Carefully pick, singe, and wipe the outside. Draw them, leaving on the head, so as to distinguish them from ordinary game. Cut an opening at the neck, and through it draw the head and neck, letting the head emerge at the back between the drumsticks, and tie it securely in place. Do not wash the inside. If carefully drawn they will not need it. Cut off the wings at the second joint. Truss the ducks neatly. Sprinkle with salt and pepper inside, and a teaspoonful of currant jelly may also be put inside. Place them in a baking-pan with a little water, and bake in a very hot oven from fifteen to eighteen minutes; baste frequently.
Wild ducks should be very rare and served very hot, on hot plates. Each duck makes but two portions, as the breast only is served. Serve with duck small pieces of fried hominy and currant jelly.
The Canvasback is superior in flavor to any other species of wild duck, and is much esteemed. They have a purple head and silver breast, and are in season from September to May. The "Redhead" closely resembles in flavor the "Canvasback," and often is mistaken for it.