower part of the sides.

Work around the legs the same as you did around the wings, always using great care at the joints not to cut the skin. Drawing out the leg bones turns that part of the bird inside out.

Turn the bird over, and proceed in the same manner with the other side.

When all is detached, carefully draw the skin from the breast-bone; then run the knife between the fat and bone at the rump, leaving the small bone in the extreme end, as it holds the skewers.

Carefully remove the flesh from the skeleton, and turn it right side out again.

Rub into it two table-spoonfuls of salt and a little pepper, and fill with dressing.

Sew up the back and neck and then the vent. Truss the same as if not boned.

Take a strong piece of cotton cloth and pin the bird firmly in it, drawing very tight at the legs, as this is the broadest place, and the shape will not be good unless this precaution be taken.

Steam three hours, and then place on a buttered tin sheet, which put in a baking pan. Baste well with butter, pepper, salt and flour.

Roast one hour, basting every ten minutes, and twice with stock.

When cold, remove the skewers and strings, and garnish with aspic jelly, cooked beets and parsley.

To carve: First cut off the wings, then about two thick slices from the neck, where it will be quite fat, and then cut in thin slices. Serve jelly with each plate.

- the flesh of one chicken weighing four pounds,
- one pound of clear veal,
- half a pound of clear salt pork,
- one small cupful of cracker crumbs,
- two eggs,
- one cupful of broth,
- two and a half tablespoonfuls of salt,
- half a teaspoonful of pepper,
- one teaspoonful of summer savory,
- one of sweet majoram,
- one of thyme,
- half a spoonful of sage,
- and, if you like, one table-spoonful of capers, one quart of oysters and two table-spoonfuls of onion juice.

Have the meat uncooked and free from any tough pieces.

Chop very fine. Add seasoning, crackers, etc., mix thoroughly, and use.

If oysters are used, half a pound of the veal must be omitted. Where one cannot eat veal, use chicken instead. Veal is recommended for its cheapness.

Why people choose boned turkey instead of a plain roast turkey or chicken, is not plain, for the flavor is not so good; but at the times and places where boned birds are used, it is a very appropriate dish. That is, at suppers, lunches and parties, where the guests are served standing, it is impracticable to provide anything that cannot be broken with a fork or spoon; therefore, the advantage of a boned turkey, chicken or bird, is apparent.

One turkey weighing eight pounds before being boned, will serve thirty persons at a party, if there are, also, say oysters, rolls, coffee, ices, cake and cream. If the supper is very elaborate the turkey will answer for one of the dishes for a hundred or more persons.

If nothing more were gained in the boning of a bird, the knowledge of the anatomy and the help this will give in carving, pay to bone two or three chickens.

It is advisable to bone at least two fowls before trying a turkey, for if you spoil them there is nothing lost, as they make a stew or soup.

- one and a half pints of clear stock—beef if for amber jelly, and chicken or veal if for white;
- half a box of gelatine,
- the white of one egg,
- half a cupful of cold water,
- two cloves,
- one large slice of onion,
- twelve pepper-corns,
- one stalk of celery,
- salt.

Soak gelatine two hours in the cold water. Then put on with other ingredients, the white of the egg being beaten with one spoonful of the cold stock. Let come to a boil, and set back where it will just simmer for twenty minutes.

Strain through a napkin, turn into a mould or shallow dish, and put away to harden.

The jelly can be made with the bones of the turkey and chicken, by washing them, covering with cold water and boiling down to about three pints; by then straining and setting away to cool, and in the morning skimming off all the fat and turning off the clear stock. The bones may, instead, be used for a soup.

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Roast Goose.

Stuff the goose with a potato dressing made in the following manner:
- six potatoes, boiled, pared and mashed fine and light;
- one table-spoonful of salt,
- one teaspoonful of pepper,
- one spoonful of sage,
- two table-spoonfuls of onion juice,
- two of butter.

Truss, and dredge well with salt, pepper and flour.

Roast before the fire (if weighing eight pounds) one hour and a half; in the oven, one hour and a quarter. Make gravy the same as for turkey.

No butter is required for goose, it is so fat. Serve with apple sauce.

Many people boil the goose half an hour before roasting, to take away the strong flavor. Why not have something else if you do not like the real flavor of the goose?


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Roast Duck.

Ducks, to be good, must be cooked rare: for this reason it is best not to stuff. If, however, you do stuff them, use the goose dressing, and have it very hot.

The better way is to cut an onion in two, and put into the body of the bird; then truss, and dredge with salt, pepper and flour, and roast, if before the fire, forty minutes, and if in the oven, thirty minutes.

The fire must be very hot if the duck be roasted in the kitchen, and if in the oven, this must be a quick one.

Serve with currant jelly and a sauce made the same as for turkey.

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Roast Chicken.

Clean the chicken, and stuff the breast and part of the body with dressing made as follows:

For a pair of chickens weighing between seven and eight pounds, take one quart of stale bread (being sure not to have any hard pieces), and break up in very fine crumbs.

