To Roast Partridges

Partridge trussed.
30 to 40 minutes.

[In season from the first of September to the second of February, and as long as they can be preserved fit for table from that time.]


Let the birds hang as long as they can possibly be kept without becoming offensive; pick them carefully, draw, and singe them; wipe the insides thoroughly with a clean cloth; truss them with the head turned under the wing and the legs drawn close together, not crossed. Flour them when first laid to the fire, and baste them plentifully with butter. Serve them with bread sauce, and good brown gravy: a little of this last should be poured over them. In some counties they are dished upon fried bread-crumbs, but these are better handed round the table by themselves. Where game is plentiful we recommend that the remains of a cold roasted partridge should be well bruised and boiled down with just so much water, or unflavoured broth, as will make gravy for a brace of other birds: this, seasoned with salt, and cayenne only, or flavoured with a few mushrooms, will be found a very superior accompaniment for roast partridges, to the best meat-gravy that can be made. A little eschalot, and a few herbs, can be added to it at pleasure. It should be served also with boiled or with broiled partridges in preference to any other.

Obs.—Rather less time must be allowed when the birds are liked underdressed. In preparing them for the spit, the crop must be removed through a slit cut in the back of the neck, the claws clipped close, and the legs held in boiling water for a minute, that they may be skinned the more easily.