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Title: Culture and Cooking - Art in the Kitchen
Author: Owen, Catherine, -1889
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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  "Le Créateur, en obligeant l'homme à manger pour vivre, l'y invite
  par l'appétit et l'en récompense par le plaisir."






THIS is not a cookery book. It makes no attempt to replace a good one;
it is rather an effort to fill up the gap between you and your household
oracle, whether she be one of those exasperating old friends who
maddened our mother with their vagueness, or the newer and better lights
of our own generation, the latest and best of all being a lady as well
known for her novels as for her works on domestic economy--one more
proof, if proof were needed, of the truth I endeavor to set forth--if
somewhat tediously forgive me--in this little book: that cooking and
cultivation are by no means antagonistic. Who does not remember with
affectionate admiration Charlotte Bronté taking the eyes out of the
potatoes stealthily, for fear of hurting the feelings of her purblind
old servant; or Margaret Fuller shelling peas?

The chief difficulty, I fancy, with women trying recipes is, that they
fail and know not why they fail, and so become discouraged, and this is
where I hope to step in. But although this is not a cookery book,
insomuch as it does not deal chiefly with recipes, I shall yet give a
few; but only when they are, or I believe them to be, better than those
in general use, or good things little known, or supposed to belong to
the domain of a French _chef_, of which I have introduced a good many.
Should I succeed in making things that were obscure before clear to a
few women, I shall be as proud as was Mme. de Genlis when she boasts in
her Memoirs that she has taught six new dishes to a German housewife.
Six new dishes! When Brillat-Savarin says: "He who has invented _one_
new dish has done more for the pleasure of mankind than he who has
discovered a star."




  PRELIMINARY REMARKS                                                1



  Sponge for bread.--One cause of failure.--Why home-made
  bread often has a hard crust.--On baking.--Ovens.--More
  reasons why bread may fail to be good.--Light
  rolls.--Rusks.--Kreuznach horns.--Kringles.--Brioche
  (Paris Jockey Club recipe).--Soufflée bread.--A novelty           12



  Why you fail in making good puff paste.--How to
  succeed.--How to handle it.--To put fruit pies together so
  that the syrup does not boil out.--Ornamenting fruit
  pies.--Rissolettes.--Pastry tablets.--Frangipane
  tartlets.--Rules for ascertaining the heat of your oven           22



  Mushroom powder (recipe).--Stock to keep, or glaze
  (recipe).--Uses of glaze.--Glazing meats, hams, tongues,
  etc.--Mâitre d'hôtel butter (recipe).--Uses of
  it.--Ravigotte or Montpellier butter (recipe).--Uses of
  it.--Roux.--Blanc (recipes).--Uses of both.--Brown flour,
  its uses                                                          28



  Remarks on what to have for luncheons.--English meat
  pies.--Windsor pie.--Veal and ham pie.--Chicken
  pie.--Raised pork pie.--(Recipes).--Ornamenting meat
  pies.--Galantine (recipe).--Fish in jelly.--Jellied
  oysters.--A new mayonnaise luncheon for small
  families.--Potted meats (recipes).--Anchovy butter.--A new
  omelet.--Potato snow.--Lyonnaise potatoes                         35



  How to have little dinners.--Hints for bills of fare,
  etc.--Filet de bœuf Chateaubriand (recipe).--What to do
  with the odds and ends.--Various recipes.--Salads.--Recipes       47



  Why you fail.--Panure or bread-crumbs, to prepare.--How to
  prepare flounders as filets de sole.--Fried oysters.--To
  clarify dripping for frying.--Remarks.--Pâte à frire à la
  Carême.--Same, à la Provençale.--Broiling                         55


  ROASTING                                                          62



  Boiling meat.--Rules for knowing exactly the degrees of
  boiling.--Vegetables.--Remarks on making soup.--To clear
  soup.--Why it is not clear.--Coloring
  pot-au-feu.--Consommé.--_Crême de celeri_, a little known
  soup.--Recipes                                                    65



  Remarks on making and flavoring sauces.--Espagnole or
  brown sauce as it should be.--How to make fine white sauce        70



  Remarks.--Salmi of cold meats.--Bœuf à la
  jardinière.--Bœuf au gratin.--Pseudo-beefsteak.
  --Cutlets à la jardinière.--Cromesquis of lamb.--Sauce
  piquant.--Miroton of beef.--Simple way of warming a
  joint.--Breakfast dish.--Stuffed beef.--Beef olives.--Chops
  à la poulette.--Devils.--Mephistophelian sauce.--Fritadella,
  twenty recipes in one                                             72



  Biscuit glacée at home (recipes).--Iced soufflés
  (recipes).--Baba and syrups for it (recipe).--Savarin and
  syrup (recipes).--Bouchées de dames.--How to make
  Curaçoa.--Maraschino.--Noyeau                                     84



  How to make them.--Fondants.--Vanilla.--Almond
  cream.--Walnut cream.--Tutti frutti.--Various candies
  dipped in cream.--Chocolate creams.--Fondant
  panaché.--Punch drops                                             91



  Remarks.--What may be made of a soup bone.--Several very
  economical dishes.--Pot roasts.--Dishes requiring no meat         96


  A FEW THINGS IT IS WELL TO REMEMBER                              105


  ON SOME TABLE PREJUDICES                                         108



  Altering recipes.--How to have tarragon, burnet,
  etc.--Remarks on obtaining ingredients not in common
  use.--An impromptu salamander.--Larding needle.--How to
  have parsley fresh all winter without expense.--On having
  kitchen conveniences.--Anecdote related by Jules
  Gouffée.--On servants in America.--A little
  advice by way of valedictory                                     111

  INDEX                                                            119




ALEXANDRE DUMAS, _père_, after writing five hundred novels, says, "I
wish to close my literary career with a book on cooking."

And in the hundred pages or so of preface--or perhaps overture would be
the better word, since in it a group of literary men, while contributing
recondite recipes, flourish trumpets in every key--to his huge volume he
says, "I wish to be read by people of the world, and practiced by people
of the art" (_gens de l'art_); and although _I_ wish, like every one who
writes, to be read by all the world, I wish to aid the practice, not of
the professors of the culinary art, but those whose aspirations point to
an enjoyment of the good things of life, but whose means of attaining
them are limited.

There is a great deal of talk just now about cooking; in a lesser degree
it takes its place as a popular topic with ceramics, modern antiques,
and household art. The fact of it being in a mild way fashionable may do
a little good to the eating world in general. And it may make it more
easy to convince young women of refined proclivities that the art of
cooking is not beneath their attention, to know that the Queen of
England's daughters--and of course the cream of the London fair--have
attended the lectures on the subject delivered at South Kensington, and
that a young lady of rank, Sir James Coles's daughter, has been
recording angel to the association, is in fact the R. C. C. who edits
the "Official Handbook of Cookery."

But, notwithstanding all that has been done by South Kensington lectures
in London and Miss Corson's Cooking School in New York to popularize the
culinary art, one may go into a dozen houses, and find the ladies of the
family with sticky fingers, scissors, and gum pot, busily porcelainizing
clay jars, and not find one where they are as zealously trying to work
out the problems of the "Official Handbook of Cookery."

I have nothing to say against the artistic distractions of the day.
Anything that will induce love of the beautiful, and remove from us the
possibility of a return to the horrors of hair-cloth and brocatel and
crochet tidies, will be a stride in the right direction. But what I do
protest against, is the fact, that the same refined girls and matrons,
who so love to adorn their houses that they will spend hours improving a
pickle jar, mediævalizing their furniture, or decorating the dinner
service, will shirk everything that pertains to the preparation of food
as dirty, disagreeable drudgery, and sit down to a commonplace,
ill-prepared meal, served on those artistic plates, as complacently as
if dainty food were not a refinement; as if heavy rolls and poor bread,
burnt or greasy steak, and wilted potatoes did not smack of the shanty,
just as loudly as coarse crockery or rag carpet--indeed far more so; the
carpet and crockery may be due to poverty, but a dainty meal or its
reverse will speak volumes for innate refinement or its lack in the
woman who serves it. You see by my speaking of rag carpets and dainty
meals in one breath, that I do not consider good things to be the
privilege of the rich alone.

There are a great many dainty things the household of small or moderate
means can have just as easily as the most wealthy. Beautiful
bread--light, white, crisp--costs no more than the tough, thick-crusted
boulder, with cavities like eye-sockets, that one so frequently meets
with as _home-made bread_. As Hood says:

  "Who has not met with home-made bread,
   A heavy compound of putty and lead?"

Delicious coffee is only a matter of care, not expense--and indeed in
America the cause of poor food, even in a boarding-house, is seldom in
the quality of the articles so much as in the preparation and selection
of them--yet an epicure can breakfast well with fine bread and butter
and good coffee. And this leads me to another thing: many people think
that to give too much attention to food shows gluttony. I have heard a
lady say with a tone of virtuous rebuke, when the conversation turned
from fashions to cooking, "I give very little time to cooking, we eat to
live only"--which is exactly what an animal does. Eating to live is mere
feeding. Brillat-Savarin, an abstemious eater himself, among other witty
things on the same topic says, "_L'animal se repait, l'homme mange,
l'homme d'esprit seul sait manger._"

Nine people out of ten, when they call a man an epicure, mean it as a
sort of reproach, a man who is averse to every-day food, one whom plain
fare would fail to satisfy; but Grimod de la Reynière, the most
celebrated gourmet of his day, author of "_Almanach des Gourmands_,"
and authority on all matters culinary of the last century, said, "A true
epicure can dine well on one dish, provided it is excellent of its
kind." Excellent, that is it. A little care will generally secure to us
the refinement of having only on the table what is excellent of its
kind. If it is but potatoes and salt, let the salt be ground fine, and
the potatoes white and mealy. Thackeray says, an epicure is one who
never tires of brown bread and fresh butter, and in this sense every New
Yorker who has his rolls from the Brevoort House, and uses Darlington
butter, is an epicure. There seems to me, more mere animalism in wading
through a long bill of fare, eating three or four indifferently cooked
vegetables, fish, meat, poultry, each second-rate in quality, or made so
by bad cooking, and declaring that you have dined well, and are easy to
please, than there is in taking pains to have a perfectly broiled chop,
a fine potato, and a salad, on which any true epicure could dine well,
while on the former fare he would leave the table hungry.

Spenser points a moral for me when he says, speaking of the Irish in
1580, "That wherever they found a plot of shamrocks or water-cresses
they had a feast;" but there were gourmets even among them, for "some
gobbled the green food as it came, and some picked the faultless stalks,
and looked for the bloom on the leaf."

Thus it is, when I speak of "good living," I do not mean expensive
living or high living, but living so that the table may be as elegant as
the dishes on which it is served.

I believe there exists a feeling, not often expressed perhaps, but
prevalent among young people, that for a lady to cook with her own
hands is vulgar; to love to do it shows that she is of low intellectual
caliber, a sort of drawing-room Bridget. When or how this idea arose it
would be difficult to say, for in the middle ages cooks were often
noble; a Montmorency was _chef de cuisine_ to Philip of Valois;
Montesquieu descended, and was not ashamed of his descent, from the
second cook of the Connetable de Bourbon, who ennobled him. And from
Lord Bacon, "brightest, greatest, meanest of mankind," who took, it is
said, great interest in cooking, to Talleyrand, the Machiavelli of
France, who spent an hour every day with his cook, we find great men
delighting in the art as a recreation.

It is surprising that such an essentially artistic people as Americans
should so neglect an art which a great French writer calls the "_science
mignonne_ of all distinguished men of the world." Napoleon the Great so
fully recognized the social value of keeping a good table that, although
no gourmet himself, he wished all his chief functionaries to be so.
"Keep a good table," he told them; "if you get into debt for it I will
pay." And later, one of his most devoted adherents, the Marquis de
Cussy, out of favor with Louis XVIII. on account of that very devotion,
found his reputation as a gourmet very serviceable to him. A friend
applied for a place at court for him, which Louis refused, till he heard
that M. de Cussy had invented the mixture of cream, strawberries, and
champagne, when he granted the petition at once. Nor is this a solitary
instance in history where culinary skill has been a passport to fortune
to its possessor. Savarin relates that the Chevalier d'Aubigny, exiled
from France, was in London, in utter poverty, notwithstanding which, by
chance, he was invited to dine at a tavern frequented by the young
bucks of that day.

After he had finished his dinner, a party of young gentlemen, who had
been observing him from their table, sent one of their number with many
apologies and excuses to beg of him, as a son of a nation renowned for
their salads, to be kind enough to mix theirs for them. He complied, and
while occupied in making the salad, told them frankly his story, and did
not hide his poverty. One of the gentlemen, as they parted, slipped a
five-pound note into his hand, and his need of it was so great that he
did not obey the prompting of his pride, but accepted it.

A few days later he was sent for to a great house, and learned on his
arrival that the young gentleman he had obliged at the tavern had spoken
so highly of his salad that they begged him to do the same thing again.
A very handsome sum was tendered him on his departure, and afterwards he
had frequent calls on his skill, until it became the fashion to have
salads prepared by d'Aubigny, who became a well-known character in
London, and was called "_the fashionable salad-maker_." In a few years
he amassed a large fortune by this means, and was in such request that
his carriage would drive from house to house, carrying him and his
various condiments--for he took with him everything that could give
variety to his concoctions--from one place, where his services were
needed, to another.

The contempt for this art of cooking is confined to this country, and to
the lower middle classes in England. By the "lower middle classes" I
mean, what Carlyle terms the gigocracy--_i.e._, people sufficiently
well-to-do to keep a gig or phaeton--well-to-do tradesmen, small
professional men, the class whose womenkind would call themselves
"genteel," and many absurd stories are told of the determined ignorance
and pretense of these would-be ladies. But in no class above this is a
knowledge of cooking a thing to be ashamed of; in England, indeed, so
far from that being the case, indifference to the subject, or lack of
understanding and taste for certain dishes is looked upon as a sort of
proof of want of breeding. Not to like curry, macaroni, or parmesan,
_pâté de foie gras_, mushrooms, and such like, is a sign that you have
not been all your life accustomed to good living. Mr. Hardy, in his
"Pair of Blue Eyes," cleverly hits this prejudice when he makes Mr.
Swancourt say, "I knew the fellow wasn't a gentleman; he had no acquired
tastes, never took Worcestershire sauce."

Abroad many women of high rank and culture devote a good deal of time to
a thorough understanding of the subject. We have a lady of the "lordly
line of proud St. Clair" writing for us "Dainty Dishes," and doing it
with a zest that shows she enjoys her work, although she does once in a
while forget something she ought to have mentioned, and later still we
have Miss Rose Coles writing the "Official Handbook of Cookery."

But it is in graceful, refined France that cookery is and has been, a
pet art. Any bill of fare or French cookery book will betray to a
thoughtful reader the attention given to the subject by the wittiest,
gayest, and most beautiful women, and the greatest men. The
high-sounding names attached to French standard dishes are no mere
caprice or homage of a French cook to the great in the land, but
actually point out their inventor. Thus _Bechamel_ was invented by the
Marquis de Bechamel, as a sauce for codfish; while _Filets de Lapereau à
la Berry_ were invented by the Duchess de Berry, daughter of the regent
Orleans, who himself invented _Pain à la d'Orleans_, while to Richelieu
we are indebted for hundreds of dishes besides the renowned mayonnaise.

_Cailles à la Mirepois_, _Chartreuse à la Mauconseil_, _Poulets à la
Villeroy_, betray the tastes of the three great ladies whose name they

But not in courts alone has the art had its devotees. Almost every great
name in French literature brings to mind something its owner said or did
about cooking. Dumas, who was a prince of cooks, and of whom it is
related that in 1860, when living at Varennes, St. Maur, dividing his
time, as usual, between cooking and literature (_Lorsqu'il ne faisait
pas sauter un roman, il faisait sauter des petits oignons_), on
Mountjoye, a young artist friend and neighbor, going to see him, he
cooked dinner for him. Going into the poultry yard, after donning a
white apron, he wrung the neck of a chicken; then to the kitchen garden
for vegetables, which he peeled and washed himself; lit the fire, got
butter and flour ready, put on his saucepans, then cooked, stirred,
tasted, seasoned until dinner time. Then he entered in triumph, and
announced, "_Le diner est servi_." For six months he passed three or
four days a week cooking for Mountjoye. This novelist's book says, in
connection with the fact that great cooks in France have been men of
literary culture, and literary men often fine cooks, "It is not
surprising that literary men have always formed the _entourage_ of a
great chef, for, to appreciate thoroughly all there is in the culinary
art, none are so well able as men of letters; accustomed as they are to
all refinements, they can appreciate better than others those of the
table," thus paying himself and confrères a delicate little compliment
at the expense of the non-literary world; but, notwithstanding the naïve
self-glorification, he states a fact that helps to point my moral, that
indifference to cooking does not indicate refinement, intellect, or
social pre-eminence.

Brillat-Savarin, grave judge as he was, and abstemious eater, yet has
written the book of books on the art of eating. It was he who said,
"Tell me what you eat, I will tell you what you are," as pregnant with
truth as the better-known proverb it paraphrases.

Malherbe loved to watch his cook at work. I think it was he who said, "A
coarse-minded man could never be a cook," and Charles Baudelaire, the
Poe of France, takes a poet's view of our daily wants, when he says,
"that an ideal cook must have a great deal of the poet's nature,
combining something of the voluptuary with the man of science learned in
the chemical principles of matter;" although he goes further than we
care to follow when he says, that the question of sauces and seasoning
requires "a chapter as grave as a _feuilleton de science_."

It has been said by foreigners that Americans care nothing for the
refinements of the table, but I think they do care. I have known many a
woman in comfortable circumstances long to have a good table, many a man
aspire to better things, and if he could only get them at home would pay
any money. But the getting them at home is the difficulty; on a table
covered with exquisite linen, glass, and silver, whose presiding queen
is more likely than not a type of the American lady--graceful, refined,
and witty--on such a table, with such surroundings, will come the
plentiful, coarse, commonplace dinner.

The chief reason for this is lack of knowledge on the part of our
ladies: know how to do a thing yourself, and you will get it well done
by others. But how are many of them to know? The daughters of the
wealthy in this country often marry struggling men, and they know less
about domestic economy than ladies of the higher ranks abroad; not
because English or French ladies take more part in housekeeping, but
because they are at home all their lives. Ladies of the highest rank
never go to a boarding or any other school, and these are the women who,
with some few exceptions, know best how things should be done. They are
at home listening to criticisms from papa, who is an epicure perhaps, on
the shortcomings of his own table, or his neighbors'; from mamma, as to
what the soup lacks, why cook is not a "_cordon bleu_," etc., while our
girls are at school, far away from domestic comments, deep in the
agonies of algebra perhaps; and directly they leave school, in many
cases they marry. As a preparation for the state of matrimony most of
them learn how to make cake and preserves, and the very excellence of
their attainments in that way proves how easy it would be for them, with
their dainty fingers and good taste, to far excel their European cousins
in that art which a French writer says is based on "reason, health,
common sense, and sound taste."

Here let me say, I do not by any means advocate a woman, who can afford
to pay a first-rate cook, avoiding the expense by cooking herself; on
the contrary, I think no woman is justified in doing work herself that
she has the means given her to get done by employing others. I have no
praise for the economical woman, who, from a desire to save, does her
own work _without necessity for economy_. It is _not_ her work; the
moment she can afford to employ others it is the work of some less
fortunate person. But in this country, it often happens that a good
cook is not to be found for money, although the raw material of which
one might be made is much oftener at hand. And if ladies would only
practice the culinary art with as much, nay, half as much assiduity as
they give to a new pattern in crochet; devote as much time to attaining
perfection in one dish or article of food, be it perfect bread, or some
French dish which father, brother, or husband goes to Delmonico's to
enjoy, as they do to the crochet tidies or embroidered rugs with which
they decorate their drawing-rooms, they could then take the material, in
the shape of any ambitious girl they may meet with, and make her a fine
cook. In the time they take to make a dozen tidies, they would have a
dozen dishes at their fingers' ends; and let me tell you, the woman who
can cook a dozen things, outside of preserves, in a _perfect_ manner is
a rarity here, and a good cook anywhere, for, by the time the dozen are
accomplished, she will have learned so much of the art of cooking that
all else will come easy. One good soup, bouillon, and you have the
foundation of all others; two good sauces, white sauce and brown, "_les
sauces mères_" as the French call them (mothers of all other sauces),
and all others are matters of detail. Learn to make one kind of roll
perfectly, as light, plump, and crisp as Delmonico's, and all varieties
are at your fingers' ends; you can have kringles, Vienna rolls,
Kreuznach horns, Yorkshire tea cakes, English Sally Lunns and Bath buns;
all are then as easy to make as common soda biscuit. In fact, in
cooking, as in many other things, "_ce n'est que le premier pas que
coûte_;" failures are almost certain at the beginning, but a failure is
often a step toward success--if we only know the reason of the failure.



OF all articles of food, bread is perhaps the one about which most has
been written, most instruction given, and most failures made. Yet what
adds more to the elegance of a table than exquisite bread or breads,
and--unless you live in a large city and depend on the baker--what so
rare? A lady who is very proud of her table, and justly so, said to me
quite lately, "I cannot understand how it is we never have really fine
home-made bread. I have tried many recipes, following them closely, and
I can't achieve anything but a commonplace loaf with a thick, hard
crust; and as for rolls, they are my despair. I have wasted eggs,
butter, and patience so often that I have determined to give them up,
but a fine loaf I will try for."

