Mrs.E. E. Kellogg.

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In selecting sweet potatoes, choose firm, plump roots, free from any
sprouts; if sprouted they will have a poor flavor, and are likely to be
watery.

The sweet potato is best cooked with the skin on; but all discolored
portions and the dry portion at each end, together with all branchlets,
should be carefully removed, and the potato well washed, and if to be
baked or roasted, well dried with a cloth before placing in the oven.

The average time required for boiling is about fifty minutes; baking,
one hour; steaming, about one hour; roasting, one and one half hours.


_RECIPES._

BAKED SWEET POTATOES. - Select those of uniform size, wash clean,
cutting out any imperfect spots, wipe dry, put into moderately hot oven,
and bake about one hour, or until the largest will yield to gentle
pressure between the fingers. Serve at once without peeling. Small
potatoes are best steamed, since if baked, the skins will take up nearly
the whole potato.

BAKED SWEET POTATO NO. 2. - Select potatoes of medium size, wash and
trim but do not pare, and put on the upper grate of the oven. For a peek
of potatoes, put in the lower part of the oven in a large shallow pan a
half pint of hot water. The water may be turned directly upon the oven
bottom if preferred. Bake slowly, turning once when half done. Serve in
their skins, or peel, slice, and return to the oven until nicely
browned.

BOILED SWEET POTATOES. - Choose potatoes of equal size; do not pare,
but after cleaning them well and removing any imperfect spots, put into
cold water and boll until they can be easily pierced with a fork; drain
thoroughly, and lay them on the top grate in the oven to dry for five or
ten minutes. Peel as soon as dry, and send at once to the table, in a
hot dish covered with a folded napkin. Sweet potatoes are much better
baked than boiled.

STEAMED SWEET POTATOES. - Wash the potatoes well, cut out any
discolored portions, and steam over a kettle of boiling water until they
can be easily pierced with a fork, not allowing the water in the pot to
cease boiling for a moment. Steam only sufficient to cook them, else
they will be watery.

BROWNED SWEET POTATOES. - Slice cold, cooked sweet potatoes evenly,
place on slightly oiled tins in a hot oven, and brown.

MASHED SWEET POTATOES. - Either bake or steam nice sweet potatoes,
and when tender, peel, mash them well, and season with cream and salt to
taste. They may be served at once, or made into patties and browned in
the oven.

POTATO HASH. - Take equal parts of cold Irish and sweet potatoes;
chop fine and mix thoroughly; season with salt if desired, and add
sufficient thin cream to moisten well. Turn into a stewpan, and heat
gently until boiling, tossing continually, that all parts become heated
alike, and serve at once.

ROASTED SWEET POTATOES. - Wash clean and wipe dry, potatoes of
uniform size, wrap with tissue paper, cover with hot ashes, and then
with coals from a hardwood fire; unless near the main fire, the coals
will need renewing a few times. This will require a longer time than by
any other method, but they are much nicer. The slow, continuous heat
promotes their mealiness. When tender, brush the ashes off with a broom,
and wipe with a dry cloth. Send to the table in their jackets.

TO DRY SWEET POTATOES. - Carefully clean and drop them into boiling
water. Let them remain until the skins can be easily slipped off; then
cut into slices and spread on racks to dry. To prepare for cooking, soak
over night, and boil the next day.


TURNIPS.

DESCRIPTION. - The turnip belongs to the order _Cruciferæ_,
signifying "cross flowers," so called because their four petals are
arranged in the form of a cross. It is a native of Europe and the
temperate portions of Asia, growing wild in borders of fields and waste
places. The ancient Roman gastronomists considered the turnip, when
prepared in the following manner, a dish fit for epicures: "After
boiling, extract the water from them, and season with cummin, rue or
benzoin, pounded in a mortar; afterward add honey, vinegar, gravy, and
boiled grapes. Allow the whole to simmer, and serve."

Under cultivation, the turnip forms an agreeable culinary esculent; but
on account of the large proportion of water entering into its
composition, its nutritive value is exceedingly low. The Swedish, or
Rutabaga, variety is rather more nutritive than the white, but its
stronger flavor renders it less palatable. Unlike the potato, the turnip
contains no starch, but instead, a gelatinous substance called pectose,
which during the boiling process is changed into a vegetable jelly
called pectine. The white lining just inside the skin is usually bitter;
hence the tuber should be peeled sufficiently deep to remove it. When
well cooked, turnips are quite easily digested.

