Hang a plump and finely-grained leg of mutton in a cool place, for as many days as it can possibly be kept without becoming altogether uneatable. Lay it on a dish, pour over, and rub well into it, about half a small cupful of pyroligneous acid, and let it remain ten minutes. Wash it very thoroughly, cut off the knuckle, and trim away the flap, and any part that may continue very offensive, or take a few inches from either end of the joint; then lay it into a close-shutting stewpot, or thick iron saucepan of its own size, with no other liquid than the drops of water which adhere to it, and simmer it over a very slow fire, from four and a half to five hours, turning it several times, that it may be equally done. Give it no seasoning beyond pepper and salt. Should the gravy be too much reduced, add two spoonsful of boiling water, or of mutton gravy. Send the meat to table in its own juices, with currant jelly, or sharp venison sauce apart. We owe this receipt entirely to accident; for, wishing to have proof of the anti-putrescent qualities of the pyroligneous acid, we had it applied to a leg of mutton which, had been kept too long, and which was dressed in the way we have described.
When brought to table, its resemblance to venison, both in appearance and flavour, was remarkable; and several persons partook of it hashed on the following day, and were all perfectly unconscious that they were not really eating venison; in the latter instance, it was served in rich gravy made in part of hare; a glass of port wine, a little compound catsup, and a thickening of rice flour were added. The meat, of course, was only heated through, and not allowed to boil. On a second trial we found it an improvement to touch the mutton in every part with a feather dipped in the acid, as soon as it gave evidence of having been sufficiently kept, and then to let it hang three or four days longer: it was again washed with the acid, and afterwards with cold water before it was dressed, to boil a leg of mutton; (an excellent receipt.) Trim into handsome form a well-kept, but perfectly sweet leg of mutton, of middling weight; wash, but do not soak it; lay it into a vessel as nearly of its size as convenient, and pour in rather more than sufficient cold water to cover it; set it over a good fire, and when it begins to boil, take off the scum, and continue to do so until no more appears; throw in a tablespoonful of salt (after the first skimming), which will assist to bring it to the surface, and as soon as the liquor is clear, add two moderate-sized onions, stuck with a dozen cloves, a large faggot of parsley, thyme, and savory, and four or five large carrots, and half an hour afterwards, as many turnips.
Draw the pan to the side of the fire, and let the mutton be simmered gently for two hours and a half, from the time of its first beginning to boil. Serve it with caper, brown cucumber, or oyster sauce. If stewed softly, as we have directed, the mutton will be found excellent dressed thus; otherwise, it will but resemble the unpalatable and ragged-looking joints of fast-boiled meat, so constantly sent to table by common English cooks. Any undressed bones of veal, mutton, or beef, boiled with the joint, will improve it much, and the liquor will then make excellent soup or bouillon. 2 to 2 1/2 hours.