"And when you achieve the fine loaf, you may revel in home-made rolls,"
I answered.

And so I advise every one first to make perfect bread, light, white,
crisp, and _thin-crusted_, that rarest thing in home-made bread.

I have read over many recipes for bread, and am convinced that when the
time allowed for rising is specified, it is invariably too short. One
standard book directs you to leave your sponge two hours, and the bread
when made up a _quarter of an hour_. This recipe strictly followed must
result in heavy, tough bread. As bread is so important, and so many
fail, I will give my own method from beginning to end; not that there
are not numberless good recipes, but simply because they frequently need
adapting to circumstances, and altering a recipe is one of the things a
tyro fears to do.

I make a sponge over night, using a dried yeast-cake soaked in a pint of
warm water, to which I add a spoonful of salt, and, if the weather is
warm, as much soda as will lie on a dime; make this into a stiff batter
with flour--it may take a quart or less, flour varies so much, to give a
rule is impossible; but if, after standing, the sponge has a watery
appearance, make it thicker by sprinkling in more flour, beat hard a few
minutes, and cover with a cloth--in winter keep a piece of thick flannel
for the purpose, as a chill is fatal to your sponge--and set in a warm
place free from draughts.

The next morning, when the sponge is quite light--that is to say, at
least twice the bulk it was, and like a honeycomb--take two quarts of
flour, more or less, as you require, but I recommend at first a small
baking, and this will make three small loaves; in winter, flour should
be dried and warmed; put it in your mixing bowl, and turn the sponge
into a hole in the center. Have ready some water, rather more than
lukewarm, but not _hot_. Add it gradually, stirring your flour into the
sponge at the same time. The great fault in making bread is getting the
dough too stiff; it should be as soft as possible, without being at all
sticky or wet. Now knead it with both hands from all sides into the
center; keep this motion, occasionally dipping your hands into the flour
if the dough sticks, but do not add more flour unless the paste sticks
very much; if you have the right consistency it will be a smooth mass,
very soft to the touch, _yet not sticky_, but this may not be attained
at a first mixing without adding flour by degrees. When you have kneaded
the dough until it leaves the bowl all round, set it in a warm place to
rise. When it is well risen, feels very soft and warm to the touch, and
is twice its bulk, knead it once more thoroughly, then put it in tins
either floured, and the flour not adhering shaken out, or buttered,
putting in each a piece of dough half the size you intend your loaf to
be. Now everything depends on your oven. Many people bake their bread
slowly, leaving it in the oven a long time, and this causes a thick,
hard crust. When baked in the modern iron oven, quick baking is
necessary. Let the oven be quite hot, then put a little ball of paste
in, and if it browns palely in seven to ten minutes it is about right;
if it burns, it is too hot; open the damper ten minutes. Your bread,
after it is in the tins, will rise much more quickly than the first
time. Let it get light, but not too light--_twice its bulk_ is a good
rule; but if it is light before your oven is ready, and thus in danger
of getting too porous, work it down with your hand, it will not harm it,
although it is better so to manage that the oven waits for the bread
rather than the bread for the oven. A small loaf--and by all means make
them small until you have gained experience--will not take more than
three quarters of an hour to bake; when a nice yellow brown, take it
out, turn it out of the tin into a cloth, and tap the bottom; if it is
crisp and smells cooked, the loaf is done. Once the bottom is brown it
need remain no longer. Should that, however, from fault of your oven, be
not brown, but soft and white, you must put it back in the oven, the
bottom upwards. An oven that does not bake at the bottom will, however,
be likely to spoil your bread. It is sometimes caused by a careless
servant leaving a collection of ashes underneath it; satisfy yourself
that all the flues are perfectly clean and clear before beginning to
bake, and if it still refuses to do its duty, change it, for you will
have nothing but loss and vexation of spirit while you have it in use. I
think you will find this bread white, evenly porous (not with small
holes in one part and caverns in another; if it is so you have made your
dough too stiff, and it is not sufficiently kneaded), and with a thin,
crisp crust. Bread will surely fail to rise at all if you have scalded
the yeast; the water must never be too hot. In winter, if it gets
chilled, it will only rise slowly, or not at all, and in using baker's
or German yeast take care that it is not stale, which will cause heavy,
irregular bread.

In making bread with compressed yeast proceed in exactly the same way,
excepting that the sponge will not need to be set over night, unless you
want to bake very early.

If you have once produced bread to your satisfaction you will find no
difficulty in making rolls. Proceed as follows:

Take a piece of the dough from your baking after it has risen once. To a
piece as large as a man's fist take a large tablespoonful of butter and
a little powdered sugar; work them into the dough, put it in a bowl,
cover it, and set it in a warm place to rise--a shelf behind the stove
is best; if you make this at the same time as your bread, you will find
it takes longer to rise; the butter causes that difference; when very
light, much lighter than your bread should be, take your hand and push
it down till it is not larger than when you put it in the bowl; let it
rise again, and again push it down, but not so thoroughly; do this once
or twice more, and you have the secret of light rolls. You will find
them rise very quickly, after once or twice pushing down. When they have
risen the third or fourth time, take a little butter on your hands, and
break off small pieces about the size of a walnut and roll them round.
Either put them on a tin close together, to be broken apart, or an inch
or two from each other, in which case work in a little more flour, and
cut a cleft on the top, and once more set to rise; half an hour will be
long enough generally, but in this case you must judge for yourself,
they sometimes take an hour; if they look swelled very much and smooth
they will be ready. Have a nice hot oven, and bake for twelve to fifteen

Add a little more sugar to your dough and an egg, go through the same
process, brush them over with sugar dissolved in milk, and you will have
delicious rusks.

The above is my own method of making rolls, and the simplest I know of;
but there are numbers of other recipes given in cookery books which
would be just as good if the exact directions for letting them rise were
given. As a test--and every experiment you try will be so much gained in
your experience--follow the recipe given for rolls in any good cookery
book, take part of the dough and let it rise as therein directed, and
bake, set the other part to rise as _I_ direct, and notice the

KREUZNACH HORNS.--Either take a third of the dough made for bread with
three quarts of flour, or set a sponge with a pint of flour and a
yeast-cake soaked in half a pint of warm water or milk, making it into a
stiffish dough with another pint of flour; then add four ounces of
butter, a _little_ sugar, and two eggs; work well. If you use the bread
dough, you will need to dredge in a little more flour on account of the
eggs, but not _very much_; then set to rise as for rolls, work it down
twice or thrice, then turn the dough out on the molding board lightly
floured, roll it as you would pie-crust into pieces six inches square,
and quarter of an inch thick, make two sharp, quick cuts across it from
corner to corner, and you will have from each square four three-cornered
pieces of paste; spread each _thinly_ with soft butter, flour lightly,
and roll up very lightly from the wide side, taking care that it is not
squeezed together in any way; lay them on a tin with the side on which
the point comes uppermost, and bend round in the form of a horseshoe;
these will take some time to rise; when they have swollen much and look
light, brush them over with white of egg (not beaten) or milk and
butter, and bake in a good oven.

KRINGLES are made from the same recipe, but with another egg and two
ounces of sugar (powdered) added to the dough when first set to rise;
then, when well risen two or three times, instead of rolling with a pin
as for horns, break off pieces, roll between your hands as thick as your
finger, and form into figure eights, rings, fingers; or take three
strips, flour and roll them as thick as your finger, tapering at each
end; lay them on the board, fasten the three together at one end, and
then lay one over the other in a plait, fasten the other end, and set to
rise, bake; when done, brush over with sugar dissolved in milk, and
sprinkle with sugar.

All these breads are delicious for breakfast, and may easily be had
without excessive early rising if the sponge is set in the _morning_,
dough made in the afternoon, and the rising and working done in the
evening; when, instead of making up into rolls, horns, or kringles,
push the dough down thoroughly, cover with a damp folded cloth, and put
in a _very_ cold place if in summer--not on ice of course--then next
morning, as soon as the fire is alight, mold, but do not push down any
more, put in a very warm spot, and when light, bake.

In summer, as I have said, I think it safest, to prevent danger of
souring, to put a little soda in the sponge for bread; and for rolls, or
anything requiring to rise several times, it is an essential precaution.

BRIOCHE.--I suppose the very name of this delectable French dainty will
call up in the mind's eye of many who read this book that great "little"
shop, _Au Grand Brioche_, on the Boulevarde Poissonière, where, on
Sunday afternoons, scores of boys from the Lycées form _en queue_ with
the general public, waiting the hour when the piles of golden brioche
shall be ready to exchange for their eager sous. But I venture to say, a
really fine brioche is rarely eaten on this side the Atlantic. They
being a luxury welcome to all, and especially aromatic of Paris, I tried
many times to make them, obtaining for that purpose recipes from French
friends, and from standard French books, but never succeeded in
producing the ideal brioche until I met with Gouffé's great book, the
"_Livre de Cuisine_," after reading which, I may here say, all secrets
of the French kitchen are laid bare; no effort is spared to make
everything plain, from the humble _pot-au-feu_ to the most gorgeous
monumental _plât_. And I would refer any one who wants to become
proficient in any French dish, to that book, feeling sure that, in
following strictly the directions, there will be no failure. It is the
one book I have met with on the subject in which no margin is left for
your own knowledge, if you have it, to fill up. But to the brioche.


Sift one pound of flour, take one fourth of it, and add rather more than
half a cake of compressed yeast, dissolved in half a gill of warm water,
make into a sponge with a _very little_ more water, put it in a warm
place; when it is double its volume take the rest of the flour, make a
hole in the center, and put in it an equal quantity of salt and sugar,
about a teaspoonful, and two tablespoonfuls of water to dissolve them.
Three quarters of a pound of butter and four eggs, beat well, then add
another egg, beat again, and add another, and so on until seven have
been used; the paste must be soft, but not spread; if too firm, add
another egg. Now mix this paste with the sponge thoroughly, beating
until the paste leaves the sides of the bowl, then put it in a crock and
cover; let it stand four hours in a warm place, then turn it out on a
board, _spread it and double it four times_, return it to the crock, and
let it rise again two hours; repeat the former process of doubling and
spreading, and put it in a very cold place for two hours, or until you
want to use it. Mold in any form you like, but the true brioche is two
pieces, one as large again as the other; form the large one into a ball,
make a deep depression in the center, on which place the smaller ball,
pressing it gently in; cut two or three gashes round it with a sharp
knife, and bake a beautiful golden brown. These brioche are such a
luxury, and so sure to come out right, that the trouble of making them
is well worth the taking, and for another reason: every one knows the
great difficulty of making puff paste in summer, and a short paste is
never handsome; but take a piece of brioche paste, roll it out thin,
dredge with flour, fold and roll again, then use as you would puff
paste; if for sweet pastry, a little powdered sugar may be sprinkled
through it instead of dredging with flour. This makes a very handsome
and delicious crust. Or, another use to which it may be put is to roll
it out, cut it in rounds, lay on them mince-meat, orange marmalade, jam,
or merely sprinkle with currants, chopped citron, and spices, fold,
press the edges, and bake.

Before quitting the subject of breads I must introduce a novelty which I
will call "soufflée bread." It is quickly made, possible even when the
fire is poor, and so delicious that I know you will thank me for making
you acquainted with it.

Use two or three eggs according to size you wish, and to each egg a
tablespoonful of flour. Mix the yolks with the flour and with them a
dessert-spoonful of butter melted, and enough milk to make a very
_thick_ batter, work, add a pinch of salt and a teaspoonful of sugar,
work till quite smooth, then add the whites of the eggs in a firm froth,
stir them in gently, and add a _quarter_ teaspoonful of soda and half a
one of cream of tartar. Have ready an iron frying-pan (or an earthen one
that will stand heat is better), made hot with a tablespoonful of butter
in it, also hot, but not so hot as for frying. Pour the batter (which
should be of the consistency of sponge cake batter) into the pan, cover
it with a lid or tin plate, and set it back of the stove if the fire is
hot--if very slow it may be forward; when well risen and near done, put
it in the oven, or if the oven is cold you may turn it gently, not to
deaden it. Serve when done (try with a twig), the under side uppermost;
it should be of a fine golden brown and look like an omelet. This
soufflée bread is equally good _baked_ in a tin in which is rather more
butter than enough to grease it; the oven must be _very hot indeed_.
Cover it for the few minutes with a tin plate or lid, to prevent it
scorching before it has risen; when it has puffed up remove the lid, and
allow it to brown, ten to fifteen minutes should bake it; turn it out as
you would sponge cake--very carefully, not to deaden it. To succeed with
bread you must use the very best flour.



TO MAKE good puff paste is a thing many ladies are anxious to do, and in
which they generally fail, and this not so much because they do not make
it properly, as because they handle it badly. A lady who was very
anxious to excel in pastry once asked me to allow her to watch me make
paste. I did so, and explained that there was more in the manner of
using than in the making up. I then gave her a piece of my paste when
completed, and asked her to cover some patty pans while I covered
others, cautioning her as to the way she must cover them; yet, when
those covered by her came out of the oven they had not risen at all,
they were like rich short paste; while my own, made from the same paste,
were toppling over with lightness. I had, without saying anything,
pressed my thumb slightly on one spot of one of mine; in that spot the
paste had not risen at all, and I think this practical demonstration of
what I had tried to explain was more useful than an hour's talk would
have been.

I will first give my method of making, which is the usual French way of
making "_feuilletonage_." Take one pound of butter, or half of it lard;
press all the water out by squeezing it in a cloth; this is important,
as the liquid in it would wet your paste; take a third of the butter, or
butter and lard, and rub it into one pound of _fine_ flour; add no salt
if your butter is salted; then take enough water (to which you may add
the well-beaten white of an egg, but it is not absolutely necessary) to
make the flour into a smooth, firm dough; it must not be too stiff, or
it will be hard to roll out, or too soft, or it will never make good
paste; it should roll easily, yet not stick; work it till it is very
smooth, then roll it out till it is half an inch thick; now lay the
whole of the butter in the center, fold one-third the paste over, then
the other third; it is now folded in three, with the butter completely
hidden; now turn the ends toward you, and roll it till it is half an
inch thick, taking care, by rolling very evenly, that the butter is not
pressed out at the other end; now you have a piece of paste about two
feet long, and not half that width; flour it lightly, and fold _over_
one third and under one third, which will almost bring it to a square
again; turn it round so that what was the side is now the end, and roll.
Most likely now the butter will begin to break through, in which case
fold it, after flouring lightly, in three, as before, and put it on a
dish on the ice, covering it with a damp cloth. You may now either leave
it for an hour or two, or till next day. Paste made the day before it is
used is much better and easier to manage, and in winter it may be kept
for four or five days in a cold place, using from it as required.

When ready to use your paste finish the making by rolling it out,
dredging a _little_ flour, and doubling it in three as before, and roll
it out thin; do this until from first to last it has been so doubled and
rolled seven times.

Great cooks differ on one or two points in making pastry; for instance,
Soyer directs you to put the yolk of an egg instead of the white, and a
squeeze of lemon juice into the flour, and expressly forbids you to
work it before adding the mass of butter, while Jules Gouffé says, "work
it until smooth and shining." I cannot pretend to decide between these
differing doctors, but I pursue the method I have given and always have
light pastry. And now to the handling of it: It must only be touched by
the lightest fingers, every cut must be made with a sharp knife, and
done with one quick stroke so that the paste is not dragged at all; in
covering a pie dish or patty pan, you are commonly directed to mold the
paste over it as thin as possible, which conveys the idea that the paste
is to be pressed over and so made thin; this would destroy the finest
paste in the world; roll it thin, say for small tartlets, less than a
quarter of an inch thick, for a pie a trifle thicker, then lay the dish
or tin to be covered on the paste, and cut out with a knife, dipped in
_hot_ water or flour, a piece a little larger than the mold, then line
with the piece you have cut, touching it as little as possible; press
only enough to make the paste adhere to the bottom, but on no account
press the border; to test the necessity of avoiding this, gently press
one spot on a tart, before putting it in the oven, only so much as many
people always do in making pie, and watch the result. When your tartlets
or pies are made, take each up on your left hand, and with a sharp knife
dipped in flour trim it round quickly. To make the cover of a pie adhere
to the under crust, lay the forefinger of your right hand lengthwise
round the border, but as far from the edge as you can, thus forming a
groove for the syrups, and pressing the cover on at the same time. A
word here about fruit pies: Pile the fruit high in the center, leaving a
space all round the sides almost bare of fruit, when the cover is on
press gently the paste, as I have explained, into this groove, then
make two or three deep holes in the groove; the juice will boil out of
these holes and run round this groove, instead of boiling out through
the edges and wasting.

This is the pastry-cook's way of making pies, and makes a much handsomer
one than the usual flat method, besides saving your syrup. To ornament
fruit pies or tartlets, whip the white of an egg, and stir in as much
powdered sugar as will make a thin meringue--a large tablespoonful is
usually enough--then when your pies or tartlets are baked, take them
from the oven, glaze with the egg and sugar, and return to the oven,
leaving the door open; when it has set into a frosty icing they are
ready to serve.

It is worth while to accomplish puff paste, for so many dainty trifles
may be made with it, which, attempted with the ordinary short paste,
would be unsightly. Some of these that seem to me novel I will describe.

Rissolettes are made with trimmings of puff paste; if you have about a
quarter of a pound left, roll it out very thin, about as thick as a
fifty-cent piece; put about half a spoonful of marmalade or jam on it,
in places about an inch apart, wet lightly round each, and place a piece
of paste over all; take a small round cutter as large as a dollar, and
press round the part where the marmalade or jam is with the thick part
of the cutter; then cut them out with a cutter a size larger, lay them
on a baking tin, brush over with white of egg; then cut some little
rings the size of a quarter dollar, put one on each, egg over again, and
bake twenty minutes in a nice hot oven; then sift white sugar all over,
put them back in the oven to glaze; a little red currant jelly in each
ring looks pretty; serve in the form of a pyramid.

PASTRY TABLETS.--Cut strips of paste three inches and a half long, and
an inch and a half wide, and as thick as a twenty-five cent piece; lay
on half of them a thin filmy layer of jam or marmalade, not jelly; then
on each lay a strip without jam, and bake in a quick oven. When the
paste is well risen and brown, take them out, glaze them with white of
egg and sugar, and sprinkle chopped almonds over them; return to the
oven till the glazing is set and the almonds just colored; serve them
hot or cold on a napkin piled log-cabin fashion.

FRANGIPANÉ TARTLETS.--One quarter pint of cream, four yolks of eggs, two
ounces of flour, three macaroons, four tablespoonfuls of powdered sugar,
the peel of a grated lemon, and a little citron cut very fine, a little
brandy and orange-flower water. Put all the ingredients, except the
eggs, in a saucepan--of course you will mix the flour smooth in the
cream first--let them come to a boil slowly, stirring to prevent lumps;
when the flour smells cooked, take it off the fire for a minute, then
stir the beaten yolks of eggs into it. Stand the saucepan in another of
boiling water and return to the stove, stirring till the eggs seem
done--about five minutes, if the water boils all the time. Line patty
pans with puff paste, and fill with frangipané and bake. Ornament with
chopped almonds and meringue, or not, as you please.

It is very difficult to make fine puff paste in warm weather, and almost
impossible without ice; for this reason I think the brioche paste
preferable; but if it is necessary to have it for any purpose, you must
take the following precautions:

Have your water iced; have your butter as firm as possible by being
kept on ice till the last moment; make the paste in the coolest place
you have, and under the breeze of an open window, if possible; make it
the day before you use it, and put it on the ice between every "turn,"
as each rolling out is technically called; then leave it on the ice, as
you use it, taking pieces from it as you need them, so that the warmth
cannot soften the whole at once, when it would become quite
unmanageable. The condition of the oven is a very important matter, and
I cannot do better than transcribe the rules given by Gouffé, by which
you may test its fitness for any purpose:

Put half a sheet of writing paper in the oven; if it catches fire it is
too hot; open the dampers and wait ten minutes, when put in another
piece of paper; if it blackens it is still too hot. Ten minutes later
put in a third piece; if it _gets dark brown_ the oven is right for all
small pastry. Called "_dark brown paper heat_." _Light brown paper heat_
is suitable for _vol-au-vents_ or fruit pies. _Dark yellow paper heat_
for large pieces of pastry or meat pies, pound cake, bread, etc. _Light
yellow paper heat_ for sponge cake, meringues, etc.

To obtain these various degrees of heat, you try paper every ten minutes
till the heat required for your purpose is attained. But remember that
"light yellow" means the paper only tinged; "dark yellow," the paper the
color of ordinary pine wood; "light brown" is only a shade darker, about
the color of nice pie-crust, and dark brown a shade darker, by no means
coffee color.



ONE great trouble with many young housekeepers is betrayed by the common
remark, "Cookery books always require so many things that one never has
in the house, and they coolly order you to 'moisten with gravy,' 'take a
little gravy,' as if you had only to go to the pump and get it." It is
very true that economy in cooking is much aided by having a supply of
various condiments; warmed-over meat may then be converted into a
delicious little entrée with little trouble. I would recommend,
therefore, any one who is in earnest about reforming her dinner table to
begin by expending a few dollars in the following articles:

  1 bottle of capers,
  1    "      olives,
  1    "      gherkins,
  1    "      soy,
  1    "      anchovies,
  1    "      tarragon vinegar,
  1    "      claret,
  1    "      white wine,
  1    "      sherry for cooking,
  1    "      brandy,
  1    "      Harvey sauce,
  1    "      walnut ketchup.