PREPARATION AND COOKING. - Turnips are good for culinary purposes
only from the time of their ripening till they begin to sprout. The
process of germination changes their proximate elements, and renders
them less fit for food. Select turnips which are plump and free from
disease. A turnip that is wilted, or that appears spongy, pithy, or
cork-like when cut, is not fit for food.

Prepare turnips for cooking by thoroughly washing and scraping, if young
and tender, or by paring if more mature. If small, they may be cooked
whole; if large, they should be cut across the grain into slices a half
inch in thickness. If cooked whole, care must be taken to select those
of uniform size; and if sliced, the slices must be of equal thickness.


_RECIPES._

BOILED TURNIPS. - Turnips, like other vegetables, should be boiled
in as small an amount of water as possible. Great care must be taken,
however, that the kettle does not get dry, as scorched turnip is
spoiled. An excellent precaution, in order to keep them from scorching
in case the water becomes low, is to place an inverted saucer or
sauce-dish in the bottom of the kettle before putting in the turnips.
Put into boiling water, cook rapidly until sufficiently tender to pierce
easily with a fork; too much cooking discolors and renders them strong
in flavor. Boiled turnips should be drained very thoroughly, and all
water pressed out before preparing for the table. The age, size, and
variety of the turnip will greatly vary the time necessary for its
cooking. The safest rule is to allow plenty of time, and test with a
fork. Young turnips will cook in about forty-five minutes; old turnips,
sliced, require from one and a quarter to two hours. If whole or cut in
halves, they require a proportionate length of time. White turnips
require much, less cooking than yellow ones.

BAKED TURNIPS. - Select turnips of uniform size; wash and wipe, but
do not pare; place on the top grate of a moderately hot oven; bake two
or more hours or until perfectly tender; peel and serve at once, either
mashed or with cream sauce. Turnips are much sweeter baked than when
cooked in any other way.

CREAMED TURNIPS. - Pare, but do not cut, young sweet white turnips;
boil till tender in a small quantity of water; drain and dry well. Cook
a tablespoonful of flour in a pint of rich milk or part cream; arrange
the turnips in a baking dish, pour the sauce over them, add salt if
desired, sprinkle the top with grated bread crumbs, and brown in a quick
oven.

CHOPPED TURNIPS. - Chop well-boiled white turnips very fine, add
salt to taste and sufficient lemon juice to moisten. Turn into a
saucepan and heat till hot, gently lifting and stirring constantly. Cold
boiled turnip may be used advantageously in this way.

MASHED TURNIPS. - Wash the turnips, pare, and drop into boiling
water. Cook until perfectly tender; turn into a colander and press out
the water with a plate or large spoon; mash until free from lumps,
season with a little sweet cream, and salt if desired. If the turnips
are especially watery, one or two hot, mealy potatoes mashed with them
will be an improvement.

SCALLOPED TURNIPS. - Prepare and boil whole white turnips until
nearly tender; cut into thin slices, lay in an earthen pudding dish,
pour over them a white sauce sufficient to cover, made by cooking a
tablespoonful of flour in a pint of milk, part cream if preferred, until
thickened. Season with salt, sprinkle the top lightly with grated bread
crumbs, and bake in a quick oven until a rich brown. Place the baking
dish on a clean plate, and serve. Rich milk or cream may be used instead
of white sauce, if preferred.

STEAMED TURNIPS. - Select turnips of uniform size, wash, pare, and
steam rapidly till they can be easily pierced with a fork; mash, or
serve with lemon juice or cream sauce, as desired.

STEWED TURNIPS. - Prepare and slice some young, fresh white turnips,
boil or steam about twenty minutes, drain thoroughly, turn into a
saucepan with a cup of new milk for each quart of turnips; simmer gently
until tender, season with salt if desired, and serve.

TURNIPS IN JUICE. - Wash young white turnips, peel, and boil whole
in sufficient water to keep them from burning. Cover closely and cook
gently until tender, by which time the water in the kettle should be
reduced to the consistency of syrup. Serve at once.

TURNIPS WITH CREAM SAUCE. - Wash and pare the turnips, cut them
into half-inch dice, and cook in boiling water until tender. Meanwhile
prepare a cream sauce as directed for Scalloped Turnips, using thin
cream in place of milk. Drain the turnips, pour the cream sauce over
them, let them boil up once, and serve.


PARSNIPS.

DESCRIPTION. - The common garden parsnip is derived by cultivation
from the wild parsnip, indigenous to many parts of Europe and the north
of Asia, and cultivated since Roman times. It is not only used for
culinary purposes, but a wine is made from it. In the north of Ireland a
table beer is brewed from its fermented product and hops.

