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The Book of Household Management by Mrs. Isabella Beeton

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_Sufficient_.--1 large fowl for one entree.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

STOCKING THE FOWL-HOUSE.--Take care that the birds with which
you stock your house are _young_. The surest indications of old
age are fading of the comb and gills from brilliant red to a
dingy brick-colour, general paleness of plumage, brittleness of
the feathers, length and size of the claws, and the scales of
the legs and feet assuming a ragged and _corny_ appearance. Your
cock and hens should be as near two years old as possible. Hens
will lay at a year old, but the eggs are always insignificant in
size, and the layers giddy and unsteady sitters. The hen-bird is
in her prime for breeding at three years old, and will continue
so, under favourable circumstances, for two years longer; after
which she will decline. Crowing hens, and those that have large
combs, are generally looked on with mistrust; but this is mere
silliness and superstition--though it is possible that a spruce
young cock would as much object to a spouse with such peculiar
addictions, as a young fellow of our own species would to a
damsel who whistled and who wore whiskers. Fowls with yellow
legs should be avoided; they are generally of a tender
constitution, loose-fleshed, and of indifferent flavour.

FRICASSEED FOWL (Cold Meat Cookery).

946. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, 1 strip of
lemon-peel, 1 blade of pounded mace, 1 bunch of savoury herbs, 1 onion,
popper and salt to taste, 1 pint of water, 1 teaspoonful of flour, 1/4
pint of cream, the yolks of 2 eggs.

_Mode_.--Carve the fowls into nice joints; make gravy of the trimmings
and legs, by stewing them with the lemon-peel, mace, herbs, onion,
seasoning, and water, until reduced to 1/2 pint; then strain, and put in
the fowl. Warm it through, and thicken with a teaspoonful of flour; stir
the yolks of the eggs into the cream; add these to the sauce, let it get
thoroughly hot, but do not allow it to boil, or it will curdle.

_Time_.--1 hour to make the gravy, 1/4 hour to warm the fowl.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the cold chicken, 8d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

CHARACTERISTICS OF HEALTH AND POWER.--The chief characteristics
of health in a fowl are brightness and dryness of eye and
nostrils, the comb and wattles firm and ruddy, the feathers
elastic and glossy. The most useful cock is generally the
greatest tyrant, who struts among his hens despotically, with
his head erect and his eyes ever watchful. There is likely to be
handsomer and stronger chicks in a house where a bold,
active--even savage--bird reigns, than where the lord of the
hen-house is a weak, meek creature, who bears the abuse and
peckings of his wives without a remonstrance. I much prefer
dark-coloured cock-birds to those of light plumage. A cock, to
be handsome, should be of middling size; his bill should be
short, comb bright-red, wattles large, breast broad, and wings
strong. His head should be rather small than otherwise, his legs
short and sturdy, and his spurs well-formed; his feathers should
be short and close, and the more frequently and heartily he
crows, the better father he is likely to become. The common
error of choosing hens _above_ the ordinary stature of their
respective varieties should be avoided, as the best
breeding-hens are those of medium size.

FRIED FOWLS (Cold Meat Cookery).

I.

947. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowls, vinegar, salt and
cayenne to taste, 3 or 4 minced shalots. For the batter,--1/2 lb. of
flour, 1/2 pint of hot water, 2 oz. of butter, the whites of 2 eggs.

_Mode_.--Cut the fowl into nice joints; steep them for an hour in a
little vinegar, with salt, cayenne, and minced shalots. Make the batter
by mixing the flour and water smoothly together; melt in it the butter,
and add the whites of egg beaten to a froth; take out the pieces of
fowl, dip them in the batter, and fry, in boiling lard, a nice brown.
Pile them high in the dish, and garnish with fried parsley or rolled
bacon. When approved, a sauce or gravy may be served with them.

_Time_.--10 minutes to fry the fowl.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the cold fowl, 8d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

CHANTICLEER AND HIS COMPANIONS.--On bringing the male and female
birds together for the first time, it will be necessary to watch
the former closely, as it is a very common occurrence with him
to conceive a sudden and violent dislike for one or more of his
wives, and not allow the obnoxious ones to approach within some
distance of the others; indeed, I know many cases where the
capricious tyrant has set upon the innocent cause of his
resentment and killed her outright. In all such cases, the hen
objected to should be removed and replaced by another. If the
cock should, by any accident, get killed, considerable delicacy
is required in introducing a new one. The hens may mope, and
refuse to associate with their new husband, clustering in
corners, and making odious comparisons between him and the
departed; or the cock may have his own peculiar notions as to
what a wife should be, and be by no means satisfied with those
you have provided him. The plan is, to keep him by himself
nearly the whole day, supplying him plentifully with
exhilarating food, then to turn him loose among the hens, and to
continue this practice, allowing him more of the society of his
wives each day, until you suffer him to abide with them
altogether.

II.

948. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, vinegar, salt and
cayenne to taste, 4 minced shalots, yolk of egg; to every teacupful of
bread crumbs allow 1 blade of pounded mace, 5 teaspoonful of minced
lemon-peel, 1 saltspoonful of salt, a few grains of cayenne.

_Mode_.--Steep the pieces of fowl as in the preceding recipe, then dip
them into the yolk of an egg or clarified butter; sprinkle over bread
crumbs with which have been mixed salt, mace, cayenne, and lemon-peel in
the above proportion. Fry a light brown, and serve with or without
gravy, as may be preferred.

_Time_.--10 minutes to fry the fowl.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the cold fowl, 6d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

VARIOUS MODES OF FATTENING FOWLS.--It would, I think, be a
difficult matter to find, among the entire fraternity of
fowl-keepers, a dozen whose mode of fattening "stock" is the
same. Some say that the grand f secret is to give them abundance
of saccharine food; others say nothing beats heavy corn steeped
in milk; while another breeder, celebrated in his day, and the
recipient of a gold medal from a learned society, says, "The
best method is as follows:-The chickens are to be taken from the
hen the night after they are hatched, and fed with eggs
hard-boiled, chopped, and mixed with crumbs of bread, as larks
and other small birds are fed, for the first fortnight; after
which give them oatmeal and treacle mixed so as to crumble, of
which the chickens are very fond, and thrive so fast that, at
the end of two months, they will be as large as full-grown
fowls." Others there are who insist that nothing beats
oleaginous diet, and cram their birds with ground oats and suet.
But, whatever the course of diet favoured, on one point they
seem agreed; and that is, that, while fattening, the fowls
_should be kept in the dark_. Supposing the reader to be a
dealer--a breeder of gross chicken meat for the market (against
which supposition the chances are 10,000 to 1), and beset with
as few scruples as generally trouble the huckster, the advice is
valuable. "Laugh and grow fat" is a good maxim enough; but
"Sleep and grow fat" is, as is well known to folks of porcine
attributes, a better. The poor birds, immured in their dark
dungeons, ignorant that there is life and sunshine abroad, tuck
their heads under their wings and make a long night of it; while
their digestive organs, having no harder work than to pile up
fat, have an easy time enough. But, unless we are mistaken, he
who breeds poultry for his own eating, bargains for a more
substantial reward than the questionable pleasure of burying his
carving-knife in chicken grease. Tender, delicate, and
nutritious flesh is the great aim; and these qualities, I can
affirm without fear of contradiction, were never attained by a
dungeon-fatted chicken: perpetual gloom and darkness is as
incompatible with chicken life as it is with human. If you wish
to be convinced of the absurdity of endeavouring to thwart
nature's laws, plant a tuft of grass, or a cabbage-plant, in the
darkest corner of your coal-cellar. The plant or the tuft may
increase in length and breadth, but its colour will be as wan
and pale, almost, as would be your own face under the
circumstances.

POULET A LA MARENGO.

949. INGREDIENTS.--1 large fowl, 4 tablespoonfuls of salad oil, 1
tablespoonful of flour, 1 pint of stock No. 105, or water, about 20
mushroom-buttons, salt and pepper to taste, 1 teaspoonful of powdered
sugar, a very small piece of garlic.

_Mode_.--Cut the fowl into 8 or 10 pieces; put them with the oil into a
stewpan, and brown them over a moderate fire; dredge in the above
proportion of flour; when that is browned, pour in the stock or water;
let it simmer very slowly for rather more than 1/2 hour, and skim off
the fat as it rises to the top; add the mushrooms; season with salt,
pepper, garlic, and sugar; take out the fowl, which arrange
pyramidically on the dish, with the inferior joints at the bottom.
Reduce the sauce by boiling it quickly over the fire, keeping it stirred
until sufficiently thick to adhere to the back of a spoon; pour over the
fowl, and serve.

_Time_.--Altogether 50 minutes. _Average cost_, 3s. 6d.

_Sufficient_ for 3 or 4 persons.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

A FOWL A LA MARENGO.--The following is the origin of the
well-known dish Poulet a la Marengo:--On the evening of the
battle the first consul was very hungry after the agitation of
the day, and a fowl was ordered with all expedition. The fowl
was procured, but there was no butter at hand, and unluckily
none could be found in the neighbourhood. There was oil in
abundance, however; and the cook having poured a certain
quantity into his skillet, put in the fowl, with a clove of
garlic and other seasoning, with a little white wine, the best
the country afforded; he then garnished it with mushrooms, and
served it up hot. This dish proved the second conquest of the
day, as the first consul found it most agreeable to his palate,
and expressed his satisfaction. Ever since, a fowl a la Marengo
is a favourite dish with all lovers of good cheer.

MINCED FOWL A LA BECHAMEL.

950. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, 6 tablespoonfuls of
Bechamel sauce No. 367, 6 tablespoonfuls of white stock No. 107, the
white of 1 egg, bread crumbs, clarified butter.

_Mode_.--Take the remains of roast fowls, mince the white meat very
small, and put it into a stewpan with the Bechamel and stock; stir it
well over the fire, and just let it boil up. Pour the mince into a dish,
beat up the white of egg, spread it over, and strew on it a few grated
bread crumbs; pour a very little clarified butter on the whole, and
brown either before the fire or with a salamander. This should be served
in a silver dish, if at hand.

_Time_.--2 or 3 minutes to simmer in the sauce.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

THE BEST WAY TO FATTEN FOWLS.--The barn-door fowl is in itself a
complete refutation of the cramming and dungeon policy of
feeding practised by some. This fowl, which has the common run
of the farm-yard, living on dairy-scraps and offal from the
stable, begins to grow fat at threshing-time. He has his fill of
the finest corn; he has his fill of fresh air and natural
exercise, and at last he comes smoking to the table,--a dish
for the gods. In the matter of unnaturally stuffing and
confining fowls, Mowbray is exactly of our opinion. He says:
"The London chicken-butchers, as they are termed, are said to
be, of all others, the most expeditious and dexterous feeders,
putting up a coop of fowls, and making them thoroughly fat
within the space of a fortnight, using much grease, and that
perhaps not of the most delicate kind, in the food. In this way
I have no boasts to make, having always found it necessary to
allow a considerable number of weeks for the purpose of making
fowls fat in coops. In the common way this business is often
badly managed, fowls being huddled together in a small coop,
tearing each other to pieces, instead of enjoying that repose
which alone can insure, the wished-for object--irregularly fed
and cleaned, until they become so stenched and poisoned in their
own excrement, that their flesh actually smells and tastes when
smoking upon the table." Sussex produces the fattest and largest
poultry of any county in England, and the fatting process there
most common is to give them a gruel made of pot-liquor and
bruised oats, with which are mixed hog's grease, sugar, and
milk. The fowls are kept very warm, and crammed morning and
night. They are put into the coop, and kept there two or three
days before the cramming begins, and then it is continued for a
fortnight, and the birds are sent to market.

