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Passenger Pigeon

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Since people seem rather taken (or annoyed) with my possum and taters recipe, I’ll throw a couple of other classics of American food preparation over the weekend. Here’s a recipe to one of my favorite American dishes, passenger pigeon!

From Marion Harland’s 1871 book, Common Sense in the Household.

“Clean and wash very carefully, then lay in salt and water for an hour. Rinse the inside with soda and water, shaking it well about in the cavity; wash out with fair water and stuff with a force-meat made of bread-crumbs and chopped salt pork, seasoned with peppper. Sew up the birds, and put on to stew in enough cold water to cover them, and allow to each a fair slice of fat bacon cut into narrow strips. Season with pepper and a pinch of nutmeg. Boil slowly in a covered saucepan until tender; take from the gravy and lay in a covered dish to keep warm. Strain the gravy, add the juice of a lemon and a tablespoonful of currant jelly, thickening with browned flour. Boil up and poor over the pigeons.”

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