In selecting poultry see that the flesh is firm, that there is a good amount of fat underneath the skin, and that the skin is whole and a good yellow. Notice the odor of the fowl particularly. The skin of cold-storage poultry has not such a good color and is sometimes broken. Often the flesh is shrunken, and if the cold storage has been too long continued the odor is unpleasant. Refrigeration is allowable for a period. Another way to judge cold-storage poultry is by the price. Well-fed poultry freshly killed brings a high market price and a bargain quite often proves to be poultry too long in cold storage. Good quality poultry is at present a high-priced food.
To prepare poultry for cooking, the "dressing" of the chicken is often done now at the market. If it is necessary to do this at home, make an incision with a sharp knife just inside of one of the legs, in the groin. Insert the hand and remove all the entrails. The skin must be loosened at the neck and the crop removed. In any case, wash the chicken thoroughly inside and out, even holding the cavity under running water. If there is hair remaining on the chicken, singe this off over burning paper or over a gas flame.
The principles of cookery are the same as with the meat. Chicken soup is made on the same principle as beef soup. After straining, it is delicious with the addition of milk or cream. The meat of the chicken may be chopped fine and used as a thickening. Rice may be added or a hard-boiled egg chopped fine.
Chicken may be served cold, for luncheon or supper, and is always very desirable in made-over dishes. Any stuffing left over may be used in the made dishes.