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Christmas Pie

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Christmas Pie
 
Old Christmas Recipe from Charles Elmé Francatelli, The Modern Cook. (London: 1846).
Ingredients
  • The quantity of game, &c., recommended to be used in the preparation of the foregoing pie may appear extravagant enough, but it is to be remembered that these very large pies are mostly in request at Christmas time.
  • Their substantial aspect renders them worthy of appearing on the side-table of those wealthy epicures who are wont to keep up the good old English style, at this season of hospitality and good cheer.
Instructions
  1. First, bone a turkey, a goose, a brace of young pheasants, four partridges, four woodcocks, a dozensnipes, four grouse, and four widgeons; then boil and trim a small York ham and two tongues.
  2. Season and garnish the inside of the fore-named game and poultry, as directed in the foregoing case, with long fillets of fat bacon and tongue, and French truffles; each must be carefully sewn up with a needle and small twine, so as to prevent the force-meat from escaping while they are being baked.
  3. When the whole of these are ready, line two round or oval braising-pans with thin layers of fat bacon, and after the birds have been arranged therein in neat order, and covered in with layers of bacon and buttered paper, put the lids on, and set them in the oven to bake rather slowly, for about four hours: then withdraw them, and allow them to cool.
  4. While the foregoing is in progress, prepare some highly-seasoned aspic-jelly with the carcasses of the game and poultry, to which add six calves'-feet, and the usual complement of vegetables, &c., and when done, let it be clarified : one-half should be reduced previously to its being poured into the pie when it is baked.
  5. Make about sixteen pounds of hot-water-paste, and use it to raise a pie of sufficient dimensions to admit of its holding the game and poultry prepared for the purpose, for making which follow the directions contained in the foregoing article.
  6. The inside of the pie must first be lined with thin layers of fat bacon, over which spread a coating of wellseasoned force-meat of fat livers; the birds should then be placed in the following order: first, put the goose at the bottom with some of the small birds round it, filling up the cavities with some of the force-meat; then, put the turkey and the pheasants with thick slices of the boiled ham between them, reserving the woodcocks and widgeons, that these may be placed on the top: fill the cavities with force-meat and truffles, and cover the whole with thin layers of fat bacon, run a little plain melted butter over the surface, cover the pie in the usual manner, and ornament it with a bold design.
  7. The pie must now be baked, for about six hours, in an oven moderately heated, and when taken out, and after the reduced aspic above alluded to has been poured into it, stop the hole up with a small piece of paste, and set it aside in the larder to become cold.

handmade-christmas-pie

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