Charles Field Mason.

A complete handbook for the sanitary troops of the U. S. army and navy and national guard and naval militia online

. (page 19 of 38)
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Variety in the mess is of much importance and may be obtained
through the use of the alternative issues, by purchases from the
hospital fund, and especially by variety in cooking. Usually bills of
fare are prepared by the non commissioned officer in charge of the
mess and submitted to the surgeon for his approval, and variety
should be insisted on. It is the duty of the noncommissioned officer
also to see that the meals are properly and promptly served in both
the dining-room and wards.

Wastage must be carefully avoided, grease and drippings should
be preserved for use in cooking, and bones for the preparation of


soup. In the dining-room the rule should be small portions served
as desired rather than large portions to be left on the plate.

Different classes of diet are necessary in hospital because of the
great variety in the nature and severity of the diseases treated
therein. The arrangement of the diet tables is based upon our
knowledge of the relative digestibility of the different sorts of food,
and the part which the different portions of the digestive tract take
in the process of digestion.

The diets usually found in military hospitals are full, light, liquid,
and special.

Full diet includes what is served at the table in the dining-room ;
the other diets are ordinarily served in the wards.

Light diet includes liquids and the simpler and more digestible
articles of solid or semisolid food. Each surgeon usually has his
own diet list; the following table, which has been used at the U. S.
Army General Hospital, Presidio of San Francisco, California, may
be taken as an illustration of full and light diets.

In addition to the regular diet tables a special diet list is provided
for the use of ward surgeons for cases requiring this kind of diet.

Liquid diet: This includes liquids only, such as milk, strained
soups, gruels, broths, albumen water, etc. The amount of each of
these articles to be taken by a patient in twenty-four hours should
always be stated.

Special diet: This is usually a list from which special articles of
food are prescribed for particular cases.

As to which diet shall be given to a particular patient depends
upon the nature of the case. In all fevers and grave disorders,
while there is increased necessity for food to repair the unusual
waste, there is unfortunately also diminished power of digestion and

Therefore we begin with liquid foods to save the digestive appa-
ratus the labor of liquefying them, and we give them in small quan-
tities and frequently.

If there is irritation of the stomach and bowels we give those foods
which have the least indigestible residue to irritate the bowels. From
liquids we go on to jellies, custards, ice cream, light puddings, milk
toast, lightly boiled eggs, chicken, rare steak, etc.








Cereal and milk.

Vermicelli soup.

Veal stew or boiled ham.

Ham and eggs.

Roast veal, sage-dressing, or

Apple sauce.

Bread and butter.

turkey, or chicken and dress-




Bread and butter.


Stewed peas. Mashed potatoes.


Farina pudding. Fruit.

Bread and butter, coffee.


Cereal and milk.

Roast beef.

Codfish balls or hash.


Mashed potatoes. String beans.

Bread and butter.

Fried potatoes.

Tapioca pudding.


Bread and butter.

Bread and butter. Fruit.

Jam. Sweet crackers.

Fruit. Coffee.


Prunes. Tea.


Cereal and milk.

Vegetable soup.

Fried liver and bacon.


Baked pork and beans. j Corn bread and syrup, or

Fried potatoes.

Baked tomatoes.


Bread and butter.

Bread pudding.

Bread, butter, tea.

Coffee. Fruit.

Bread, butter, cocoa, fruit.



Milk toast.

Roast mutton with dressing.

Mutton stew.


Mashed potatoes.

Pickles. Sweet crackers.

Bread and butter.

Corn or fresh vegetables.

Bread, butter, tea.

Coffee. Fruit.

Chocolate pudding, fruit.

Peach cobbler.

Bread, butter, coffee.


Cereal and milk.

Oyster soup.

Sliced roast beef.


Corned beef and cabbage.

Macaroni and cheese.

Bread and butter.

Boiled potatoes. Radishes.


Coffee. Fruit.

Rice pudding. Fruit.

Bread and butter.

Bread, butter, coffee.



Cereal and milk.

Baked fish with sauce.

Salmon salad. Potato

Bacon and eggs.

Plain boiled potatoes.


Bread and butter.

Fresh salad.

Apple sauce.

Coffee. Fruit.

Farina pudding. Fruit.

Ginger crackers.

Bread, butter, cocoa.

Bread and butter. Tea.


Cereal and milk.

Roast beef, veal, or pork.

Baked hash or stew.


Mashed potatoes.

Stewed prunes.

