Select a young turkey, remove all the feathers carefully, singe it over a burning newspaper on the top of the stove; then "draw" it nicely, being very careful not to break any of the internal organs; remove the crop carefully; cut off the head, and tie the neck close to the body by drawing the skin over it. Now rinse the inside of the turkey out with several waters, and in the next to the last, mix a tea-spoonful of baking soda; oftentimes the inside of a fowl is very sour, especially if it is not freshly killed. Soda, being cleansing, acts as a corrective, and destroys that unpleasant taste which we frequently experience in the dressing when fowls have been killed for some time. Now, after washing, wipe the turkey dry, inside and out, with a clean cloth, rub the inside with some salt, then stuff the breast and body with "Dressing for Fowls." Then sew up the turkey with a strong thread, tie the legs and wings to the body, rub it over with a litle soft butter, sprinkle over some salt and pepper, dredge with a little flour; place it in a dripping-pan, pour in a cup of boiling water, and set in the oven. Baste the turkey often, turning it around occasionally so that every part will be uniformly baked. When pierced with a fork and the liquid runs out perfectly clear, the bird is done. If any part is likely to scorch, pin over it a piece of buttered white paper. A fifteen pound turkey requires between three and four hours to bake. Serve with cranberry sauce.
When, you put the turkey in to roast, put the neck, heart, liver and gizzard into a stewpan with a pint of water; boil until they become quite tender; take them out of the water, chop the heart and gizzard, mash the liver and throw away the neck; return the chopped heart, gizzard and liver to. the liquor in which they were stewed; set it to one side, and when the turkey is done it should be added to the gravy that dripped from the turkey, having first skimmed off the fat from the surface of the dripping-pan; set it all over the fire, boil three minutes and thicken with flour. It will not need brown flour to color the gravy. The garnishes for turkey or chicken are fried oysters, thin slices of ham, slices of lemon, fried sausages, or force meat balls, also parsley.
Prepare as you would for baking or roasting; fill with an oyster stuffing, made as the above. Tie the legs and wings close to the body, place in salted boiling water with the breast downward; skim it often and boil about two hours, but not till the skin breaks. Serve with oyster or celery sauce. Boil a nicely pickled piece of salt pork, and serve at table a thin slice to each plate. Some prefer bacon or ham instead of pork.
Some roll the turkey in a cloth dipped in flour. If the liquor is to be used afterwards for soup, the cloth imparts an unpleasant flavor. The liquor can be saved and made into a nice soup for the next day's dinner, by adding the same seasoning as for chicken soup.
Pick the meat from the bones of cold turkey and chop it fine. Put a layer of bread crumbs on the bottom of a buttered dish, moisten them with a little milk, then put in a layer of turkey with some of the filling, and cut small pieces of butter over the top; sprinkle with pepper and salt; then another layer of bread crumbs, and so on until the dish is nearly full; add a little hot water to the gravy left from the turkey and pour over it; then take two eggs, two table-spoonfuls of milk, one of melted butter, a little salt and cracker crumbs as much as will make it thick enough to spread on with a knife; put bits of butter over it, and cover with a plate. Bake three-quarters of an hour. Ten minutes before serving, remove the plate and let it brown.
Cut the remnants of turkey from a previous dinner into pieces of equal size. Boil the bones in a quart of water, until the quart is reduced to a pint; then take out the bones, and to the liquor in which they were boiled add turkey gravy, if you have any, or white stock, or a small piece of butter with salt and pepper; let the liquor thus prepared boil up once; then put in the pieces of turkey, dredge in a little flour, give it one boil-up, and serve in a hot dish.
Pieces of cold turkey or chicken may be warmed up with a little butter in a frying pan; place it on a warm platter, surround it with pieces of small thick slices of bread or biscuit halved, first dipping them in hot salted water; then place the platter in a warm oven with the door open. Have already made the following gravy to pour over all: -
Into the frying pan put a large spoonful of butter, one or two cupfuls of milk, and any gravy that may be left over. Bring it to a boil; then add sufficient flour, wet in a little cold milk or water, to make it the consistency of cream. Season with salt, pepper and add a little of the dark meat chopped very fine. Let the sauce cook a few moments, then pour over the biscuit and fowl. This will be found a really nice dish.
Clean the fowl as usual. With a sharp and pointed knife, begin at the extremity of the wing, and pass the knife down close to the bone, cutting all the flesh from the bone, and preserving the skin whole; run the knife down each side of the breast bone and up the legs, keeping close to the bone; then split the back half way up, and draw out the bones; fill the places whence the bones were taken with a stuffing, restoring the fowl to its natural form, and sew up all the incisions made in the skin. Lard with two or three rows of slips of fat bacon on the top, basting often with salt and water, and a little butter. Some like a glass of port wine in the gravy.
This is a difficult dish to attempt by any but skillful hands. Carve across in slices, and serve with tomato sauce.