And a package of compressed vegetables and a few bay leaves.

Ten dollars thus spent may seem a good deal of money to a young
housewife trying to make her husband's salary go as far as it will; but
I assure her it is in the end an economy, especially in a small family,
who are so apt to get tired of seeing the same thing, that it has to be
thrown or given away. With these condiments and others I have yet to
mention you will have no trouble in using every scrap; not using it and
eating it from a sense of duty, and wishing it was something better, but
enjoying it. With your store-room well provided, you can indeed go for
gravy "as if to the pump."

Besides the foregoing list of articles to be bought of any good grocer,
there are others which can be made at home to advantage, and once made
are always ready. Mushroom powder I prefer for any use to mushroom
catsup; it is easily made and its uses are infinite. Sprinkled over
steak (when it must be sifted) or chops, it is delicious. For ordinary
purposes, such as flavoring soup or gravy, it need not be sifted. To
prepare it, take a peck of large and very fresh mushrooms, look them
over carefully that they are not wormy, then cleanse them with a piece
of flannel from sand or grit, then peel them and put them in the sun or
a cool oven to dry; they require long, slow drying, and must become in a
state to crumble. Your peck will have diminished by the process into
half a pint or less of mushroom powder, but you have the means with it
of making a rich gravy at a few minutes' notice.

Apropos of gravies--that much-vexed question in small households--for
without gravies on hand you cannot make good hash, or many other things
that are miserable without, and excellent with it. Yet how difficult it
is to have gravy always on hand every mistress of a small family knows,
in spite of the constant advice to "save your trimming to make stock."
Do by all means save your bones, gristle, odds and ends of meat of all
kinds, and convert them into broth; but even if you do, it often happens
that the days you have done so no gravy is required, and then it sours
quickly in summer, although it may be arrested by reboiling. In no
family of three or four are there odds and ends enough, unless there is
a very extravagant table kept, to insure stock for every day. My remedy
for this, then, is to make a stock that will keep for months or
years--in other words, _glaze_. So very rarely forming part of a
housewife's stores, yet so valuable that the fact is simply astonishing;
with a piece of glaze, you have a dish of soup on an emergency, rich
gravy for any purpose, and all with the expenditure of less time than
would make a pot of sweetmeats.

Take six pounds of a knuckle of veal or leg of beef, cut it in pieces
the size of an egg, as also half a pound of lean ham; then rub a quarter
of a pound of butter on the bottom of your pot, which should hold two
gallons; then put in the meat with half a pint of water, three
middle-sized onions, with two cloves in each, a turnip, a carrot, and a
_small_ head of celery; then place over a quick fire, occasionally
stirring it round, until the bottom of the pot is covered with a thick
glaze, which will adhere lightly to the spoon; then fill up the pot with
cold water, and when on the boiling point, draw it to the back of the
stove, where it may gently simmer three hours, if veal, six if beef,
carefully skimming it to remove scum. This stock, as it is, will make a
delicious foundation, with the addition of salt, for all kinds of clear
soup or gravies. To reduce it to glaze proceed as follows: Pass the
stock through a fine hair sieve or cloth into a pan; then fill up the
pot again with _hot_ water, and let it boil four hours longer to obtain
all the glutinous part from the meat; strain, and pour both stocks in a
large pot or stew-pan together; set it over the fire, and let it boil
as fast as possible with the lid off, leaving a large spoon in it to
prevent it boiling over, and to stir occasionally. When reduced to about
three pints, pour it into a small stew-pan or saucepan, set again to
boil, but more slowly, skimming it if necessary; when it is reduced to a
quart, set it where it will again boil quickly, stirring it well with a
wooden spoon until it begins to get thick and of a fine yellowish-brown
color; at this point be careful it does not burn.

You may either pour it into a pot for use, or, what is more convenient
for making gravies, get a sausage skin from your butcher, cut a yard of
it, tie one end very tightly, then pour into it by means of a large
funnel the glaze; from this cut slices for use. A thick slice dissolved
in hot water makes a cup of nutritious soup, into which you may put any
cooked vegetables, or rice, or barley. A piece is very useful to take on
a journey, especially for an invalid who does not want to depend on
wayside hotel food, or is tired of beef-tea.

The foregoing is the orthodox recipe for glaze, and if you have to buy
meat for the purpose the very best way in which you can make it; but if
it happen that you have some strong meat soup or jelly, for which you
have no use while fresh, then boil it down till it is thick and brown
(not burnt); it will be excellent glaze; not so fine in flavor, perhaps,
but it preserves to good use what would otherwise be lost. Very many
people do not know the value of pork for making jelly. If you live in
the country and kill a pig, use his hocks for making glaze instead of

Glaze also adds much to the beauty of many dishes. If roast beef is not
quite brown enough on any one spot set your jar of glaze--for this
purpose it is well to have some put in a jar as well as in the skin--in
boiling water. Keep a small stiff brush; such as are sold for the
purpose at house-furnishing stores, called a glazing brush, are best;
but you may manage with any other or even a stiff feather. When the
glaze softens, as glue would do, brush over your meat with it, it will
give the lacking brown; or, if you have a ham or tongue you wish to
decorate you may "varnish" it, as it were, with the melted glaze; then
when cold beat some fresh butter to a white cream, and with a kitchen
syringe, if you have one, a stiff paper funnel if you have not, trace
any design you please on the glazed surface; this makes a very handsome
dish, and if your ham has been properly boiled will be very satisfactory
to the palate. Of the boiling of ham I will speak in another chapter.

I have a few more articles to recommend for your store-room, and then I
think you will find yourself equal to the emergency of providing an
elegant little meal if called upon unexpectedly, provided you have any
cold scraps at all in the house, and _maître d'hôtel_ butter.

To make the latter, take half a pound of fine butter, one tablespoonful
of very fresh parsley, chopped not too fine, salt, pepper, and a small
tablespoonful of lemon juice; mix together, but do not work more than
sufficient for that purpose, and pack in a jar, keeping it in a cool
place. A tablespoonful of this laid in a hot dish on which you serve
beefsteak, chops, or any kind of fish, is a great addition, and turns
plain boiled potatoes into _pomme de terre à la maître d'hôtel_. It is
excellent with stewed potatoes, or added to anything for which parsley
is needed, and not always at hand; a spoonful with half the quantity of
flour stirred into a gill of milk or water makes the renowned _maître
d'hôtel_ sauce (or English parsley butter) for boiled fish, mutton, or
veal. In short, it is one of the most valuable things to have in the
house. Equally valuable, even, and more elegant is the preparation known
as "Ravigotte" or Montpellier butter.

Take one pound in equal quantities of chervil, tarragon, burnet
(pimpernel), chives, and garden cress (peppergrass); scald _two_
minutes, drain quite dry; pound in a mortar three hard eggs, three
anchovies, and one scant ounce of pickled cucumbers, and same quantity
of capers well pressed to extract the vinegar; add salt, pepper, and a
bit of garlic half as large as a pea, rub all through a sieve; then put
a pound of fine butter into the mortar, which must be well cleansed from
the herbs, add the herbs, with two tablespoonfuls of oil and one of
tarragon vinegar, mix perfectly, and if not of a fine green, add the
juice of some pounded spinach.

This is the celebrated "_beurre de Montpellier_" sold in Paris in tiny
jars at a high price. Ravigotte is the same thing, only in place of the
eggs, anchovies, pickles, and capers, put half a pound more butter; it
is good, but less piquant.

Pack in a jar, and keep cool. This butter is excellent for many
purposes. For salad, beaten with oil, vinegar, and yolks of eggs, as for
mayonnaise, it makes a delicious dressing. For cold meat or fish it is
excellent, and also for chops.

Two or three other articles serve to simplify the art of cooking in its
especially difficult branches, and in the branches a lady finds
difficult to attend to herself without remaining in the kitchen until
the last minute before dinner; but with the aid of blanc and roux a
fairly intelligent girl can make excellent sauces.

For roux melt slowly half a pound of butter over the fire, skim it, let
it settle, then dredge in eight ounces of fine flour, stir it till it is
of a bright brown, then put away in a jar for use.

Blanc is the same thing, only it is not allowed to brown; it should be
stirred only enough to make all hot through, then put away in a jar.

If you need thickening for a white sauce and do not wish to stand over
it yourself, having taught your cook the simple fact that a piece of
blanc put into the milk _before it boils_ (or it will harden instead of
melt) and allowed to dissolve, stirring constantly, will make the sauce
you wish, she will be able at all times to produce a white sauce that
you need not be ashamed of. When the sauce is nearly ready to serve,
stir in a good piece of butter--a large spoonful to half a pint; when
mixed, the sauce is ready. Brown sauce can always be made by taking a
cup of broth or soup and dissolving in the same way a piece of the roux;
and also, if desired, a piece of Montpellier butter. If there is no soup
of course you make it with a piece of glaze.

Brown flour is also a convenient thing to have ready; it is simply
cooking flour in the oven until it is a _pale_ brown; if it is allowed
to get dark it will be bitter, and, that it may brown evenly, it
requires to be laid on a large flat baking pan and stirred often. Useful
for thickening stews, hash, etc.



LUNCHEON is usually, in this country, either a forlorn meal of cold meat
or hash, or else a sort of early dinner, both of which are a mistake. If
it is veritably _luncheon_, and not early dinner, it should be as unlike
that later meal as possible for variety's sake, and, in any but very
small families, there are so many dishes more suitable for luncheon than
any other meal, that it is easy to have great variety with very little

I wish it were more the fashion here to have many of the cold dishes
which are popular on the other side the Atlantic; and, in spite of the
fact that table prejudices are very difficult to get over, I will append
a few recipes in the hope that some lady, more progressive than
prejudiced, may give them a trial, convinced that their excellence,
appearance, and convenience will win them favor.

By having most dishes cold at luncheon, it makes it a distinct meal from
the hot breakfast and dinner. In summer, the cold food and a salad is
especially refreshing; in winter, a nice hot soup or purée--thick soup
is preferable at luncheon to clear, which is well fitted to precede a
heavy meal--and some savory _entrée_ are very desirable, while cold
raised pie, galantine, jellied fish, and potted meats may ever, at that
season, find their appropriate place on the luncheon table. The
potatoes, which are the only vegetable introduced at strict lunch,
should be prepared in some fancy manner, as croquettes, mashed and
browned, _à la maître d'hôtel_, or in snow. The latter mode is pretty
and novel; I will, therefore, include it in my recipes for luncheon
dishes. Omelets, too, are excellent at luncheon.

In these remarks I am thinking especially of large families, whose
luncheon table might be provided with a dish of galantine, one of
collared fish, and a meat pie, besides the steak, cutlets, or
warmed-over meat, without anything going to waste. In winter most cold
jellied articles will keep a fortnight, and in summer three or four

WINDSOR PIE.--Take slices of veal cutlet, half an inch thick, and very
thin slices of lean boiled ham; put at the bottom of one of these
veal-pie dishes or "bakers," about two to three inches deep, a layer of
the veal, seasoned, then one of ham, then one of force-meat, made as
follows: Take a little veal, or if you have sausage-meat ready-made, it
will do, as much fine dry bread-crumbs, a dessert-spoonful of _finely_
chopped parsley, in which is a salt-spoonful of powdered thyme, savory,
and marjoram, if you have them, with salt and pepper, and mix with
enough butter to make it a crumbling paste; lay a _thin_ layer of this
on the ham, then another of veal, then ham and force-meat again, until
the dish is quite full. Lay something flat upon it, and then a weight
for an hour. You must have prepared, from bones and scraps of veal,
about a pint of stiff veal jelly; pour this over the meat, and then take
strips of rich puff paste (the _brioche_ paste would be excellent in hot
weather), wet the edge of the dish, and lay the strips round, pressing
them lightly to the dish; roll the cover a little larger than the top
of the dish, and lay it on, first wetting the surface, _not the edge_,
of the strips round the lips of the dish; press the two together, then
make a hole in the center and ornament as you please; but I never
ornament the _edge_ of a pie, as it is apt to prevent the paste from
rising. An appropriate and simple ornament for meat pies is to roll a
piece of paste very thin, cut it in four diamond-shaped pieces, put one
point of each to the hole in the center so that you have one on each
end, and one each side, then roll another little piece of paste as thin
as possible, flour it and double it, then double it again, bring all the
corners together in your hand, like a little bundle, then with a sharp
knife give a quick cut over the top of the ball of paste, cutting quite
deeply, then another across; if your cut has been clean and quick, you
will now be able to turn half back the leaves of paste as if it were a
half-blown rose. The ends which you have gathered together in your hand
are to be inserted in the hole in the center of the pie. Then brush over
with yolk of egg beaten very well in a little milk or water, and bake an
hour and a half.

This way of covering and ornamenting a pie is appropriate for all meat
pies; pigeon pie should, however, have the little red feet skinned by
dipping in boiling water, then rubbed in a cloth, when skin and nails
peel off; if allowed to lie in the water, the flesh comes too; then one
pair is put at each end of the pie, a hole being cut to insert them, or
four are put in the center instead of the rose.

The Windsor pie is intended to be eaten cold, as are all veal and ham
pies, the beauty of the jelly being lost in a hot pie. Do not fail to
try it on that account, for cold pies are excellent things.

ANOTHER VEAL AND HAM PIE, more usual, and probably the "weal and hammer"
that "mellered the organ" of Silas Wegg, was manufactured by Mrs. Boffin
from this recipe; it is as follows:

Take the thick part of breast of veal, removing all the bones, which put
on for gravy, stewing them long and slowly; put a layer of veal, pepper
and salt, then a thin sprinkling of ham; if boiled, cut in slices; if
raw, cut a slice in dice, which scald before using, then more veal and
again ham. If force-meat balls are liked, make some force-meat as for
Windsor pie, using if you prefer it chopped hard-boiled eggs in place of
chopped meat, and binding into a paste with a raw egg; then make into
balls, which drop into the crevices of the pie; boil two or three eggs
quite hard, cut each in four and lay them round the sides and over the
top, pour in about a gill of gravy, and cover the same as the Windsor
pie. In either of these pies the force-meat may be left out, a
sweetbread cut up, or mushrooms put in.

A chicken pie to eat cold is very fine made in this way.

RAISED PORK PIES are so familiar to every one who has visited England,
and, in spite of the greasy idea, are so very good, that I introduce a
well-tried recipe, feeling sure any one who eats pork at all will find
it worth while to give them a trial; they will follow it with many

The paste for them is made as follows:

Rub into two pounds of flour a liberal half pound of butter, then melt
in half a pint of hot, but not boiling milk, another half pound--or it
may be lard; pour this into the flour, and knead it into a smooth, firm
paste. Properly raised pies should be molded by hand, and I will
endeavor to describe the method in case any persevering lady would like
to try and have the orthodox thing. But pie molds of tin, opening at
the side, are to be bought, and save much trouble; the mold, if used,
should be well buttered, and the pie taken out when done, and returned
to the oven for the sides to brown.

To "raise" a pie, proceed thus: While the paste is warm, form a ball of
paste into a cone; then with the fist work inside it, till it forms an
oval cup; continue to knead till you have the walls of an even
thickness, then pinch a fold all around the bottom. If properly done,
you have an oval, flat-bottomed crust, with sides about two inches high;
fill this with pork, fat and lean together, well peppered and salted;
then work an oval cover, as near the size of the bottom cover as you
can, and wet the edges of the wall, lay the cover on, and pinch to match
the bottom; ornament as directed for Windsor pie, wash with egg, and
bake a pale brown in a moderate oven; they must be well cooked, or the
meat will not be good. One containing a pound of meat may be cooked an
hour and a quarter. All these pies are served in slices, cut through to
the bottom.

Galantines are very handsome dishes, not very difficult to make, and
generally popular. I give a recipe for a very simple and delicious one:

Take a fine breast of veal, remove all gristle, tendons, bones, and trim
to fifteen inches in length and eight wide; use the trimmings and bones
to help make the jelly, then put on the meat a layer of force-meat made
thus: Take one pound of sausage meat, or lean veal, to which add half a
pound of bread-crumbs, parsley and thyme to taste; grate a _little_
nutmeg, pepper, salt, and the juice of half a lemon; have also some long
strips an inch thick of fat bacon or pork, and lean of veal, and lean
ham, well seasoned with pepper, salt, and finely chopped shallots. Lay
on the meat a layer of force-meat an inch thick, leaving an inch and a
half on each side uncovered; then lay on your strips of ham, veal, and
bacon fat, alternately; then another of force-meat, but only half an
inch thick, as too much force-meat will spoil the appearance of the
dish; if you have any cold tongue, lay some strips in, also a few
blanched pistachio nuts (to be obtained of a confectioner) will give the
appearance of true French galantine. Roll up the veal, and sew it with a
packing or coarse needle and fine twine, tie it firmly up in a piece of
linen. Observe that you do not put your pistachio nuts amid the
force-meat, where, being green, their appearance would be lost; put them
in crevices of the meats.

Cook this in sufficient water to cover, in which you must have the
trimmings of the breast and a knuckle of veal, or hock of pork, two
onions, a carrot, half a head of celery, two cloves, a blade of mace,
and a good bunch of parsley, thyme and bay leaf, two ounces of salt. Set
the pot on the fire till it is at boiling point, then draw it to the
back and let it simmer three hours, skimming carefully; then take it
from the fire, leaving it in the stock till nearly cold; then take it
out, remove the string from the napkin, and roll the galantine up
tighter--if too tight at first it will be hard--tying the napkin at each
end only; then place it on a dish, set another dish on it, on which
place a fourteen-pound weight; this will cause it to cut firm. When
quite cold, remove strings and cloth, and it is ready to be ornamented
with jelly. When the stock in which the galantine was cooked is cold
take off the fat and clarify it, first trying, however, if it is in
right condition, by putting a little on ice. If it is not stiff enough
to cut firm, you must reduce it by boiling; if too stiff, that is
approaching glaze, add a _little_ water, then clarify by adding whites
of eggs, as directed to clarify soup (see soups). A glass of sherry and
two spoonfuls of tarragon or common vinegar are a great improvement.
Some people like this jelly cut in dice, to ornament the galantine, part
of it may then also serve to ornament other dishes at the table. But I
prefer to have the galantine enveloped in jelly, which may be done by
putting it in an oblong soup tureen or other vessel that will contain
it, leaving an inch space all round, then pouring the jelly over it.

Jellied fish is a favorite dish with many, and is very simple to
prepare; it is also very ornamental. Take flounders or almost any flat
fish that is cheapest at the time you require them. Clean and scrape
them, cut them in small pieces, but do not cut off the fins; put them in
a stew-pan with a few small button onions or one large one, a half
teaspoonful of sugar, a glass of sherry, a dessert-spoonful of lemon
juice, and a small bunch of parsley. To one large flounder put a quart
of water, and if you are going to jelly oysters put in their liquor and
a little salt. Stew long and slowly, skimming well; then strain, and if
not perfectly clear clarify as elsewhere directed. (See if your stock
jellies, by trying it on ice before you clarify.) Now take a mold, put
in it pieces of cold salmon, eels that have been cooked, or oysters, the
latter only just cooked enough in the stock to plump them; pour a little
of the jelly in the mold, then three or four half slices of lemon, then
oysters or the cold fish, until the mold is near full, disposing the
lemon so that it will be near the sides and decorate the jelly; then
pour the rest of the jelly over all and stand in boiling water for a few
minutes, then put it in a cold place, on ice is best, for some hours.
When about to serve, dip the mold in hot water, turn out on a dish,
garnish with lettuce leaves or parsley and hard-boiled eggs. The latter
may be introduced into the jelly cut in quarters if it is desired; very
ornamental force-meat balls made bright green with spinach juice are
also an improvement in appearance.

A NEW MAYONNAISE (Soyer's).--Put a quarter of a pint of stiff veal jelly
(that has been nicely flavored with vegetables) on ice in a bowl,
whisking it till it is a white froth; then add half a pint of salad oil
and six spoonfuls of tarragon vinegar, _by degrees_, first oil, then
vinegar, continually whisking till it forms a white, smooth, sauce-like
cream; season with half a teaspoonful of salt, a quarter ditto of white
pepper, and a very little sugar, whisk it a little more and it is ready.
It should be dressed pyramidically over the article it is served with.
The advantage of this sauce is that (although more delicate than any
other) you may dress it to any height you like, and it will remain so
any length of time; if the temperature is cool, it will remain hours
without appearing greasy or melting. It is absolutely necessary,
however, that it should be prepared on ice.

All these dishes, however, are only adapted for large families, but
there are several ways of improving on the ordinary lunch table of very
small ones. And nothing is more pleasant for the mistress of one of
these very small families than to have a friend drop in to lunch, and
have a _recherché_ lunch to offer with little trouble. Warming over will
aid her in this, and to that chapter I refer her; but there are one or
two ways of having cold relishes always ready, which help out an
impromptu meal wonderfully.

