Killing and Cooking a Bird for Christmas Dinner

Pat Smyth

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Pat Smyth 21st July 2017 Skylark Centre, Athenry, Co. Galway

Killing and Cooking a bird for Christmas dinner

Interviewer: Clare Doyle (CD)

Interviewee: Pat Smyth (PS)

 

CD: Do you ever remember what you’d eat at Christmas, Christmas would be a special time

PS: Turkey

CD: Was it, and…

PS: Goose

CD: Would you buy the turkey or the goose or would you have to kill it?

PS: You’d have to kill it, pluck it

CD: How would you do that now, how would you kill the turkey?

PS: A good knife

CD: Ah, right. And would that be quick?

PS: It would, yeah

CD: And then once you’d killed him what would happen after that?

PS: We…left it a while to die and … he plucked it

CD: Right

PS: Plucked the body

CD: And then he was ready for the pot

PS: And when it was plucked we singed it, like

CD: Ah right, and why…would you singe it?

PS: With papers. My mother, my mother…. My mother singed it, to see, just to make sure that the feathers, that there were no feathers left

CD: Ah, very good, the feathers would be off it then?

PS: Yeah, she done it with papers

CD: Right, and then he’d be ready for the pot?

PS: Yeah. She’d have to … she’s have to cut it

CD: Right. That would be a messy job, would it?

PS: Jesus, it would. Very messy

CD: I’d say there’s a bit of a smell then is there?

PS: Yes, burn them!

CD: Get rid of them!

PS: … on the open fire

CD: Right. And how would she cook the goose then, would it go into a big pot

PS: It would go into a pot

CD: And you put him on the fire?

PS: On the crane, as we called it

CD: Right. How…what did the crane look like?

PS: It was a steel crane, steel crane with crooks on it

CD: And you hang the pots off it, is it?

PS: Yeah

CD: So, you’d want your fire to be very hot?

PS: Yeah

CD: You’d burn the turf in it, is it?

PS: Burn turf or coal

CD: Right

PS: Or timber

 

This page was added on 22/08/2017.

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