The etymology of the word haslet is slightly complicated, it comes from the Middle English hastelet, which comes from the Old French. Or ultimately from the Latin hasta meaning a spear. It may even have a Germanic origin.

Hannah Glasse a 18th century cook defined haslet :-

'as the liver, crow, kidney and skirts of a hog'

Dr. Johnson gave the alternative spelling in 1755 of harslet and defined it as :-

‘the heart, liver, and lights of a hog, with the windpipe and part of the throat to it'

This is not as bad as it sounds, as today (at least in the UK) haslet is more like a lightly spiced sausage meat. It tends to be mottled in texture and is cooked in a large loaf, it's firm texture means it can thinly sliced and makes an ideal sandwich meat.

Has"let (?), n. [F. hatelettes broil, for hastelettes, fr. F. haste spit; cf. L. hasta spear, and also OHG. harst gridiron.]

The edible viscera, as the heart, liver, etc., of a beast, esp. of a hog.

[Written also harslet.]


© Webster 1913.

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