RAGOUT OF FOWL.

951. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowls, 3 shalots, 2 blades
of mace, a faggot of savoury herbs, 2 or three slices of lean ham, 1
pint of stock or water, pepper and salt to taste, 1 onion, 1
dessertspoonful of flour, 1 tablespoonful of lemon-juice, 1/2
teaspoonful of pounded sugar, 1 oz. of butter.

_Mode_.--Cut the fowls up into neat pieces, the same as for a fricassee;
put the trimmings into a stewpan with the shalots, mace, herbs, ham,
onion, and stock (water may be substituted for this). Boil it slowly for
1 hour, strain the liquor, and put a small piece of butter into a
stewpan; when melted, dredge in sufficient flour to dry up the butter,
and stir it over the fire. Put in the strained liquor, boil for a few
minutes, and strain it again over the pieces of fowl. Squeeze in the
lemon-juice, add the sugar and a seasoning of pepper and salt, make it
hot, but do not allow it to boil; lay the fowl neatly on the dish, and
garnish with croutons.

_Time_.--Altogether 1-1/2 hour. _Average cost_, exclusive of the cold
fowl, 9d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

THE BEST FOWLS TO FATTEN, &c.--The chicks most likely to fatten
well are those first hatched in the brood, and those with the
shortest legs. Long-legged fowls, as a rule, are by far the most
difficult to fatten. The most delicate sort are those which are
put up to fatten as soon as the hen forsakes them; for, as says
an old writer, "then they will be in fine condition, and full of
flesh, which flesh is afterwards expended in the exercise of
foraging for food, and in the increase of stature; and it may be
a work of some weeks to recover it,--especially with young
cocks." But whether you take them in hand as chicks, or not till
they are older, the three prime rules to be observed are, sound
and various food, warmth, and cleanliness. There is nothing that
a fatting fowl grows so fastidious about as his water. If water
any way foul be offered him, he will not drink it, but sulk with
his food, and pine, and you all the while wondering the reason
why. Keep them separate, allowing to each bird as much space as
you can spare. Spread the ground with sharp sandy gravel; take
care that they are not disturbed. In addition to their regular
diet of good corn, make them a cake of ground oats or beans,
brown sugar, milk, and mutton suet. Let the cake lie till it is
stale, then crumble it, and give each bird a gill-measureful
morning and evening. No entire grain should be given to fowls
during the time they are fattening; indeed, the secret of
success lies in supplying them with the most nutritious food
without stint, and in such a form that their digestive mills
shall find no difficulty in grinding it.

[Illustration: ROAST FOWL.]

ROAST FOWLS.

952. INGREDIENTS.--A pair of fowls; a little flour.

_Mode_.--Fowls to be tender should be killed a couple of days before
they are dressed; when the feathers come out easily, then let them be
picked and cooked. In drawing them, be careful not to break the
gall-bag, as, wherever it touches, it would impart a very bitter taste;
the liver and gizzard should also be preserved. Truss them in the
following manner:--After having carefully picked them, cut off the head,
and skewer the skin of the neck down over the back. Cut off the claws;
dip the legs in boiling water, and scrape them; turn the pinions under,
run a skewer through them and the middle of the legs, which should be
passed through the body to the pinion and leg on the other side, one
skewer securing the limbs on both sides. The liver and gizzard should be
placed in the wings, the liver on one side and the gizzard on the other.
Tie the legs together by passing a trussing-needle, threaded with twine,
through the backbone, and secure it on the other side. If trussed like a
capon, the legs are placed more apart. When firmly trussed, singe them
all over; put them down to a bright clear fire, paper the breasts with a
sheet of buttered paper, and keep the fowls well basted. Roast them for
3/4 hour, more or less, according to the size, and 10 minutes before
serving, remove the paper, dredge the fowls with a little fine flour,
put a piece of butter into the basting-ladle, and as it melts, baste the
fowls with it; when nicely frothed and of a rich colour, serve with good
brown gravy, a little of which should be poured over the fowls, and a
tureen of well-made bread sauce, No. 371. Mushroom, oyster, or egg sauce
are very suitable accompaniments to roast fowl.--Chicken is roasted in
the same manner.

_Time_.--A very large fowl, quite 1 hour, medium-sized one 3/4 hour,
chicken 1/2 hour, or rather longer.

_Average cost_, in full season, 5s. a pair; when scarce, 7s. 6d. the
pair.

_Sufficient_ for 6 or 7 persons.

_Seasonable_ all the year, but scarce in early spring.

THE DISEASES OF FOWLS, AND HOW TO CURE THEM.--The diseases to
which _Gallus domesticus_ is chiefly liable, are roup, pip,
scouring, and chip. The first-mentioned is the most common of
all, and results from cold. The ordinary symptoms,--swollen
eyes, running at the nostrils, and the purple colour of the
wattles. Part birds so affected from the healthy ones, as, when
the disease is at its height it is as contagious as glanders
among horses. Wash out the nostrils with warm water, give daily
a peppercorn inclosed in dough; bathe the eyes and nostrils with
warm milk and water. If the head is much swollen, bathe with
warm brandy and water. When the bird is getting well, put half a
spoonful of sulphur in his drinking-water. Some fanciers
prescribe for this disease half a spoonful of table salt,
dissolved in half a gill of water, in which rue has been
steeped; others, pills composed of ground rice and fresh butter:
but the remedy first mentioned will be found far the best. As
there is a doubt respecting the wholesomeness of the eggs laid
by roupy hens, it will be as well to throw them away. The pip is
a white horny skin growing on the tip of the bird's tongue. It
should be removed with the point of a penknife, and the place
rubbed with salt.

FOWL AND RICE CROQUETTES (an Entree).

953. INGREDIENTS.--1/4 lb. of rice, 1 quart of stock or broth, 3 oz. of
butter, minced fowl, egg, and bread crumbs.

_Mode_.--Put the rice into the above proportion of cold stock or broth,
and let it boil very gently for 1/2 hour; then add the butter, and
simmer it till quite dry and soft When cold, make it into balls, hollow
out the inside, and fill with minced fowl made by recipe No. 956. The
mince should be rather thick. Cover over with rice, dip the balls into
egg, sprinkle them with bread crumbs, and fry a nice brown. Dish them,
and garnish with fried parsley. Oysters, white sauce, or a little cream,
may be stirred into the rice before it cools.

_Time_.--1/2 hour to boil the rice, 10 minutes to fry the croquettes.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the fowl, 8d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

CHIP.--If the birds are allowed to puddle about on wet soil, or
to be much out in the rain, they will get "chip." Young chicks
are especially liable to this complaint. They will sit shivering
in out-of-the-way corners, perpetually uttering a dolorous
"chip, chip;" seemingly frozen with cold, though, on handling
them, they are found to be in high fever. A wholesale breeder
would take no pains to attempt the cure of fowls so afflicted;
but they who keep chickens for the pleasure, and not for the
profit they yield, will be inclined to recover them if possible.
Give them none but warm food, half a peppercorn rolled in a
morsel of dough every night, and a little nitre in their water.
Above all, keep them warm; a corner in the kitchen fender, for a
day or two, will do more to effect a cure than the run of a
druggist's warehouse.

CROQUETTES OF FOWL (an Entree).

954. INGREDIENTS.--3 or 4 shalots, 1 oz. of butter, 1 teaspoonful of
flour, white sauce; pepper, salt, and pounded mace to taste; 1/2
teaspoonful of pounded sugar, the remains of cold roast fowls, the yolks
of 2 eggs, egg, and bread crumbs.

_Mode_.--Mince the fowl, carefully removing all skin and bone, and fry
the shalots in the butter; add the minced fowl, dredge in the flour, put
in the pepper, salt, mace, pounded sugar, and sufficient white sauce to
moisten it; stir to it the yolks of 2 well-beaten eggs, and set it by to
cool. Then make the mixture up into balls, egg and bread-crumb them, and
fry a nice brown. They may be served on a border of mashed potatoes,
with gravy or sauce in the centre.

_Time_.--10 minutes to fry the balls.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

THE TURN.--What is termed "turrling" with song-birds, is known,
as regard fowls, as the "turn." Its origin is the same in both
cases,--over-feeing and want of exercise. Without a moment's
warning, a fowl so afflicted will totter and fall from its
perch, and unless assistance be at hand, speedily give up the
ghost. The veins of the palate should be opened, and a few drops
of mixture composed of six parts of sweet nitre and one of
ammonia, poured down its throat. I have seen ignorant keepers
plunge a bird, stricken with the "turn," into cold water; but I
never saw it taken out again alive; and for a good reason: the
sudden chill has the effect of driving the blood to the
head,--of aggravating the disease indeed, instead of relieving
it.

HASHED FOWL--an Entree (Cold Meat Cookery).

955. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, 1 pint of water, 1
onion, 2 or three small carrots, 1 blade of pounded mace, pepper and
salt to taste, 1 small bunch of savoury herbs, thickening of butter and
flour, 1-1/2 tablespoonful of mushroom ketchup.

_Mode_.--Cut off the best joints from the fowl, and the remainder make
into gravy, by adding to the bones and trimmings a pint of water, an
onion sliced and fried of a nice brown, the carrots, mace, seasoning,
and herbs. Let these stew gently for 1-1/2 hour, strain the liquor, and
thicken with a little flour and butter. Lay in the fowl, thoroughly warm
it through, add the ketchup, and garnish with sippets of toasted bread.

_Time_.--Altogether 1-3/4 hour.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the cold fowl, 4d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

SKIN-DISEASE IN FOWLS.--Skin-disease is, nine times out of ten,
caused by the feathers being swarmed by parasites. Poor feeding
will induce this, even if cleanliness be observed;
uncleanliness, however liberal the bill of fare, will be taken
as an invitation by the little biting pests, and heartily
responded to. Mix half a teaspoonful of hydro-oxalic acid with
twelve teaspoonfuls of water,--apply to the itching parts with
an old shaving-brush.

OBSTRUCTION OF THE CROP.--Obstruction of the crop is occasioned
by weakness or greediness. You may know when a bird is so
afflicted by his crop being distended almost to bursting.
Mowbray tells of a hen of his in this predicament; when the crop
was opened, a quantity of new beans were discovered in a state
of vegetation. The crop should be slit from the _bottom_ to the
_top_ with a sharp pair of scissors, the contents taken out, and
the slit sewed up again with line white thread.

MINCED FOWL--an Entree (Cold Meat Cookery).

956. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, 2 hard-boiled eggs,
salt, cayenne, and pounded mace, 1 onion, 1 faggot of savoury herbs, 6
tablespoonfuls of cream, 1 oz. of butter, two teaspoonfuls of flour, 1/2
teaspoonful of finely-minced lemon-peel, 1 tablespoonful of lemon-juice.

