Mrs.F.L. Gillette.

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through a sieve), and add the force meat balls and a little butter
rolled in flour. Simmer it gently for ten minutes, but do not let it
come to a boil, as that will injure the color. Serve with small dice
of bread fried brown in butter.


OYSTER SOUP, No. 1.

Two quarts of oysters, one quart of milk, two tablespoonfuls of
butter, one teacupful of hot water; pepper, salt.

Strain all the liquor from the oysters; add the water, and heat. When
near the boil, add the seasoning, then the oysters. Cook about five
minutes from the time they begin to simmer, until they "ruffle." Stir
in the butter, cook one minute, and pour into the tureen. Stir in the
boiling milk and send to table. Some prefer all water in place of
milk.

[Illustration: IDA SAXTON McKINLEY.]

OYSTER SOUP. No. 2.

Scald one gallon of oysters in their own liquor. Add one quart of rich
milk to the liquor, and when it comes to a boil, skim out the oysters
and set aside. Add the yolks of four eggs, two good tablespoonfuls of
butter, and one of flour, all mixed well together, but in this
order - first, the milk, then, after beating the eggs, add a little of
the hot liquor to them gradually, and stir them rapidly into the soup.
Lastly, add the butter and whatever seasoning you fancy besides plain
pepper and salt, which must both be put in to taste with caution.

Celery salt most persons like extremely; others would prefer a little
marjoram or thyme; others again mace and a bit of onion. Use your own
discretion in this regard.


CLAM SOUP. (French Style.)

Mince two dozen hard shell clams very fine. Fry half a minced onion in
an ounce of butter; add to it a pint of hot water, a pinch of mace,
four cloves, one allspice and six whole pepper corns. Boil fifteen
minutes and strain into a saucepan; add the chopped clams and a pint
of clam-juice or hot water; simmer slowly two hours; strain and rub
the pulp through a sieve into the liquid. Return it to the saucepan
and keep it lukewarm. Boil three half-pints of milk in a saucepan
(previously wet with cold water, which prevents burning) and whisk it
into the soup. Dissolve a teaspoonful of flour in cold milk, add it to
the soup, taste for seasoning; heat it gently to near the boiling
point; pour into a tureen previously heated with hot water, and serve
with or without pieces of fried bread - called _croutons_ in kitchen
French.


CLAM SOUP.

Twenty-five clams chopped fine. Put over the fire the liquor that was
drained from them, and a cup of water; add the chopped clams and boil
half an hour; then season to taste with pepper and salt and a piece of
butter as large as an egg; boil up again and add one quart of milk
boiling hot, stir in a tablespoon of flour made to a cream with a
little cold milk, or two crackers rolled fine. Some like a little mace
and lemon juice in the seasoning.




MODES OF FRYING


The usual custom among professional cooks is to entirely immerse the
article to be cooked in boiling fat, but from inconvenience most
households use the half-frying method of frying in a small amount of
fat in a frying pan. For the first method a shallow iron frying
kettle, large at the top and small at the bottom, is best to use. The
fat should half fill the kettle, or an amount sufficient to float
whatever is to be fried; the heat of the fat should get to such a
degree that, when a piece of bread or a teaspoonful of the batter is
dropped in it, it will become brown almost instantly, but should not
be so hot as to burn the fat. Some cooks say that the fat should be
smoking, but my experience is, that is a mistake, as that soon ruins
the fat. As soon as it begins to smoke it should be removed a little
to one side, and still be kept at the boiling point. If fritters,
crullers, croquettes, etc., are dropped into fat that is too hot, it
crusts over the outside before the inside has fully risen, making a
heavy, hard article, and also ruining the fat, giving it a burnt
flavor.

Many French cooks prefer beef fat or suet to lard for frying purposes,
considering it more wholesome and digestible, does not impart as much
flavor, or adhere or soak into the article cooked as pork fat.