Fried potatoes.

Hot slaw. Cauliflower.

Assorted cakes.

Bread and butter.

Bread pudding.

Bread and butter.

Coffee. Fruit.

Bread, butter, coffee.








Cereal and milk.
Soft-boiled eggs.
Milk toast. Coffee.

Rice soup.
Farina pudding.

Milk toast.
Cup custard.

Cereal and milk.
Milk toast.
Boiled eggs.

Plain tomato soup.
Bread pudding with lemon

Farina mush and milk.
Sweet crackers. Jelly.

Cereal and milk.
Boiled eggs.

Barley soup.
Tapioca pudding.

Biscuits or corn bread.
Maple syrup. Boiled rice.
Milk toast and tea.

Cereal and milk.
Soft-boiled eggs.

Consomme vermicelli.
Cornstarch pudding.
Vanilla sauce. Coffee.

Sweet crackers. Jam.
Milk toast.

Cereal and milk..
Boiled eggs.

Oyster soup.
Rice pudding.

Macaroni and cheese.
Milk toast. Maple syrup.

Cereal and milk.
Boiled eggs.
Milk toast.

Fish chowder.
Farina pudding.

Tapioca pudding.
Milk toast. Ginger
Boiled eegs. Tea.

Cereal and milk.
Boiled eggs.

Vermicelli soup.
Sago pudding.

Cereal mush.
Assorted Cakes. Jelly.
Milk toast. Tea.



PRACTICAL cooking can only be learned in the kitchen where each
hospital-corps man must serve an apprenticeship, those who show
aptitude being given an opportunity to develop into cooks. But the
principles of cooking and diet cooking must be learned by all.

Nearly all food is capable of prompt putrefaction ; putrefaction is
due to the growth of germs, and requires the presence of heat, mois-
ture, and organic matter; if any one of these conditions is absent
putrefaction will not take place. Hence meats will keep indefinitely
when frozen (absence of a suitable temperature) ; when dried
(absence of moisture) ; canned (absence of germs which have been
destroyed by heat) ; or when pickled (absence of germs which have
been killed by antiseptics, such as salt, vinegar, and sugar).

A clean kitchen means the practical absence of germs; in such a
kitchen foods do not spoil or putrefy.

The following extracts from an old work on *' Camp Fires and
Camp Cooking " are worth repeating here :

" Cleanliness is next to godliness, both in person and kettles : Be
ever industrious, then, in scouring your pots. Much elbow grease, a
few ashes, and a little water are capital aids to the careful cook.
Dirt and grease betray the poor cook and destroy the poor soldier,
whilst health, content, and good cheer should ever reward him who
does his duty and keeps his kettles clean. In military life, punctu-
ality is not only a duty, but a necessity, and the cook should always
endeavor to be exact in time. Be sparing with sugar and salt, as a
deficiency can be better remedied than an overplus.

" Remember that beans, badly boiled, kill more than bullets ; fat is
more fatal than powder. In cooking, more than anything else in the
world, always make haste slowly. One hour too much is vastly
better than five minutes too little, with rare exceptions. A big fire
scorches your soup, burns your face, and crisps your temper. Skim,
simmer, and scour are the true secrets of good cooking."



Cooking improves the flavor of food and thereby increases the
appetite ; it destroys all parasites and disease germs ; and it enables
the food to be more thoroughly masticated and digested.

It lessens the toughness of muscular fibres, gelatinizes the connec-
tive tissue, coagulates albumin, breaks up the starch granules and
practically converts them into glucose and dextrin, all of which per-
mits of more thorough penetration of the digestive fluids and more
rapid digestion.

The ordinary processes of cooking are boiling, stewing, roasting,
baking, frying, and broiling or grilling.

In boiling, the object is to cook the food and at the same time
retain in it all its natural juices. To do this with fresh meat and
vegetables the water should be salted, and the food in large masses
dropped at once in boiling water ; this by coagulating the albumin in
the outer layers forms a protecting coating which prevents the juices
from escaping.

Active boiling is continued for five minutes, after which the process
should be one of simmering or very slowly boiling.

Salt meats, beans, and pease should be put on in cold water and
the temperature slowly raised.

Potatoes should be boiled in their jackets, but if peeled the water
should be salted to prevent the escape of the vegetable salts.

Fish and potatoes should be thoroughly drained after boiling.
Beans, pease, rice, and other hard grains require a preliminary soak-
ing ; the two former can not be cooked in hard water. Fresh meats
require about fifteen minutes to the pound.