_Mode_.--Cut out from the fowl all the white meat, and mince it finely
without any skin or bone; put the bones, skin, and trimmings into a
stewpan with an onion, a bunch of savoury herbs, a blade of mace, and
nearly a pint of water; let this stew for an hour, then strain the
liquor. Chop the eggs small; mix them with the fowl; add salt, cayenne,
and pounded mace, put in the gravy and remaining ingredients; let the
whole just boil, and serve with sippets of toasted bread.

_Time_.--Rather more than 1 hour.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the fowl, 8d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

_Note_.--Another way to make this is to mince the fowl, and warm it in
white sauce or Bechamel. When dressed like this, 3 or 4 poached eggs may
be placed on the top: oysters, or chopped mushrooms, or balls of oyster
forcemeat, may be laid round the dish.

THE MOULTING SEASON.--During the moulting season beginning
properly at the end of September, the fowls will require a
little extra attention. Keep them dry and warm, and feed them
liberally on warm and satisfying food. If in any fowl the moult
should seem protracted, examine it for broken feather-stumps
still beaded in the skin: if you find any, extract them
carefully with a pair of tweezers. If a fowl is hearty and
strong, six weeks will see him out of his trouble; if he is
weakly, or should take cold during the time, he will not
thoroughly recover in less than three months. It is seldom or
ever that hens will lay during the moult; while the cock, during
the same period, will give so little of his consideration to the
frivolities of love, that you may as well, nay, much better,
keep him by himself till he perfectly recovers. A moulting
chicken makes but a sorry dish.

HASHED FOWL, Indian Fashion (an Entree).

957.--INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, 3 or 4 sliced
onions, 1 apple, 2 oz. of butter, pounded mace, pepper and salt to
taste, 1 tablespoonful of curry-powder, 2 tablespoonfuls of vinegar, 1
tablespoonful of flour, 1 teaspoonful of pounded sugar, 1 pint of gravy.

_Mode_.--Cut the onions into slices, mince the apple, and fry these in
the butter; add pounded mace, pepper, salt, curry-powder, vinegar,
flour, and sugar in the above proportions; when the onion is brown, put
it the gravy, which should be previously made from the bones and
trimmings of the fowls, and stew for 3/4 hour; add the fowl cut into
nice-sized joints, let it warm through, and when quite tender, serve.
The dish should be garnished with au edging of boiled rice.

_Time_.--1 hour. Average cost, exclusive of the fowl, 8d.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

THE SCOUR OR DYSENTERY.--The scour, or dysentery, or diarrhoea,
is induced variously. A sudden alteration in diet will cause it,
as will a superabundance of green food. The best remedy is a
piece of toasted biscuit sopped in ale. If the disease has too
tight a hold on the bird to be quelled by this, give six drops
of syrup of white poppies and six drops of castor-oil, mixed
with a little oatmeal or ground rice. Restrict the bird's diet,
for a few days, to dry food,--crushed beans or oats, stale
bread-crumbs, &c.

FOWL SCOLLOPS (Cold Meat Cookery).

958. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast or boiled fowl, 1/2
pint of Bechamel, No. 367, or white sauce, No. 537 or 539.

_Mode_.--Strip off the skin from the fowl; cut the meat into
thin slices, and warm them in about 1/2 pint, or rather more, of
Bechamel, or white sauce. When quite hot, serve, and garnish the
dish with rolled ham or bacon toasted.

_Time_.--1 minute to simmer the slices of fowl.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

[Illustration: THE FEATHER LEGGED BANTAM.]

THE FEATHER LEGGED BANTAM.--Since the introduction of the Bantam
into Europe, it has ramified into many varieties, none of which
are destitute of elegance, and some, indeed, remarkable for
their beauty. All are, or ought to be, of small size, but lively
and vigorous, exhibiting in their movements both grace and
stateliness. The variety shown in the engraving is remarkable
for the _tarsi_, or beams of the legs, being plumed to the toes,
with stiff, long feathers, which brush the ground. Owing,
possibly, to the little care taken to preserve this variety from
admixture, it is now not frequently seen. Another variety is
often red, with a black breast and single dentated comb. The
_tarsi_ are smooth, and of a dusky blue. When this sort of
Bantam is pure, it yields in courage and spirit to none, and is,
in fact, a game-fowl in miniature, being as beautiful and
graceful as it is spirited. A pure white Bantam, possessing all
the qualifications just named, is also bred in the royal aviary
at Windsor.

AN INDIAN DISH OF FOWL (an Entree).

959. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, 3 or 4 sliced onions,
1 tablespoonful of curry-powder, salt to taste.

_Mode_.--Divide the fowl into joints; slice and fry the onions in a
little butter, taking care not to burn them; sprinkle over the fowl a
little curry-powder and salt; fry these nicely, pile them high in the
centre of the dish, cover with the onion, and serve with a cut lemon on
a plate. Care must be taken that the onions are not greasy: they should
be quite dry, but not burnt.

_Time_.--5 minutes to fry the onions, 10 minutes to fry the fowl.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the fowl, 4d.

_Seasonable_ during the winter month.

[Illustration: SPECKLED HAMBURGS.]

THE SPECKLED HAMBURG.--Of the speckled, or spangled Hamburg
which is a favourite breed with many persons, there are two
varieties,--the golden-speckled and the silver-speckled. The
general colour of the former is golden, or orange-yellow, each
feather having a glossy dark brown or black tip, particularly
remarkable on the hackles of the cock and the wing-coverts, and
also on the darker feathers of the breast. The female is yellow,
or orange-brown, the feathers in like manner being margined with
black. The silver-speckled variety is distinguished by the
ground-colour of the plumage being of a silver-white, with
perhaps a tinge of straw-yellow, every leather being margined
with a semi-lunar mark of glossy black. Both of these varieties
are extremely beautiful, the hens laying freely. First-rate
birds command a high price.

FOWL SAUTE WITH PEAS (an Entree).

960. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowl, 2 oz. of butter,
pepper, salt, and pounded mace to taste, 1 dessertspoonful of flour, 1/2
pint of weak stock, 1 pint of green peas, 1 teaspoonful of pounded
sugar.

_Mode_.--Cut the fowl into nice pieces; put the butter into a stew-pan;
sautez or fry the fowl a nice brown colour, previously sprinkling it
with pepper, salt, and pounded mace. Dredge in the flour, shake the
ingredients well round, then add the stock and peas, and stew till the
latter are tender, which will be in about 20 minutes; put in the pounded
sugar, and serve, placing the chicken round, and the peas in the middle
of the dish. When liked, mushrooms may be substituted for the peas.

_Time_.--Altogether 40 minutes.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the fowl, 7d.

_Seasonable_ from June to August.

BOUDIN A LA REINE (an Entree).

(M. Ude's Recipe.)

961. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast fowls, 1 pint of Bechamel
No. 367, salt and cayenne to taste, egg and bread crumbs.

_Mode_.--Take the breasts and nice white meat from the fowls; cut it
into small dice of an equal size, and throw them into some good
Bechamel, made by recipe No. 367; season with salt and cayenne, and put
the mixture into a dish to cool. When this preparation is quite cold,
cut it into 2 equal parts, which should be made into _boudins_ of a long
shape, the size of the dish they are intended to be served on; roll them
in flour, egg and bread-crumb them, and be careful that the ends are
well covered with the crumbs, otherwise they would break in the
frying-pan; fry them a nice colour, put them before the fire to drain
the greasy moisture from them, and serve with the remainder of the
Bechamel poured round: this should be thinned with a little stock.

_Time_.--10 minutes to fry the boudins.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the fowl, 1s. 3d.

_Sufficient_ for 1 entree.

[Illustration: SEBRIGHT BANTAMS.]

SIR JOHN SEBRIGHT'S BANTAMS.--Above all Bantams is placed, the
celebrated and beautiful breed called Sir John Sebright's Silver
Bantams. This breed, which Sir John brought to perfection after
years of careful trials, is very small, with un-feathered legs,
and a rose comb and short hackles. The plumage is gold or
silver, spangled, every feather being of a golden orange, or of
a silver white, with a glossy jet-black margin; the cocks have
the tail folded like that of a hen, with the sickle feathers
shortened straight, or nearly so, and broader than usual. The
term _hen-cocks_ is, in consequence, often applied to them; but
although the sickle feathers are thus modified, no bird
possesses higher courage, or a more gallant carriage. The
attitude of the cock is, indeed, singularly proud; and he is
often seen to bear himself so haughtily, that his head, thrown
back as if in disdain, nearly touches the two upper
feathers--sickles they can scarcely be called--of his tail.
Half-bred birds of this kind are not uncommon, but birds of the
pure breed are not to be obtained without trouble and expense;
indeed, some time ago, it was almost impossible to procure
either a fowl or an egg. "The finest," says the writer whom we
have consulted as to this breed, "we have ever seen, were in Sir
John's poultry-yard, adjacent to Turnham-Green Common, in the
byroad leading to Acton."

FOWL A LA MAYONNAISE.

962. INGREDIENTS.--A cold roast fowl, Mayonnaise sauce No. 468, 4 or 5
young lettuces, 4 hard-boiled eggs, a few water-cresses, endive.

_Mode_.--Cut the fowl into neat joints, lay them in a deep dish, piling
them high in the centre, sauce the fowl with Mayonnaise made by recipe
No. 468, and garnish the dish with young lettuces cut in halves,
water-cresses, endive, and hard-boiled eggs: these may be sliced in
rings, or laid on the dish whole, cutting off at the bottom a piece of
the white, to make the egg stand. All kinds of cold meat and solid fish
may be dressed a la Mayonnaise, and make excellent luncheon or supper
dishes. The sauce should not be poured over the fowls until the moment
of serving. Should a very large Mayonnaise be required, use 2 fowls
instead of 1, with an equal proportion of the remaining ingredients.

_Average cost_, with one fowl, 3s. 6d.

_Sufficient_ for a moderate-sized dish.

_Seasonable_ from April to September.

[Illustration: BLACK SPANISH.]

BLACK SPANISH.--The real Spanish fowl is recognized by its
uniformly black colour burnished with tints of green; its
peculiar white face, and the large development of its comb and
wattle. The hens are excellent layers, and their eggs are of a
very large size. They are, however, bad nurses; consequently,
their eggs should be laid in the nest of other varieties to be
hatched. "In purchasing Spanish," says an authority, "blue legs,
the entire absence of white or coloured feathers in the plumage,
and a large, white face, with a very large high comb, which
should be erect in the cock, though pendent in the hens, should
be insisted on." The flesh of this fowl is esteemed; but, from
the smallness of its body when compared with that of the
Dorking, it is not placed on an equality with it for the table.
Otherwise, however, they are profitable birds, and their
handsome carriage, and striking contrast of colour in the comb,
face, and plumage, are a high recommendation to them as kept
fowls. For a town fowl, they are perhaps better adapted than any
other variety.

FOWL PILLAU, based on M. Soyer's Recipe (an Indian Dish).

