This section is from the book "The Steward's Handbook And Guide To Party Catering", by Jessup Whitehead. Also available from Amazon: Larousse Gastronomique.
A name attached to several modern French dishes, has reference to a notable patron of culinary art, contemporary with De Cussy, CariSme, and Brillat-Savarin: "Grimond de la Reyniere came of a banking family, and no one had a bad word to say against either his palate or his camel. An accident in early childhood deprived him of both hands, which he replaced by many ingenious contrivances; and he even became a dandy in his youth, frequented the leaders of the Francais, and visited Voltaire. He was muscularly strong, and had a strong constitution; eventually developed, let us say, a hump on his camel, i. e. became obese and lived to be eighty. He was a charming talker in his best years, but latterly, wrote De Cussy, he got to be commonplace and garrulous about every thing. The same Dr. Roques, exclaming quantum tnutatns, said in a sketch of Grimod's old age that ' he rang for his servants at nine in the morning, shouting and scolding until he got his vermicelli soup. Soon after he became tranquil, and began to talk gaily; finally becoming silent, and going to sleep again for some hours. At his waking the complaints began over again; he would fly into rages, groan, weep, and wish he was dead.
But, when dinner-time came, he ate of every dish, all the time declaring that he would have nothing, for his end was nigh. At dessert his face began to show some animation, his eyebrows lifted, and some light showed from the eyes, deep sunk in their sockets. ' How is De Cussy? Will he live long?' he would ask; 'they say he has a fatal ailment. They haven't put him on diet yet, have they? The rains were heavy; we'll have lots of mushrooms in the autumn. The vines are splendid; you must come for the vintage;' and so on, always about gluttony. Then he would grow gradually silent in his great armchair, and the eyes would .close. At ten they came for him - he could no longer walk - and put him to bed.' And this was the youngster who, at the age of twenty, was canght by his own father sitting down, lone as the ace of spades, to seven roast turkeys, merely for their "oysters," their sot-l'y-laisse, as the French say." (Note. - The "oysters" are the tid-bits of meat on each side of the small of the back.
But another one who tells the anecdote says the seven turkeys were ordered merely for their " Pope's nose.")
A plump, fat and tender turkey-hen is trussed nicely and roasted about an hour and a quarter; untrussed, placed on a dish, surrounded with sausages and chestnuts and cress at each end; served with a slightly thickened gravy into which the liver of the turkey previously cooked and sliced fine, is put at the last moment.
The birds skewered with their bills, the trail chopped on toast, birds roasted before the fire with the prepared toast beneath to receive the drippings. Served on the toast with gravy and quartered lemons.