Calf’s Head en Tortue

Tête de Veau en Tortue


Put half a calf’s head into cold water well salted, and let it lie in it for twenty-four hours, during which time the water should be occasionally changed; when ready to cook remove and blanch the brains; tie up the head in a clean cloth and put it into a stewpan with enough cold water to cover it, bring to the boil, then strain, rinse and return to the stewpan and cover it either with water or gravy stock, add a good plateful of vegetables to it, such as one or two carrots cleaned, two or three onions, one leek, a few strips of celery, a good bunch of herbs, such as thyme, parsley, bayleaf, basil, marjoram, a few black and white peppercorns, a blade or two of mace, and four or five cloves, bring to the boil, then skim and cover the pan and boil for three and a half to four hours according to the size; then take up and remove the cloth, cut the meat in square pieces large enough to allow one for each person, take off the outer skin by means of a small knife and arrange the pieces on a large square or round croûton of fried bread in a pile, and garnish this and round the dish with slices of braised sweetbread, and the calf’s brains cut in nice slices, and the tongue removed from the head and skinned and glazed; also cooked crayfish or prawns, and slices of cooked lobster, hard boiled yolks of eggs sprinkled with lobster coral, button mushrooms and truffles; serve a good espagnole sauce in a boat, and some round the dish. Hatelet skewers to fix the prawns, truffles, and mushrooms, and fastened in the crouton, are very pretty. This makes a very excellent dish to serve for a luncheon party. The liquor in which the head has been cooked will come in well for mock turtle soup in which any of the remains can be used up.