963. INGREDIENTS.--1 lb. of rice, 2 oz. of butter, a fowl, 2 quarts of
stock or good broth, 40 cardamum-seeds, 1/2 oz. of coriander-seed, 1/4
oz. of cloves, 1/4 oz. of allspice, 1/4 oz. of mace, 1/4 oz. of
cinnamon, 1/2 oz. of peppercorns, 4 onions, 6 thin slices of bacon, 2
hard-boiled eggs.

_Mode_.--Well wash 1 lb. of the best Patna rice, put it into a
frying-pan with the butter, which keep moving over a slow fire until the
rice is lightly browned. Truss the fowl as for boiling, put it into a
stewpan with the stock or broth; pound the spices and seeds thoroughly
in a mortar, tie them in a piece of muslin, and put them in with the
fowl. Let it boil slowly until it is nearly done; then add the rice,
which should stew until quite tender and almost dry; cut the onions into
slices, sprinkle them with flour, and fry, without breaking them, of a
nice brown colour. Have ready the slices of bacon curled and grilled,
and the eggs boiled hard. Lay the fowl in the form of a pyramid upon a
dish, smother with the rice, garnish with the bacon, fried onions, and
the hard-boiled eggs cut into quarters, and serve very hot. Before
taking the rice out, remove the spices.

_Time_.--1/2 hour to stew the fowl without the rice; 1/2 hour with it.

_Average cost_, 4s. 3d. _Sufficient_ for 4 or 5 persons.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

[Illustration: SULTANS.]

THE SERAI TA-OOK, OR FOWLS OF THE SULTAN.--This fowl is the size
of our English Polands, and is the latest species introduced to
England. They have a white and flowing plumage, a full-sized,
compact Poland tuft on the head, are muffed, have a full flowing
tail, short legs well feathered, and five toes upon each foot.
Their comb consists merely of two little points, and their
wattles are very small: their colour is that of a pure white. In
January, 1854, they arrived in this country from Constantinople;
and they take their name from _sarai_, the Turkish word for
sultan's palace, and _ta-ook_, the Turkish for fowl. They are
thus called the "fowls of the sultan," a name which has the
twofold advantage of being the nearest to be found to that by
which they have been known in their own country, and of
designating the country whence they come. Their habits are
described as being generally brisk and happy-tempered, but not
so easily kept in as Cochin-Chinas. They are excellent layers;
but they are non-sitters and small eaters: their eggs are large
and white. Brahmas or Cochins will clear the crop of a grass-run
long before they will, and, with scattered food, they soon
satisfy themselves and walk away.

POULET AUX CRESSONS.

964. INGREDIENTS.--A fowl, a large bunch of water-cresses, 3
tablespoonfuls of vinegar, 1/4 pint of gravy.

_Mode_.--Truss and roast a fowl by recipe No. 952, taking care that it
is nicely frothed and brown. Wash and dry the water-cresses, pick them
nicely, and arrange them in a flat layer on a dish. Sprinkle over a
little salt and the above proportion of vinegar; place over these the
fowl, and pour over it the gravy. A little gravy should be served in a
tureen. When not liked, the vinegar may be omitted.

_Time_.--From 1/2 to 1 hour, according to size.

_Average cost_, in full season, 2s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 3 or 4 persons.

_Seasonable_ at any time.

ROAST FOWL, Stuffed.

965. INGREDIENTS.--A large fowl, forcemeat No. 417, a little flour.

_Mode_.--Select a large plump fowl, fill the breast with forcemeat, made
by recipe No. 417, truss it firmly, the same as for a plain roast fowl,
dredge it with flour, and put it down to a bright fire. Roast it for
nearly or quite an hour, should it be very large; remove the skewers,
and serve with a good brown gravy and a tureen of bread sauce.

_Time_.--Large fowl, nearly or quite 1 hour.

_Average cost_, in full season, 2s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 or 5 persons.

_Seasonable_ all the year, but scarce in early spring.

_Note_.--Sausage-meat stuffing may be substituted for the above: this is
now a very general mode of serving fowl.

[Illustration: PENCILLED HAMBURG.]

PENCILLED HAMBURG.--This variety of the Hamburg fowl is of two
colours, golden and silver, and is very minutely marked. The
hens of both should have the body clearly pencilled across with
several bars of black, and the hackle in both, sexes should be
perfectly free from dark marks. The cocks do not exhibit the
pencillings, but are white or brown in the golden or silver
birds respectively. Their form is compact, and their attitudes
graceful and sprightly. The hens do not sit, but lay extremely
well; hence one of their common names, that of Dutch every-day
layers. They are also known in different parts of the country,
as Chitteprats, Creoles, or Corals, Bolton bays and grays, and,
in some parts of Yorkshire, by the wrong name of Corsican fowls.
They are imported in large numbers from Holland, but those bred
in this country are greatly superior in size.

GIBLET PIE.

966. INGREDIENTS.--A set of duck or goose giblets, 1 lb. of rump-steak,
1 onion, 1/2 teaspoonful of whole black pepper, a bunch of savoury
herbs, plain crust.

_Mode_.--Clean, and put the giblets into a stewpan with an onion, whole
pepper, and a bunch of savoury herbs; add rather more than a pint of
water, and simmer gently for about 1-1/2 hour. Take them out, let them
cool, and cut them into pieces; line the bottom of a pie-dish with a few
pieces of rump-steak; add a layer of giblets and a few more pieces of
steak; season with pepper and salt, and pour in the gravy (which should
be strained), that the giblets were stewed in; cover with a plain crust,
and bake for rather more than 1-1/2 hour in a brisk oven. Cover a piece
of paper over the pie, to prevent the crust taking too much colour.

_Time_.--1-1/2 hour to stew the giblets, about 1 hour to bake the pie.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the giblets, 1s. 4d.

_Sufficient_ for 5 or 6 persons.

THE BRENT GOOSE.--This is the smallest and most numerous species
of the geese which visit the British islands. It makes its
appearance in winter, and ranges over the whole of the coasts
and estuaries frequented by other migrant geese. Mr. Selby
states that a very large body of these birds annually resort to
the extensive sandy and muddy flats which lie between the
mainland and Holy Island, on the Northumbrian coast, and which
are covered by every flow of the tide. This part of the coast
appears to have been a favourite resort of these birds from time
immemorial, where they have always received the name of Ware
geese, no doubt from their continually feeding on marine
vegetables. Their flesh is very agreeable.

HASHED GOOSE.

967. INGREDIENTS.--The remains of cold roast goose, 2 onions, 2 oz. of
butter, 1 pint of boiling water, 1 dessertspoonful of flour, pepper and
salt to taste, 1 tablespoonful of port wine, 2 tablespoonfuls of
mushroom ketchup.

_Mode_.--Cut up the goose into pieces of the size required; the inferior
joints, trimmings, &c., put into a stewpan to make the gravy; slice and
fry the onions in the butter of a very pale brown; add these to the
trimmings, and pour over about a pint of boiling water; stew these
gently for 3/4 hour, then skim and strain the liquor. Thicken it with
flour, and flavour with port wine and ketchup, in the above proportion;
add a seasoning of pepper and salt, and put in the pieces of goose; let
these get thoroughly hot through, but do not allow them to boil, and
serve with sippets of toasted bread.

_Time_.--Altogether, rather more than 1 hour.

_Average cost_, exclusive of the cold goose, 4d.

_Seasonable_ from September to March.

THE WILD GOOSE.--This bird is sometimes called the "Gray-lag"
and is the original of the domestic goose. It is, according to
Pennant, the only species which the Britons could take young,
and familiarize. "The Gray-lag," says Mr. Gould, "is known to
Persia, and we believe it is generally dispersed over Asia
Minor." It is the bird that saved the Capitol by its vigilance,
and by the Romans was cherished accordingly.

ROAST GOOSE.

968. INGREDIENTS.--Goose, 4 large onions, 10 sage-leaves, 1/4 lb. of
bread crumbs, 1-1/2 oz. of butter, salt and pepper to taste, 1 egg.

_Choosing and Trussing_.--Select a goose with a clean white skin, plump
breast, and yellow feet: if these latter are red, the bird is old.
Should the weather permit, let it hang for a few days: by so doing, the
flavour will be very much improved. Pluck, singe, draw, and carefully
wash and wipe the goose; cut off the neck close to the back, leaving the
skin long enough to turn over; cut off the feet at the first joint, and
separate the pinions at the first joint. Beat the breast-bone flat with
a rolling-pin, put a skewer through the under part of each wing, and
having drawn up the legs closely, put a skewer into the middle of each,
and pass the same quite through the body. Insert another skewer into the
small of the leg, bring it close down to the side bone, run it through,
and do the same to the other side. Now cut off the end of the vent, and
make a hole in the skin sufficiently large for the passage of the rump,
in order to keep in the seasoning.

[Illustration: ROAST GOOSE.]

_Mode_.--Make a sage-and-onion stuffing of the above ingredients, by
recipe No. 504; put it into the body of the goose, and secure it firmly
at both ends, by passing the rump through the hole made in the skin, and
the other end by tying the skin of the neck to the back; by this means
the seasoning will not escape. Put it down to a brisk fire, keep it well
basted, and roast from 1-1/2 to 2 hours, according to the size. Remove
the skewers, and serve with a tureen of good gravy, and one of well-made
apple-sauce. Should a very highly-flavoured seasoning be preferred, the
onions should not be parboiled, but minced raw: of the two methods, the
mild seasoning is far superior. A ragout, or pie, should be made of the
giblets, or they may be stewed down to make gravy. Be careful to serve
the goose before the breast falls, or its appearance will be spoiled by
coming flattened to table. As this is rather a troublesome joint to
carve, a _large_ quantity of gravy should not be poured round the goose,
but sent in a tureen.

_Time_.--A large goose, 1-3/4 hour; a moderate-sized one, 1-1/4 to 1-1/2
hour.

_Seasonable_ from September to March; but in perfection from Michaelmas
to Christmas.

_Average cost_, 5s. 6d. each. _Sufficient_ for 8 or 9 persons.

_Note_.--A teaspoonful of made mustard, a saltspoonful of salt, a few
grains of cayenne, mixed with a glass of port wine, are sometimes poured
into the goose by a slit made in the apron. This sauce is, by many
persons, considered an improvement.

[Illustration: EMDEN GOOSE.]

THE GOOSE.--This bird is pretty generally distributed over the
face of the globe, being met with in North America, Lapland,
Iceland, Arabia, and Persia. Its varieties are numerous; but in
England there is only one species, which is supposed to be a
native breed. The best geese are found on the borders of
Suffolk, and in Norfolk and Berkshire; but the largest flocks
are reared in the fens of Lincolnshire and Cambridge. They
thrive best where they have an easy access to water, and large
herds of them are sent every year to London, to be fattened by
the metropolitan poulterers. "A Michaelmas goose," says Dr.
Kitchener, "is as famous in the mouths of the million as the
minced-pie at Christmas; yet for those who eat with delicacy, it
is, at that time, too full-grown. The true period when the goose
is in the highest perfection is when it has just acquired its
full growth, and not begun to harden; if the March goose is
insipid, the Michaelmas goose is rank. The fine time is between
both; from the second week in June to the first in September."
It is said that the Michaelmas goose is indebted to Queen
Elizabeth for its origin on the table at that season. Her
majesty happened to dine on one at the table of an English
baronet, when she received the news of the discomfiture of the
Spanish Armada. In commemoration of this event, she commanded
the goose to make its appearance at table on every Michaelmas.
We here give an engraving of the Emden goose.

