This hermetically seals the meat while cooking, and is better than baking in a kettle, but requires experience. Draw the animal, but leave the skin and hair on. If it be a large bird, as a duck or goose, cut off head and most of neck, also feet and pinions, pull out tail feathers and cut tail off (to get rid of oil sac), but leave smaller feathers on. If a fish, do not scale. Moisten and work some clay till it is like softened putty. Roll it out in a sheet an inch thick and large enough to completely encase the animal. Cover the latter so that no feather or hair projects. Place in fire and cover with good bed of coals and let it remain with fire burning on top from 24 of an hour, for a small bird or medium trout, to two hours for a pheasant or duck. Larger animals require more time, and had best be placed in bake-hole over night.
When done, break open the hard casing of baked clay. The skin peels off with it, leaving the meat perfectly clean and baked to perfection in its own juices. This method has been practiced for ages by the gipsies and other primitive peoples.
Frank Bates recommends another way: " Have a pail of water in which stir clay until it is of the consistency of thick porridge or whitewash. Take the bird by the feet and dip into the water. The clay will gather on and between the feathers. Repeat till the bird is a mass of clay. Lay this in the ashes, being careful to dry the outside. . . . Bake till the clay is almost burned to a brick".