- a table-spoonful of salt,
- a scant teaspoonful of pepper,
- a teaspoonful of chopped parsley,
- half a teaspoonful of powdered sage,
- one of summer savory
- and a scant half cupful of butter.

Mix well together. This gives a rich dressing that will separate like rice when served.

Now truss the chickens, and dredge well with salt.

Take soft butter in the hand, and rub thickly over the chicken; then dredge rather thickly with flour.

Place on the side, on the meat rack, and put into a hot oven for a few moments, that the flour in the bottom of the pan may brown.

When it is browned, put in water enough to cover the pan. Baste every fifteen minutes with the gravy in the pan, and dredge with salt, pepper and flour. When one side is browned, turn, and brown the other.

The last position in which the chicken should bake is on its back, that the breast may be nicely frothed and browned. The last basting is on the breast, and should be done with soft butter, and the breast should be dredged with flour.

Putting the butter on the chicken at first, and then covering with flour, makes a paste, which keeps the juices in the chicken, and also supplies a certain amount of rich basting that is absorbed into the meat. It really does not take as much butter to baste poultry or game in this manner as by the old method of putting it on with a spoon after the bird began to cook.

The water in the pan must often be renewed; and always be careful not to get in too much at a time.

It will take an hour and a quarter to cook a pair of chickens, each weighing between three and a half and four pounds; anything larger, an hour and a half.

A sure sign that they are done is the readiness of joints to separate from the body.

If the chickens are roasted in the tin-kitchen, before the fire, it will take a quarter of an hour longer than in the oven.

GRAVY FOR CHICKENS: Wash the hearts, livers, gizzards and necks and put on to boil in three pints of water; boil down to one pint. Take them all up.

Put the liver on a plate, and mash fine with the back of the spoon; return it to the water in which it was boiled.

Mix two table-spoonfuls of flour with half a cupful of cold water. Stir into the gravy, season well with salt and pepper, and set back where it will simmer, for twenty minutes.

Take up the chickens, and take the meat rack out of the pan. Then tip the pan to one side, to bring all the gravy together. Skim off the fat.

Place the pan on top of the stove and turn into it one cupful of water. Let this boil up, in the meantime scraping everything from the sides and bottom of the pan. Turn this into the made gravy, and let it all boil together while you are removing the skewers and strings from the chickens.

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Broiled Quail.

Split the quail down the back. Wipe with a damp towel.

Season with salt and pepper, rub thickly with soft butter, and dredge with flour.

Broil ten minutes over clear coals.

Serve on hot buttered toast, garnishing with parsley.

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Broiled Pigeons.

Prepare, cook and serve the same as quail. They should be young for broiling, squabs being the best.

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Broiled Small Birds.

All small birds can be broiled according to the directions for quail, remembering that for extremely small ones it takes a very bright fire. As the birds should be only browned, the time required is very brief.

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Small Birds, Roasted.

Clean, by washing quickly in one water after they have been drawn. Season with salt and pepper.

Cut slices of salt pork very thin, and with small skewers, fasten a slice around each bird.

Run a long skewer through the necks of six or eight, and rest it on a shallow baking-pan. When all the birds are arranged, put into a hot oven for twelve minutes, or before a hot fire for a quarter of an hour.

Serve on toast.


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Chicken a la, Matelote.

Cut up an uncooked chicken. Rub in butter and flour, and brown in an oven.

Fry in four table-spoonfuls of chicken fat or butter, for about twenty minutes, a small carrot, onion and parsnip, all cut into dice.

When the chicken is browned, put it in a stew-pan with the cooked vegetables and one quart of white stock.

Then into the fat in which the vegetables were fried, put two table-spoonfuls of flour, and cook until brown. Stir this in with the chicken.

Add the liver, mashed fine, one table-spoonful of capers and salt and pepper to taste.

Cook very gently three-quarters of an hour; then add one-fourth of a pound of mushrooms, cut in small pieces. Cook fifteen minutes longer.

Serve with a border of boiled macaroni, mashed potatoes or rice.

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Chicken a la Reine.

Clean, stuff and truss a pair of chickens, as for roasting. Dredge well with salt, pepper and flour.

Cut a quarter of a pound of pork in slices, and put part on the bottom of a deep stew-pan with two slices of carrot and one large onion, cut fine.

Stir over the fire until they begin to color; then put in the chickens, and lay the remainder of the pork over them.

Place the stew-pan in a hot oven for twenty minutes; then add white stock to half cover the chicken (about two quarts), and a bouquet of sweet herbs. Dredge well with flour.

Cover the pan and return to the oven. Baste about every fifteen minutes, and after cooking one hour, turn over the chickens. Cook, in all, two hours.

Serve with Hollandaise sauce or with the sauce in which the chickens were cooked, it being strained over them.

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Chicken a la Tartare.

Singe the chicken, and split down the back. Wipe thoroughly with a damp cloth. Dredge well with salt and pepper, cover thickly with softened butter, and dredge thickly on both sides with fine, dry bread crumbs.