TO DRESS A GREEN GOOSE.

969. INGREDIENTS.--Goose, 3 oz. of butter, pepper and salt to taste.

_Mode_.--Geese are called green till they are about four months old, and
should not be stuffed. After it has been singed and trussed, the same as
in the preceding recipe, put into the body a seasoning of pepper and
salt, and the butter to moisten it inside. Roast before a clear fire for
about 3/4 hour, froth and brown it nicely, and serve with a brown gravy,
and, when liked, gooseberry-sauce. This dish should be garnished with
water-cresses.

_Time_.--About 3/4 hour. _Average cost_, 4s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 5 or 6 persons.

_Seasonable_ in June, July, and August.

[Illustration: TOULOUSE GOOSE.]

THE EGYPTIAN GOOSE.--Especial attention has been directed to
this bird by Herodotus, who says it was held sacred by the
ancient Egyptians, which has been partially confirmed by modern
travellers. Mr. Salt remarks, "Horus Apollo says the old geese
stay with their young in the most imminent danger, at the risk
of their own lives, which I have myself frequently witnessed.
Vielpanser is the goose of the Nile, and wherever this goose is
represented on the walls of the temples in colours, the
resemblance may be clearly traced." The goose is also said to
have been a bird under the care of Isis. It has been placed by
Mr. Gould amongst the birds of Europe; not from the number of
half-reclaimed individuals which are annually shot in Britain,
but from the circumstance of its occasionally visiting the
southern parts of the continent from its native country, Africa.
The Toulouse goose, of which we give an engraving, is a
well-known bird.

ROAST GUINEA-FOWL, Larded.

970. INGREDIENTS.--A Guinea-fowl, lardoons, flour, and salt.

_Mode_.--When this bird is larded, it should be trussed the same as a
pheasant; if plainly roasted, truss it like a turkey. After larding and
trussing it, put it down to roast at a brisk fire; keep it well basted,
and a short time before serving, dredge it with a little flour, and let
it froth nicely. Serve with a little gravy in the dish, and a tureen of
the same, and one of well-made bread-sauce.

_Time_.--Guinea-fowl, larded, 1-1/4 hour; plainly roasted, about 1 hour.

_Sufficient_ for 6 persons.

_Seasonable_ in winter.

_Note_.--The breast, if larded, should be covered with a piece of paper,
and removed about 10 minutes before serving.

[Illustration: GUINEA-FOWLS.]

THE GUINEA-FOWL.--The bird takes its name from Guinea, in
Africa, where it is found--wild, and in great abundance. It is
gregarious in its habits, associating in flocks of two or three
hundred, delighting in marshy grounds, and at night perching
upon trees, or on high situations. Its size is about the same as
that of a common hen, but it stands higher on its legs. Though
domesticated, it retains much of its wild nature, and is apt to
wander. The hens lay abundantly, and the eggs are excellent. In
their flesh, however, they are not so white as the common fowl,
but more inclined to the colour of the pheasant, for which it
frequently makes a good substitute at table. The flesh is both
savoury and easy of digestion, and is in season when game is out
of season.

LARK PIE (an Entree).

971. INGREDIENTS.--A few thin slices of beef, the same of bacon, 9
larks, flour; for stuffing, 1 teacupful of bread crumbs, 1/2 teaspoonful
of minced lemon-peel, 1 teaspoonful of minced parsley, 1 egg, salt and
pepper to taste, 1 teaspoonful of chopped shalot, 1/2 pint of weak stock
or water, puff-paste.

_Mode_.--Make a stuffing of bread crumbs, minced lemon-peel, parsley,
and the yolk of an egg, all of which should be well mixed together; roll
the larks in flour, and stuff them. Line the bottom of a pie-dish with a
few slices of beef and bacon; over these place the larks, and season
with salt, pepper, minced parsley, and chopped shalot, in the above
proportion. Pour in the stock or water, cover with crust, and bake for
an hour in a moderate oven. During the time the pie is baking, shake it
2 or 3 times, to assist in thickening the gravy, and serve very hot.

_Time_.--1 hour. _Average cost_, 1s. 6d. a dozen.

_Sufficient_ for 5 or 6 persons.

_Seasonable_.--In full season in November.

ROAST LARKS.

972. INGREDIENTS.--Larks, egg and bread crumbs, fresh butter.

_Mode_.--These birds are by many persons esteemed a great delicacy, and
may be either roasted or broiled. Pick, gut, and clean them; when they
are trussed, brush them over with the yolk of an egg; sprinkle with
bread crumbs, and roast them before a quick fire; baste them continually
with fresh butter, and keep sprinkling with the bread crumbs until the
birds are well covered. Dish them on bread crumbs fried in clarified
butter, and garnish the dish with slices of lemon. Broiled larks are
also very excellent: they should be cooked over a clear fire, and would
take about 10 minutes or 1/4 hour.

_Time_.--1/4 hour to roast; 10 minutes to broil.

_Seasonable_.--In full season in November.

_Note_.--Larks may also be plainly roasted, without covering them with
egg and bread crumbs; they should be dished on fried crumbs.

BROILED PIGEONS.

973. INGREDIENTS.--Pigeons, 3 oz. of butter, pepper and salt to taste.

_Mode_.--Take care that the pigeons are quite fresh, and carefully
pluck, draw, and wash them; split the backs, rub the birds over with
butter, season them with pepper and salt, and broil them over a moderate
fire for 1/4 hour or 20 minutes. Serve very hot, with either
mushroom-sauce or a good gravy. Pigeons may also be plainly boiled, and
served with parsley and butter; they should be trussed like boiled
fowls, and take from 1/4 hour to 20 minutes to boil.

_Time_.--To broil a pigeon, from 1/4 hour to 20 minutes; to boil one,
the same time.

_Average cost_, from 6d. to 9d. each.

_Seasonable_ from April to September, but in the greatest perfection
from midsummer to Michaelmas.

THE POUTER PIGEON.--This is a very favourite pigeon, and,
without doubt, the most curious of his species. He is a tail
strong bird, as he had need be to carry about his great inflated
crop, frequently as large and as round as a middling-sized
turnip. A perfect pouter, seen on a windy day, is certainly a
ludicrous sight: his feathered legs have the appearance of white
trousers; his tapering tail looks like a swallow-tailed coat;
his head is entirely concealed by his immense windy
protuberance; and, altogether, he reminds you of a little
"swell" of a past century, staggering under a bale of linen. The
most common pouters are the blues, buffs, and whites, or an
intermixture of all these various colours. The pouter is not a
prolific breeder, is a bad nurse, and more likely to degenerate,
if not repeatedly crossed and re-crossed with Irish stock, than
any other pigeon: nevertheless, it is a useful bird to keep if
you are founding a new colony, as it is much attached to its
home, and little apt to stray; consequently it is calculated to
induce more restless birds to fettle down and make themselves
comfortable. If you wish to breed pouters, you cannot do worse
than intrust them with the care of their own eggs.

ROAST PIGEONS.

974. INGREDIENTS.--Pigeons, 3 oz. of butter, pepper and salt to taste.

_Trussing_.--Pigeons, to be good, should be eaten fresh (if kept a
little, the flavour goes off), and they should be drawn as soon as
killed. Cut off the heads and necks, truss the wings over the backs, and
cut off the toes at the first joint: previous to trussing, they should
be carefully cleaned, as no bird requires so much washing.

[Illustration: ROAST PIGEON.]

_Mode_.--Wipe the birds very dry, season them inside with pepper and
salt, and put about 3/4 oz. of butter into the body of each: this makes
them moist. Put them down to a bright fire, and baste them well the
whole of the time they are cooking (they will be done enough in from 20
to 30 minutes); garnish with fried parsley, and serve with a tureen of
parsley and butter. Bread-sauce and gravy, the same as for roast fowl,
are exceedingly nice accompaniments to roast pigeons, as also egg-sauce.

_Time_.--From 20 minutes to 1/2 hour. _Average cost_, 6d. to 9d. each.

_Seasonable_ from April to September; but in the greatest perfection
from Midsummer to Michaelmas.

THE PIGEON--The pigeon tribe forms a connecting ling between the
passerine birds and poultry. They are widely distributed over
the world, some of the species being found even in the arctic
regions. Their chief food is grain, and they drink much; not at
intervals, like other birds, but by a continuous draught, like
quadrupeds. The wild pigeon, or stockdove, is the parent whence
all the varieties of the domestic pigeon are derived. In the
wild state it is still found in many parts of this island,
making its nest in the holes of rocks, in the hollows of trees,
or in old towers, but never, like the ringdove, on branches. The
blue house-pigeon is the variety principally reared for the
table in this country, and is produced from our farmyards in
great numbers. When young, and still fed by their parents, they
are most preferable for the table, and are called _squabs_;
under six months they are denominated _squeakers_, and at six
months they begin to breed. Their flesh is accounted savoury,
delicate, and stimulating, and the dark-coloured birds are
considered to have the highest flavour, whilst the light are
esteemed to have the more delicate flesh.

THE PIGEON-HOUSE, OR DOVECOT.--The first thing to be done
towards keeping pigeons is to provide a commodious place for
their reception; and the next is, to provide the pigeons
themselves. The situation or size of the dovecot will
necessarily depend on convenience; but there is one point which
must invariably be observed, and that is, that every pair of
pigeons has two holes or rooms to nest in. This is
indispensable, as, without it, there will be no security, but
the constant prospect of confusion, breaking of eggs, and the
destruction of young. The proper place for the pigeon-house is
the poultry-yard; but it does very well near dwellings, stables,
brewhouses, bakehouses, or such offices. Some persons keep
pigeons in rooms, and have them making their nests on the floor.
The object is to escape the danger of the young falling out; but
in such cases, there is a great risk of rats or other vermin
getting at the pigeons.

ASPECT OF THE PIGEON-HOUSE.--The front of the pigeon-house
should have a southwest aspect, and, if a room be selected for
the purpose, it is usual to break a hole in the roof of the
building for the passage of the pigeons, but which can be closed
at convenience. A platform ought to be laid at the entrance for
the pigeons to perch upon, with some kind of defence against
strange cats, which will frequently depopulate a whole dovecot.
Yet, although cats are dangerous neighbours for the birds, they
are necessary to defend them from the approach of rats and mice,
which will not only suck the eggs, but destroy the birds. The
platform should be painted white, and renewed as the paint wears
off, white being a favourite colour with pigeons, and also most
conspicuous as a mark to enable them to find their house. The
boxes ought also to be similarly painted, and renewed when
necessary, for which purpose lime and water will do very well.

