To give venison the flavour and the tenderness so much prized by epicures, it must be well kept; and by taking the necessary precautions, it will hang a considerable time without detriment. Wipe it with soft dry cloths wherever the slightest moisture appears on the surface, and dust it plentifully with freshly-ground pepper or powdered ginger, to preserve it from the flies. The application of the pyroligneous or ascetic acid would effectually protect it from these, as well as from the effects of the weather; but the joint must then be not only well washed, but soaked some considerable time, and this would be injurious to it: the acid, therefore, should only be resorted to for the purpose of restoring to an eatable state that which would otherwise be lost, from having been kept beyond the point in which it is possible to serve it.
* It must be observed that venison is not in perfect on when young: like mutton, it requires to be of a certain age before it is brought to table. The word cleft applies also to he thickest part of the haunch, and it is the depth of the fat on this which decides the quality of the joint.
To prepare the venison for the spit, wash it slightly with tepid water, or merely wipe it thoroughly with damp cloths, and dry it afterwards with clean ones; then lay over the fat side a large sheet of thickly-buttered paper, and next a paste of flour and water about three quarters of an inch thick; cover this again with two or three sheets of stout paper, secure the whole well with swine, and lay the haunch to a sound clear fire; baste the paper immediately with butter, or clarified dripping, and roast the joint from three hours and a half to four and a half, according to its weight and quality. Doe venison will require half an hour less time than buck venison. Twenty minutes before the joint is done remove the paste and paper, baste the meat in every part with butter, and dredge it very lightly with flour; let it take a pale brown colour, and send it to table as hot as possible with unflavoured gravy in a tureen, and good currant-jelly. It is not now customary to serve any other sauces with it; but should the old-fashioned sharp or sweet sauce be ordered, the receipt for it will be found at page 88.*
3 1/2 to 4 1/2 hours.