by Georges Auguste Escoffier
Woodcock should be hung for several days with the feathers still on and only plucked when they are going to be cooked. After plucking, remove the gizzard only and truss the bird by pushing its beak through the thick part of its legs, the ends of which are then entwined together. Cover the breasts with a thin slice of salt pork fat and roast in a very hot oven for 15-18 minutes. Place on a Canape of bread fried in butter; serve accompanied with gravy made by deglazing the pan with a little brandy.
Snipe are treated in exactly the same way as for woodcock but roasting them for 9 minutes only in a very hot oven. Present and serve as for woodcock.
3928 Figpeckers and Warblers
These birds are usually impaled 6 at a time on skewers and roasted at a very high temperature allowing 8 minutes of cooking time.
Choose white plump birds with firm fat; wrap each in a buttered vine leaf then in a thin slice of salt pork fat and roast at a very high temperature for 10-12 minutes.
Arrange each on a Canape of bread fried in butter and spread with Gratin Forcemeat "C" (see section 295 of the book). Surround with halves of lemon and bunches of watercress and serve accompanied with a small quantity of gravy made from the juices in the pan.
3930 Wild Ducks
Wild ducks should not be covered with salt pork fat. They should be roasted at a very high temperature for 20 minutes keeping them very underdone.
Serve surrounded with halves of lemon and watercress.
3931 Roast Wild Duck, English Style
Roast as above and serve accompanied with Apple Sauce.
3932 Canard Sauvage a la Bigarade
Roast the wild duck as 3930 and serve garnished with segments of peeled orange free of skin and pith. Serve a clear Sauce Bigarade separately.
3933 Roast Wild Duck with Cranberry Sauce
Roast the wild duck as 3930 and serve accompanied with Cranberry Sauce.
3934 Canard Sauvage au Porto
Roast the wild duck as 3930 and serve accompanied with a very fine gravy thickened with arrowroot and flavoured with Port wine.
Roast the pintail as usual allowing 15-17 minutes cooking time.
Roast in the same way as wild duck allowing 12-14 minutes cooking time.
The various species of this bird are completely emptied before cooking then roasted in the same way as plovers.
This bird is not held in high regard and is usually cooked in a covered pan; only young birds should be used.
3939 Hazel Grouse
This bird must be very fresh; cover with slices of salt pork fat and roast at a high temperature for 15-18 minutes.
This bird must be very fresh; the time for roasting varies from 12-15 minutes according to size.
Note: These last three birds should be cooked underdone and it is usual to serve only the breasts. If roasted in the English style they should be served accompanied with bread sauce, fried breadcrumbs and game chips.
A pheasant for roasting should be covered with thin slices of salt pork fat but should not be larded. It is a good idea to pound a piece of fresh pork fat with some truffle peelings and place this inside the bird—or pork fat alone may be used. The fat will penetrate into the flesh helping it to cook better without drying out. This method is also suitable for partridges.
Roast at a high temperature for 25-30 minutes according to size and serve surrounded with halves of lemon and bunches of watercress; the gravy should be left slightly fatty and served separately.
3942 Faisan Truffé—Truffled Pheasant
Proceed as for Truffled Young Turkey (see section 3914 of the book) allowing 400 g (14 oz) fresh pork fat and 200 g (7 oz) truffle, Cover with thin slices of salt pork fat and roast in a moderate oven for 50 minutes to 1 hour.
Cover the breast with thin slices of salt pork fat, place 1 juniper berry inside each and roast in a very hot oven for 10-12 minutes, Place on Canapes of bread fried in butter but without the usual Gratin Forcemeat.
Serve accompanied with a little good gravy.
The only part of the hare suitable for roasting is the saddle which comprises the whole of the back from the beginning of the rib cage to the tail, which can be left on.
Remove the sinews, lard with strips of salt pork fat, then roast at a fairly high temperature for 20 minutes.
The usual accompaniment for roast hare is a thin Sauce Poivrade.
In northern countries the accompaniment is either slightly sweet apple purée or red currant jelly.
Wrap each bird in a thin slice of salt pork fat and impale on a skewer, or impale the birds on a skewer alternating with squares of blanched streaky bacon. Roast at a high temperature for 10 minutes.
Place the larks on Croutons of bread fried in butter and surround with halves of lemon and bouquets of watercress.
These are roasted in the same way as thrushes.
Wrap each bird in a strip of vine leaf, place in a tray moistened with a very little salt water and roast in a very hot oven for 4-5 minutes; the evaporation of the water prevents the birds from loosing their fat. Thus the use of slices of pork fat, butter or gravy becomes unnecessary.
The buntings may be presented, each placed in a half lemon fashioned in the shape of a basket.
3948 Ortolans au Suc d' Ananas
For 6 birds melt some butter in a shallow earthenware dish just large enough to hold the birds, allowing 30 g (1 oz) per 6 buntings. Season them with salt, roll them in the butter, then place in a very hot oven for 3 minutes.
On removing from the oven sprinkle them with pineapple juice, cover with the lid and serve immediately.
Wrap each partridge in a buttered vine leaf then in a thin slice of salt pork fat and roast in a hot oven for 20 minutes or on a spit for 25 minutes.
Place on a Crouton of bread fried in butter and coated with Gratin Forcemeat "C" (see section 295 of the book), and garnish with half a lemon and a bouquet of watercress.
3950 Perdreau Truffé—Truffled Partridge
Stuff the bird in the same way as for Dindonneau Truffé (see section 3914 of the book) allowing 100 g (31 oz) fresh pork fat and 80 g (2 oz) truffles; cover with thin slices of salt pork fat and roast in a moderate oven for 25 minutes.
3951 Plovers and Lapwings
It is not necessary to cover these birds with salt pork fat. They should be emptied then roasted at a very high temperature for 12-14 minutes keeping them slightly underdone, They must be served immediately they are cooked as waiting tends to spoil them.
Serve accompanied with a small quantity of good gravy.
This page created October 2011
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