Pocahontas County

Receipes from 1884 - 1886

Mrs A P Cooper
First catch your beaver. Then dress same as any other animal. Cut your roast from any part of the animal you wish. Make a strong brine and pour over the meat and let stand over night. Then take enough cold water to cover, and lay it in a kettle with a few whole peppers, 6 cloves, a piece of stick cinnamon, 6 allspice, a teaspoon of white mustard seed, if handy, all tied up together in a piece of cheese cloth. Parboil half an hour. Take up and put in a dripping-pan with a pint of water, and start it to roasting in the oven. Then mix a teaspoon of mustard, a teaspoon of black pepper, a pinch of cayenne, with a tablespoon of flour and mix with water from the dripping-pan, and use to baste with. Either stick 2 or 3 garlics here and there in the roast, or chop an onion fine and mix with the dressing.
Clean like a pig—scrape, not skin it. Chop the liver fine, mix with bread crumbs, chopped onion, and parsley, with pepper and salt; bind with a beaten egg, and stuff the body with it. Sew up, roast, baste with salt and water. In order to make it crisp, rub it with a rag dipped in its own grease. Serve with the gravy made of browned flour. Serve it whole on a platter, and put a baked apple in its mouth. It is very nice stuffed with apples peeled and sliced. Opossum may be made into a very palatable stew.
After casing the hare, wipe off all loose hairs carefully, cut at the joints and fry brown. Season well with salt, pepper, chopped parsley, mace, nutmeg, cloves, grated lemon peel, and a sprig of thyme. Put a layer of this into a bean-pot or a small-necked jar, alternately with a layer of thin slices of bacon, until all are used. Pour I cup of water over, cover closely and set in a kettle of water. Boil 3 hours or longer if the hare is old and tough. Skim out when done and strain the liquor. Take one teaspoon each of flour and butter ; mix in a saucepan over the fire, and add the strained liquor. Let boil up and pour over the hare in a deep dish.
Truss for boiling; cover with hot water and cook gently about 45 minutes, if of medium size. In another vessel, boil the liver for 10 minutes, mince very fine and put it back into the water in which it was boiled, season with butter, pepper, and salt, and thicken with flour, and pour over the rabbit. Onion sauce is preferred by some, in which case serve it in the same manner as the liver sauce.
After skinning, cleaning, and wiping dry, fry the same as chicken. Unless known to be young and tender, it is a surer way to parboil before frying.
After cleaning, cut up like chicken and stew until tender. Then put into a deep pan with sides lined with pie-paste. Thicken the gravy and add butter, pepper, and salt. Pour over and cover with crust. Bake about 20 minutes.
After skinning and cleaning, lay in salt water for an hour. Parboil the heart and liver, mince them with a slice of fat salt pork, and add thyme, onion, pepper, and salt, and bread crumbs moistened with the water in which the giblets were boiled. Mix with a beaten egg. Stuff the rabbit with this. sew up, rub the body with butter or tie over it a few slices of fat pork. Put a cup or more of water into the dripping- pan. Baste often. An hour will generally suffice for cook- ing it. Dredge with flour before taking it from the oven, and pour melted butter over. When browned remove to a hot dish, and to the gravy add lemon juice, a bit of minced onion, and one tablespoon of flour made smooth with the same quantity of butter. Let boil up and serve in a gravy dish. Garnish the rabbit with slices of lemon and sprigs, of green parsley.
Skin, clean, and cut in small pieces a couple of rabbits. Let stand in cold salted water for an hour. Then put on to cook, in enough cold water to cover them, and boil till ten- der. Season with pepper and salt, and stir 1 tablespoon of butter made smooth with 2 tablespoons of flour into the gravy. Lemon juice is an improvement. If onions are liked, they may be boiled in a dish by themselves and added to the gravy before dishing up. Serve rabbits and gravy together on a large platter.
Pemmican is made of the lean portions of venison, buffalo, etc. The Indian method is to remove the fat from the lean, dry the lean in the sun ; then make a bag of the skin of the animal, and put the lean pieces in loosely. To this must be added the fat of the animal, rendered into tallow, and poured in quite hot. This will cause all the spaces to be filled. When cold, put away for future use. In civilized life, a jar can be used in place of the bag. Pemmican may be cooked same as sausage, or eaten as dried beef. It is invaluable in long land explorations, and is of great use in sea voyages.
RACCOONS—See Woodchucks
Clean one pair of squirrels and cut into small pieces. Wipe off with a damp cloth. Put into a stewpan with 2 slices of salt pork, and water to nearly cover. Cook until half done. Season it well and thicken the gravy. Pour into a deep dish, cover with pie crust, and bake 30 minutes. Squirrels may be fried, broiled, or stewed, like chickens or rabbits.
The haunch is the choicest piece for roasting. Wipe off with a damp cloth. Rub over with butter or lard. Then cover the top and sides with a thick paste of flour and water half an inch deep. Lay a coarse paper over all and put to roast with one cup of water in the dripping-pan. Keep the oven well heated. Baste every 15 or 20 minutes with butter . and water. Twenty minutes before serving remove the paste and paper, and dredge with flour, and baste with but- ter until of a light brown. Pour in a pint of water and make a thickened gravy as for roast beef or pork, adding a pinch of cloves, nutmeg, cayenne, and a few blades of mace. Strain before sending to table, and 2 tablespoons of currant jelly may be added if you have it. Have dishes very hot. The shoulder is also a good roasting piece, but need not be covered with the paste as in the above directions.
Take equal quantities of old salt pork and bits of raw venison. Chop fine. To each pound of chopped meat add 3 teaspoons of sage, 1 ½ of salt, and 1 of pepper. Make into flat cakes and fry with no other fat, as that in the sausage is sufficient.
These take longer to cook than beef, but should be simi- larly broiled or fried. When done, place in a hot dish with a gravy made of butter the size or an egg for each pound of steak mixed with a spoon of flour, and properly seasoned with pepper and salt. Jelly may be added if desired. Before serving, cover the platter and set in a hot oven for 5 minutes or less. Have the plates well heated, as venison cools quickly. At table it is nice to place a bit of jelly on each piece served.
Cut the meat into small pieces. Inferior cuts will make a very good stew. Boil for a couple of hours. Season to suit the taste. Add potatoes peeled, and, if large, cut in two. When done, skim out, thicken the gravy and pour over.
Mrs E E Bower, Erie PA
In Pennsylvania, woodchucks are called ground-hogs and esteemed a great delicacy, and really a fine fat one well roasted is not to be despised. To cook either ground-hogs or ‘coons, parboil for 30 minutes, to take off the wild smell; then rub well with salt and pepper, and roast in a quick oven at first, allowing the fire to cool gradually; 30 minutes to every pound is a safe rule. Young animals need no parboiling. Where fire-places are used, people cook them on a spit over a dripping-pan.