In families of any size, where there is much cooking required, there
are enough drippings and fat remnants from roasts of beef, skimmings
from the soup kettle, with the addition of occasionally a pound of
suet from the market, to amply supply the need. All such remnants and
skimmings should be clarified about twice a week, by boiling them all
together in water. When the fat is all melted, it should be strained
with the water and set aside to cool. After the fat on the top has
hardened, lift the cake from the water on which it lies, scrape off
all the dark particles from the bottom, then melt over again the fat;
while hot strain into a small clean stone jar or bright tin pail, and
then it is ready for use. Always after frying anything, the fat should
stand until it settles and has cooled somewhat; then turn off
carefully so as to leave it clear from the sediment that settles at
the bottom.

Refined cotton-seed oil is now being adopted by most professional
cooks in hotels, restaurants and many private households for culinary
purposes, and will doubtless in future supersede animal fats,
especially for frying, it being quite as delicate a medium as frying
with olive oil. It is now sold by leading grocers, put up in packages
of two and four quarts.

The second mode of frying, using a frying pan with a small quantity of
fat or grease, to be done properly, should, in the first place, have
the frying pan hot over the fire, and the fat in it _actually boiling_
before the article to be cooked is placed in it, the intense heat
quickly searing up the pores of the article and forming a brown crust
on the lower side, then turning over and browning the other the same
way.

Still, there is another mode of frying; the process is somewhat
similar to broiling, the hot frying pan or spider replacing the hot
fire. To do this correctly, a thick bottomed frying pan should be
used. Place it over the fire, and when it is so hot that it will siss,
oil over the bottom of the pan with a piece of suet, that is if the
meat is all lean; if not, it is not necessary to grease the bottom of
the pan. Lay in the meat quite flat, and brown it quickly, first on
one side, then on the other; when sufficiently cooked, dish on a _hot_
platter and season the same as broiled meats.


FISH.

In selecting fish, choose those only in which the eye is full and
prominent, the flesh thick and firm, the scales bright and fins stiff.
They should be thoroughly cleaned before cooking.

The usual modes of cooking fish are boiled, baked, broiled, fried and
occasionally stewed. Steaming fish is much superior to boiling, but
the ordinary conveniences in private houses do not admit of the
possibility of enjoying this delicate way of cooking it. Large fish
are generally boiled, medium-sized ones baked or boiled, the smaller
kinds fried or broiled. Very large fish, such as cod, halibut, etc.,
are cut in steaks or slices for frying or broiling. The heads of some
fish, as the cod, halibut, etc., are considered tidbits by many. Small
fish, or pan-fish, as they are usually called, are served without the
heads, with the exception of brook-trout and smelts; these are usually
cooked whole, with the heads on. Bake fish slowly, basting often with
butter and water. Salmon is considered the most nutritious of all
fish. When boiling fish, by adding a little vinegar and salt to the
water, it seasons and prevents the nutriment from being drawn out; the
vinegar acting on the water hardens the water.

Fill the fish with a nicely prepared stuffing of rolled cracker or
stale bread crumbs, seasoned with butter, pepper, salt, sage and any
other aromatic herbs fancied; sew up; wrap in a well-floured cloth,
tied closely with twine, and boil or steam. The garnishes for boiled
fish are: for turbot, fried smelts; for other boiled fish, parsley,
sliced beets, lemon or sliced boiled egg. Do not use the knives,
spoons, etc., that are used in cooking fish, for other food, as they
will be apt to impart a fishy flavor.

Fish to be boiled should be put into _cold water_ and set on the fire
to cook very gently, or the outside will break before the inner part
is done. Unless the fish are small, they should never be put into warm
water; nor should water, either hot or cold, be poured _on_ to the
fish, as it is liable to break the skin; if it should be necessary to
add a little water while the fish is cooking, it ought to be poured in
gently at the side of the vessel.

Fish to be broiled should lie, after they are dressed, for two or
three hours, with their inside well sprinkled with salt and pepper.

Salt fish should be soaked in water before boiling, according to the
time it has been in salt. When it is hard and dry, it will require
thirty-six hours soaking before it is dressed, and the water must be
changed three or four times. When fish is not very salt, twenty-four
hours, or even one night, will suffice.