Potted meats are a great resource to English housekeepers; this side
the Atlantic they are chiefly known through the medium of Cross &
Blackwell, though latterly one or two American firms have introduced
some very admirable articles of the sort. Home-made potted meats are,
however, better and less expensive than those bought; they should be
packed away in jars, Liebig's extract of meat jars not being too small
for the purpose, as, while covered with the fat they keep well; once
opened, they require eating within a week or ten days, except in very
cold weather.

Potted bloater is one of the least expensive and appetizing of all
potted meats. To make it, take two or three or more bloaters, cut off
the heads and cleanse them, put them in the oven long enough to cook
them through; take them out, take off the skin, and remove the meat from
the bones carefully; put the meat of the fish in a jar with half its
weight of butter, leave it to _slowly_ cook in a cool oven for an hour,
then take it out, put the fish into a mortar or strong dish, pour the
butter on it carefully, but don't let the gravy pass too, unless the
fish is to be eaten very quickly, as it would prevent it keeping. Beat
both butter and fish till they form a paste, add a little cayenne, and
press it into small pots, pouring on each melted butter, or mutton suet.
Either should be the third of an inch thick on the bloater. This makes
excellent sandwiches.

POTTED HAM.--Take any remains of ham you have, even fried, if of a nice
quality, is good for the purpose; take away all stringy parts, sinew, or
gristle, put it in a slow oven with its weight of butter, let it stay
macerating in the butter till very tender, then beat it in a mortar, add
cayenne, and pack in pots in the same way as the bloater. Thus you may
pot odds and ends of any meat or fish you have, and as a little potted
meat goes a long way, when you have a little lobster, a bit of chicken
breast, or even cold veal, I advise you to use it in this way; you will
then have a little stock of dainties in the house to fall back on at any
time for unexpected calls--a very important thing in the country.

Potted chicken or veal requires either a little tongue or lean ham to
give flavor; but failing these, a little ravigotte butter, beaten in
after the meat is well pounded, is by no means a bad substitute.

Many people like the flavor of anchovies, but do not like the idea of
eating raw fish; for these anchovy butter is very acceptable.

Take the anchovies out of the liquor in which they are packed, but do
not wash them, put them in twice their weight of butter in a jar, which
stand in boiling water; set all back of the stove for an hour, then
pound, add cayenne, and pack in glasses.

Unexpected company to luncheon with a lady who has to eat that meal
alone generally, and (as is the unwise way of such ladies) makes it a
very slender meal, is one of the ordeals of a young housekeeper; company
to lunch and nothing in the house. But there is generally a dainty
luncheon in every house if you know how to prepare it; there certainly
always will be if you keep your store-room supplied with the things I
have named. Let the table be prettily laid at all times, then if you
have potted meat and preserves, have them put on the table. Are there
cold potatoes? If so cut them up into potato salad, if they are whole;
if broken, warm them in a wineglass of milk, a teaspoonful of flour,
and a piece as large as an egg of _maître d'hôtel_ butter. Have you
such scraps of cold meat as could not come to table? Toss them up with a
half cup of water, a slice of glaze (oh, blessed ever-ready glaze!) a
teaspoonful of ravigotte, or _maître d'hôtel_, and a teaspoonful of roux
or blanc, according as your meat is light or dark, season, and serve. Or
you have no meat, then you have eggs, and what better than an omelet and
such an omelet as the following? Take the crumb of a slice of bread,
soak it in hot milk (cold will do, but hot is better), beat up whites of
four eggs to a high froth; mix the bread with all the milk it will
absorb, _no more_, into a paste, add the yolks of eggs with a little
salt, set the pan on the fire with an ounce of butter. Let it get very
hot, then mix the whites of eggs with the yolks and bread lightly, pour
in the pan, and move about for a minute; if the oven is hot, when the
omelet is brown underneath, set the pan in the oven for five minutes, or
until the top is set; then double half over, and serve. If your guests
have a liking for sweets, and your potted meats supply the savory part
of your luncheon, then have a brown gravy ready to serve with it. Put
into a half cup of boiling water a slice of glaze, a spoonful of roux,
and enough Harvey sauce, or mushroom powder, to flavor. If your omelet
is to be sweet, before you fold it put in a layer of preserves.

The advantage of the omelet I have here given is that it keeps plump and
tender till cold, so that five minutes of waiting does not turn it into
leather, the great objection with omelets generally.

Potatoes for luncheon, as I have said, should always be prepared in some
fancy way, and snow is a very pretty one. Have some fine mealy potatoes
boiled, carefully poured off, and set back of the stove with a cloth
over them till they are quite dry and fall apart; then have a colander,
or coarse wire sieve made _hot_ and a _hot_ dish in which to serve them,
pass the floury potatoes through the sieve, taking care not to crush the
snow as it falls. You require a large dish heaping full, and be
careful it is kept hot.

This mode of preparing potatoes, although very pretty and novel, must
never be attempted with any but the whitest and mealiest kind.

The remains of cold potatoes may be prepared thus: Put three ounces of
butter in a frying-pan in which fry three onions sliced till tender, but
not very brown, then put on the potatoes cut in slices, and shake them
till they are of a nice brown color, put a spoonful of chopped parsley,
salt, pepper, and juice of a lemon, shake well that all may mix
together, dish, and serve very hot.



A VERY small family, "a young _ménage_," for instance, is very much more
difficult to cater for without waste than a larger one; two people are
so apt to get tired of anything, be it ever so good eating, when it has
been on the table once or twice; therefore it would be useless to make
galantine or the large pies I have indicated, except for occasions when
guests are expected; but, as I hope to aid young housekeepers to have
nice dishes when alone, I will devote this chapter to their needs.

The chapter on "Warming Over" will be very useful also to this large

In the first place it is well to have regard, when part of a dish leaves
the table, as to whether it, or any particular part of it, will make a
nice little cold dish, or a _rechauffé_; in that case have it saved,
unless it is required for the servants' dinner (it is well to manage so
that it is not needed for that purpose); for instance, if there is the
wing and a slice or two of the breast of a chicken left, it will make a
dainty little breakfast dish, or cold, in jelly, be nice for lunch.
There is always jelly if you have roast chicken, if you manage properly,
and this is how you do it:

Carefully save the feet, throat, gizzard, and liver of your chickens;
scald the feet by pouring boiling water over them; leave them just a
minute, and pull off the outer skin and nails; they come away very
readily, leaving the feet delicately white; put these with the other
giblets, properly cleansed, into a small saucepan with an onion, a slice
of carrot, a sprig of parsley, and a pint of water (if you have the
giblets of one chicken), if of two, put a quart; let this _slowly_
simmer for two hours and a half; it will be reduced to about half, and
form a stiff jelly when cold; a glass of sherry, and squeeze of lemon,
or teaspoonful of tarragon vinegar, makes this into a delicious aspic,
and should be added if to be eaten cold. The jelly must of course be

In roasting chickens, if you follow the rule for meat, that is, put no
water in the pan, but a piece of butter, and dredge a _very little_
flour over the chicken, you will have a nice brown glaze at the bottom
of the pan, provided it has been cooked in a _quick oven_; if in a cool
oven there will be nothing brown at all; but we will suppose the bird is
browned to a turn; pour your gravy from the giblets into the pan, take
off every bit of the glaze or osma-zone that adheres, and let it
dissolve, rubbing it with the back of the spoon; then, if you are likely
to have any chicken left cold, pour off a little gravy in a cup through
a fine strainer, leaving in your pan sufficient for the dinner; in this
mash up the liver till it is a smooth paste which thickens the gravy,
and serve. Some object to liver, therefore the use of it is a matter of
taste. If you dress the chickens English fashion, you will _need_ the
liver and gizzard to tuck under the wings; in this case, stew only the
feet and throat, using a little meat of any kind, if you have it, to
take their place; but on no account fail to use the feet, as they are as
rich in jelly as calves' feet in proportion to their size.

The jelly laid aside will be enough to ornament and give relish to a
little dish of cold chicken, and changes it from a dry and commonplace
thing to a _recherché_ one. If two chickens are cooked it is more
economical than one; there is, then, double the amount of gravy,
generally sufficient, if you lay some very nice pieces of cold chicken
in a bowl, to pour over it and leave it enveloped in jelly; you still
then, if from dinner for two people, have perhaps joints enough to make
a dish of curry or fricassee, or any of the many ways in which cold
chicken may be used, for which see chapter on "_Warming Over_."

For small households large joints are to be avoided, but even a small
roast is a large joint when there are but two or three to eat it. For
this reason it is a good plan to buy such joints as divide well. A
sirloin of beef is better made into two fine dishes than into one roast,
and then warmed over twice. Every one knows that "_Filet de bœuf
Chateaubriand_" is one of the classical dishes of the French table, that
to a Frenchman luxury can go no further; but every one does not know how
entirely within his power it is to have that dish as often as he has
roast beef; how convenient it would be to so have it. Here it is: When
your sirloin roast comes from the butcher, take out the tenderloin or
fillets, which you must always choose thick; cut it across into steaks
an inch thick, trim them, cover them with a coat of butter (or oil,
which is much better), and broil them ten minutes, turning them often;
garnish with fried potatoes, and serve with _sauce Chateaubriand_, as
follows: Put a gill of white wine (or claret will do if you have no
white) into a saucepan, with a piece of glaze, weighing an ounce and a
half; add three quarters of a pint of _espagnole_, and simmer fifteen
minutes; when ready to serve, thicken with two ounces of _maître
d'hôtel_ butter in which a dessert-spoonful of flour has been worked.
That is how Jules Gouffé's recipe runs; but, as no small family will
keep _espagnole_ ready made, allow a little more glaze (of course the
recipe as given may be divided to half or quarter, provided the correct
proportions are retained), and use a tablespoonful of roux and the
_maître d'hôtel_ butter, both of which you have probably in your
store-room; if not, brown a little flour, chop some parsley, and add to
two ounces of butter; work them together, then let them dissolve in the
sauce, for which purpose let it go off the boil; let the sauce simmer a
minute, skim, and serve.

The sirloin of beef, denuded of its fillet, is still a good roast; and
as you can't have your cake and eat it too, and hot fresh roast beef is
better than the same warmed over, warm ye never so wisely, I think this
plan may commend itself to those who like nice _little_ dinners.

A nice little dinner of a soup, an _entrée_, or made dish, salad, and
dessert, really costs no more than frequent roast meat, or even steak
and pudding, by following some such plan as this:

Sunday.--_Pot-au-feu_ and roast lamb, leg of mutton or other good joint,

Monday.--Rice or vermicelli soup made with remains of the _bouillon_
from _pot-au-feu_. If the Sunday joint was a fore or hindquarter of lamb
it should have been divided, say the leg from the loin, thus providing
choice roasts for two days, and yet having enough cold lamb--that
favorite dish with so many--for luncheon with a salad; and, surprising
to say, after hot roast lamb for dinner Sunday, cold lunch for Monday,
another roast Monday, and cold or warmed up for lunch Tuesday, there
will still be (supposing as I do, in preparing this chapter, that the
family consists only of gentleman, lady, and servant) remains enough
from the two cold joints to make cromesquis of lamb (see recipe), a
little dish of mince, or a delicate _sauté_ of lamb for breakfast. It is
surprising what may be done with odds and ends in a small family; a tiny
plate of pieces, far too small to make an appearance on the table, and
which, if special directions are not given, will seem to Bridget not
worth saving, will, with each piece dipped into the batter _à la
Carême_, and fried in hot fat, make a tempting dish for breakfast, or an
_entrée_ for dinner or luncheon. Two tablespoonfuls only of chopped meat
of any kind will make croquettes for two or three people; hence, 'save
the pieces.' But to return to our bills of fare: I have given the two
roasts of lamb for consecutive days, because the weather in lamb season
is usually too warm to keep it; when this can be done, however, it is
pleasanter to leave the second joint of lamb till Tuesday. Should a
forequarter (abroad held in greater esteem than the hindquarter) have
been chosen, get the butcher to take out the shoulder in one round thick
joint, English fashion; this crisply roasted is far more delicious than
the leg; you then have the chops to be breaded, and an excellent dish of
the neck and breast, either broiled, curried, stewed with peas, or

Yet how often we see a whole quarter of lamb put in the oven for two or
three people who get tired of the sight of it cold, yet feel in economy
bound to eat it.

Should sirloin of beef have been the Sunday dinner, you will know what
to do with it, from directions already given; and as a sirloin of beef,
even with the fillet out, will be more than required for one dinner, it
may serve for a third day, dressed in one of the various ways I shall
give in chapter on "Warming Over." You have still at your disposal the
bouilli or beef from which you have made your _pot-au-feu_, which, if it
has been carefully boiled, not galloped, nor allowed to fall to rags, is
very good eating. Cut thin with lettuce, or in winter celery, in about
equal quantities, and a good salad dressing, it is excellent; or, made
into hash, fritadella, or even rissoles, is savory and delicious; only
bear in mind with this, as all cooked meats, the gravy drawn out must be
replaced by stock or glaze; it is very easy to warm over bouilli
satisfactorily, as a cup of the soup made from it can always be kept for

A leg of mutton makes two excellent joints, and is seldom liked cold--as
beef and lamb often are.

Select a large fine leg, have it cut across, that each part may weigh
about equally; roast the thick or fillet end and serve with or without
onion sauce (_à la soubise_); boil the knuckle in a small quantity of
water, just enough to cover it, with a carrot, turnip, onion, and bunch
of parsley, and salt in the water, serve with caper sauce and mashed
turnips. The broth from this is excellent soup served thus: Skim it
carefully, take out the vegetables, and chop a small quantity of parsley
very fine, then beat up in a bowl two eggs, pour into them a little of
the broth--not boiling--beating all the time, then draw your soup back
till it is off the boil, and pour in the eggs, stirring continually till
it is on the boiling point again (but it must not boil, or the eggs will
curdle and spoil the soup), and then turn it into a _hot_ tureen and
serve. Use remains of the cold roast and boiled mutton together, to make
made dishes; between the days of having the roast and boiled mutton you
may have had a fowl, and the remains from that will make you a second
dish to go with your joint.

The remains from the first cooked mutton, in form of curry, mince,
salmi, or _sauté_, will be a second dish with your fowl.

Veal is one of the most convenient things to have for a small family, as
it warms over in a variety of ways, and in some is actually better than
when put on the table as a joint. By having a little fish one day,
instead of soup, and a little game another, and remembering when you
have an especially dainty thing, to have one with it a little more
substantial and less costly, you may have variety at little expense.

For instance, if you find it convenient to have for dinner fritadella
(see "_Warming Over_") or miroton of beef, or cold mutton curried, you
might have broiled birds, or roast pigeon, or game. In this consists
good management, to live so that the expenses of one day balance those
of the other--unless you are so happily situated that expense is a small
matter, in which case these remarks will not apply to you at all. Then,
never mind warming over, or making one joint into two; let your poor
neighbors and Bridget's friends enjoy your superfluity. To the woman
with a moderate income it usually is a matter of importance, or ought to
be, that her weekly expenditure should not exceed a certain amount, and
for this she must arrange that any extra expense is balanced by a
subsequent economy.

Salads add much to the health and elegance of a dinner; it is in early
spring an expensive item if lettuce is used; but no salad can be more
delicious or more healthful than dressed celery; and by buying when
cheap, arranging with a man to lay in your cellar, covered with soil,
enough for the winter's use, it need cost but moderately. Celeriac, or
turnip-rooted celery is another salad that is very popular with our
German friends; it is a bulbous celery, the root being the part eaten;
these are cooked like potatoes, cut in slices, and dressed with oil and
vinegar, or mayonnaise, it is exceedingly good. Potato salad is always
procurable, and in summer at lunch, instead of the hot vegetable, or in
winter when green salad is dear, is very valuable. It may be varied by
the addition, one day, of a few chopped pickles, another, a little
onion, or celery, or parsley, or tarragon, a little ravigotte butter
beaten to cream with the vinegar, or with meat, as follows: Boil the
potatoes in their skins, peel them, cut them into pieces twice the
thickness of a fifty-cent piece, and put them into a salad bowl with
cold meat (bouilli from soup is excellent); put to them a teaspoonful of
salt, half that quantity of pepper, two tablespoonfuls of vinegar, three
or even four of oil, and a teaspoonful of chopped parsley. You can vary
this by putting at different times some chopped celery or pickles,
olives, or anchovies.



FRYING is one of the operations in cookery in which there are more
failures than any other, or, at least, there appear to be more, because
the failure is always so very apparent. Nothing can make a dish of
breaded cutlets on which are bald white spots look inviting, or
livid-looking fish, just flaked here and there with the bread that has
been persuaded to stay on. And, provided you have enough fat in the
pan--there should always be enough to immerse the article; therefore use
a deep iron or enameled pan--there can be but two reasons why you fail.
Your fat has not been hot enough, or your crumbs have not been fine and

Many suppose when the fat bubbles and boils in the pan that it is quite
hot; it is far from being so. Others again are so much nearer the truth
that they know it must become _silent_, that is, boil and cease to boil,
before it is ready, but even that is not enough; it must be silent some
time, smoke, and appear to be on the point of burning, then drop a bit
of bread in; if it crisps and takes color directly, quickly put in your

These articles, whether cutlets or fish, must have been carefully
prepared, or herein may lie the second cause of failure. Any cookery
book will give you directions how to crumb, follow them; but what some
do not tell you is, that your bread-crumbs should be _finely sifted_;
every coarse crumb is liable to drop off and bring with it a good deal
of the surrounding surface.

I also follow the French plan in using the egg, and mix with it oil and
water in the proportion of three eggs, one tablespoonful of oil, one of
water, and a little salt, beat together and use. It is a good plan to
keep a supply of _panure_ or dried bread-crumbs always ready. Cut any
slices of baker's bread, dry them in a cool oven so that they remain
quite colorless, or they will not do for the purpose. When as dry as
crackers, crush under a rolling-pin, and sift; keep in a jar for use.

In no branch of cooking is excellence more appreciated than in that of
frying. A dish of _filets de sole_ or cutlets, crisp and golden brown,
is an ornament to any table, and is seldom disdained by any one. Apropos
of _filets de sole_; it is very high-sounding yet very attainable, as I
shall show. I was staying with a friend early in spring, a lady always
anxious for table novelties. "Oh, do tell me what fish to order, I
should like something fried, now that you are here to tell cook how to
do it; she hasn't the wildest idea, although she would be astounded to
hear me say so." "Have you ever had flounders?" I asked. "Flounders!" My
friend's pretty nose went up the eighth of an inch, and her confidence
in my powers as counselor went down to zero. "Flounders! but they are a
very common fish you know." "I know they are very delicious," I
answered. "Order them, and trust me; but I must coax the autocrat of
your kitchen to allow me to cook and prepare them myself."

An hour before dinner I went into the kitchen, put at least a pound of
lard into a deep frying-pan, and set it where it would get gradually
hot, then I turned my attention to the fish; they were thick, firm
flounders, and were ready cleaned, scraped, and the heads off. I then
proceeded to bone one in the following way: Take a sharp knife and split
the flounder right down the middle of the back, then run the knife
carefully between the flesh and bones going toward the edge. You have
now detached one quarter of the flesh from the bone, do the other half
in the same way, and when the back is thus entirely loose from the bone,
turn the fish over and do the same with the other part. You will now
find you can remove the bone whole from the fish, detaching, as you do
so, any flesh still retaining the bone, then you have two halves of the
fish; cut away the fins, and you have four quarters of solid fish. Now
see if the fat is very hot, set it forward while you wipe your fish dry,
and dip each piece in milk, then in flour. Try if the fat is hot by
dropping a crumb into it; if it browns at once, put in the fish. When
they are beautifully brown, which will be in about ten minutes, take
them up in the colander, and then lay them on a towel to absorb any fat,
lay them on a hot dish, and garnish with slices of lemon and parsley or
celery tops.

Now when this dish made its appearance, my friend's husband, a _bon
vivant_, greeted it with, "Aha! _Filets de sole à la Delmonico_," and as
nothing to the contrary was said until dinner was over, he ate them
under the impression that they were veritable _filets de sole_. Of
course I can't pretend to say whether M. Delmonico imports his soles, or
uses the homely flounder; but I do know that one of his frequenters knew
no difference.

Oysters should be laid on a cloth to drain thoroughly, then rolled in
fine sifted cracker dust, and dropped into very hot fat; do not put more
oysters in the pan than will fry without one overlapping the other.
Very few minutes will brown them beautifully, if your fat was hot
enough, and as a minute too long toughens and shrinks them, be very
careful that it browns a cube of bread almost directly, before you begin
the oysters. Egg and bread-crumb may be used instead of cracker dust,
but it is not the proper thing, and is a great deal more trouble. Should
you be desirous of using it, however, the oysters must be carefully
wiped _dry_ before dipping them; while for cracker dust they are not
wiped, but only drained well.

Fish of any kind, fried in batter _à la Carême_ (see recipe), is very
easy to do, and very nice.

Carefully save veal, lamb, beef, and pork drippings. Keep a crock to put
it in, and, clarified as I shall direct, it is much better than lard for
many purposes, and for frying especially; it does not leave the dark
look that is sometimes seen on articles fried in lard. The perfection of
"friture," or frying-fat, according to Gouffé, is equal parts of lard
and beef fat melted together.

Yet there are families where dripping is never used--is looked upon as
unfit to use--while the truth is that many persons quite unable to eat
articles fried in lard would find no inconvenience from those fried in
beef fat. It is as wholesome as butter, and far better for the purpose.
Butter, indeed, is only good for frying such things as omelets or
scrambled eggs; things that are cooked in a very short time, and require
no great degree of heat.