In stewing meats we do not mind the escape of the juices because
the broth, as the water in which meat is boiled is called, forms a part
of the food, all of which is to be eaten. Therefore the meat is cut in
small pieces, placed in cold water, and the boiling done very slowly;
vegetables are usually added. If the stew is made with meat which
has already been cooked it is known as a hash.

In soup making the broth is the part used, hence we desire to get
out of the meat and bones and into the water all that can be extracted
of their nutritive ingredients, and especially the gelatin which is a
result of a prolonged boiling of the bone and connective tissues. The
meat is cut in small pieces and the bones thoroughly cracked, and all
placed in cold water in a covered pot which should simmer slowly
and be frequently skimmed. The product when finished constitutes


stock, and the various soups are prepared by adding vegetables cut
into small pieces, and cooking for an hour or so more or until the
vegetables are done. Soup stock should not be kept in an iron pot
because the iron gives it an unpleasant flavor.

In making meat teas or extracts by heat, the process is a little
different from soup making; we do not wish any fat, hence lean meat
is selected without bone, and all fat is removed after the broth is
cold ; the water should never come to a boil so as not to coagulate the
albumin which we wish to retain.

Roasting is properly done in front of a clear fire with special
arrangements for concentrating the heat and turning the joint. In
this country the term roast is ordinarily applied to baked meats.

Baking is done in an oven, and as the fat acids developed by high
temperature can not escape, the flavor and digestibility are not so
good as in roasting. As in boiling, our object is to expose the roast
to a high temperature in order to coagulate the surface layer so that
it may retain the juices; when that is accomplished the balance of
the cooking is done more slowly at a lower temperature. Frequent
basting with the melted fat and meat juices is necessary in order to
prevent the surface becoming too tough and hard, and to secure
better penetration of the heat into the interior of the joint. The
oven must not be too hot; if the hand and arm can be held in the
oven for fifteen seconds the temperature is about right. Baking
ordinarily requires about fifteen minutes to the pound.

Broiling or grilling is practically the same as roasting only the
cooking is done over instead of in front of the fire, and a larger
extent of surface is exposed to the heat.

The meat is placed on a gridiron or broiler over a clear bright fire
free from smoke. If the broiling is done before a fire instead of
over it, the juices can be caught in a drip pan and used.

Frying is properly done by dropping the meat or vegetables in
boiling oil or fat at a temperature of about 500 F. and in a frying
pan deep enough to immerse the article to be cooked. If the fat
is hot enough the surface layer of the meat is at once coagulated as
in boiling and roasting, and the grease does not penetrate.

Frying is usually improperly done, the bottom of the frying pan
being only greased enough to prevent the meat from sticking to it ;
articles thus friend are saturated with grease and indigestible.

The object of bread making is to convert an indigestible, tasteless


mass of flour into an appetizing, porous food capable of ready pene-
tration by the digestive juices and known as bread.

The first step is to make the dough, which is done by thoroughly
mixing or kneading the flour with salt and water ; the next step is to
impart the necessary porosity by the introduction of carbonic-acid
gas into the mass; this done by either generating it within the
dough or forcing it in from without.

The first of the methods may be effected either by fermentation
of yeast or by baking powders; the second constitutes the so-called
aerated bread, a process little used in this country.

The carbonic-acid gas is held in minute bubbles by the tenacity
of the gluten, the nitrogenous element of flour, and the dough rises,
becoming light and spongy. It is then kneaded over again, divided
into loaves of suitable size, allowed to rise for about one hour in the
forms, and then baked, by which the gas is still further expanded, the
dough made lighter, and the porosity permanently fixed in the bread.

By leavened bread we mean that which has been made by fermen-
tation ; yeast may be used directly, or we may use a portion of old
fermenting dough or leaven; the former is preferable.

In the growth of the yeast fungus a portion of the sugar of the
dough is converted into alcohol and carbonic acid; the former is
driven off by the heat in baking, and the latter is spread through the
dough, making it porous. Usually a portion of the flour is first made
into dough with yeast, salt, and water, and set aside in a warm place
for a couple of hours, this constituting the sponge which is subse-
quently thoroughly kneaded with the remainder of the flour and
water, and the fermentation allowed to proceed in the entire mass.

