The whole brick should be soaked in cold water for about 15 minutes. Give it a good scrub. To cook your chicken you will require no fats, but brushing with olive oil before seasoning is recommended. According to taste, the inside of the brick can be rubbed with a clove of garlic before cooking each time to improve the flavour of the bird or meat being cooked. This is of course optional.
The brick containing the bird or meat should be placed in a cold oven which is then set at a high temperature (250C, 500F, Gas Mark 9). The time for cooking 1.5 hours for a 3lbs. bird or meat and pro rata - your brick size will determine weight limits. The bird will brown without basting during its cooking period. The juices obtained can of course be used to advantage.
To clean the brick after use, a solution of hot water with two teaspoons of salt or vinegar, and then a thorough washing with hot water, is all that is needed. Do not use detergents as the taste will remain in the clay.
The chicken should be cooked as described. Stuffing of herbs, herbs, and a few mushrooms are useful additions [double herbs as per the original leaflet! - ed.]
Cook the same as chickens but additionally wrap each bird in a bacon rasher and season with thyme. Serve with potatoes or rice and salad or vegetables.
Prepare brick. Incise the pork skin and stick with lemon rind and pieces of garlic. Season with rosemary or thyme. Remove the juice and place meat on serving dish (warmed). Remove fat from the juice, add half a glass white wine or cider and boil for 2 minutes. Pour over meat and serve.
Beef, lamb and other joints can be similarly treated - varying or omitting the seasoning as required.
Soak ham overnight. Place in a saucepan with 2 onions, 2 carrots, 2 sticks celery, 4 allspice and 6 black peppercorns. Bring to the boil very gently and simmer for 45-60 mins, depending on the weight of the ham. Prepare the brick. A crust for the ham now has to be made. A breakfast-cup of fresh breadcrumbs and a dessertspoon of mustard (ideally Dijon) together with a little cider should be mixed to a paste. The ham should now be peeled, the fat should be stuck with 10 cloves and the breadcrumb mixture spread over it. Place ham in the brick and ook for about 1.5 hours. Pour off excess fat and replace with cider or fruit juice and serve.
Large brick needed. Treated the same way as chickens but taking a lot longer to cook. Ideally stuffed with chestnuts, sausage meat and gammon.
As chicken. A goose of small size could be cooked in the large brick.
Experiments can be very rewarding and the suggestions above can of course be varied accordingly.