The same may be said of oil, than which, for fish, nothing can be
better. Yet it can only be used once, and is unsuitable for things
requiring long-sustained heat, as it soon gets bitter and rank.

Do not be afraid to put a pound or two of fat in your pan for frying; it
is quite as economical as to put less for it can be used over and over
again, a pail or crock being kept for the purpose of receiving it.
Always in returning it to the crock pour it through a fine strainer, so
that no sediment or brown particles may pass which would spoil the next

To clarify dripping, when poured from the meat-pan, it should go into a
bowl, instead of the crock in which you wish to keep it. Then pour into
the bowl also some boiling water, and add a little salt, stir it, and
set it away. Next day, or when cold, run a knife round the bowl, and
(unless it is pork) it will turn out in a solid cake, leaving the water
and impurities at the bottom. Now scrape the bottom of your dripping,
and put it in more boiling water till it melts, then stir again, another
pinch of salt add, and let it cool again. When you take off the cake of
fat, scrape it as before, and it is ready to be melted into the general
crock, and will now keep for months in cool weather. If you are having
frequent joints it is as well to do all your dripping together, once a
week; but do not leave it long at any season with water under it, as
that would taint it. Fat skimmed from boiled meat, _pot-au-feu_, before
the vegetables, etc., go in, is quite as good as that from roast,
treated in the same way.

Frying in batter is very easy and excellent for some things, such as
warming over meat, being far better than eggs and crumbs. Carême gives
the following recipe, which is excellent:

Three quarters of a pound of sifted flour, mixed with two ounces of
butter melted in warm water; blow the butter off the water into the
flour first, then enough of the water to make a _soft_ paste, which
beat smooth, then more warm water till it is batter thick enough to mask
the back of a spoon dipped into it, and salt to taste; add the _last
thing_ the whites of two eggs well beaten.

Another batter, called _à la Provençale_, is also exceedingly good,
especially for articles a little dry in themselves, such as chickens to
be warmed over, slices of cold veal, etc.

Take same quantity of flour, two yolks of eggs, four tablespoonfuls of
oil, mix with _cold_ water, and add whites of eggs and salt as before.
Into this batter I sometimes put a little chopped parsley, and the least
bit of powdered thyme, or grated lemon-peel, or nutmeg; this is,
however, only a matter of taste.

BROILING is the simplest of all forms of cooking, and is essentially
English. To broil well is very easy with a little attention. A brisk
clear fire, not too high in the stove, is necessary to do it with ease;
yet if, as must sometimes happen, to meet the necessities of other
cooking, your fire is very large, carefully fix the gridiron on two
bricks or in any convenient manner, to prevent the meat scorching, then
have the gridiron _very hot_ before putting your meat upon it; turn it,
if chop or steak, as soon as the gravy begins to start on the upper
side; if allowed to remain without turning long, the gravy forms a pool
on the top, which, when turned, falls into the fire and is lost; the
action of the heat, if turned quickly, seals the pores and the gravy
remains in the meat. If the fire is not very clear, put a cover over the
meat on the gridiron, it will prevent its blackening or burning--if the
article is thick I always do so--and it is an especially good plan with
birds or chickens, which are apt to be raw at the joints unless this is
done; indeed, with the latter, I think it a good way to put them in a
hot oven ten minutes before they go on to broil, then have a spoonful of
_maître d'hôtel_ butter to lay on the breast of each. Young spring
chickens are sometimes very dry, in which case dip them in melted
butter, or, better still, oil them all over a little while before
cooking. There is nothing more unsightly than a sprawling dish of
broiled chickens; therefore, in preparing them place them in good form,
then, with a gentle blow of the rolling-pin, break the bones that they
may remain so.



IN spite of Brillat-Savarin's maxim that one may become a cook, but must
be born a _rotisseur_, I am inclined to think one may also, by
remembering one or two things, become a very good "roaster" (to
translate the untranslatable), especially in our day, when the oven has
taken the place of the spit, although a great deal of meat is spoiled in
roasting; a loin of lamb or piece of beef, that comes to the table so
pale that you can't tell whether it has been boiled or merely wilted in
the oven, is an aggravation so familiar, that a rich brown, well-roasted
joint is generally a surprise. Perhaps the cook will tell you she has
had the "hottest kind of an oven;" but then she has probably also had a
well of water underneath it, the vapor from which, arising all the time,
has effectually soddened the meat, and checked the browning. The surface
of roast meat should be covered with a rich glaze, scientifically called
"osma-zone." That the meat may be thus glazed, it should always go into
a _hot_ oven, so that, as the gravy exudes, it may congeal on the
outside, thus sealing up the pores. The general plan, however, is to put
meat into a warm oven an hour or two earlier than it should go, with a
quantity of water and flour underneath it. The result in hot weather I
have known to be very disagreeable, the tepid oven having, in fact,
given a stale taste to the joint before it began to cook, and it at all
times results in flavorless, tough meat. There is no time saved, either,
in putting the meat in while the oven is yet cool. Heat up the oven till
it is quite brisk, then put the meat in a pan, in which, if it is fat,
you require _no water_; if very lean, you may put half a teacup, just
enough to prevent the pan burning; you may rub a little flour over the
joint or not, as you please, but never more than the surface moisture
absorbs; have no clinging particles of flour upon the joint, neither put
salt nor pepper upon the meat before it goes into the oven; salt draws
out the gravy, which it is your object to keep in, and the flavor of
pepper is entirely changed by the parching it undergoes when on the
surface of the meat, the odor of scorched pepper, while cooking, being
very offensive to refined nostrils. This does not occur when pepper is
not on the surface; for the _inside_ of birds, in stuffing, and in meat
pies it is indispensable, and the flavor undergoes no change. This
remark on pepper applies also to broiling and frying. Always pepper
_after_ the article is cooked, and both for appearance and delicacy of
flavor white pepper should always be used in preference to black.

Meat, while in the oven, should be carefully turned about so that it may
brown equally, and when it has been in half the time you intend to give
it, or when the upper surface is well browned, turn it over. When it
comes out of the oven put it on a hot dish, then carefully pour off the
fat by holding the corner of the meat pan over your dripping-pan, and
very gently allowing the fat to run off; do not shake it; when you see
the thick brown sediment beginning to run too, check it; if there is
still much fat on the surface, take it off with a spoon; then pour into
the pan a little boiling water and salt, in quantity according to the
quantity of sediment or glaze in the pan, and with a spoon rub off every
speck of the dried gravy on the bottom and sides of the pan. Add no
flour, the gravy must be thick enough with its own richness. If you have
added too much water, so that it looks poor, you may always boil it down
by setting the pan on the stove for a few minutes; but it is better to
put very little water at first, and add as the richness of the gravy
allows. Now you have a rich brown gravy, instead of the thick
whitey-brown broth so often served with roast meat. Every drop of this
gravy and that from the dish should be carefully saved if left over.

Save all dripping, except from mutton or meat with which onions are
cooked, for purposes which I shall indicate in another place.

Veal and pork require to be very thoroughly cooked. For them, therefore,
the oven must not be too hot, neither must it be lukewarm, a good even
heat is best; if likely to get too brown before it is thoroughly cooked,
open the oven door.



BOILING is one of the things about which cooks are most careless;
theoretically they almost always know meat should be slowly boiled, but
their idea of "slow" is ruled by the fire; they never attempt to rule
that. There is a good rule given by Gouffé as to what slow boiling
actually is: the surface of the pot should only show signs of ebullition
at one side, just an occasional bubble. _Simmering_ is a still slower
process, and in this the pot should have only a sizzling round one part
of the edge. All fresh meat should boil _slowly_; ham or corn beef
should barely simmer. Yet they must not go off the boil at all, which
would spoil fresh meat entirely; steeping in water gives a flat, insipid

All vegetables except potatoes, asparagus, peas, and cauliflower should
boil as fast as possible; these four only moderately. Most vegetables
are boiled far too long. Cabbage is as delicate as cauliflower in the
summer and fall if boiled in plenty of water, to which a salt spoonful
of soda has been added, _as fast as possible_ for twenty minutes or half
an hour, then drained and dressed. In winter it should be cut in six or
eight pieces, boiled _fast_, in plenty of water, for half an hour, _no
longer_. Always give it plenty of room, let the water boil rapidly when
you put it in the pot, which set on the hottest part of the fire to
come to that point again, and you will have no more strong, rank, yellow
stuff on your table, no bad odor in your house. Peas require no more
than twenty minutes' boiling if young; asparagus the same; the latter
should always be boiled in a saucepan deep enough to let it stand up in
the water when tied up in bunches, for this saves the heads. Potatoes
should be poured off the minute they are done, and allowed to stand at
the back of the stove with a clean cloth folded over them. They are the
only vegetable that should be put into _cold_ water. When new, boiling
water is proper. When quite ripe they are more floury if put in cold

SOUPS.--As I have before said, I do not pretend to give many recipes,
only to tell you how to succeed with the recipes given in other books. I
shall, therefore, only give one recipe which I know is a novelty and one
for the foundation of all soups. In one sense I have done the latter
already. The stock for glaze is an excellent soup before it is reduced;
but I will also give Jules Gouffé's method of making _pot-au-feu_, it
being a most beautifully clear soup.

It often happens, however, that you have sufficient stock from bones,
trimmings of meat, and odds and ends of gravies, which may always be
turned to account; but the stock from such a source, although excellent,
will not always be clear; therefore, you must proceed with it in the
following manner, unless you wish to use it for thick soup:

Make your stock boiling hot and skim well; then have ready the whites of
three eggs (I am supposing you have three quarts of stock--one egg to a
quart), to which add half a pint of cold water; whisk well together;
then add half a pint of the boiling stock gradually, still whisking the
eggs; then stir the boiling stock rapidly, pouring in the whites of
eggs, etc.; as you do it, stir quickly till nearly boiling again, then
take it from the fire, let it remain till the whites of eggs separate;
then strain through a clean, fine cloth into a basin. This rule once
learned will clear every kind of soup or jelly.

There are many people who are good cooks, yet fail in clear soup, which
is with them semi-opaque, while it should be like sherry. The cause of
this opacity is generally quick boiling while the meat is in. This gives
it a milky appearance. After the stock is once made and clear, quick
boiling will do no harm, but of course wastes the soup, unless resorted
to for the purpose of making it stronger. A word here about coloring
soup: Most persons resort to burnt sugar, and, very carefully used, it
is not at all a bad makeshift. But how often have we a rich-looking soup
put before us, the vermicelli appearing to repose under a lake of strong
russet _bouillon_, but which, on tasting, we find suggestive of nothing
but burnt sugar and salt, every bit of flavor destroyed by the acrid
coloring. Sometimes stock made by the recipe for _pot-au-feu_ (to
follow) requires no color; this depends on the beef; but usually all
soup is more appetizing in appearance for a little browning, and for
this purpose I always use burnt onions in preference to anything else.
If you have none in store when the soup is put on, put a small onion in
the oven (or on the back of the stove; should you be baking anything the
odor would taint); turn it often till it gets quite black, but not
_charred_. Then put it to the soup; it adds a fine flavor as well as
color, and you need not fear overdoing it.

Soup that is to be reduced must be very lightly salted; for this reason
salt is left out altogether for glaze, as the reduction causes the
water only to evaporate, the salt remains.

GOUFFÉ'S POT-AU-FEU.--Four pounds of lean beef, six quarts of water, six
ounces of carrot, six of turnip, six of onion, half an ounce of celery,
one clove, salt.

Put the meat on in cold water, and just before it comes to the boil skim
it, and throw in a wineglass of cold water, skim again, and, when it is
"on the boil," again throw in another wineglass of cold water; do this
two or three times. The object of adding the cold water is to keep it
just off the boil until all the scum has risen, as the boiling point is
when it comes to the surface, yet once having boiled, the scum is broken
up, and the soup is never so clear.

The meat must simmer slowly, _not boil_, for three hours before the
vegetables are added, then for a couple of hours more.

It is necessary to be very exact in the proportions of vegetables; but,
of course, after having weighed them for soups once or twice, you will
get to know about the size of a carrot, turnip, etc., that will weigh
six ounces. The exact weight is given until the eye is accustomed to it.

This soup strained, and boiled down to one half, becomes _consommé_.

CELERY CREAM is a most delicious and little-known white soup, and all
lovers of good things will thank me for introducing it.

Have some nice veal stock, or the water in which chickens have been
boiled, reduced till it is rich enough, will do, or some very rich
mutton broth, but either of the former are preferable; then put on a
half cup of rice in a pint of rich milk, and grate into it the white
part and root of two heads of celery. Let the rice milk cook very
slowly at the back of the stove, adding more milk before it gets at all
stiff; when tender enough to mash through a coarse sieve or fine
colander add it to the stock, which must have been strained and be quite
free from sediment, season with salt and a little _white_ pepper or
cayenne, boil all together gently a few minutes. It should look like
rich cream, and be strongly flavored with celery. Of course the quantity
of rice, milk, and celery must depend on the quantity of stock you have.
I have given the proportion for one quart, which, with the milk, etc.,
added, would make about three pints of soup.



TALLEYRAND said England was a country with twenty-four religions and
only one sauce. He might have said two sauces, and he would have been
literally right as regards both England and America. Everything is
served with brown sauce or white sauce. And how often the white sauce is
like bookbinder's paste, the brown, a bitter, tasteless brown mess!
Strictly speaking, perhaps, the French have but two sauces either,
_espagnole_, or brown sauce, and white sauce, which they call the mother
sauces; but what changes they ring on these mother sauces! The espagnole
once made, with no two meats is it served alike in flavor, and in this
matter of flavor the artist appears. In making brown sauce for any
purpose, bethink yourself of anything there may be in your store-room
with which to vary its flavor, taking care that it shall agree with the
meat for which it is intended. The ordinary cook flies at once to
Worcestershire or Harvey sauce, which are excellent at times, but
"_toujours perdrix_" is not always welcome. A pinch of mushroom powder,
or a few chopped oysters, are excellent with beef or veal; so will be a
spoonful of Montpellier butter stirred in, or curry, not enough to
yellow the sauce, but enough to give a dash of piquancy. A pickled
walnut chopped, or a gherkin or two, go admirably with mutton or pork
chops. In short, this is just where imagination and brains will tell in
cooking, and little essays of invention may be tried with profit. But
beware of trying too much; make yourself perfect in one thing before
venturing on another.

ESPAGNOLE, or brown sauce, is simply a rich stock well flavored with
vegetables and herbs, and thickened with a piece of _roux_ or with brown

WHITE SAUCE is one of those things we rarely find perfectly made; bad,
it is the _ne plus ultra_ of badness; good, it is delicious. Those who
have tried to have it good, and failed, I beg to try the following
method of making it: Take an ounce and a half of butter and a scant
tablespoonful of flour, mix both with a spoon into a paste; when smooth
add half a pint of warm milk, a _small_ teaspoonful of salt, and the
sixth part of one of _white_ pepper; set it on the fire till it boils,
and is thick enough to mask the back of the spoon transparently; then
add a squeeze of lemon juice, and another ounce and a half of fresh
butter; stir this till quite blended. This sauce is the foundation for
many others, and, for some purposes, the beaten yolk of an egg is
introduced when just off the boil. Capers may be added to it, or chopped
mushrooms, or chopped celery, or oysters, according to the use for which
it is intended. The object of adding the second butter is because
boiling takes away the flavor of butter; by stirring half of it in,
without boiling, you retain it.



HASH is a peculiarly American institution. In no other country is every
remnant of cold meat turned into that one unvarying dish. What do I say?
_remnants_ of cold meat! rather _joints_ of cold meat, a roast of beef
of which the tenderloin had sufficed for the first day's dinner, the leg
of mutton from which a few slices only have been taken, the fillet of
veal, available for so many delicate dishes, all are ruthlessly turned
into the all-pervading hash. The curious thing is that people are not
fond of it. Men exclaim against it, and its name stinks in the nostrils
of those unhappy ones whose home is the boarding-house.

Yet hash in itself is not a bad dish; when I say it is a peculiarly
_American_ institution, I mean, that when English people speak of hash,
they mean something quite different--meat warmed in slices. Our hash, in
its best form--that is, made with nice gravy, garnished with sippets of
toast and pickles, surrounded with mashed potatoes or rice--is dignified
abroad by the name of _mince_, and makes its appearance as an elegant
little _entrée_. Nor would it be anathematized in the way it is with us,
if it were only occasionally introduced. It is the familiarity that has
led to contempt. "But what shall I do?" asks the young wife
distressfully; "John likes joints, and he and I and Bridget can't
possibly eat a roast at a meal."

Very true; and it is to just such perplexed young housekeepers that I
hope this chapter will be especially useful--that is to say, small
families with moderate means and a taste for good things. In this, as in
many other ways, large families are easier to cater for; they can
consume the better part of a roast at a meal, and the remains it is no
great harm to turn into hash, although even they might, with little
trouble and expense, have agreeable variety introduced into their bill
of fare.

In England and America there is great prejudice against warmed-over
food, but on the continent one eats it half the time in some of the most
delicious-made dishes without suspecting it. Herein lies the secret.
With us and our transatlantic cousins the warming over is so artlessly
done, that the _hard_ fact too often stares at us from out the watery
expanse in which it reposes.

One great reason of the failure to make warmed-over meat satisfactory is
the lack of gravy. On the goodness of this (as well as its presence)
depends the success of your _réchauffé_.

The glaze, for which I have given the recipe, renders you at all times
independent in this respect, but at the same time it should not alone be
depended on. Every drop of what remains in the dish from the roast
should be saved, and great care be taken of all scraps, bones, and
gristle, which should be carefully boiled down to save the necessity of
flying to the glaze for every purpose. I will here give several recipes,
which I think may be new to many readers.

SALMI OF COLD MEAT is exceedingly good. Melt butter in a saucepan, if
for quite a small dish two ounces will be sufficient; when melted, stir
in a little flour to thicken; let it brown, but not burn, or, if you are
preparing the dish in haste, put in some brown flour; then add a glass
of white or red wine and a cup of broth, or a cup of water and a slice
of glaze, a sprig or two of thyme, parsley, a small onion, chopped, and
one bay leaf, pepper, and salt. Simmer all thoroughly (all savory dishes
to which wine is added should simmer long enough for the distinct
"winey" flavor to disappear, only the strength and richness remaining).
Strain this when simmered half an hour and lay in the cold meat. Squeeze
in a little lemon juice and draw the stew-pan to the back of the stove,
but where it will cook no longer, or the meat will harden. Serve on
toast, and pour the sauce over. A glass of brandy added to this dish
when the meat goes in is a great addition, if an extra fine salmi is
desired. By not allowing the flour and butter to brown and using white
wine, this is a very fine sauce in which to warm cold chicken, veal, or
any _white_ meat.

B[OE]UF À LA JARDINIÈRE.--Put in a fireproof dish if you have it, or a
thick saucepan, a pint of beef broth, a small bunch each of parsley,
chervil, tarragon--very little of this--shallot or onion, capers,
pickled gherkins, of each or any a teaspoonful chopped fine; roll a
large tablespoonful of butter with a dessert-spoonful of brown flour,
stir it in; then take slices of underdone beef, with a blunt knife hack
each slice all over in fine dice, but not to separate or cut up the
slices; then pepper and salt each one and lay it in with the herbs,
sprinkle a layer of herbs over the beef and cover closely; then stand
the dish in the oven to slowly cook for an hour, or, if you use a
stew-pan, set in a pan of boiling water on the stove for an hour where
the water will just boil. Serve on a dish surrounded with young carrots
and turnips if in season, or old ones cut.

BEEF AU GRATIN.--Cut a little fat bacon or pork very thin, sprinkle on
it chopped parsley, onion, and mushrooms (mushroom powder will do) and
bread-crumbs; then put in layers of beef, cut thick, and well and
closely hacked, then another layer of bacon or pork cut thin as a wafer,
and of seasoning, crumbs last; pour over enough broth or gravy to
moisten well, in which a little brandy or wine may be added if an
especially good dish is desired; bake slowly an hour.

PSEUDO BEEFSTEAK.--Cut cold boiled or roast beef in thick slices, broil
slowly, lay in a _hot_ dish in which you have a large spoonful of
Montpellier butter melted, sprinkle a little mushroom powder if you
desire, and garnish with fried potato.

CUTLETS À LA JARDINIÈRE.--Trim some thick cutlets from a cold leg of
mutton, or chops from the loin, dip them in frying batter, _à la
Carême_, fry crisp and quickly, and serve wreathed round green peas, or
a ragout made as follows: Take young carrots, turnips, green peas, white
beans; stew gently in a little water to which the bones of the meat and
trimmings have been added (and which must be carefully removed not to
disfigure the vegetables). Encircle this ragout with the fried cutlets,
and crown with a cauliflower.

