Eighteenth Century Chicken with Sweetbreads Wild Mushrooms And Bacon
|Corn fed chicken||3 Pound (1 Chicken, 1 1/3 Kilogram)|
|Onions||4 Ounce (100 Gram)|
|Dried wild mushrooms/Cultivated mushrooms of same quantity||3⁄4 Ounce (15 - 20 Gram)|
|Lamb sweetbreads||1 Pound (450 Gram)|
|Lean bacon||4 Ounce, chopped small (100 Gram)|
|Mace||1 Teaspoon, ground (1/2 Teaspoon Extra Required)|
|Nutmeg||3⁄4 Teaspoon, ground (1/2 Teaspoon Extra Required)|
|Butter||1 Teaspoon (Leveled)|
|Double cream||1⁄4 Pint (150 Milliliter)|
|Lemon juice||1 Teaspoon (Leveled) (Little Required)|
|Black pepper||To Taste|
1) Bone the chicken, either by leaving the skin in place or by slicing along the side.
2) Initially remove the wishbone, then run a knife along either side of the rib cage towards the parson's nose.
3) Dislocate the joints and discard.
4) Leave the wings intact, but cut out the thigh bone of each leg.
5) Trim and remove as much fat as you can.
6) Place the bones in 1 1/2 pints (900 ml) water and add the onion, half lemon, carrot and bay leaves,reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered until reduced to just 1/2 pint (300 ml) of stock.
7) Strain and allow to stand overnight to cool.
8) Keep the mushrooms in 1/2 pint (300 ml) water and cook on minimum heat until they are reconstituted and just cooked through and there is very little liquid left - though add a little more water if you necessary to avoid burning.
9) Allow the liquid to remain overnight.
10) Soak the sweetbreads in slightly salted cold water for at least 4 hours, changing the water frequently.
11) Evening is the convenient time to start.
12) When you are ready to put together the chicken, skim the fat from the stock, allow to boil and then soak in the drained sweetbreads for 5 minutes.
13) Take out now and dip into cold water.
14) Once stiff, pick off the globules of fat or any really thick membrane, but do not remove it all as it helps them keep their shape.
15) Remove the mushrooms from their liquid and add that to the stock as well.
16) Retain 6 sweetbreads and some nice looking mushrooms, then mix the remaining together with the chopped bacon.
17) Add the mace and nutmeg and lots of black pepper and a little salt, mixing well.
18) Stuff the chicken with this mixture, and either sew or secure together with toothpicks.
19) If you are using toothpicks, try and point them across the chicken rather than lengthwise, as this will make carving easier.
20) Stir butter until melted to cover the bottom of a wide saucepan, then gently brown both sides of the chicken, taking great care not to tear it when turning.
21) Wipe out the pan, add the stock (which should be just over 1/2 pint/300 ml), and once that is boiling, add the chicken, breast side up.
22) Cover the pan with its lid and cook for 50-60 minutes.
23) Transfer the chicken to a warmed plate, increasing the heat under the pan to reduce the juices a little and then add the cream.
24) When you reach to the desired consistency, add the retained mushrooms and sweetbreads and the final extra spices.
25) Discard the wings and the remaining leg joints, then slice across the chicken.
26) Pour a little of the sauce on each plate and place a thick slice of chicken in the middle.
27) Serve after drizzling each serving with a little lemon juice now itself (as guests tend to overdo you give them lemon wedges giving a rather sharp tangy flavour.