PIGEONS. PILAU. PLOVER. PRAIRIE CHICKEN. QUAIL. REED-BIRDS, RAILS, AND SNIPE. WOODCOCK.
May be broiled or stewed, like chickens. They make a very fine soup. Dress and joint 5 or 6 and put into a pot with an equal weight of beef cut small; slice 1 onion (or more); add a slice of fat pork; water to cover. When tender add, if you have them, about a pint of oysters with their liquor. Crabs cleaned and quartered may be substituted. Let simmer till done. Then just before serving stir in 1 or 2 tablespoons of gumbo, if you have it prepared.
Pluck, singe, draw, and wipe well. Do not wash; let the duck retain its own flavor as far as possible. Leave the head on to show its species. Roast, without stuffing, 25 or 30 minutes, in a hot oven, alter seasoning with pepper and salt. Baste with butter and water. A bit of cayenne and a tablespoon of currant jelly added to the gravy are an improvement. Thicken with browned flour.
Prepare for roasting the same as any fowl. Parboil for 15 minutes with an onion in the water, and the strong fishy flavor that is sometimes so disagreeable in wild ducks will have disappeared. A carrot will answer the same purpose. Stuff with bread crumbs, a minced onion, season with pepper, salt, and sage, and roast until tender. Use butter plentifully in basting. A half hour will suffice for young ducks.
Cut the ducks into joints; pepper, salt, and flour them; fry in butter in a stewpan. Then cover with a gravy made of the giblets and some bits of lean veal if you have it, all minced and stewed in water until tender Add a minced onion or shallot, a bunch of sweet herbs, and salt and pepper, with a bit of lemon peel. Cover closely and let them stew until tender. About 30 minutes will suffice. Skim out the ducks; skim and strain the gravy, add a cup of cream or milk and a beaten egg, thicken with browned flour, and let boil up once and pour over the ducks. The juice of a lemon may be added, or lemon may be sliced and served on the ducks.
After dressing, divide in halves, rub with pepper, salt, and flour, sprinkle in parsley, thyme, and mushrooms, if you happen to have them. Put a slice of ham and 2 pounds of veal cut up small at the bottom of the baking-dish. Then add the partridges and pour over them a pint of good broth or gravy. This is for about 4 birds. If you have no gravy, use water with a large spoon of butter. Cover with rich pie-paste. Leave an opening in the center and bake about 1 hour.
Pick and draw; divide through the back and breast, and wipe with a damp cloth. Season highly with pepper, salt, a bit of cayenne, and broil over a clear, bright fire. It will broil in 15 or 20 minutes. When done rub over with butter. Serve with lemon laid in slices on the bird.