CROMESQUIS OF LAMB is a Polish recipe. Cut some underdone lamb--mutton
will of course do--quite small; also some mushrooms, cut small, or the
powder. Put in a saucepan a piece of glaze the size of a pigeon's egg,
with a _little_ water or broth, warm it and thicken with yolks of two
eggs, just as you would make boiled custard, that is, without letting
it come to the boil, or it will curdle; then add the mushrooms and meat,
let all get cold, and divide it into small pieces, roll in bread-crumbs
sifted, then in egg, then in crumbs again, and fry in very hot fat; or
you may, _after_ rolling in bread-crumbs, lay each piece in a spoon and
dip it into frying batter; let the extra batter run off, and drop the
cromesquis into the hot fat. These will be good made of beef and rolled
up in a bard of fat pork cut thin, and fried; serve with sauce piquant
made thus: Take some chopped parsley, onion, and pickled cucumbers,
simmer till tender, and thicken with an equal quantity of butter and
flour. Of course your own brightness will tell you that, if you are in
haste, a spoonful of Montpellier butter, the same of flour, melted in a
little water, to which you add a teaspoonful of vinegar, will make an
excellent sauce piquant, and this same is excellent for anything fried,
as breaded chops, croquettes, etc. I may here say, that where two or
three herbs are mentioned as necessary, for instance, parsley, tarragon,
and chervil, if you have no tarragon you must leave it out, or chervil
the same. It is only a matter of flavoring, at the same time _flavor_ is
a great deal, and these French herbs give that indescribable _cachet_ to
a dish which is one of the secrets of French cooking. Therefore if you
are a wise matron you will have a supply on hand, even if only bought
dry from the druggist.

MIROTON OF BEEF.--Peel and cut into thin slices two large onions, put
them in a stew-pan with two ounces of butter, place it over a slow fire;
stir the onions round till they are rather brown, but not in the least
burnt; add a teaspoonful of brown flour, mix smoothly, then moisten with
half a pint of broth, or water with a little piece of glaze, three
salt-spoonfuls of salt unless your broth was salted, then half the
quantity or less, two of sugar, and one of pepper. Put in the cold beef,
cut in thin slices as lean as possible, let it remain five minutes at
the back of the stove; then serve on a very hot dish garnished with
fried potatoes, or sippets of toast. To vary the flavor, sometimes put a
spoonful of tarragon or plain vinegar, or a teaspoonful of mushroom
powder, or a pinch of curry, unless objected to, or a few sweet herbs.
In fact, as you may see, variety is as easy to produce as it is rare to
meet with in average cooking, and depends more on intelligence and
thoughtfulness than on anything else.

The simplest of all ways of warming a joint that is not far cut, is to
wrap it in thickly buttered paper, and put it in the oven again,
contriving, if possible, to cover it closely, let it remain long enough
to get _hot_ through, not to cook. By keeping it closely covered it will
get hot through in less time, and the steam will prevent it getting hard
and dry; make some gravy hot and serve with the meat. If your gravy is
good and plentiful, your meat will be as nice as the first day; without
gravy it would be an unsatisfactory dish. If you cannot manage to cover
the joint in the oven, you may put it in a pot over the fire _without_
water, but with a dessert spoonful of vinegar to create steam; let it
get hot through, and serve as before.

For the third day the meat may be warmed up in any of the ways I am
going to mention, repeating once more, that you must have gravy of some
kind, or else carefully make some, with cracked bones, gristle, etc.,
stewed _long_, and nicely flavored with any kind of sauce.

RAGOUT.--A very nice ragout may be made from cold meat thus: Slice the
meat, put it in a stew-pan in which an onion, or several if you like
them, has been sliced; squeeze half a lemon into it, or a
dessert-spoonful of vinegar, cover closely without water, and when it
begins to cook, set the stew-pan at the back of the stove for three
quarters of an hour, shaking it occasionally. The onions should now be
brown; take out the meat, dredge in a little flour, stir it round, and
add a cup of gravy, pepper, salt, and a small quantity of any sauce or
flavoring you prefer; stew gently a minute or two, then put the meat
back to get hot, and serve; garnish with sippets of toast, or pickles.

A NICE LITTLE BREAKFAST DISH IS made thus: Cut two long slices of cold
meat and three of bread, buttered thickly, about the same shape and
size; season the meat with pepper, salt, and a little finely chopped
parsley; or, if it is veal, a little chopped ham; then lay one slice of
bread between two of meat, and have the other two slices outside; fasten
together with short wooden skewers. If you have a quick oven, put it in;
and take care to baste with butter thoroughly, that the bread may be all
over crisp and brown. If you can't depend on your oven, fry it in very
hot fat as you would crullers; garnish with sprigs of parsley, and serve
very hot.

TO WARM A GOOD-SIZED PIECE OF BEEF.--Trim it as much like a thick fillet
as you can; cut it horizontally half way through, then scoop out as much
as you can of the meat from the inside of each piece. Chop the meat fine
that you have thus scooped out, season with a little finely chopped
parsley and thyme, a shred of onion, if you like it; or if you have
celery boil a little of the coarser part till tender, chop it and add
as much bread finely crumbled as you have meat, and a good piece of
butter; add pepper and salt, and make all into a paste with an egg,
mixed with an equal quantity of gravy or milk; fill up the hollow in the
meat and tie, or still better, sew it together. You may either put this
in a pot with a slice of pork or bacon, and a cup of gravy; or you may
brush it over with beaten egg, cover it with crumbs, and pour over these
a cup of butter, melted, so that it moistens every part; and bake it,
taking care to baste well while baking; serve with nice gravy.

BEEF OLIVES are no novelty to the ear, but it is a novel thing to find
them satisfactory to the palate.

Take some stale bread-crumbs, an equal quantity of beef finely chopped,
some parsley, and thyme; a little scraped ham if you have it, a few
chives, or a slice of onion, all chopped small as possible; put some
butter in a pan, and let this force-meat just simmer, _not fry_, in it
for ten minutes. While this is cooking, cut some underdone oblong slices
of beef about half an inch thick, hack it with a sharp knife on _both
sides_; then mix the cooked force-meat with the yolk of an egg and a
tablespoonful of gravy; put a spoonful of this paste in the center of
each slice of meat and tie it up carefully in the shape of an egg. Then
if you have some nice gravy, thicken it with a piece of butter rolled in
flour, roll each olive slightly in flour and lay it in the gravy and let
it very gently _simmer_ for half an hour. A few chopped oysters added to
the gravy will be a great addition. Or you may lay each olive on a thin
slice of fat pork, roll it up, tie it, dip it in flour, and bake in a
quick oven until beautifully brown.

TO WARM OVER COLD MUTTON.--An excellent and simple way is to cut it, if
loin, into chops, or leg, into thick collops, and dip each into egg
well beaten with a tablespoonful of milk, then in _fine_ bread-crumbs
and fry in plenty of _very hot_ fat.

If your crumbs are not very fine and even, the larger crumbs will fall
off, and the appearance be spoilt. These chops will be almost as nice,
if quickly fried, as fresh cooked ones. They will also be excellent if,
instead of being breaded, they are dipped into thick batter (see recipe)
and fried brown in the same way. This method answers for any kind of
meat, chicken thus warmed over being especially good. The batter, or egg
and bread-crumbs form a sort of crust which keeps it tender and juicy.
Any attempt to fry cold meat without either results in a hard, stringy,
uneatable dish.

WHITE MEAT OF ANY KIND is excellent warmed over in a little milk, in
which you have cut a large onion, and, if you like it, a slice of salt
pork or ham, and a little sliced cucumber, if it is summer; thicken with
the yolks of one or two eggs, added after the whole has simmered twenty
minutes; take care the egg thickens in the gravy, but does not _boil_,
or it will curdle. If it is in winter, chop a teaspoonful of pickled
cucumber or capers and add just on going to table. In summer when you
have the sliced cucumber, squeeze half a lemon into the gravy, the last
thing, to give the requisite dash of acid. You may vary the above by
adding sometimes a few chopped oysters; at others, mushrooms, or celery.
The last must be put in with the onion and before the meat.

DEVILED MEAT.--Our better halves are usually fond of this, especially
for breakfast or lunch.

For this dish take a pair of turkey or chicken drumsticks or some nice
thick wedges of underdone beef or mutton, score them deeply with a
knife and rub them over with a sauce made thus: A teaspoonful of
vinegar, the same of Harvey or Worcestershire sauce, the same of
mustard, a _little_ cayenne, and a tablespoonful of salad oil, or butter
melted; mix all till like cream, and take care your meat is thoroughly
moistened all over with the mixture, then rub your gridiron with butter.
See that the fire is clear, and while the gridiron is getting hot, chop
a teaspoonful of parsley very fine, mix it up with a piece of butter the
size of a walnut, and lay this in a dish which you will put to get hot.
Then put the meat to be grilled on the fire and turn often, so that it
will not burn; when hot through and brown, lay it in the hot dish, lay
another hot dish over it, and serve as quickly as possible with hot

Or the grill may be served with what Soyer calls his _Mephistophelian
sauce_, which he especially designed for serving with deviled meats.
Chop six shallots or small onions, wash and press them in the corner of
a clean cloth, put them in a stew-pan with half a wineglass of chili
vinegar (pepper sauce), a chopped clove, a tiny bit of garlic, two bay
leaves, an ounce of glaze; boil all together ten minutes; then add four
tablespoonfuls of tomato sauce, a _little_ sugar, and ten of broth
thickened with roux (or water will do if you have no broth).

It will be remarked that in many French recipes a _little_ sugar is
ordered. This is not meant to sweeten, or even be perceptible; but it
enriches, softens, tones, as it were, the other ingredients as salt

SOYER'S FRITADELLA (twenty recipes in one).--Put half a pound of
bread-crumb to soak in a pint of cold water; take the same quantity of
any kind of roast, or boiled meat, with a little fat, chop it fine,
press the bread in a clean cloth to extract the water; put in a
stew-pan two ounces of butter, a tablespoonful of chopped onions; fry
two minutes and stir, then add the bread, stir and fry till rather dry,
then the meat; season with a teaspoonful of salt, half of pepper, and a
little grated nutmeg, and lemon peel; stir continually till very hot,
then add two eggs, one at a time; mix well and pour on a dish to get
cold. Then take a piece, shape it like a small egg, flatten it a little,
egg and bread-crumb it all over, taking care to keep in good shape. Do
all the same way, then put into a frying-pan a quarter of a pound of
lard or dripping, let it get hot, and put in the pieces, and sauté (or
as we call it "_fry_") them a fine yellow brown. Serve very hot with a
border of mashed potatoes, or any garniture you fancy. Sauce piquant, or
not, as you please.

The above can be made with any kind of meat, poultry, game, fish, or
even vegetables; hard eggs, or potatoes, may be introduced in small
quantities, and they may be fried instead of sautéed (frying in the
French and strict sense, meaning as I need hardly say, entire immersion
in very hot fat). To _fry_ them you require at least two pounds of fat
in your pan.

Oysters or lobsters prepared as above are excellent.

Boileau says, "_Un diner réchauffé ne valut jamais rien_." But I think a
good French cook of the present day would make him alter his opinion.

Indeed Savarin quotes a friend of his own, a notable gourmand, who
considered spinach cooked on Monday only reached perfection the
following Saturday, having each day of the week been warmed up with
butter, and each day gaining succulence and a more marrowy consistency.

The only trouble I find in relation to this part of my present task is
the difficulty of knowing when to leave off. There are so many ways of
warming meats to advantage--and in every one way there is the suggestion
for another--that I suffer from an _embarras de richesse_, and have had
difficulty in selecting. Dozens come to my mind, blanquettes, patties,
curries, as I write; but as this is not, I have said, to be a recipe
book, I forbear. Of one thing I am quite sure: when women once know how
to make nice dishes of cold meat they will live well where they now live
badly, and for less money; and "hash" will be relegated to its proper
place as an occasional and acceptable dish.



  "Le rôle du gourmand finit avec l'entremets, et celui du friand
   commence au dessert."--_Grimod de la Reynière._

AMERICAN ladies, as a rule, excel in cake making and preserving, and I
feel that on that head I have very little to teach; indeed, were they as
accomplished in all branches of cooking as in making dainty sweet dishes
this book would be uncalled for.

Yet, notwithstanding their undoubted taste and ability in making
"_friandises_," it seems to me a few recipes borrowed from what the
French call _la grande cuisine_, and possible of execution at home, will
be welcome to those who wish to vary the eternal ice cream and charlotte
russe, with other sweets more elegant and likely to be equally popular.

ICED SOUFFLÉ À LA BYRON.--One pint of sugar syrup of 32 degrees (get
this at a druggist's if you do not understand sugar boiling), three
gills of strained raspberry juice, one lemon, one gill of maraschino,
fifteen yolks of eggs, two ounces of chocolate drops, half a pint of
very thick cream whipped.

Method of making this and the next recipe is as follows: Mix the syrup
and yolks of eggs, strain into a warm bowl, add the raspberry and lemon
juice and maraschino, whisk till it creams well, then take the bowl out
of the hot water and whisk ten minutes longer; add the chocolate drops
and whipped cream; lightly fill a case or mold, and set in a freezer for
two hours, then cover the surface with lady-fingers (or sponge cake)
dried in the oven a pale brown, and rolled. Serve at once.

Another frozen _soufflé_ is as follows:

One pint of syrup, 32 degrees, half a pint of noyeau, half a pint of
cherry juice, two ounces of bruised macaroons, half a pint of thick
cream whipped, made in the same way as the last. I may here say that the
fruit juices can be procured now at all good druggists, so that these
_soufflés_ are very attainable in winter, and as noyeau and maraschino
do not form part of the stores in a family of small means, I will give
in this chapter recipes for the making of very fair imitations of the
genuine _liqueurs_.

BISCUIT GLACÉ À LA CHARLES DICKENS.--One pint of syrup (32°), fifteen
yolks of eggs, three gills of peach pulp, colored pink with cochineal,
one gill of noyeau, half a pint of thick cream, and a little chocolate
water-ice, made with half a pint of syrup and four ounces of the best
chocolate smoothly mixed and frozen ready.

Mix syrup, yolks, peach pulps, noyeau, and a few drops of vanilla, whip
high; mix with the whipped cream, and set in ice for one hour and a half
in brick-shaped molds, then turn out (if very firm), and cut in slices
an inch thick, and coat them all over, or on top and sides, with the
chocolate ice, smoothing with a knife dipped in cold water; serve in
paper cases.

BISCUIT GLACÉ À LA THACKERAY.--One pint of syrup (32°), one pint of
strawberry pulp, fifteen yolks of eggs, one ounce of vanilla sugar
(flavor a little sugar with vanilla), half a pint of thick cream.

Mix syrup, yolks, strawberry, and vanilla sugar, whipping as before,
then add the whipped cream lightly; fill paper cases, either round or
square; surround each with a band of stiff paper, to reach half an inch
above the edge of the case, the bands to be pinned together to secure
them; place them in a freezer. When about to send to table, remove the
bands of paper, and cover with macaroons bruised fine and browned in the
oven. The bands of paper are meant to give the biscuit the appearance of
having risen while supposed to bake.

These delicious ices were invented by Francatelli, the Queen of
England's chief cook, to do homage to the different great men whose
names they bear, on the occasion of preparing dinners given in their
honor. They read as if somewhat intricate, but any lady who has ever had
ice cream made at home, and had the patience to make charlotte russe,
need not shrink appalled before these novelties, or fear for a
successful result.

Baba is a cake many call for at a confectioner's, yet few, if any one,
attempts to make it at home. That the recipes generally offered do not
lead to success may be one reason, and I offer the following, quite
sure, if accurately followed, such a baba will result as never was eaten
outside of Paris.

BABA.--One pound of flour; take one quarter of it, and make a sponge
with half an ounce of compressed yeast and a little warm water, set it
to rise, make a hole in the rest of the flour, add to it ten ounces of
butter, three eggs, and a dessert-spoonful of sugar, a little salt,
unless your butter salts it enough, which is generally the case. Beat
all together well, then add five more eggs, one at a time, that is to
say, add one egg and beat well, then another and beat again, and so on
until the five are used. When the paste leaves the bowl it is beaten
enough, but not before; then add the sponge to it, and a large half
ounce of citron chopped, the same of currants, and an ounce and a half
of sultana raisins, seedless. Let it rise to twice its size, then bake
it in an oven of dark yellow paper heat; the small round babas are an
innovation of the pastry-cook to enable him to sell them uncut. But the
baba proper should be baked in a large, deep, upright tin, such as a
large charlotte russe mold, when they keep for several days fresh, and
if they get stale, make delicious fritters, soaked in sherry and dipped
in frying batter.

In some cases, however, it may be preferred to make them as usually seen
at French pastry cooks; for this purpose you require a dozen small-sized
_round_ charlotte russe molds, which fill half full only, as they rise
very much; bake these in a hotter oven, light brown paper heat; try with
a twig as you would any other cake, if it comes out dry it is done; then
prepare a syrup as follows: Boil half pound of sugar in a pint of water,
add to this the third of a pint of rum, and some apricot pulp--peach
will of course do--and boil all together a few minutes; pour this half
an inch deep in a dish, and stand the cake or cakes in it; it should
drink up all the syrup, you may also sprinkle some over it. If any syrup
remains, use it to warm over your cake when stale, instead of the

Baba was introduced into France by Stanislas Leczinski, king of Poland,
and the father-in-law of Louis XIV.; and his Polish royal descendants
still use with it, says Carême, a syrup made of Malaga wine and one
sixth part of _eau de tanaisie_.

But, although our forefathers seemed to have relished tansy very much,
to judge from old recipe books, I doubt if such flavoring would be
appreciated in our time.

SAVARINS--commonly called wine cake by New York pastry cooks--are made
as follows:

One pound of flour, of which take one quarter to make a sponge, using
half an ounce of German compressed yeast, and a little warm milk; when
it has risen to twice its bulk, add one gill of hot milk, two eggs, and
the rest of the flour; mix well; then add one more egg and beat,
another, still beating; then add three quarters of a pound of fresh
butter, a quarter of an ounce of salt, half an ounce of sugar, and half
a gill of hot milk, beat well; then add eggs, one at a time, beating
continually, until you have used five more. Cut in small dice three
ounces of candied orange peel; butter a tin, which should be deep and
straight-sided--a tin pudding boiler is not a bad thing--and sprinkle
with chopped almonds. Fill the mold half full, and when risen to twice
its bulk, bake in a moderate oven, dark yellow paper heat. When served,
this cake should stand in a dish of syrup, flavored with rum, as for
baba, or with sherry wine.

BOUCHÉES DES DAMES, a very ornamental and delicious little French cake,
is sufficiently novel to deserve a place here, I think. Make any nice
drop cake batter (either sponge, or sponge with a little butter in it I
prefer); drop one on buttered paper and bake; if it runs, beat in a
_little_ more flour and sugar, but not much, or your cakes will be
brittle; they should be the size, when done, of a fifty-cent piece, and
I find half a teaspoonful of batter dropped generally makes them about
right. Have a tin cutter or tin box lid, if you have no cutter so small,
about the size, and with it trim each cake when baked; then take half
the number and spread some with a very thin layer of red currant jelly,
others with peach or raspberry; then on each so spread put a cake that
is unspread, thus making a tiny sandwich or jelly cake. If you have
different sorts of jelly, put each separate, as you must adapt the
flavor of your icing to the jelly. For red currant, ice with chocolate
icing. Recipes for icing are so general that I refer you to your cookery
book. Those with peach may have white icing, flavored with almond, or
with rum, beating in a little more sugar if the flavoring dilutes your
icing too much. Almond flavoring goes well with raspberry. Cakes with
raspberry jelly or jam should be iced pink, coloring the icing with
prepared cochineal or cranberry juice. Thus you have your cakes brown,
pink, and white, which look very pretty mixed.

The process of icing is difficult to do after they are put together, but
they are much handsomer this way, and keep longer. You require, to
accomplish it, a good quantity of each kind of icing, and a number of
little wooden skewers; stick one into each cake and dip it in the icing,
let it run off, then stand the other end of the skewer in a box of sand
or granulated sugar. The easiest way is to ice each half cake before
putting in the jelly; when the icing is hard spread with jelly, and put

CURAÇOA may be successfully imitated by pouring over eight ounces of the
_thinly_ pared rind of very ripe oranges a pint of boiling water, cover,
and let it cool; then add two quarts of brandy, or strong French spirit,
cover closely, and let it stand fourteen days, shaking it every day.
Make a clarified syrup of two pounds of sugar into one pint of water,
well boiled; strain the brandy into it, leaving it covered close
another day. Rub up in a mortar one drachm of potash, with a teaspoonful
of the liqueurs; when well blended, put this into the liqueur, and in
the same way pound and add a drachm of alum, shake well, and in an hour
or two filter through thin muslin. Ready for use in a week or two.

MARASCHINO.--Bruise slightly a dozen cherry kernels, put them in a deep
jar with the outer rind of three oranges and two lemons, cover with two
quarts of gin, then add syrup and leave it a fortnight, as for curaçoa.
Stir syrup and spirit together, leave it another day, run it through a
jelly bag, and bottle. Ready to use in ten days.

NOYEAU.--Blanch and pound two pounds of bitter almonds, or four of peach
kernels; put to them a gallon of spirit or brandy, two pounds of white
sugar candy--or sugar will do--a grated nutmeg, and a pod of vanilla;
leave it three weeks covered close, then filter and bottle; but do not
use it for three months. To be used with caution.



THIS chapter I shall have to make one of recipes chiefly, for it treats
of a branch of cooking not usually found in cookery books, or at least
there is seldom anything on the art of confectionery beyond molasses or
cream taffy and nougat. These, therefore, I shall not touch upon, but
rather show you how to make the expensive French candies.