The percentage of nutritive elements contained in the parsnip is very
small; so small, indeed, that one pound of parsnips affords hardly one
fifth of an ounce of nitrogenous or muscle-forming material. The time
required for its digestion, varies from two and one half to three and
one half hours.

PREPARATION AND COOKING. - Wash and trim off any rough portions:
scrape well with a knife to remove the skins, and drop at once into cold
water to prevent discoloration. If the parsnips are smooth-skinned,
fresh, and too small to need dividing, they need only be washed
thoroughly before cooking, as the skins can be easily removed by rubbing
with a clean towel. Reject those that are wilted, pithy, coarse, or
stringy. Large parsnips should be divided, for if cooked whole, the
outside is likely to become soft before the center is tender. They may
be either split lengthwise or sliced. Parsnips may be boiled, baked, or
steamed; but like all other vegetables containing a large percentage of
water, are preferable steamed or baked.

The time required for cooking young parsnips, is about forty-five
minutes; when old, they require from one to two hours.


_RECIPES._

BAKED PARSNIPS. - Wash, thoroughly, but do not scrape the roots;
bake the same as potatoes. When tender, remove the skins, slice, and
serve with cream or an egg sauce prepared as directed for Parsnips with
Egg Sauce. They are also very nice mashed and seasoned with cream. Baked
and steamed parsnips are far sweeter than boiled ones.

BAKED PARSNIPS NO. 2. - Wash, scrape, and divide; drop into boiling
water, a little more than sufficient to cook them, and boil gently till
thoroughly tender. There should remain about one half pint of the liquor
when the parsnips are done. Arrange on an earthen plate or shallow
pudding dish, not more than one layer deep; cover with the juice, and
bake, basting frequently until the juice is all absorbed, and the
parsnips delicately browned. Serve at once.

BOILED PARSNIPS. - Clean, scrape, drop into a small quantity of
boiling water, and cook until they can be easily pierced, with a fork.
Drain thoroughly, cut the parsnips in slices, and mash or serve with a
white sauce, to which a little lemon juice may be added if desired.

BROWNED PARSNIPS. - Slice cold parsnips into rather thick pieces,
and brown as directed for browned potatoes.

CREAMED PARSNIPS. - Bake or steam the parsnips until tender; slice,
add salt if desired, and a cup of thin sweet cream. Let them stew slowly
until nearly dry, or if preferred, just boil up once and serve.

MASHED PARSNIPS. - Wash and scrape, dropping at once into cold water
to prevent discoloration. Slice thinly and steam, or bake whole until
perfectly tender. When done, mash until free from lumps, removing all
hard or stringy portions; add salt to taste and a few spoonfuls of thick
sweet cream, and serve.

PARSNIPS WITH CREAM SAUCE. - Bake as previously directed. When
tender, slice, cut into cubes, and pour over them a cream sauce prepared
as for Turnips with Cream Sauce. Boil up together once, and serve.

PARSNIPS WITH EGG SAUCE. - Scrape, wash, and slice thinly, enough
parsnips to make three pints; steam, bake, or boil them until very
tender. If boiled, turn into a colander and drain well. Have ready an
egg sauce, for preparing which heat a pint of rich milk or very thin
cream to boiling, stir into it a level tablespoonful of flour rubbed
smooth with a little milk. Let this boil a few minutes, stirring
constantly until the flour is well cooked and the sauce thickened; then
add slowly the well-beaten yolk of one egg, stirring rapidly so that it
shall be well mingled with the whole; add salt to taste; let it boil up
once, pour over the parsnips, and serve. The sauce should be of the
consistency of thick cream.

PARSNIPS WITH POTATOES. - Wash, scrape, and slice enough parsnips
to make two and a half quarts. Pare and slice enough potatoes to make
one pint. Cook together in a small quantity of water. When tender, mash
smoothly, add salt, the yolks of two eggs well beaten, and a cup of rich
milk. Beat well together, put into an earthen or china dish, and brown
lightly in the oven.

STEWED PARSNIPS. - Prepare and boil for a half hour; drain, cover
with rich milk, add salt if desired, and stew gently till tender.

STEWED PARSNIPS WITH CELERY. - Prepare and steam or boil some nice
ones until about half done. If boiled, drain thoroughly; add salt if
desired, and a tablespoonful of minced celery. Turn rich boiling milk
over them, cover, and stew fifteen or twenty minutes, or till perfectly
tender.


CARROTS.