THE NECESSITY OF CLEANLINESS.--As cleanliness in human
habitations is of the first importance, so is it in the
pigeon-house. There the want of it will soon render the place a
nuisance not to be approached, and the birds, both young and
old, will be so covered with vermin and filth, that they will
neither enjoy health nor comforts, whilst early mortality
amongst them will be almost certain. In some cases, the
pigeon-house is cleaned daily; but it should always be done, at
any rate, once a week, and the floor covered with sifted gravel,
frequently renewed. Pigeons being exceedingly fond of water, and
having a prescience of the coming of rain, they may be seen upon
the house-tops waiting upon it until late in the evening, and
then spreading their wings to receive the luxury of the
refreshing shower. When they are confined in a room, therefore,
they should be allowed a wide pan of water, to be often renewed.
This serves them for a bath, which cools, refreshes, and assists
them to keep their bodies clear of vermin.

BREEDING PIGEONS.--In breeding pigeons, it is necessary to match
a cock and hen, and shut them up together, or place them near to
each other, and in the course of a day or two there is little
doubt of their mating. Various rules have been laid down for the
purpose of assisting to distinguish the cock from the hen
pigeon; but the masculine forwardness and action of the cock is
generally so remarkable, that he is easily ascertained. The
pigeon being monogamous, the male attaches and confines himself
to one female, and the attachment is reciprocal, and the
fidelity of the dove to its mate is proverbial. At the age of
six months, young pigeons are termed squeakers, and then begin
to breed, when properly managed. Their courtship, and the
well-known tone of voice in the cock, just then acquired and
commencing, are indications of their approaching union.
Nestlings, while fed by cock and hen, are termed squabs, and
are, at that age, sold and used for the table. The dove-house
pigeon is said to breed monthly, when well supplied with food.
At all events, it may be depended on, that pigeons of almost any
healthy and well-established variety will breed eight or nine
times in the year; whence it may readily be conceived how vast
are the numbers that may be raised.

[Illustration: CARRIER PIGEONS.]

THE CARRIER PIGEON.--Without doubt the carrier is entitled to
rank first in the pigeon family, with the exception, perhaps, of
the blue-rock pigeons. No domestic fowl can be traced to so
remote an antiquity. When Greece was in its glory, carrier
pigeons were used to convey to distant parts the names of the
victors at the Olympian games. During the holy war, when Acre
was besieged by King Richard, Saladin habitually corresponded
with the besieged by means of carrier pigeons. A shaft from an
English crossbow, however, happened to bring one of those
feathered messengers to the ground, and the stratagem was
discovered, the design of the Saracens revealed, and so turned
against the designers, that Acre was in the hands of the
Christians before the wily Saladin dreamt of such a thing.

PIGEON PIE (Epsom Grand-Stand Recipe).

975. INGREDIENTS.--1-1/2 lb. of rump-steak, 2 or 3 pigeons, 3 slices of
ham, pepper and salt to taste, 2 oz. of butter, 4 eggs, puff crust.

_Mode_.--Cut the steak into pieces about 3 inches square, and with it
line the bottom of a pie-dish, seasoning it well with pepper and salt.
Clean the pigeons, rub them with pepper and salt inside and out, and put
into the body of each rather more than 1/2 oz. of butter; lay them on
the steak, and a piece of ham on each pigeon. Add the yolks of 4 eggs,
and half fill the dish with stock; place a border of puff paste round
the edge of the dish, put on the cover, and ornament it in any way that
may be preferred. Clean three of the feet, and place them in a hole made
in the crust at the top: this shows what kind of pie it is. Glaze the
crust,--that is to say, brush it over with the yolk of an egg,--and bake
it in a well-heated oven for about 1-1/4 hour. When liked, a seasoning
of pounded mace may be added.

_Time_.--1-1/4 hour, or rather less. _Average cost_, 5s. 3d.

_Sufficient_ for 5 or 6 persons. _Seasonable_ at any time.

[Illustration: TUMBLER PIGEONS.]

TUMBLER PIGEONS.--The smaller the size of this variety, the
greater its value. The head should be round and smooth, the neck
thin, and the tail similar to that of the turbit. Highly-bred
birds of this variety will attain an elevation in their flight
beyond that of any other pigeons; and it is in seeing these
little birds wing themselves so far into the skies that the
fanciers take such delight. For four or five hours tumblers have
been known to keep on the wing; and it is when they are almost
lost to the power of human vision that they exhibit those
pantomimic feats which give them their name, and which are
marked by a tumbling over-and-over process, which suggests the
idea of their having suddenly become giddy, been deprived of
their self-control, or overtaken by some calamity. This
acrobatic propensity in these pigeons has been ascribed by some
to the absence of a proper power in the tail; but is nothing
more than a natural habit, for which no adequate reason can be
assigned. Of this variety, the Almond Tumbler is the most
beautiful; and the greater the variation of the colour in the
flight and tail, the greater their value.

[Illustration: RUNT PIGEONS.]

THE RUNT PIGEON.--This is generally esteemed among the largest
of the pigeon varieties, and being possessed of proportionate
strength, with a strong propensity to exercise it, they keep the
dovecot in a state of almost continual commotion by domineering
over the weaker inmates. They breed tolerably well, however, and
are valuable for the table. There is both the Leghorn and the
Spanish Runt, variously plumaged; but when red, white, or black
mottled, are most highly esteemed. One of the great advantages
connected with the Runt is, that he is not likely to fly away
from home. Being heavy birds, they find it difficult, when well
fed, to mount even to a low housetop. Again, they require no
loft, or special dwelling-place, but, if properly tended, will
be perfectly satisfied, and thrive as well, in a rabbit-hutch as
any where. Their flavour is very good; and it is not an uncommon
thing for a squeaker Runt to exceed a pound and a quarter in
weight.

[Illustration: NUN PIGEONS.]

THE NUN PIGEON.--The Tumbler bears a strong resemblance to this
variety, which is characterized by a tuft of feathers rising
from the back of the head, and which, on the whole, is an
extremely pretty little bird. According to the colour of the
head, it is called the red, black, or yellow-headed Nun. To be a
perfect bird, it should have a small head and beak; and the
larger the tuft at the back of his head, the handsomer the bird
is esteemed, and proportionately valuable in the eyes of
pigeon-fanciers.

[Illustration: TRUMPETER PIGEONS.]

THE TRUMPETER PIGEON.--From the circumstance of this bird
imitating the sound of a trumpet, instead of cooing, like other
pigeons, it has received its designation. It is of the middle
size, having its legs and feet covered with feathers, and its
plumage generally of a mottled black-and-white. It has a tuft
springing from the root of its beak, and the larger this topknot
is, the higher the estimation in which the breed is held. In
their powers of trumpeting some are more expert than others; and
whether this has any effect in influencing their own estimate of
themselves, we cannot say; but they are rather select in the
choice of their company. If two of them are put in a
pigeon-house with other doves, it will be found that they
confine their association almost entirely to each other. As much
as two guineas have been paid for a well-trained docile bird of
this kind.

[Illustration: WOOD-PIGEON.]

THE WOOD, OR WILD PIGEON.--Buffon enumerates upwards of thirty
varieties of the pigeon, which he derives from one root,--viz.
the stockdove, or common wild pigeon. All the varieties of
colour and form which we witness, he attributes to human
contrivance and fancy. Nevertheless, there exist essentially
specific differences in these birds, which would appear to be
attributable rather to the nature of the region, soil, and
climate to which they are indigenous, than to the art and
ingenuity of man. The stockdove, in its wild state, is still
found in some parts of Britain, forming its nest in the holes of
rocks, old towers, and in the hollows of trees; it never,
however, like the ringdove, nestles in the branches. Multitudes
of wild pigeons still visit our shores in the winter, coming
from their more northerly retreats, making their appearance
about November, and retiring again in the spring. When forests
of beechwood covered large tracts of the ground of this country,
these birds used to haunt them in myriads, frequently covering a
mile of ground in extent when they went out in the morning to
feed.

STEWED PIGEONS.

976. INGREDIENTS.--6 pigeons, a few slices of bacon, 3 oz. of butter, 2
tablespoonfuls of minced parsley, sufficient stock No. 104 to cover the
pigeons, thickening of butter and flour, 1 tablespoonful of mushroom
ketchup, 1 tablespoonful of port wine.

_Mode_.--Empty and clean the pigeons thoroughly, mince the livers, add
to these the parsley and butter, and put it into the insides of the
birds. Truss them with the legs inward, and put them into a stewpan,
with a few slices of bacon placed under and over them; add the stock,
and stew gently for rather more than 1/2 hour. Dish the pigeons, strain
the gravy, thicken it with butter and flour, add the ketchup and port
wine, give one boil, pour over the pigeons, and serve.

_Time_.--Rather more than 1/2 hour. _Average cost, 6d. to 9d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 or 5 persons.

_Seasonable_ from April to September.

[Illustration: FANTAIL PIGEONS.]

THE FANTAIL PIGEON.--This curious variety is inferior in point
of size to most of the other varieties, and is characterized by
having a short, slender bill, pendent wings, and naked legs and
feet. It has the power of erecting its tail in the manner of a
turkey-cock; during which action, especially when paying court
to it's mate, it trembles or shakes, like the peacock when
moving about with his train expanded and in full display. This
power of erecting and spreading the tail is not confined to the
male bird alone: the female possesses the same power to an equal
extent, and otherwise resembles the male in every respect. It is
not very prolific, and seldom succeeds so well in the aviary or
pigeon-house as most of the other kinds.

[Illustration: JACOBIN PIGEONS.]

THE JACOBIN PIGEON.--This variety, having the power to transmit
to posterity a form precisely similar, with all its peculiar
characters undiminished, is, among pigeon-fanciers, designated
as of a pure or permanent race. It is distinguished by a
remarkable ruff or frill of raised feathers, which, commencing
behind the head and proceeding down the neck and breast, forms a
kind of hood, not unlike that worn by a monk. From this
circumstance, it has obtained its Gallic name of _nonnain
capuchin_. In size it is one of the smallest of the domestic
pigeons, and its form is light and elegant. It is a very
productive species, and, having its flight considerably impeded
by the size and form of its hooded frill, keeps much at home,
and is well adapted for the aviary or other buildings where
pigeons are confined.

[Illustration: TURBIT PIGEONS.]

THE TURBIT PIGEON.--This variety bears a strong resemblance to
the Jacobin, having a kind of frill in the fore part of its
neck, occasioned by the breast-feathers lying contrariwise and
standing straight out. The species is classed in accordance with
the colour of the shoulders, similarly as the Nuns are by the
colour of their heads. Their characteristics of excellence are a
full frill, short bill, and small round head. In Germany it is
called the ruffle pigeon, in allusion to the feathers on its
breast; and it has rarely any feathers on its feet. There is a
peculiarity connected with this bird, which somewhat lowers it
in the estimation of fanciers: it seldom rears more than one at
a time, which, therefore, marks it as a bird rather for
amusement than profit.

[Illustration: BARB PIGEONS.]

THE BARB PIGEON.--The name of this variety is a contraction of
Barbary, from which country it originally comes. It is both
prolific and has excellent qualities as a nurse. The kind most
esteemed is that of one uniform colour, that of blue-black being
preferable to any other. Speckled or mottled Barbs are esteemed
the most common of all pigeons. It is not unlike the Carrier
pigeon, and, at a small distance, might easily be mistaken for
the latter. It has a short beak and a small wattle. A spongy,
pinky skin round the eyes is its chief characteristic, however,
and this increases in size till the bird is three or four years
old. This peculiarity is hardly distinguishable in very young
birds.