The important point is to know just when it has gone far enough ;
if it goes too far the bread becomes sour; if not far enough it is

The necessary carbonic acid may also be generated by the use of
baking powders; these consist generally of bicarbonate of soda mixed
with cream of tartar, acid phosphate of lime, or alum ; in the chemi-
cal reaction which takes place in the dough carbonic-acid gas is set
free and certain more or less harmless salts remain in the bread.
Alum baking powders are objectionable because the remaining salts
are believed to cause indigestion.



THE following recipes are taken from the valuable pamphlet on
" Emergency Diet for the Sick in the Military Service," by Captain
Edward L. Munson, assistant surgeon, U. S. Army, and published
with his permission. They will serve an excellent purpose in prepar-
ing foods for the sick and also in the instruction of the hospital corps
in cooking and diet cooking:


Sterilized Milk

Pour the milk into a granite saucepan (or a double boiler) and raise the
temperature of milk to about 190 Fahrenheit. Keep it at this point for one
hour. Do not boil the milk. Any utensil used for this purpose must be
absolutely clean.

Milk Punch

Three-fourths of a coffee cup of milk (six ounces).

Two tablespoonfuls of brandy or whisky.

One teaspoonful of sugar.

Grated nutmeg to taste.

Sweeten the milk (preferably sterilized) with the sugar. Stir into it the
brandy. Shake it up well by pouring from one cup into another, or by the
use of a milk-shaker, until a froth is formed. Grate a little nutmeg on top
and serve.

The term "cup" in this recipe, as in all others, means the ordinary coffee
cup, holding eight ounces.

Milk with Mineral or Aerated Waters

Mix equal quantities of sterilized milk with seltzer, soda water, or lime
water, and serve immediately.

Albuminized Milk

Beat up the white of an egg till light. Add a good-size pinch of salt, and
four ounces of fresh, cool milk which has been sterilized. A little sugar may
be added if desired.



Peptonized Milk (Cold Process)

Into a clean quart bottle put two peptonizing tablets dissolved in four
ounces of cold water. Add one pint of fresh cold milk, shake thoroughly,
and place the bottle on ice. Use clean cotton to plug the bottle.

In place of the peptonizing tablets, five grains of pancreatine and fifteen
grains of sodium bicarbonate, to be obtained from the dispensary, may be

Peptonized Milk (Warm Process)

Into a clean quart jar or bottle put the tablets above mentioned, dissolved
in four ounces of cold water. Add one pint of fresh milk and shake the
whole well. Place the bottle in a pan or kettle of hot water maintained at
such a temperature that the hand can just be held in it without discomfort.
Keep the bottle hi the water for ten minutes. Put on the ice immediately
after removing from the hot bath, to check further digestion. If ice is not
available pour the milk into a saucepan and heat quickly to boiling.


Warm one pint of milk to about blood heat, or about 100 Fahrenheit.
Dissolve half a rennet tablet in one tablespoonful of cold water. Stir it into
the milk and let it stand until the latter is curdled, which will be in a few
minutes. Break up the curd with a fork and strain off the liquid (whey).
This may be sweetened with sugar, and when cooled makes a refreshing
drink for fever patients.


Heat one pint of fresh unboiled milk to about blood heat, or about 100
Fahrenheit. Dissolve a full tablespoonful of sugar in it. Add half a rennet
tablet which has been dissolved in one tablespoonful of cold water. It will
set the milk in about fifteen minutes. Put in a cool place till ready to be
used. It can be served plain, or with cream, sugar, and a little nutmeg.

Farina Gruel

One tablespoonful of farina.

One pint of water.

One teaspoonful of sugar.

One-half teaspoonful of salt.

Into one pint of water, raised to boiling, put a half teaspoonful of salt;
then add the farina and cook for twenty minutes. Flavor with sugar and
condensed milk, if fresh milk is not available. Strain and serve hot.

In this recipe, as in others, condensed milk is used in a strength of one
teaspoonful to the half pint of gruel.

Rice Gruel

Two tablespoonfuls of rice.
Or one tablespoonful of rice flour.
One pint of boiling water.
One-half teaspoonful of salt.
One teaspoonful of sugar.


Wash the rice thoroughly in two waters, after removing any specks that
may be mixed in the grain. Have the cooking water boiling. Add the salt
and then the rice. Boil for two hours, when the rice should be almost
entirely dissolved. Strain. Add condensed milk and sugar, if desired. Some
persons prefer the use of salt alone.

If ground rice or rice flour is used, it should be mixed with cold water
before mixing with boiling water, and requires but thirty minutes' boiling.
Flavor with sugar or condensed milk.