DESCRIPTION. - The garden carrot is a cultivated variety of a plant
belonging to the _Umbettiferæ_, and grows wild in many portions of
Europe. The root has long been used for food. By the ancient Greeks and
Romans it was much esteemed as a salad. The carrot is said to have been
introduced into England by Flemish refugees during the reigns of
Elizabeth and James I. Its feathery leaves were used by the ladies as an
adornment for their headdresses, in place of plumes. Carrots contain
sugar enough for making a syrup from them; they also yield by
fermentation and distillation a spirituous liquor. In Germany they are
sometimes cut into small pieces, and roasted as a substitute for coffee.

Starch does not enter into the composition of carrots, but a small
portion of pectose is found instead. Carrots contain more water than
parsnips, and both much cellulose and little nutritive material. Carrots
when well cooked form a wholesome food, but one not adapted to weak
stomachs, as they are rather hard to digest and tend to flatulence.

PREPARATION AND COOKING. - The suggestions given for the preparation
of parsnips are also applicable to carrots; and they may be boiled,
steamed, or browned in the same manner. From one to two hours time will
be required, according to age, size, variety, and method of cooking.


_RECIPES._

BOILED CARROTS. - Clean, scrape, drop into boiling water, and cook
till tender; drain thoroughly, slice, and serve with a cream sauce.
Varieties with strong flavor are better parboiled for fifteen or twenty
minutes, and put into fresh boiling water to finish.

CARROTS WITH EGG SAUCE. - Wash and scrape well; slice and throw into
boiling water, or else steam. When tender, drain thoroughly, and pour
over them a sauce prepared the same as for parsnips (page 244), with the
addition of a tablespoonful of sugar. Let them boil up once, and serve.

STEWED CARROTS. - Prepare young and tender carrots, drop into
boiling water, and cook for fifteen or twenty minutes. Drain, slice, and
put into a stewpan with rich milk or cream nearly to cover; simmer
gently until tender; season with salt and a little chopped parsley.


BEETS.

DESCRIPTION. - The beet is a native of the coasts of the
Mediterranean, and is said to owe its botanical name, _beta_, to a
fancied resemblance to the Greek letter B. Two varieties are in common
use as food, the white and the red beet; while a sub-variety, the sugar
beet, is largely cultivated in France, in connection with the beet-sugar
industry in that country. The same industry has recently been introduced
into this country. It is grown extensively in Germany and Russia, for
the same pose, and is also used there in the manufacture of alcohol.

The beet root is characterized by its unusual amount of sugar. It is
considered more nutritive than any other esculent tuber except the
potato, but the time required for its digestion exceeds that of most
vegetables, being three and three fourths hours.

PREPARATION AND COOKING. - Beets, like other tubers, should be
fresh, unshriveled, and healthy. Wash carefully, scrubbing with a soft
brush to remove all particles of dirt; but avoid scraping, cutting, or
breaking, lest the sweet juices escape. In handling for storage, be
careful not to bruise or break the skins; and in purchasing from the
market, select only such as are perfect.

Beets may be boiled, baked, or steamed. In boiling, if the skin is cut
or broken, the juice will escape in the water, and the flavor will be
injured; for this reason, beets should not be punctured with a fork to
find if done. When tender, the thickest part will yield readily to
pressure of the fingers. Beets should be boiled in just as little water
as possible, and they will be much better if it has all evaporated by
the time they are cooked.

Young beets will boil in one hour, while old beets require from three to
five hours; if tough, wilted, and stringy, they cannot be boiled tender.
Baked beets require from three to six hours.


_RECIPES._

BAKED BEETS. - Beets are far better baked than boiled, though it
takes a longer time to cook properly. French cooks bake them slowly six
hours in a covered dish, the bottom of which is lined with
well-moistened rye straw; however, they may be baked on the oven grate,
like potatoes. Wipe dry after washing, and bake slowly. They are very
nice served with a sauce made of equal quantities of lemon juice and
whipped cream, with a little salt.

BAKED BEETS NO. 2. - Wash young and tender beets, and place in an
earthen baking dish with a very little water; as it evaporates, add
more, which must be of boiling temperature. Set into a moderate oven,
and according to size of the beets, bake slowly from two to three hours.
When tender, remove the skins and dress with lemon juice or cream sauce.

BEETS AND POTATOES. - Boil newly matured potatoes and young beets
separately till tender; then peel and slice. Put thorn in alternate
layers in a vegetable dish, with salt to taste, and enough sweet cream
nearly to cover. Brown in the oven, and serve at once.

BEET HASH. - Chop quite finely an equal quantity of cold boiled or
baked beets and boiled or baked potatoes. Put into a shallow saucepan,
add salt and sufficient hot cream to moisten. Toss frequently, and cook
until well heated throughout. Serve hot.