[Illustration: BLUE ROCK-PIGEON.]

THE ROCK PIGEON.--This variety, in its wild state, is found upon
the rocky parts of the west of Scotland, and the bold shores of
the Western Isles, more abundant than in any other parts of the
British islands. As the shores of the mainland are exposed to
the muds of the Atlantic, and the comparatively small islands
are surrounded by that ocean, the low grounds exposed to the
west are seldom covered with snow for any length of time, and
thus the birds easily find a supply of food. The numbers which
there congregate are often very great, and the din of their
united cry is sometimes very loud and even alarming. The love of
home and the certainty of returning to it is very conspicuous in
the rock-pigeon or _biset_, as it is called by the French.
Flocks from different parts of the coasts often meet on the
feeding-grounds; but when the time of returning to rest comes
round, each one keeps to its own party.

[Illustration: OWL PIGEONS.]

THE OWL PIGEON.--This pigeon does not seem to be so well known
as it formerly was, if we may judge from the fact that few
modern writers mention it. Like the Turbit pigeon, the Owl has a
remarkable tuft of feathers on the breast, it having been
compared by some to the frill of a shirt, and by others to a
full-blown white rose. In size, it is not quite so large a
pigeon as the Jacobin. It is said to be preferred in France,
above other varieties, as a bird to rear and kill for the table.
In England it is very far from being common; indeed, we have
applied to several keepers of pigeons, who have fancied
themselves acquainted with all the varieties of this bird, and
they have been able to tell us nothing of it. Mr. Harrison Weir,
our artist, however, has made his portrait from the life.

BOILED RABBIT.

[Illustration: BOILED RABBIT.]

977. INGREDIENTS.--Rabbit; water.

_Mode_.--For boiling, choose rabbits with smooth and sharp claws, as
that denotes they are young: should these be blunt and rugged, the ears
dry and tough, the animal is old. After emptying and skinning it, wash
it well in cold water, and let it soak for about 1/4 hour in warm water,
to draw out the blood. Bring the head round to the side, and fasten it
there by means of a skewer run through that and the body. Put the rabbit
into sufficient hot water to cover it, let it boil very gently until
tender, which will be in from 1/2 to 3/4 hour, according to its size and
age. Dish it, and smother it either with onion, mushroom, or liver
sauce, or parsley-and-butter; the former is, however, generally
preferred to any of the last-named sauces. When liver-sauce is
preferred, the liver should be boiled for a few minutes, and minced very
finely, or rubbed through a sieve before it is added to the sauce.

_Time_.--A very young rabbit, 1/2 hour; a large one, 3/4 hour; an old
one, 1 hour or longer.

_Average cost_, from 1s. to 1s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

THE RABBIT.--Though this animal is an inhabitant of most
temperate climates, it does not reach so far north as the hare.
The wild rabbit is a native of Great Britain, and is found in
large numbers in the sandy districts of Norfolk and
Cambridgeshire. Its flesh is, by some, considered to have a
higher flavour than that of the tame rabbit, although it is
neither so white nor so delicate. The animal, however, becomes
larger and fatter in the tame than in the wild state; but it is
not desirable to have it so fat as it can be made.

CURRIED RABBIT.

978. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, 2 oz. of butter, 3 onions, 1 pint of stock
No. 104, 1 tablespoonful of curry powder, 1 tablespoonful of flour, 1
teaspoonful of mushroom powder, the juice of 1/2 lemon, 1/2 lb. of rice.

_Mode_.--Empty, skin, and wash the rabbit thoroughly, and cut it neatly
into joints. Put it into a stewpan with the butter and sliced onions,
and let them acquire a nice brown colour, but do not allow them to
blacken. Pour in the stock, which should be boiling; mix the curry
powder and flour smoothly with a little water, add it to the stock, with
the mushroom powder, and simmer gently for rather more than 1/2 hour;
squeeze in the lemon-juice, and serve in the centre of a dish, with an
edging of boiled rice all round. Where economy is studied, water may be
substituted for the stock; in this case, the meat and onions must be
very nicely browned. A little sour apple and rasped cocoa-nut stewed
with the curry will be found a great improvement.

_Time_.--Altogether 3/4 hour.

_Average cost_, from 1s. to 1s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 persons.

_Seasonable_ in winter.

[Illustration: WILD RABBITS.]

THE COMMON OR WILD RABBIT.--Warrens, or inclosures, are
frequently made in favourable localities, and some of them are
so large as to comprise 2,000 acres. The common wild rabbit is
of a grey colour, and is esteemed the best for the purposes of
food. Its skin is valuable as an article of commerce, being used
for the making of hats. Another variety of the rabbit, however,
called the "silver-grey," has been lately introduced to this
country, and is still more valuable. Its colour is a black
ground, thickly interspersed with grey hairs; and its powers as
a destroyer and consumer of vegetable food are well known to be
enormous, especially by those who have gardens in the vicinity
of a rabbit-warren.

FRIED RABBIT.

979. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, flour, dripping, 1 oz. of butter, 1
teaspoonful of minced shalot, 2 tablespoonfuls of mushroom ketchup.

_Mode_.--Cut the rabbit into neat joints, and flour them well; make the
dripping boiling in a fryingpan, put in the rabbit, and fry it a nice
brown. Have ready a very hot dish, put in the butter, shalot, and
ketchup; arrange the rabbit pyramidically on this, and serve as quickly
as possible.

_Time_.--10 minutes. _Average cost_, from 1s. to 1s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 or 5 persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

_Note_.--The rabbit may be brushed over with egg, and sprinkled with
bread crumbs, and fried as above. When cooked in this manner, make a
gravy in the pan by recipe No. 866, and pour it round, but not over, the
pieces of rabbit.

VARIETIES IN RABBITS.--Almost everybody knows that a rabbit is a
furry animal, that lives on plants, and burrows in the ground;
that it has its varieties as well as other animals, and that it
is frequently an especial favourite with boys. Among its
varieties, the short-legged, with width and substance of loin,
is the most hardy, and fattens the most expeditiously. It has,
besides, the soundest liver, rabbits generally being subject to
defects of that part. It is also the smallest variety. There is
a very large species of the hare-colour, having much bone,
length and depth of carcase, large and long ears, with full
eyes, resembling those of the hare: it might readily be taken
for a hybrid or mule, but for the objection to its breeding. Its
flesh is high-coloured, substantial, and more savoury than that
of the common rabbit; and, cooked like the hare, it makes a good
dish. The large white, and yellow and white species, have whiter
and more delicate flesh, and, cooked in the same way, will rival
the turkey. Rabbits are divided into four kinds, distinguished
as warreners, parkers, hedgehogs, and sweethearts. The warrener,
as his name implies, is a member of a subterranean community,
and is less effeminate than his kindred who dwell _upon_ the
earth and have "the world at their will," and his fur is the
most esteemed. After him, comes the parker, whose favourite
resort is a gentleman's pleasure-ground, where he usually breeds
in great numbers, and from which he frequently drives away the
hares. The hedgehog is a sort of vagabond rabbit, that, tinker
like, roams about the country, and would have a much better coat
on his back if he was more settled in his habits, and remained
more at home. The sweetheart is a tame rabbit, with its fur so
sleek, soft, and silky, that it is also used to some extent in
the important branch of hat-making.

RABBIT A LA MINUTE.

980. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, 1/4 lb. of butter, salt and pepper to
taste, 2 blades of pounded mace, 3 dried mushrooms, 2 tablespoonfuls of
minced parsley, 2 teaspoonfuls of flour, 2 glasses of sherry, 1 pint of
water.

_Mode_.--Empty, skin, and wash the rabbit thoroughly, and cut it into
joints. Put the butter into a stewpan with the pieces of rabbit; add
salt, pepper, and pounded mace, and let it cook until three parts done;
then put in the remaining ingredients, and boil for about 10 minutes: it
will then be ready to serve. Fowls or hare may be dressed in the same
manner.

_Time_.--Altogether, 35 minutes. _Average cost_, from 1s. to 1s. 6d.
each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 or 5 persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

RABBIT PIE.

981. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, a few slices of ham, salt and white pepper
to taste, 2 blades of pounded mace, 1/2 teaspoonful of grated nutmeg, a
few forcemeat balls, 3 hard-boiled eggs, 1/2 pint of gravy, puff crust.

_Mode_.--Cut up the rabbit (which should be young), remove the
breastbone, and bone the legs. Put the rabbit, slices of ham, forcemeat
balls, and hard eggs, by turns, in layers, and season each layer with
pepper, salt, pounded mace, and grated nutmeg. Pour in about 1/2 pint of
water, cover with crust, and bake in a well-heated oven for about 1-1/2
hour. Should the crust acquire too much colour, place a piece of paper
over it to prevent its burning. When done, pour in at the top, by means
of the hole in the middle of the crust, a little good gravy, which may
be made of the breast- and leg-bones of the rabbit and 2 or 3
shank-bones, flavoured with onion, herbs, and spices.

_Time_.--1-1/2 hour. _Average cost_, from 1s. to 1s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 5 or 6 persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

Note.--The liver of the rabbit may be boiled, minced, and mixed with the
forcemeat balls, when the flavour is liked.

FECUNDITY OF THE RABBIT.--The fruitfulness of this animal has
been the subject of wonder to all naturalists. It breeds seven
times in the year, and generally begets seven or eight young
ones at a time. If we suppose this to happen regularly for a
period of four years, the progeny that would spring from a
single pair would amount to more than a million. As the rabbit,
however, has many enemies, it can never be permitted to increase
in numbers to such an extent as to prove injurious to mankind;
for it not only furnishes man with an article of food, but is,
by carnivorous animals of every description, mercilessly
sacrificed. Notwithstanding this, however, in the time of the
Roman power, they once infested the Balearic islands to such an
extent, that the inhabitants were obliged to implore the
assistance of a military force from Augustus to exterminate
them.

RAGOUT OF RABBIT OR HARE.

982. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, 3 teaspoonfuls of flour, 3 sliced onions, 2
oz. of butter, a few thin slices of bacon, pepper and salt to taste, 2
slices of lemon, 1 bay-leaf, 1 glass of port wine.

_Mode_.--Slice the onions, and put them into a stewpan with the flour
and butter; place the pan near the fire, stir well as the butter melts,
till the onions become a rich brown colour, and add, by degrees, a
little water or gravy till the mixture is of the consistency of cream.
Cut some thin slices of bacon; lay in these with the rabbit, cut into
neat joints; add a seasoning of pepper and salt, the lemon and bay-leaf,
and let the whole simmer until tender. Pour in the port wine, give one
boil, and serve.

_Time_.--About 1/2 hour to simmer the rabbit.

