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To Stuff A peacock


This is an excerpt from An Anonymous Tuscan Cookery Book
(Italy, ~1400 - Ariane Helou, trans.)
The original source can be found at Ariane Helou's website

To stuff a peacock. Skin the peacock, keeping the head with its feathers: then take pork meat that is not too fatty, and also the ground meat of said peacock or another one, and mince and grind them together. Also grind spices, cinnamon and nutmeg, whatever you want; once these have been well ground and beaten with egg whites, mix them together, and beat said spices and meat together thoroughly, and keep the yolk aside by itself. The stuff said peacock with said minced and ground meat and the aforementioned spices: and wrap said peacock in pork caul fat, and close it with a wooden pick: and thus put it in a cauldron in lukewarm water, and boil it gently. And when it has been boiled solid i.e. the mincemeat stuffing is fully cooked], roast it on a spit or on the grill, and color it with beaten egg yolks, which you have kept aside; and don't take all of them, but make apples out of the rest of them, as follows, that is: take raw pork loin and mince it very finely with a knife and chop it thoroughly; then mix said meat with said reserved egg yolks and aforementioned spices, and make it so thick that you can make little apples in the palms of your hands; and roll them in egg yolks and color them and set them to boil in boiling water. Once they have boiled a little you can roast them and color them slightly with egg yolks, using feathers. Some of these apples you can put inside the peacock, and on the outside, under said caul fat. And once this is done, re-clothe the peacock in its coat, skin and feathers reserved, and carry it to the table; and, with the coat taken off, serve it.

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