Ingredients

  • 12–15 small teal, or 3 woodcocks
  • ½ lb butter
  • 1 French roll

Method

Teal, like woodcocks and thrushes, are not eviscerated, but fried with their legs and heads. Pluck 12–15 teal, wash and salt them, and cook in a stewpan with 3 spoons butter. Set each cooked bird on a sippet made of white bread, fried in butter, and dried out in the oven. Arrange the birds and sippets on a platter and pour on the butter in which the birds were cooked.

Teal have large livers, which may be removed, chopped fine, and fried together with the birds. If the liver is used, arrange the ducks in the middle of the platter, and garnish with sippets spread with the finely chopped cooked liver. Pour on the sauce.

*Svisteli appears to be a dialect word for svistunok (Anas crecca), the name deriving from the bird’s distinctive whistling cry. Although teal are larger than woodcocks and thrushes, in the nineteenth century, teal was a common term for several species of small freshwater ducks. Here Molokhovets was clearly referring to a particularly small variety.

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