The great art of making these exquisite candies is in boiling the sugar,
and it is an art easily acquired with patience.

Put into a marbleized saucepan (by long experience in sugar-boiling I
find them less likely to burn even than brass, and I keep one for the
purpose) one pound of sugar and half a pint of water; when it has boiled
ten minutes begin to try it; have a bowl of water with a piece of ice
near you, and drop it from the end of a spoon. When it falls to the
bottom, and you can take it up and make it into a softish ball (not at
all sticky) between your thumb and finger, it is at the right point;
remove it from the fire to a cold place; when cool, if perfectly right,
a thin jelly-like film will be over the surface, _not a sugary one_; if
it is sugary, and you want your candy very creamy, you must add a few
spoonfuls of water, return to the fire and boil again, going through
the same process of trying it. You must be careful that there is not the
least inclination to be brittle in the ball of candy you take from the
water; if so, it is boiled a degree too high; put a little water to
bring it back again, and try once more. A speck of cream of tartar is
useful in checking a tendency in the syrup to go to sugar. When you have
your sugar boiled just right set it to cool, and when you can bear your
finger in it, begin to beat it with a spoon; in ten minutes it will be a
white paste resembling lard, which you will find you can work like bread
dough. This, then, is your foundation, called by French confectioners
_fondant_; with your _fondant_ you can work marvels. But to begin with
the simplest French candies.

Take a piece of _fondant_, flavor part of it with vanilla, part of it
with lemon, color yellow (see coloring candies), and another part with
raspberry, color pink; make these into balls, grooved cones, or anything
that strikes your fancy, let them stand till they harden, they are then
ready for use.

Take another part of your _fondant_, have some English walnuts chopped,
flavor with vanilla and color pink; work the walnuts into the paste as
you would fruit into a loaf cake; when mixed, make a paper case an inch
wide and deep, and three or four inches long; oil it; press the paste
into it, and when firm turn it out and cut into cubes. Or, instead of
walnuts, use chopped almonds, flavor with vanilla, and leave the
_fondant_ white. This makes VANILLA ALMOND CREAM.

TUTTI FRUTTI CANDY.--Chop some almonds, citron, a _few_ currants, and
seedless raisins; work into some _fondant_, flavor with rum and lemon,
thus making Roman punch, or with vanilla or raspberry; press into the
paper forms as you did the walnut cream. You see how you can ring the
changes on these bars, varying the flavoring, inventing new
combinations, etc.

FONDANT PANACHÉ.--Take your _fondant_, divide it in three equal parts,
color one pink and flavor as you choose, leave the other white and
flavor also as you please; but it must agree with the pink, and both
must agree with the next, which is chocolate. Melt a little unsweetened
chocolate by setting it in a saucer over the boiling kettle, then take
enough of it to make your third piece of _fondant_ a fine brown; now
divide the white into two parts; make each an inch and a half wide, and
as long as it will; do the same with the chocolate _fondant_; then take
the pink, make it the same width and length, but of course, not being
divided, it will be twice as thick; now butter slightly the back of a
plate, or, better still, get a few sheets of waxed paper from the
confectioner's; lay one strip of the chocolate on it, then a strip of
white on that, then the pink, the other white, and lastly the chocolate
again; then lightly press them to make them adhere, but not to squeeze
them out of shape. You have now an oblong brick of parti-colored candy;
leave it for a few hours to harden, then trim it neatly with a knife and
cut it crosswise into slices half an inch think, lay on waxed paper to
dry, turning once in a while, and pack away in boxes.

If your _fondant_ gets very hard while you work, stand it over hot water
a few minutes.

Creamed candies are very fashionable just now, and, your _fondant_ once
ready, are very easy to make.

CREAM WALNUTS.--Make ready some almonds, some walnuts in halves, some
hazelnuts, or anything of the sort you fancy; let them be very dry. Take
_fondant_ made from a pound of sugar, set it in a bowl in a saucepan of
boiling water, stirring it till it is like cream. Then having flavored
it with vanilla or lemon, drop in your nuts one by one, taking them out
with the other hand on the end of a fork, resting it on the edge of your
bowl to drain for a second, then drop the nut on to a waxed or buttered
paper neatly. If the nut shows through the cream it is too hot; take it
out of the boiling water and beat till it is just thick enough to mask
the nut entirely, then return it to the boiling water, as it cools very
rapidly and becomes unmanageable, when it has to be warmed over again.

VERY FINE CHOCOLATE CREAMS are made as follows: Boil half a pound of
sugar with three tablespoonfuls of thick cream till it makes a _soft_
ball in water, then let it cool. When cool beat it till it is very
white, flavor with a few drops of vanilla and make it into balls the
size of a large pea; then take some unsweetened chocolate warmed, mix it
with a piece of _fondant_ melted--there should be more chocolate than
sugar--and when quite smooth and thick enough to mask the cream, drop
them in from the end of a fork, take them out, and drop on to wax paper.

Another very fine candy to be made without heat, and therefore
convenient for hot weather, is made as follows:

PUNCH DROPS.--Sift some powdered sugar. Have ready some fine white
gum-arabic, put a tablespoonful with the sugar (say half a pound of
sugar), and make it into a firm paste; if too wet, add more sugar,
flavor with lemon and a tiny speck of tartaric acid or a very little
lemon juice. Make the paste into small balls, then take more sugar and
make it into icing with a spoonful of Santa Cruz rum and half the white
of an egg. Try if it hardens, if not, beat in more sugar and color it a
bright pink, then dip each ball in the pink icing and harden on wax
paper. These are very novel, beautiful to look at, and the flavors may
vary to taste.

powdered cochineal, one ounce of cream of tartar, two drachms of alum,
half a pint of water; boil the cochineal, water, and cream of tartar
till reduced to one half, then add the alum, and put up in small bottles
for use. Yellow is obtained by the infusion of Spanish saffron in a
little water, or a still better one from the grated rind of a ripe
orange put into muslin, and a little of the juice squeezed through it.

Be careful in boiling the sugar for _fondant_, not to stir it after it
is dissolved; stirring causes it to become rough instead of creamy.



I AM sorry to say in these days this chapter may appeal to many, who are
yet not to be called "poor people," who may have been well-to-do and
only suffering from the pressure of the times, and for whose cultivated
appetites the coarse, substantial food of the laboring man (even if they
could buy it) would not be eatable, who must have what they do have
good, or starve. But, as some of the things for which I give recipes
will seem over-economical for people who can afford to buy meat at least
once a day, I advise those who have even fifty dollars a month income to
skip it; reminding them, if they do not, "that necessity knows no law."

A bone of soup meat can be got at a good butcher's for ten or fifteen
cents, and is about the best investment, for that sum I know of, as two
nourishing and savory meals, at least, for four or five persons can be
got from it.

Carefully make a nice soup, with plenty of vegetables, rice, or any
other thickening you like. Your bone will weigh from four to six pounds,
perhaps; put it on with water according to size, and let it boil down
slowly until nice and strong. If you have had any scraps of meat or
bones, put them also to your soup.

When you serve it, keep back a cup of soup and a few of the vegetables,
and save the meat, from which you can make a very appetizing hash in the
following way: Take the meat from the bone, chop it with some cold
potatoes and the vegetables you saved from the soup. Cold stewed onions,
boiled carrots or turnips, all help to make the dish savory. Chop an
onion very fine, unless you have cold ones, a little parsley and thyme,
if liked, and sometimes, for variety's sake, if you have it, a pinch of
curry powder, not enough to make it hot or yellow, yet to impart
piquancy. If you have a tiny bit of fried bacon or cold ham or cold
pork, chop it with the other ingredients, mix all well, moisten with the
cold soup, and, when nicely seasoned, put the hash into an iron
frying-pan, in which you have a little fat made hot; pack it smoothly
in, cover it with a pot-lid, and either set it in a hot oven, or leave
it to brown on the stove. If there was more soup than enough to moisten
the hash, put it on in a tiny saucepan, with a little brown flour made
into a paste with butter, add a drop of tomato catsup, or a little
stewed tomato, or anything you have for flavoring, and stir till it
boils. Then turn the hash out whole on a dish, it should be brown and
crisp, pour the gravy you have made round it, and serve. For a change
make a pie of the hash, pouring the gravy in through a hole in the top
when done.

It is not generally known that a very nice plain paste can be made with
a piece of bread dough, to which you have added an egg, and some lard,
dripping, or butter. The dripping is particularly nice for the hash pie,
and, as you need only a piece of dough as large as an orange, you will
probably have enough from the soup, if you skimmed off all the fat
before putting the vegetables in (see _pot-au-feu_); work your dripping
into the dough, and let it rise well, then roll as ordinary pie-crust.
Potato crust is also very good for plain pies of any sort, but as there
are plenty of recipes for it, I will not give one here.

One of the very best hashes I ever ate was prepared by a lady who, in
better times, kept a very fine table. And she told me there were a good
many cold beans in it, well mashed; and often since, when taking
"travelers' hash" in an hotel, I have thought of that savory dish with

Instead of making your chopped meat into hash, vary it, by rolling the
same mixture into egg-shaped pieces, or flat cakes, flouring them, and
frying them nicely in very hot fat; pieces of pork or bacon fried and
laid round will help out the dish, and be an improvement to what is
already very good.

To return once more to the soup bone. If any one of your family is fond
of marrow, seal up each end of the bone with a paste made of flour and
water. When done, take off the paste, and remove the marrow. Made very
hot, and spread on toast, with pepper and salt, it will be a relish for
some one's tea or breakfast.

In this country there is a prejudice against sheep's liver; while in
England, where beef liver is looked upon as too coarse to eat (and falls
to the lot of the "cats-meat man," or cat butcher), sheep's is esteemed
next to calf's, and it is, in fact, more delicate than beef liver. The
nicest way to cook it is in very _thin_ slices (not the inch-thick
pieces one often sees), each slice dipped in flour and fried in pork or
bacon fat, and pork or bacon served with it. But the more economical way
is to put it in a pan, dredge it with flour, pin some fat pork over it,
and set it in a hot oven; when very brown take it out; make nice brown
gravy by pouring water in the pan and letting it boil on the stove,
stirring it well to dissolve the glaze; pour into the dish, and serve.
The heart should be stuffed with bread-crumbs, parsley, thyme, and a
_little_ onion, and baked separately. Or, for a change, you may chop the
liver up with a few sweet herbs and a little pork (onion, or not, as you
like), and some bread-crumbs. Put all together in a crock, dredge with
flour, cover, and set in a slow oven for an hour and a half; then serve,
with toasted bread around the dish.

It is very poor economy to buy inferior meat. One pound of fine beef has
more nourishment than two of poor quality. But there is a great
difference in prices of different parts of meat, and it is better
management to choose the cheap part of fine beef than to buy the sirloin
of a poor ox even at the same price; and, by good cooking many parts not
usually chosen, and therefore sold cheaply, can be made very good. Yet
you must remember, that a piece of meat at seven cents a pound, in which
there is at least half fat and bone, such as brisket, etc., is less
economical than solid meat at ten or twelve.

Pot roasts are very good for parts of meat not tender enough for
roasting, the "cross-rib," as some butchers term it, being very good for
this purpose; it is all solid meat, and being very lean, requires a
little fat pork, which may be laid at the bottom of the pot; or better
still, holes made in the meat and pieces of the fat drawn through,
larding in a rough way, so that they cut together. A pot roast is best
put on in an iron pot, without water, allowed to get finely brown on one
side, then turned, and when thoroughly brown on the other a little water
may be added for gravy; chop parsley or any seasoning that is
preferred. Give your roast at least three hours to cook. Ox cheek, as
the head is called, is very good, and should be very cheap; prepare it

Clean the cheek, soak it in water six hours, and cut the meat from the
bones, which break up for soup; then take the meat, cut into neat
pieces, put it in an earthen crock, a layer of beef, some thin pieces of
pork or bacon, some onions, carrots, and turnips, cut _thin_, or chopped
fine, and sprinkled over the meat; also, some chopped parsley, a little
thyme, and bay leaf, pepper and salt, and a clove to each layer; then
more beef and a little pork, vegetables, and seasoning, as before. When
all your meat is in pour over it, if you have it, a tumbler of hard
cider and one of water, or else two of water, in which put a half gill
of vinegar. If you have no tight-fitting cover to your crock, put a
paste of flour and water over it to keep the steam in. Place the crock
in a slow oven five or six hours, and when it is taken out remove the
crust and skim. Any piece of beef cooked in this way is excellent.

Ox heart is one of the cheapest of dishes, and really remarkably nice,
and it is much used by economical people abroad.

The heart should be soaked in vinegar and water three or four hours,
then cut off the lobes and gristle, and stuff it with fat pork chopped,
bread-crumbs, parsley, thyme, pepper, and salt; then tie it in a cloth
and very slowly simmer it (large end up) for two hours; take it up,
remove the cloth, and flour it, and roast it a nice brown. Lay in the
pan in which it is to be roasted some fat pork to baste it. Any of this
left over is excellent hashed, or, warmed in slices with a rich brown
gravy, cannot be told from game. Another way is to stuff it with sage
and onions. It must always be served _very hot_ with hot plates and on a
very hot dish.

Fore quarter of mutton is another very economical part of meat, if you
get your butcher to cut it so that it may not only be economical, but
really afford a choice joint. Do not then let him hack the shoulder
across, but, before he does a thing to it, get him to take the shoulder
out in a round plate-shaped joint, with knuckle attached; if he does
this well, that is, cuts it close to the bone of the ribs, you will have
a nice joint; then do not have it chopped at all; this should be roasted
in the oven very nicely, and served with onion sauce or stewed onions.
If onions are not liked, mashed turnips are the appropriate vegetable.
This joint, to be enjoyed, must be properly carved, and that is, across
the middle from the edge to the bone, the same as a leg of mutton; and
like the leg, you must learn, as I cannot describe it in words, where
the bone lies, then have that side nearest you and cut from the opposite

You have, besides this joint, another roast from the ribs, or else cut
it up into chops till you come to the part under the shoulder; from this
the breast should be separated and both either made into a good Irish
stew, or the breast prepared alone in a way I shall describe, the neck
and thin ribs being stewed or boiled.

The neck of mutton is very tender boiled and served with parsley or
caper sauce; the liquor it is boiled in served as broth, with vegetables
and rice, or prepared as directed in a former chapter for the broth from
leg of mutton.

The mode I am about to give of preparing breast of mutton was told me by
a Welsh lady of rank, at whose table I ate it (it appeared as a side
dish), and who said, half laughingly, "Will you take some 'fluff'? We
are very fond of it, but breast of mutton is such a despised dish I
never expect any one else to like it." I took it, on my principle of
trying everything, and did find it very good. This lady told me that,
having of course a good deal of mutton killed on her father's estate,
and the breast being always despised by the servants, she had invented a
way of using it to avoid waste. Her way was this:

Set the breast of mutton on the fire whole, just covered with water in
which is a little salt. When it comes to the boil draw it back and let
it _simmer_ three hours; then take it up and draw out the bones, and lay
a force-meat of bread-crumbs, parsley, thyme, chopped suet, salt and
pepper all over it; double or roll it, skewer it, and coat it thickly
with egg and bread-crumbs; then bake in a moderate oven, basting it
often with nice dripping or butter; when nicely brown it is done, and
eats like the tenderest lamb. It was, when I saw it, served on a bed of
spinach. I like it better on a bed of stewed onions.

I now give some dishes made without meat.

RAGOUT OF CUCUMBER AND ONIONS.--Fry equal quantities of large cucumbers
and onions in slices until they are a nice brown. The cucumber will
brown more easily if cut up and put to drain some time before using;
then flour each slice. When both are brown, pour on them a cup of water,
and let them stew for half an hour; then take a good piece of butter in
which you have worked a dessert-spoonful of flour (browned); add pepper,
salt, and a little tomato catsup or stewed tomato. This is a rich-eating
dish if nicely made, and will help out cold meat or a scant quantity of
it very well. A little cold meat may be added if you have it. ONION
SOUP.--Fry six large onions cut into slices with a quarter of a pound of
butter till they are of a bright brown, then well mix in a tablespoonful
of flour, and pour on them rather more than a quart of water. Stew
gently until the onions are quite tender, season with a spoonful of salt
and a little sugar; stir in quickly a _liaison_ made with the yolks of
two eggs mixed with a gill of milk or cream (do not let it boil
afterwards), put some toast in a tureen, and serve very hot.

PEA SOUP.--Steep some yellow split peas all night, next morning set them
on to boil with two quarts of water to a pint of peas; in the water put
a tiny bit of soda. In another pot put a large carrot, a turnip, an
onion, and a large head of celery, all cut small and covered with water.
When both peas and vegetables are tender, put them together, season with
salt, pepper, and a little sugar, and let them gently stew till thick
enough; then strain through a colander, rubbing the vegetables well, and
return to the pot while you fry some sippets of bread a crisp brown;
then stir into the soup two ounces of butter in which you have rolled a
little flour.

This soup is simply delicious, and the fact of it being _maigre_ will
not be remembered.

POTATO SOUP is another of this good kind, for meat is scarcely required,
so good is it without.

Boil some potatoes, then rub them through a colander into two quarts of
hot milk (skimmed does quite well); have some fine-chopped parsley and
onion, add both with salt and pepper, stew three quarters of an hour;
then stir in a large piece of butter, and beat two eggs with a little
cold milk, stir in quickly, and serve with fried bread. There should be
potatoes enough to make the soup as thick as cream. Do not be
prejudiced against a dish because there is no meat in it, and you think
it cannot be nourishing. This chapter is not written for those with whom
meat, or money, is plentiful; and if it be true that man is nourished
"not by what he eats, but by what he assimilates," and, according to an
American medical authority, "what is eaten with distaste is not
assimilated" (Dr. Hall), it follows that an enjoyable dinner, even
without meat, will be more nourishing than one forced down because it
lacks savor; that potato soup will be more nourishing than potatoes and
butter, with a cup of milk to drink, because more enjoyable. Yet it
costs no more, for the soup can be made without the eggs if they are

Or say bread and butter and onions. They will not be very appetizing,
especially if they had to be a frequent meal, yet onion soup is made
from the same materials, and in France is a very favorite dish, even
with those well able to put meat in it if they wished.



EVERY housekeeper has pet "wrinkles" of her own which she thinks are
especially valuable; some are known to all the world, others are new to
many. So it may be with mine; but, on the chance that some few things
are as new to my friends as they were to me, I jot them down without any
pretense of order or regularity.

Lemons will keep fresher and better in water than any other way. Put
them in a crock, cover them with water. They will in winter keep two or
three months, and the peel be as fresh as the day they were put in. Take
care, of course, that they do not get frosted. In summer change the
water twice a week; they will keep a long time.

In grating nutmegs begin at the flower end; if you commence at the
other, there will be a hole all the way through.

Tea or coffee made hot (not at all scorched), before water is added, are
more fragrant and stronger. Thus, by putting three spoonfuls of tea in
the pot and setting in a warm place before infusing, it will be as
strong as if you make tea with four spoonfuls without warming it, and
much more fragrant.

Vegetables that are strong can be made much milder by tying a bit of
bread in a clean rag and boiling it with them.

Bread dough is just as good made the day before it is used; thus, a
small family can have fresh bread one day, rolls the next, by putting
the dough in a cold place enveloped in a damp cloth. In winter, kept
cold, yet not in danger of freezing, it will keep a week.

Celery seed takes the place of celery for soup or stews when it is
scarce; parsley seed of parsley.

Green beans, gherkins, etc., put down when plentiful in layers of rock
salt, will keep crisp and green for months, and can be taken out and
pickled when convenient.

Lemon or orange peel grated and mixed with powdered sugar and a squeeze
of its own juice (the sugar making it into paste) is excellent to keep
for flavoring; put it into a little pot and it will keep for a year.

Bread that is very stale may be made quite fresh for an hour or two by
dipping it quickly into milk or water, and putting it in a brisk oven
till _quite hot through_. It must be eaten at once, or it will be as
stale as ever when cold.

Meat to be kept in warm weather should be rubbed over with salad oil,
every crevice filled with ginger; meat that is for roasting or frying is
much better preserved in this way than with salt; take care that every
part of the surface has a coat of oil. Steaks or chops cut off, which
always keep badly, should be dipped into warm butter or even dripping,
if oil is not handy (the object being to exclude the air), and then hung
up till wanted.

Mutton in cold weather should be hung four or five weeks in a place not
subject to changes of temperature, and before it is so hung, every
crevice filled with ginger and thoroughly dredged with flour, which
must be then rubbed in with the hand till the surface is quite dry. This
is the English fashion of keeping venison.

It may be useful for those who burn kerosene to know that when their
lamps smell, give a bad light, and smoke, it is not necessary to buy new
burners. Put the old ones in an old saucepan with water and a
tablespoonful of soda, let them boil half an hour, wipe them, and your
trouble will be over.

Meat that has become slightly tainted may be quite restored by washing
it in water in which is a teaspoonful of borax, cutting away every part
in the least discolored.

In summer when meat comes from the butcher's, if it is not going to be
used the same day, it should be washed over with vinegar.

Poultry in summer should always have a piece of charcoal tied in a rag
placed in the stomach, to be removed before cooking. Pieces of charcoal
should also be put in the refrigerator and changed often.

Oyster shells put one at a time in a stove that is "clinkered" will
clean the bricks entirely. They should be put in when the fire is
burning brightly.