Hard-Bread Gruel

Toast hard bread thoroughly and grind it into a powder. To one pint
of boiling water, to which one-half teaspoonful of salt has been added, add
two tablespoonfuls of hard-bread powder. Boil te.n minutes and then strain.
Flavor with one teaspoonful of sugar and one teaspoonful of condensed
milk to each cupful of the gruel.


Dissolve one-fourth cake of compressed yeast (Fleischmann's) in a little
warm water. If Fleischmann's yeast is not obtainable, use one-fourth cake
of ordinary compressed yeast or half a fluid ounce of bakers' yeast. Warm
one quart of fresh milk to about 90 Fahrenheit, add one tablespoonful of
sugar and the dissolved yeast; thoroughly mix and put into a stout bottle,
tying a small piece of cloth firmly over the cork to hold it in place. Shake
well, and allow to stand for six hours at a temperature of about 70 Fahren-
heit. Then put the bottle on ice upside down, and allow to stand for three
days before using. Condensed milk may be used with as good a result as
fresh milk. Use five parts of water to one part of condensed milk, and
omit the sugar.


One small lemon or lime.

One tablespoonful of sugar.

Three-fourths of a coffee cup of water (six ounces).

Wash and wipe the lemon or lime. Squeeze the juice into a glass or bowl.
Then add the sugar, pour on the water, and strain. Serve at once. Boiled
or sterilized water should be used.

One orange.

One teaspoonful of sugar.

Three-fourths of a coffee cup of water (six ounces).

Wash and wipe the orange. Squeeze the juice into the sugar. Add the
cold water, previously boiled. Strain and serve.

One egg.

Two teaspoonfuls of sugar.

Three-fourths of a coffee cup of milk (six ounces).
Salt to taste.


Beat the egg up till light. Add sugar and salt and then the milk, which
is better when not too cold. With the addition of one or two tablespoonfuls
of brandy this makes a very strengthening drink for convalescents.

Egg Lemonade

One egg.

One small lemon.

Two teaspoonfuls of sugar.

Beat up the white and yolk of the egg separately; add sugar to yolk. When
both are light, mix them together and add the strained juice of the lemon.
Pour into a glass and serve with a spoon.

A little cold water may be added if the beaten egg is too foamy.

Sherry and Egg

One egg.

One teaspoonful of sugar.

Two tablespoonfuls of sherry wine.

Break the egg into a bowl and add the sugar. Beat the two together until
they are thoroughly mixed. Add two tablespoonfuls of sherry wine and an
equal quantity of cold water. Mix thoroughly, strain, and serve immediately.

Toast Water

Toast three slices of soft bread till very brown, and dry throughout.
Break up fine, add one pint of boiling water, and set aside for fifteen
minutes. Turn into a strainer or piece of gauze and strain. The water thus
obtained may be used plain, or a little sugar or condensed milk may be
added. It may be served either hot or cold.


To each cup of water allow one tablespoonful of coffee, freshly roasted
and ground. Have the water boiling. Mix the coffee with a little cold
water and pour it into the boiling water. Let the whole come to a boil, and
then set aside for five or ten minutes to steep and settle before using. If
muddy it may be cleared by boiling with egg shells, or, in their absence, by
a dash of cold water. Add sugar and fresh or condensed milk to flavor as


To each half-pint of boiling water add one teaspoonful of tea. Let it
steep or infuse for five minutes. Never let. tea boil. Add sugar and fresh
or condensed milk to flavor as desired.

Beef Juice

Cut a lean piece of steak, from the round or other good portion, about
one-half pound in weight. Remove all fat and fibrous tissue. Broil over a
clear, hot fire so that the meat becomes pink and full of juice. It should



not be merely done on the outside and raw inside. Cut into small pieces
and squeeze out the juice. Add a little salt and it is ready to serve.

If it is needed warm, place the cup holding the juice in a bowl of warm
water. Do not let the temperature of this water exceed 160 Fahrenheit.

Beef Juice (Bottled)

Choose a good, well-flavored piece of beef, half a pound in weight. Cut
away the fat, leaving only the lean. Cut this up into small pieces. Put
these into a clean glass jar and cover the latter. Set the jar in a deep sauce-
pan of cold water and heat gradually for one hour. Then strain out the

Online LibraryCharles Field MasonA complete handbook for the sanitary troops of the U. S. army and navy and national guard and naval militia → online text (page 19 of 38)