BEET GREENS. - Take young, tender beets, clean thoroughly without
separating the tops and roots. Examine the leaves carefully, and pick
off inferior ones. Put into boiling water, and cook for nearly an hour.
Drain, press out all water, and chop quite fine. Serve with a dressing
of lemon juice or cream, as preferred.

BEET SALAD, OR CHOPPED BEETS. - Cold boiled or baked beets, chopped
quite fine, but not minced, make a nice salad when served with a
dressing of lemon juice and whipped cream in the proportion of three
tablespoonfuls of lemon juice to one half cup of whipped cream, and salt
if desired.

BEET SALAD NO. 2. - Chop equal parts of boiled beets and fresh young
cabbage. Mix thoroughly, add salt to taste, a few tablespoonfuls of
sugar, and cover with diluted lemon juice. Equal quantities of cold
boiled beets and cold boiled potatoes, chopped fine, thoroughly mixed,
and served with a dressing of lemon juice and whipped cream, make a
palatable salad. Care should be taken in the preparation of these and
the preceding salad, not to chop the vegetables so fine as to admit of
their being eaten without mastication.

BOILED BEETS. - Wash carefully, drop into boiling water, and cook
until tender. When done, drop into cold water for a minute, when the
skins can be easily rubbed off with the hand. Slice, and serve hot with
lemon juice or with a cream sauce.

STEWED BEETS. - Bake beets according to recipe No. 2. Peel, cut in
slices, turn into a saucepan, nearly cover with thin cream, simmer for
ten or fifteen minutes, add salt if desired, and thicken the gravy with
a little corn starch or flour.


CABBAGE.

DESCRIPTION. - The common white garden cabbage is one of the oldest
of cultivated vegetables. A variety of the plant known as red cabbage
was the delight of ancient gourmands more than eighteen centuries ago.
The Egyptians adored it, erected altars to it, and made it the first
dish at their repasts. In this they were imitated by the Greeks and
Romans.

Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, considered the cabbage one of the
most valuable of remedies, and often prescribed a dish of boiled cabbage
to be eaten with salt for patients suffering with violent colic.
Erasistratus looked upon it as a sovereign remedy against paralysis,
while Cato in his writings affirmed it to be a panacea for all diseases,
and believed the use the Romans made of it to have been the means
whereby they were able, during six hundred years, to do without the
assistance of physicians, whom they had expelled from their territory.
The learned philosopher, Pythagoras, composed books in which he lauded
its wonderful virtues.

The Germans are so fond of cabbage that it enters into the composition
of a majority of their culinary products. The cabbage was first raised
in England about 1640, by Sir Anthony Ashley. That this epoch, important
to the English horticultural and culinary world, may never be forgotten,
a cabbage is represented upon Sir Anthony's monument.

The nutritive value of the cabbage is not high, nearly ninety per cent
being water; but it forms an agreeable variety in the list of vegetable
foods, and is said to possess marked antiscorbutic virtue. It is,
however, difficult of digestion, and therefore not suited to weak
stomachs. It would be impossible to sustain life for a lengthened period
upon cabbage, since to supply the body with sufficient food elements,
the quantity would exceed the rate of digestion and the capacity of the
stomach.

M. Chevreul, a French scientist, has ascertained that the peculiar odor
given off during the boiling of cabbage is due to the disengagement of
sulphureted hydrogen. Cabbage is said to be more easily digested raw
than cooked.

PREPARATION AND COOKING. - A good cabbage should have a
well-developed, firm head, with fresh, crisp leaves, free from
worm-holes and decayed portions. To prepare for cooking, stalk, shake
well to free from dirt, and if there are any signs of insects, lay in
cold salted water for an hour or so to drive them out. Rinse away the
salt water, and if to be boiled, drop into a small quantity of boiling
water. Cover closely and boil vigorously until tender. If cooked slowly,
it will be watery and stringy, while overdone cabbage is especially
insipid and flavorless. If too much water has been used, remove the
cover, that evaporation may go on more rapidly; if too little, replenish
with boiling water. Cabbage should be cooked in a porcelain-lined or
granite-ware sauce pan or a very clean iron kettle. Cabbage may also be
steamed, but care must be taken to have the process as rapid as
possible. Fresh young cabbage will cook in about one hour; old cabbage
requires from two to three hours.


_RECIPES._

BAKED CABBAGE. - Prepare and chop a firm head of young white
cabbage, boil until tender, drain, and set aside until nearly cold. Then
add two well-beaten eggs, salt to taste, and a half cup of thin cream or



Online LibraryMrs.E. E. KelloggScience in the Kitchen → online text (page 22 of 54)