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Published: 11/14/2000

Roast Capon with Orange Pecan Stuffing and Peach Sauce

1 frozen capon (7 to 9 pounds), defrosted

2 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1 1/2 cups thinly sliced celery

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup water

6 cups cubed, crust-free bread

3/4 cup drained diced orange sections, membranes removed

3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans

1 tablespoon grated orange rind

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon curry powder, or to taste

Plain or pickled peach halves and greens for garnish

Peach Sauce (recipe follows)

Wash, drain, and pat capon dry with paper toweling. Sprinkle body cavities of capon using 11/2 teaspoons salt. Prepare stuffing. Melt butter or margarine in large skillet or Dutch oven. Add celery, onion, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Cook over moderate heat until celery is almost tender. Add water.

Combine bread cubes, oranges, pecans, orange rind, sugar, and curry powder; mix. Pour vegetables and liquid over bread cubes; mix carefully. Stuff neck and body cavities loosely with bread mixture.

Skewer neck skin to back. Return legs and tail to tucked position or tie legs together loosely. Place capon, breast side up, on rack in shallow roasting pan. Brush capon with melted butter or margarine. Cover capon loosely with aluminum foil, crimping it to edges of pan, to prevent over-browning. Place in 325-degree oven for 3 hours.

Remove foil 45 minutes before end of roasting time. Brush capon with melted butter or margarine and continue roasting until leg joint moves easily. Use meat thermometer to determine doneness of poultry (180 degrees in thigh).

To serve, place capon on platter and garnish with plain or pickled peach halves and greens.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Peach Sauce

3/4 cup peach preserves

1/3 cup light corn syrup

1/3 cup water

3 tablespoons vinegar

8 whole cloves

3 cinnamon sticks

Combine ingredients in saucepan. Simmer to blend flavors and thicken slightly, about 30 minutes. Serve with capon.



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