Place in a baking pan, the inside down, and cook in a very hot oven thirty minutes, taking care not to burn.

Serve with Tartare sauce.

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Broiled Chicken.

Singe the chicken, and split down the back, if not already prepared; and wipe with a damp cloth.

Never wash it.

Season well with salt and pepper. Take some soft butter in the right hand and rub over the bird, letting the greater part go on the breast and legs. Dredge with flour.

Put in the double broiler, and broil over a moderate fire, having the breast turned to the heat at first.

When the chicken is a nice brown, which will be in about fifteen minutes, place in a pan and put into a moderate oven for twelve minutes.

Place on a hot dish, season with salt, pepper and butter, and serve immediately.

This rule is for a chicken weighing about two and a half pounds. The chicken is improved by serving with rnaitre d’ hotel butter or Tartare sauce.


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Chicken Stew with Dumplings.

- one chicken or fowl, weighing about three pounds;
- one table-spoonful of butter,
- three of flour,
- one large onion,
- three slices of carrot,
- three of turnip,
- three pints of boiling water
- salt
- pepper

Cut the chicken in slices suitable for serving. Wash, and put in a deep stew-pan, add the water, and set on to boil.

Put the carrot, turnip and onion, cut fine, in a sauce-pan, with the butter, and cook slowly half an hour, stirring often.

Then take up the vegetables in a strainer, place the strainer in the stew-pan with the chicken, and dip some of the water into it.

Mash the vegetables with the back of a spoon, and rub as much as possible through the strainer.

Now skim two spoonfuls of chicken fat from the water, and put in the pan in which the vegetables were cooked. When boiling hot, add the three table-spoonfuls of flour.

Stir over the fire until a dark brown; then stir it in with the chicken, and simmer until tender. Season well with pepper and salt.

The stew should only simmer all the while it is cooking. It must not boil hard. About two hours will be needed to cook a year old chicken.

Twelve minutes before serving draw the stew-pan forward, and boil up; then put in the dumplings, and cook ten minutes.

Take them up, and keep in the heater while you are dishing the chicken into the centre of the platter. Afterwards, place the dumplings around the edge.

This is a very nice and economical dish, if pains be taken in preparing. One stewed chicken will go farther than two roasted.

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Roast Rabbit.

First make a stuffing of:
a pound of veal and a quarter of a pound of pork, simmered two hours in water to cover;
four crackers, rolled fine;
a table-spoonful of salt,
a scant teaspoonful of pepper,
a teaspoonful of summer savory,
a large table-spoonful of butter
and one and a quarter cupfuls of the broth in which the veal and pork were cooked.

Chop the meat fine, add the other ingredients, and put on the fire to heat.

Cut off the rabbit’s head, open the vent, and draw. Wash clean, and season with salt and pepper.

Stuff while the dressing is hot, and sew up the opening.

Put the rabbit on its knees, and skewer in that position.

Rub thickly with butter, dredge with flour, and put in the baking pan, the bottom of which should be covered with hot water. Bake half an hour in a quick oven, basting frequently.

Serve with a border of mashed potatoes, and pour the gravy over the rabbit.


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Curry of Rabbit.

Cut the rabbit in small pieces. Wash, and cook the same as chicken curry.

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Saddle of Venison.

Carefully scrape off the hair, and wipe with a damp towel. Season well with salt and pepper, and roll up and skewer together.

Rub thickly with soft butter and dredge thickly with flour.

Roast for an hour before a clear fire or in a hot oven, basting frequently. When half done, if you choose, baste with a few spoonfuls of claret. Or, you can have one row of larding on each side of the back-bone. This gives a particularly nice flavor.

TO MAKE THE GRAVY: Pour off all the fat from the baking pan, and put in the pan a cupful of boiling water. Stir from the sides and bottom, and set back where it will keep hot.

In a small frying-pan put one table-spoonful of butter, a small slice of onion, six pepper-corns and four whole cloves.

Cook until the onion is browned, and then add a generous teaspoonful of flour. Stir until this is browned; then, gradually, add the gravy in the pan. Boil one minute.

Strain, and add half a teaspoonful of lemon juice and three tablespoonfuls of currant jelly.

Serve both venison and gravy very hot. The time given is for a saddle weighing between ten and twelve pounds.

All the dishes and plates for serving must be hot. Venison is cooked in almost the same manner as beef, always remembering that it must be served rare and hot.

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Roast Leg of Venison.

Draw the dry skin from the meat, and wipe with a damp towel.

Make a paste with one quart of flour and a generous pint of cold water.

Cover the venison with this, and place before a hot fire, if to be roasted in the tin kitchen, or else in a very hot oven. As the paste browns, baste it frequently with the gravy in the pan.

When it has been cooking one hour and a half, take off the paste, cover with butter, and dredge thickly with flour. Cook one hour longer, basting frequently with butter, salt and flour.

Make the gravy the same as for a saddle of venison, or serve with game sauce. The time given is for a leg weighing about fifteen pounds.

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