Salt and soapstone powder (to be bought at the druggist's) mend fire
brick; use equal quantities, make into a paste with water, and cement
the brick; they will be as strong as new ones.

Ink spilled on carpets may be entirely removed by rubbing while wet with
blotting paper, using fresh as it soils.



MANY people have strong prejudices against certain things which they
have never even tasted, or which they do frequently take and like as a
part of something else, without knowing it. How common it is to hear and
see untraveled people declare that they dislike garlic, and could not
touch anything with it in. Yet those very people will take
Worcestershire sauce, in which garlic is actually predominant, with
everything they eat; and think none but English pickles eatable, which
owe much of their excellence to the introduction of a _soupçon_ of
garlic. Therefore I beg those who actually only know garlic from hearsay
abuse of it, or from its presence on the breath of some inveterate
garlic eater, to give it a fair trial when it appears in a recipe. It is
just one of those things that require the most delicate handling, for
which the French term a "_suspicion_" is most appreciated; it should
only be a suspicion, its presence should never be pronounced. As Blot
once begged his readers, "Give garlic a fair trial in a _rémolade_
sauce." (Montpellier butter beaten into mayonnaise is a good _rémolade_
for cold meat or fish.)

Curry is one of those things against which many are strongly prejudiced,
and I am inclined to think it is quite an acquired taste, but a taste
which is an enviable one to its possessors; for them there is endless
variety in all they eat. The capabilities of curry are very little known
in this country, and, as the taste for it is so limited, I will not do
more in its defense than indicate a pleasant use to which it may be put,
and in which form it would be a welcome condiment to many to whom "a
curry," pure and simple, would be obnoxious. I once knew an Anglo-Indian
who used curry as most people use cayenne; it was put in a pepper-box,
and with it he would at times pepper his fish or kidneys, even his eggs.
Used in this way, it imparts a delightful piquancy to food, and is
neither hot nor "spicy."

Few people are so prejudiced as the English generally, and the
stay-at-home Americans; but the latter are to be taught by travel, the
Englishman rarely.

The average Briton leaves his island shores with the conviction that he
will get nothing fit to eat till he gets back, and that he will have to
be uncommonly careful once across the channel, or he will be having
fricasseed frogs palmed on him for chicken. Poor man! in his horror of
frogs, he does not know that the Paris restaurateur who should give the
costly frog for chicken, would soon end in the bankruptcy court.

"If I could only get a decent dinner, a good roast and plain potato, I
would like Paris much better," said an old Englishman to me once in that
gay city.

"But surely you can."

"No; I have been to restaurants of every class, and called for beefsteak
and roast beef, but have never got the real article, although it's my
belief," said he, leaning forward solemnly, "that I have eaten _horse_
three times this week." Of course the Englishman of rank, who has spent
half his life on the continent, is not at all the _average_ Englishman.

Americans think the hare and rabbits, of which the English make such
good use, very mean food indeed, and if they are unprejudiced enough to
try them, from the fact that they are never well cooked, they dislike
them, which prejudice the English reciprocate by looking on squirrels as
being as little fit for food as a rat. And a familiar instance of
prejudice from ignorance carried even to insanity, is that of the Irish
in 1848, starving rather than eat the "yaller male," sent them by
generous American sympathizers; yet they come here and soon get over
that dislike. Not so the French, who look on oatmeal and Indian meal as
most unwholesome food. "_Ça pêse sur l'estomac, ça creuse l'estomac_," I
heard an old Frenchwoman say, trying to dissuade a mother from giving
her children mush.

The moral of all of which is, that for our comfort's sake, and the
general good we should avoid unreasonable prejudices against unfamiliar
food. We of course have a right to our honest dislikes; but to condemn
things because we have heard them despised, is prejudice.



I HAVE alluded, in an earlier chapter, to the fact that many
inexperienced cooks are afraid of altering recipes; a few words on this
subject may not be out of place. As a rule, a recipe should be
faithfully followed in all important points; for instance, in making
soup you cannot because you are short of the given quantity of meat, put
the same amount of water as directed for the full quantity, without
damaging your soup; but you may easily reduce water and _every other
ingredient_ in the same proportion; and, in mere matters of flavoring,
you may vary to suit circumstances. If you are told to use cloves, and
have none, a bit of mace may be substituted.

If you read a recipe, and it calls for something you have not, consider
whether that something has anything to do with the substance of the
dish, or whether it is merely an accessory for which something else can
be substituted. For instance, if you are ordered to use cream in a
sauce, milk with a larger amount of well-washed butter may take its
place; but if you are told to use cream for charlotte russe or trifles,
there is no way in which you could make milk serve, since it is not an
accessory but the chief part of those dishes. For a cake in which cream
is used, butter whipped to a cream may take its place. Wine is usually
optional in savory dishes; it gives richness only.

Again, in cakes be very careful the exact proportions of flour, eggs,
and milk are observed; of butter you can generally use more or less,
having a more or less rich cake in proportion. In any but plain cup
cakes (which greatly depend on soda and acid for their lightness) never
lessen the allowance of eggs; never add milk if a cake is too stiff (but
an extra egg may always be used), unless milk is ordered in the recipe,
when more or less may be used as needed. Flavoring may be always varied.

In reducing a recipe always reduce _every ingredient_, and it can make
no difference in the results. Sometimes, in cookery books, you are told
to use articles not frequently found in ordinary kitchens; for instance,
a larding-needle (although that can be bought for twenty-five cents at
any house-furnishing store, and should always be in a kitchen); but, in
case you have not one for meat, you may manage by making small cuts and
inserting slips of bacon.

Another article that is very useful, but seldom, if ever, to be found in
small kitchens, is a salamander; but when you wish to brown the top of a
dish, and putting it in the oven would not do, or the oven is not quick
enough to serve, an iron shovel, made nearly red, and a few red cinders
in it, is a very good salamander. It must be held over the article that
requires browning near enough to color it, yet not to burn.

In the recipes I have given nothing is required that cannot be obtained,
with more or less ease, in New York. For syrups, fruit juices, etc.,
apply to your druggist; if he has not them he will tell you where to
obtain them. We often make up our minds that because a thing is not
commonly used in this country, it is impossible to get it. Really there
are very few things not to be got in New York City to the intelligent
seeker. You need an article of French or Italian or may be English
grocery, that your grocer, a first-class one, perhaps, has not, and you
make up your mind you cannot get it. But go into the quarters where
French people live, and you can get everything belonging to the French
_cuisine_. So prejudiced are the French in favor of the productions of
_la belle France_, that they do not believe in our parsley or our chives
or garlic or shallots; for I know at least one French grocer who imports
them for his customers. On being asked why he brought them from France
to a country where those very things were plentiful, he answered:

"Oh, French herbs are much finer."

Needless to say tarragon is one of the herbs so imported, and can thus
be bought; but, as several New Jersey truck gardeners grow all kinds of
French herbs, they can be got in Washington Market, and most druggists
keep them dried; but for salads, Montpellier butter, and some other
uses, the dried herb would not do, although for flavoring it would
serve; but the far better way is to grow them for yourself, as I have
done. Any large seedsman will supply you with burnet, tarragon, and
borage (very useful for salads, punch, etc.) seeds, and if you live in
the country, have an herb bed; if in town, there are few houses where
there is not ground enough to serve for the purpose; but even in these
few houses one can have a box of earth in the kitchen window, in which
your seeds will flourish.

Parsley is a thing in almost daily request in winter, yet it is very
expensive to buy it constantly for the sake of using the small spray
that often suffices. It is a good plan, therefore, in fall, to get a few
roots, plant them in a pot or box, and they will flourish all winter,
if kept where they will not freeze, and be ready for garnishing at any

Always, as far as your means allow, have every convenience for cooking.
By having utensils proper for every purpose you save a great deal of
work and much vexation of spirit. Yet it should be no excuse for bad
work that such utensils are not at hand. A willing and intelligent cook
will make the best of what she has. Apropos of this very thing Gouffé
relates that a friend of his, an "artist" of renown, was sent for to the
chateau of a Baron Argenteuil, who had taken a large company with him,
unexpectedly crowding the chateau in every part. He was shown into a
dark passage in which a plank was suspended from the ceiling, and told
this was to be his kitchen. He had to fashion his own utensils, for
there was nothing provided, and his pastry he had to bake in a
frying-pan--besides building two monumental _plâts_ on that board--and
prepare a cold _entrée_. But he cheerfully set to work to overcome
difficulties, achieved his task, and was rewarded by the plaudits of the
diners. Such difficulties as these our servants never have to encounter,
and a cheerful endeavor to make the best of everything should be the
rule. Yet, let us spare them all the labor we can, or rather make it as
easy and pleasant as possible; they will be more proud of their
well-furnished kitchen, more cheerful in it, than they will of one where
everything for their convenience is grudged, and such pride and
cheerfulness will be your gain.

There is always a great deal of talk about servants in America, how bad
and inefficient they are, how badly they contrast with those of England.
Certainly, they are not so efficient as those of the older country; how
could they be? There, girls who are intended for servants have ever held
before their eyes what they may or may not do in the future calling, and
how it is to be done. But take one of these orderly, efficient girls,
put her in an American family as general servant or as cook, where two
are kept, washing and ironing to do, and a variety of other work, and
see how your English servant would stare at your requirements. She has
been accustomed to her own line of work at home; if housemaid, she has
been dressed for the day at noon; if cook, she has never done even her
own washing.

She may, and will no doubt, fall into the way of the country, after a
while, and on account of her early habits of respect, will make a good
servant perhaps. But many of them would be quite indignant at being
asked to do the average servant's work here. I am speaking now of the
_trained_ servants; but, comparing the London "maid-of-all-work" or
"slavey" with our own general servants, and considering how much more is
expected of the latter, the comparison seems to me vastly in the favor
of our own Bridgets. We may rest assured, however smoothly the wheels of
household management glide along in wealthy families across the water,
people who can only keep one or two have all our troubles with servants
and a few added, and their faults are just as general a subject of
conversation among ladies.

France (out of Paris, from Parisian servants deliver me!) and Germany
seem the favored lands where one servant does the work of three or four.
Yet even they, are, they say, degenerating. Let us, then, be contented
and make the best of what we have, assured that even Biddy is not so
hopeless as she is painted. Kindness (not weakness), firmness, and
patience work wonders, even with the roughest Emerald that ever crossed
the sea.

I have said somewhere else that you must beware of attempting too much
at once; perfect yourself in one thing before you attempt another. Take
breaded chops or fried oysters, make opportunities for having them
rather often, and do not rest satisfied until you have them as well
fried as you have ever seen them anywhere; "practice makes perfect," and
you certainly will achieve perfection if you are not discouraged by one
failure. But above all things never make experiments for company; let
them be made when it really matters little whether you succeed or not,
and let your experiments be on a _small_ scale; don't attempt to fry a
_large_ dish of oysters or chops until it is a very easy task, or make
more than half a pound of puff paste at first; for if you fail with a
large task before you, you will be tired and disheartened, hate the
sight of what you are doing, and, as a consequence, not be likely to
return to it very soon. The same may be said of cooks; some of them are
very fond of experiments, which taste I should always encourage; but do
not let them jump from one experiment to the other; if they try a dish
and fail, they often make up their minds that the fault is not theirs,
that it is not worth while to "bother" with it. Here your knowledge will
be of service; you will show them that it can be done, how it should be
done, and order the dish cook failed in, frequently, giving it
sufficient surveillance to prevent your family suffering from her
inexperience; for, as a witty Frenchman said of Mme. du Deffaud's cook,
"Between her and Brinvilliers there is only the difference of

Few things add more to a man or woman's social reputation than the fact
that they keep a good table. It need not be one where

                    "The strong table groans
   Beneath the smoking sirloin stretched immense;"

but a table where whatever you do have will be good, be it pork and
beans, or salmi; the pork and beans would satisfy a Bostonian, the salmi
Grimod de la Reynière himself. I do not admit with Di Walcott that

  "The turnpike road to people's hearts I find
   Lies through their mouths, or I mistake mankind."

But it is a fact that good living--by this I do not mean extravagant
living--presupposes good breeding. Well-bred people sometimes live
badly; but ill-bred people seldom or ever live well, in the right sense
of the term.

Now, by way of valedictory, let me repeat that I do not think a lady's
best or proper place is the kitchen; but it is quite possible to have a
perfectly served table, yet spend very little time there. Only that one
little hour a day that Talleyrand, the busy man full of intrigue and
statecraft, found time to spend with his cook, would insure your table
being well served. For, after devoting say a few winter months to
perfecting yourself in a few things, you will be able to teach your
cook, who is often ambitious to excel if put in the right way. A word
here about cooks.

The knowledge that if they fail to do a thing well you will do it
yourself, will often put them on their mettle to do their best; while
the feeling that you don't know, will make them careless.

Servants have a great deal more _amour propre_ than people imagine;
therefore, stimulate it by judicious praise and appreciation; let them
think that to send in a dish perfect, is a glory to themselves as well
as a pleasure to you. While careful to remark when alone with them upon
any fault that results from carelessness, be equally careful to give all
the praise you can, and repeat to them complimentary remarks that may
have been made on their skill. Servants are usually--such is the
weakness of feminine nature, whether in the drawing-room or the
kitchen--very sensitive to the praise or blame of the gentlemen of the
family. Indulge poor humanity a little when you honestly can.


  Almond creams,                         93

  Altering recipes,                111, 112

  Asparagus, to boil,                    66

  Baba,                                  86
    Small,                               87
    Syrup for,                           87

  Batter for frying à la Carême,         59
     "    "    "     "   Provençale,     60

  Beef, Bœuf à la jardinière,         74
           "    au Gratin,               75
    Filet de bœuf Chateaubriand,      49
    Fritadella,                          81
    Little breakfast dish of,            78
    Miroton of,                          76
    Olives of,                           79
    Pseudo-beefsteak,                    75
    Ragout of cold,                      78
    Salmi of cold,                       73
    Simplest way to warm a joint,        77
    To warm over a large piece,          78
    Sirloin, to make two dishes,         49

  Biscuit glacé, à la Charles Dickens,   85
     "      "     "   Thackeray,         85

  Blanc for white sauce,                 31

  Boiling, asparagus,                    66
    Cabbage,                             65
    Potatoes,                            66
    Peas,                                65
    Rules for meat,                      65

  Bouchées de dames,                     88
    To ice,                              89

  Bread,                                 12
    Baking,                              14
    Cause of failure,                    15
      "   of thick crust,                14
    Compressed yeast,                    15
    Kneading,                            14
    Oven heating,                        14
    Remarks,                             12
    Rules of time for rising,            14
    To set sponge,                       13

  Bread-crumbs for frying,               56

  Bread dough, to keep a day or two,    106
    "     "    for pie crust,            97
    Soufflée,                            20

  Brioche, 18
    Jockey Club, recipe for,             19
    for summer pastry,               19, 20

  Broiling,                              60
    Chickens and birds,                  61

  Brown flour,                           34
    Sauce,                               71

  Butter, maître d'hôtel,                32
    Montpellier,                         33
    Ravigotte,                           33

  Cabbage, to boil,                      65

  Cakes, Baba,                           86
    Bouchées de dames,                   83
    Savarins,                            88

  Candies,                               92
    Chocolate creams,                    94
    Cream almonds,                       93
    Cream walnuts,                       93
    Fondant,                             92
    Fondant panaché,                     93
    Punch drops,                         94
    Simple French,                       92
    Tutti frutti,                        92
    Vanilla almond cream,                92
    Walnut cream,                        92

  Celeraic, or turnip-rooted celery,     54

  Celery seed for soup,                 106

  Celery cream soup,                     68

  Chateaubriand, filet de bœuf,       49

  Chicken,                               48
    Broiling,                            60
    Cold,                                49
    Pie,                                 38
    Potted,                              44
    Roasting,                            48
    Use of the feet,                     48

  Clinkered fire-bricks,                107

  Cold meat salmi,                       73
    Various ways of warming,          72-81

  Coloring for candy and icing,          95

  Company to lunch, and nothing in
    the house,                           44

  Cromesquis of cold lamb,               75

  Crumbs for frying,                     56

  Cucumber and onion ragout,            102

  Curaçoa, to make,                      89

  Curry,                                108

  Deviled meats,                         80

  Dishes made without meat,             102

  Dripping, to clarify,                  59

  Feuilletonage,                         23

  Fire-bricks, to remove clinkers from, 107
    To mend,                            107

  Flavoring,                             70

  Flounders, to bone,                    56
    As filet de sole,                    56

  Forequarter of mutton,                101

  Frangipane tartlets,                   26

  French herbs,                         113

  Friandises,                            84

  Fritadella of cold meat, twenty
    recipes in one,                      81

  Frying,                                55
    Batter à la Carême,                  59
      "     "   Provençale,              60
    Crumbing,                            56
    Filet de sole,                       56
    Flounders,                           56
    Oil for,                             58
    Oysters,                             57
    Remarks on,                          55
    To clarify dripping for,             59
    To test the heat of fat for,         57

  Galantine,                             39

  Garlic,                               108

  Glaze,                                 30
    To glaze ham, tongue, etc.,          32

  Gouffé's pot-au-feu,                   68
    Rules for ovens,                     27

  Gravy,                              29-63

  Grating nutmegs,                      105

  Ham, to boil,                          65
    To glaze,                            32
    To pot,                              43

  Hash,                                  97

  Heart, beef,                          100
    Sheep's,                             99

  Iced soufflée,                         85
    A la Byron,                          84

  Icing,                                 89

  Ink, to remove from carpets,          107

  Jellied fish or oysters,               41

  Jelly for cold chicken,                47

  Jelly from pork,                       31

  Kerosene lamps,                       107

  Keeping meat,                         106
    Poultry,                            107
    Dough,                              106

  Kitchen conveniences,                 114

  Kreuznach horns,                       16

  Kringles,                              17

  Lamb, cromesquis of,                   75

  Lamps,                                107

  Larding needle,                       112

  Leg of mutton,                         52
    A la Soubise,                        52
    Boiled,                              52

  Lemons, to keep,                      105
    Peels,                              106

  Little dinners,                        50

  Liver, sheep's,                        98

  Luncheons,                             35

  Maître d'hôtel butter,                 32

  Management in small families,          47

  Maraschino, to make,                   90

  Marrow from soup bone,                 98

  Mayonnaise, new,                       42

  Meat, to keep,                        106
    Salad,                               52

  Mephistophelian sauce,                 81

  Miroton of beef,                       76

  Montpellier butter,                    33

  Mushroom powder,                       29

  Mutton broth,                          52
    Forequarter,                        101
    Leg,                                 52

  Neck of mutton,                       101

  Noyeau,                                90

  Nutmegs, best way to grate,           105

  Omelet, new,                           45

  Onion soup, maigre,                   103

  Ornamenting meat pies,                 37

  Ovens,                                 14
    Gouffé's rules for heating,          27

  Oysters, to fry,                       57
    In jelly,                            41

  Ox cheek,                             100

  Panaché fondant,                       93

  Parsley seed for soup,                106

  Parsley in winter,                    113

  Paste, puff,                           22
    To handle,                           24

  Pastry tablets,                        26

  Pâte à la Carême for frying,           59
    "    "  Provençale,                  60

  Peas, to boil,                         66

  Pease soup, maigre,                   103

  Pie, bread dough for crust,            97
    Chicken, to eat cold,                38
    Fruit,                               24
    English raised,                      38
    To "raise" a,                        39
    Veal and ham,                        38
    Windsor,                             36

  Pork for jelly,                        31

  Potato salad,                          54
    Snow,                                45
    Soup, maigre,                       103
    To warm over,                        46

  Pot-au-feu,                            68

  Pot roasts,                            99

  Potted meats,                          43

  Punch drops,                           94

  Ragout of cold meat,                   78
    Of cucumber and onion,              102

  Ravigotte,                             33

  Remarks, preliminary,                1-12
    On boiling,                          65
    On bread-making,                     12
    On frying,                           54
    On kitchen and servants,            114
    On little dinners,                   50
    On luncheons,                        35
    On maigre dishes,                   104
    On management in small families,     47
    On sauces and flavoring,             70

  Remarks on soups,                      67
    On table prejudices,                108
    On true economy in buying meat,      99
    On roasting,                         62

  Rissolettes,                           25

  Rolls,                                 15

  Roux,                                  34

  Rusks,                                 16

  Salad, Celeraic,                       54
    Potato,                              54
    Cold meat,                           52

  Salamander, substitute for,           112

  Sauces,                                70
    Flavoring,                           70
    Brown or espagnole,                  71
    Mephistophelian,                     81
    White,                               71
    Mayonnaise,                          42

  Savarin (cake),                        88

  Soufflée bread,                        20
    Iced,                                85
    A la Byron,                          84

  Soup bone,                             96

  Soup, celery cream,                    68
    Consommé,                            68
    Pot-au-feu,                          68
    Onion,                              103
    Pease,                              103
    Potato,                             103
    To color,                            67
    To clear stock,                      66

  Sugar boiling for candy,               91

  Tainted meat, to restore,             107

  To make strong vegetables milder,     106

  Tutti frutti candy,                    92

  Vanilla almond cream,                  92

  Veal,                                  53

  Warming over,                          72

  What to do with scraps,                45

  Where to buy articles not in general
    use,                                112

  Why meat does not brown in cooking,    62

  Windsor pie,                           36

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