_Average cost_, from 1s. to 1s. 6d. each. _Sufficient_ for 4 or 5
persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

THE RABBIT-HOUSE.--Rabbit-keeping is generally practised by a
few individuals in almost every town, and by a few in almost
every part of the country. Forty years ago, there were in the
metropolis one or two considerable feeders, who, according to
report, kept from 1,600 to 2,000 breeding does. These large
establishments, however, have ceased to exist, and London
receives the supply of tame as well as wild rabbits chiefly from
the country. Where they are kept, however, the rabbit-house
should be placed upon a dry foundation, and be well ventilated.
Exposure to rain, whether externally or internally, is fatal to
rabbits, which, like sheep, are liable to the rot, springing
from the same causes. Thorough ventilation and good air are
indispensable where many rabbits are kept, or they will neither
prosper nor remain healthy for any length of time. A thorough
draught or passage for the air is, therefore, absolutely
necessary, and should be so contrived as to be checked in cold
or wet weather by the closing or shutting of opposite doors or
windows.

ROAST OR BAKED RABBIT.

983. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, forcemeat No. 417, buttered paper,
sausage-meat.

[Illustration: ROAST RABBIT.]

_Mode_.--Empty, skin, and thoroughly wash the rabbit; wipe it dry, line
the inside with sausage-meat and forcemeat made by recipe No. 417, and
to which has been added the minced liver. Sew the stuffing inside,
skewer back the head between the shoulders, cut off the fore-joints of
the shoulders and legs, bring: them close to the body, and secure them
by means of a skewer. Wrap the rabbit in buttered paper, and put it down
to a bright clear fire; keep it well basted, and a few minutes before it
is done remove the paper, flour and froth it, and let it acquire a nice
brown colour. Take out the skewers, and serve with brown gravy and
red-currant jelly. To bake the rabbit, proceed in the same manner as
above; in a good oven, it will take about the same time as roasting.

_Time_.--A young rabbit, 35 minutes; a large one, about 3/4 hour.

_Average cost_, from 1s. to 1s. 6d. each. _Sufficient_ for 4 persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

THE HUTCH.--Hutches are generally placed one above another to
the height required by the number of rabbits and the extent of
the room. Where a large stock is kept, to make the most of room,
the hutches may be placed in rows, with a sufficient interval
between for feeding and cleaning, instead of being, in the usual
way, joined to the wall. It is preferable to rest the hutches
upon stands, about a foot above the ground, for the convenience
of cleaning under them. Each of the hutches intended for
breeding should have two rooms,--a feeding and a bed-room. Those
are single for the use of the weaned rabbits, or for the bucks,
which are always kept separate. The floors should be planed
smooth, that wet may run off, and a common hoe, with a short
handle, and a short broom, are most convenient implements for
cleaning these houses.

STEWED RABBIT.

984. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, 2 large onions, 6 cloves, 1 small
teaspoonful of chopped lemon-peel, a few forcemeat balls, thickening of
butter and flour, 1 large tablespoonful of mushroom ketchup.

_Mode_.--Cut the rabbit into small joints; put them into a stewpan, add
the onions sliced, the cloves, and minced lemon-peel. Pour in sufficient
water to cover the meat, and, when the rabbit is nearly done, drop in a
few forcemeat balls, to which has been added the liver, finely chopped.
Thicken the gravy with flour and butter, put in the ketchup, give one
boil, and serve.

_Time_.--Rather more than 1/2 hour. _Average cost_, 1s. to 1s. 6d each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 or 5 persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

[Illustration: LOP-EARED RABBIT.]

FANCY RABBITS.--The graceful fall of the ears is the first thing
that is looked to by the fancier; next, the dewlap, if the
animal is in its prime; then the colours and marked points, and,
lastly, the shape and general appearance. The ears of a fine
rabbit should extend not less than seven inches, measured from
tip to tip in a line across the skull; but even should they
exceed this length, they are admitted with reluctance into a
fancy stock, unless they have a uniform and graceful droop. The
dewlap, which is a fold of skin under the neck and throat, is
only seen in fancy rabbits, after they have attained their full
growth: it commences immediately under the jaw, and adds greatly
to the beauty of their appearance. It goes down the throat and
between the fore legs, and is so broad that it projects beyond
the chin.

The difference between the fancy and common rabbit in the back,
independent of the ears, is sufficient to strike the common
observer. Fancy rabbits fetch a very high price; so much as five
and ten guineas, and even more, is sometimes given for a
first-rate doe. If young ones are first procured from a good
family, the foundation of an excellent stock can be procured for
a much smaller sum. Sometimes the ears, instead of drooping
down, slope backwards: a rabbit with this characteristic is
scarcely admitted into a fancy lot, and is not considered worth
more than the common variety. The next position is when one ear
lops outwards, and the other stands erect: rabbits of this kind
possess but little value, however fine the shape and beautiful
the colour, although they sometimes breed as good specimens as
finer ones.

The forward or horn-lop is one degree nearer perfection than the
half-lop: the ears, in this case, slope forward and down over
the forehead. Rabbits with this peculiarity are often perfect in
other respects, with the exception of the droop of the ears, and
often become the parents of perfect young ones: does of this
kind often have the power of lifting an ear erect. In the
ear-lop, the ears spread out in an horizontal position, like the
wings of a bird in flight, or the arms of a man swimming. A
great many excellent does have this characteristic, and some of
the best-bred bucks in the fancy are entirely so. Sometimes a
rabbit drops one ear completely, but raises the other so neatly
horizontally as to constitute an ear-lop: this is superior to
all others, except the perfect fall, which is so rarely to be
met with, that those which are merely ear-lopped are considered
as valuable rabbits, if well bred and with other good qualities.

"The real lop has ears that hang down by the side of the cheek,
slanting somewhat outward in their descent, with the open part
of the ear inward, and sometimes either backwards or forwards
instead of perpendicular: when the animals stand in an easy
position, the tips of the ears touch the ground. The hollows of
the ears, in a fancy rabbit of a first-rate kind, should be
turned so completely backwards that only the outer part of them
should remain in front: they should match exactly in their
descent, and should slant outwards as little as possible."

The same authority asserts that perfect lops are so rare, that a
breeder possessing twenty of the handsomest and most perfect
does would consider himself lucky if, in the course of a year,
he managed to raise twelve full-lopped rabbits out of them all.
As regards variety and purity of colour an experienced breeder
says:--

"The fur of fancy rabbits may be blue, or rather lead-colour,
and white, or black and white, or tawny and white, that is,
tortoiseshell-coloured. But it is not of so much importance what
colours the coat of a rabbit displays, as it is that those
colours shall be arranged in a particular manner, forming
imaginary figures or fancied resemblances to certain objects.
Hence the peculiarities of their markings have been denoted by
distinctive designations. What is termed 'the blue butterfly
smut' was, for some time, considered the most valuable of fancy
rabbits. It is thus named on account of having bluish or
lead-coloured spots on either side of the nose, having some
resemblance to the spread wings of a butterfly, what may be
termed the groundwork of the rabbit's face being white. A black
and white rabbit may also have the face marked in a similar
manner, constituting a 'black butterfly smut.'

"But A good fancy rabbit must likewise have other marks, without
which it cannot be considered a perfect model of its kind. There
should be a black or blue patch on its back, called the saddle;
the tail must be of the same colour with the back and snout;
while the legs should be all white; and there ought to be dark
stripes on both sides of the body in front, passing backwards to
meet the saddle, and uniting on the top of the shoulders at the
part called the withers in a horse. These stripes form what is
termed the 'chain' having somewhat the appearance of a chain or
collar hanging round the neck."

"Among thorough-bred fancy rabbits, perhaps not one in a hundred
will have all these markings clearly and exactly displayed on
the coat; but the more nearly the figures on the coat of a
rabbit approach to the pattern described, the greater will be
its value, so far, at least, as relates to colour. The beauty
and consequent worth of a fancy rabbit, however, depends a good
deal on its shape, or what is styled its carriage. A rabbit is
said to have a good carriage when its back is finely arched,
rising full two inches above the top of its head, which must be
held so low as for the muzzle and the points of the ears to
reach almost to the ground."

STEWED RABBIT, Larded.

985. INGREDIENTS.--1 rabbit, a few strips of bacon, rather more than 1
pint of good broth or stock, a bunch of savoury herbs, salt and pepper
to taste, thickening of butter and flour, 1 glass of sherry.

_Mode_.--Well wash the rabbit, cut it into quarters, lard them with
Blips of bacon, and fry them; then put them into a stewpan with the
broth, herbs, and a seasoning of pepper and salt; simmer gently until
the rabbit is tender, then strain the gravy, thicken it with butter and
flour, add the sherry, give one boil, pour it over the rabbit, and
serve. Garnish with slices of cut lemon.

_Time_.--Rather more than 1/2 hour.

_Average cost_, 1s. to 1s. 6d. each.

_Sufficient_ for 4 or 5 persons.

_Seasonable_ from September to February.

[Illustration: THE HARE-RABBIT.]

THE HARE-RABBIT.--There has been lately introduced to French
tables an animal called the "Hare-rabbit," partaking of the
nature, characteristics, and qualifications of both the hare and
the rabbit. It is highly spoken of, both as regards flesh and
flavour; and it is said to be the only hybrid which is able to
perpetuate its race. We hope that some enterprising individual
will soon secure for English, tables what would seem to be a
really valuable addition to our other game and poultry dishes;
although it will be rather difficult to exactly assign its
proper position, as within or without the meaning of "game," as
by law established. Only a few specimens have been seen in
England at present, but there is no reason to doubt that our
rabbit-fanciers will prove equal to the occasion, and cope
successfully with our neighbours across the Channel in
introducing a new animal serviceable in the kitchen.

[Illustration: ANGORA RABBIT.]

THE ANGORA RABBIT.--This is one of the handsomest of all
rabbits. It takes its name from being an inhabitant of Angora, a
city and district of Asia Minor. Like the well-known Angora goat
and cat, both of which are valuable on account of the fineness
of their wool and fur, this rabbit is prized for its long,
waved, silky fur, which, as an article of commerce is highly
esteemed. We are not aware whether it is eaten by the
inhabitants, and but few specimens have been introduced into
England, where, doubtless, the beauty of its coat would
materially suffer from the more humid and less genial character
of the climate. To the rabbits of the ancient and mountainous
district of Angora the words of the wise man would seem most to
apply, "The conies are but feeble folk, yet make they their
houses in the rocks."

[Illustration: HIMALAYA RABBITS.]

THE HIMALAYA RABBIT.--Amidst the mighty Himalaya mountains,
whose peaks are the highest on the globe, the pretty rabbit here
portrayed is found; and his colour seems to be like the snow,
which, above the altitude of from 13,000 to 16,000 feet,
perpetually crowns the summits of these monarchs of the world.
It is, at present, a very rare animal in England, but will,
doubtless, be more extensively known in the course of a few
years. From the earth-tunnelling powers of this little animal,
Martial declares that mankind learned the art of fortification,
mining, and covered roads.

BOILED TURKEY.

986. INGREDIENTS.--Turkey; forcemeat No. 417.

_Choosing and Trussing_.--Hen turkeys are preferable for boiling, on
account of their whiteness and tenderness, and one of moderate size
should be selected, as a large one is not suitable for this mode of
cooking. They should not be dressed until they have been killed 3 or 4
days, as they will neither look white, nor will they be tender. Pluck
the bird, carefully draw, and singe it with a piece of white paper, wash
it inside and out, and wipe it thoroughly dry with a cloth. Cut off the

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