Do you have any idea what this little thing is? Have you ever seen one before? Have you ever used one? Can you imagine what purpose it serves?
I won't make you guess, really. Here's the answer. It's a doohickey that you use to "sew up" a chicken or other fowl so that the stuffing you put inside won't fall out. Even if you cook the volaille on the tourne-broche (rotisserie) in your little French oven. But I think we bought the gadget in the U.S. I can't really remember.
I stuffed the cavity of the bird with a kind of sausage meat dressing and then used the whatchamacallit to "sew" it up...
That's what we did yesterday. We had a 4¾ lb. chapon de pintade for our Christmas dinner. That's a "Guinea fowl" capon. I don't know you are familiar with Guinea fowl. I know my great-aunt in South Carolina used to raise them, back in the 1960s, but I don't think they are easy to come by in the U.S. And I'm not even sure if my S.C. relatives ate them. I think they kept them for the eggs.
...before putting the guineafowl on the broche ("spit") and roasting it in the oven.
Guinea hens or "guineafowl" are available year-round in French markets and supermarkets. At Christmastime, you can find capons everywhere — both chicken and Guinea fowl capons. They are especially fattened birds that people serve for holiday feasts.
Here it is with the whatsit still in place...
Guineafowl resemble partridges, Wikipedia says, but they have featherless heads. They make their nests on the ground. They are related to chickens and pheasants, and the French name for the bird is la pintade.
...and finally with it removed so we could start carving the bird.
Guineafowl meat is darker and more flavorful than chicken meat, and I like it better than turkey myself. Guineafowl are African. There are both wild and domesticated species. Try one. You'll like it.