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Meats - Offal

Pig's pluck, liver, sweetbreads etc, chopped with sage, onions, seasonings, wrapped together and roasted (Cury 1390, Eaton 1822, etc).

The word 'Harslet' derives from the Latin hasta meaning a spear (OED), and was applied to meats suitable for roasting on a skewer. By the early modern period it seems to have come to specifically mean offal, so that M Radcliffe's 'Modern system of domestic cookery', (Radcliffe 1822) could say that; "The inwards form what is called the haslet, which consists of the liver, crow, kidney, and skirts. Besides these there are chitterlins, or guts, the parts of which are cleansed for sausages and black puddings." The more modern Haslet is a type of meat loaf made with a high proportion of lean meat and no longer necessarily contains any offal at all.

Original Receipt in 'The Cook and Housekeeper's Dictionary' by Mary Eaton (Eaton 1822);

PIG'S HARSLET. Wash and dry some liver, sweetbreads, and fat and lean bits of pork, beating the latter with a rolling-pin to make it tender. Season with pepper, salt, sage, and a little onion shred fine. When mixed, put all into a cawl, and fasten it up tight with a needle and thread. Roast it on a hanging jack, or by a string. Serve with a sauce of port wine and water, and mustard, just boiled up, and put into the dish. Or serve it in slices with parsley for a fry.

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