When frying fish the fire must be hot enough to bring the fat to such
a degree of heat as to sear the surface and make it impervious to the
fat, and at the same time seal up the rich juices. As soon as the fish
is browned by this sudden application of heat, the pan may be moved to
a cooler place on the stove, that the process may be finished more
slowly.

Fat in which fish has been fried is just as good to use again for the
same purpose, but it should be kept by itself and not put to any other
use.


TO FRY FISH.

Most of the smaller fish (generally termed pan-fish) are usually
fried. Clean well, cut off the head, and, if quite large, cut out the
backbone, and slice the body crosswise into five or six pieces; season
with salt and pepper. Dip in Indian meal or wheat flour, or in beaten
egg, and roll in bread or fine cracker crumbs - trout and perch should
not be dipped in meal; put into a thick bottomed iron frying pan, the
flesh side down, with hot lard or drippings; fry slowly, turning when
lightly browned. The following method may be deemed preferable: Dredge
the pieces with flour; brush them over with beaten egg; roll in bread
crumbs, and fry in hot lard or drippings sufficient to cover, the same
as frying crullers. If the fat is very hot, the fish will fry without
absorbing it, and it will be palatably cooked. When browned on one
side, turn it over in the fat and brown the other, draining when done.
This is a particularly good way to fry slices of large fish. Serve
with tomato sauce; garnish with slices of lemon.


PAN-FISH.

Place them in a thick bottomed frying pan with heads all one way. Fill
the spaces with smaller fish. When they are fried quite brown and
ready to turn, put a dinner plate over them, drain off the fat; then
invert the pan, and they will be left unbroken on the plate. Put the
lard back into the pan, and when _hot_ slip back the fish. When the
other side is brown, drain, turn on a plate as before, and slip them
on a warm platter, to be sent to the table. Leaving the heads on and
the fish a crispy-brown, in perfect shape, improves the appearance if
not the flavor. Garnish with slices of lemon.

_Hotel Lafayette, Philadelphia._


BAKED PICKEREL.

Carefully clean and wipe the fish, and lay in a dripping pan with
enough hot water to prevent scorching. A perforated sheet of tin,
fitting loosely, or several muffin rings may be used to keep it off
the bottom. Lay it in a circle on its belly, head and tail touching,
and tied, or as directed in note on fish; bake slowly, basting often
with butter and water. When done, have ready a cup of sweet cream or
rich milk to which a few spoons of hot water has been added; stir in
two large spoons of melted butter and a little chopped parsley; heat
all by setting the cup in boiling water; add the gravy from the
dripping-pan, and let it boil up once; place the fish in a hot dish
and pour over it the sauce. Or an egg sauce may be made with drawn
butter; stir in the yolk of an egg quickly, and then a teaspoon of
chopped parsley. It can be stuffed or not, just as you please.


BOILED SALMON.

The middle slice of salmon is the best. Sew up neatly in a
mosquito-net bag, and boil a quarter of an hour to the pound in hot
salted water. When done, unwrap with care, and lay upon a hot dish,
taking care not to break it. Have ready a large cupful of drawn
butter, very rich, in which has been stirred a tablespoonful of minced
parsley and the juice of a lemon. Pour half upon the salmon and serve
the rest in a boat. Garnish with parsley and sliced eggs.


BROILED SALMON.

Cut slices from an inch to an inch and an half thick, dry them in a
cloth, season with salt and pepper, dredge them in sifted flour, and
broil on a gridiron rubbed with suet.

_Another Mode._ - Cut the slices one inch thick, and season them with
pepper and salt; butter a sheet of white paper, lay each slice on a
separate piece, envelop them in it with their ends twisted; broil
gently over a clear fire, and serve with anchovy or caper sauce. When
higher seasoning is required, add a few chopped herbs and a little
spice.


FRESH SALMON FRIED.

Cut the slices three-quarters of an inch thick, dredge them with
flour, or dip them in egg and crumbs; fry a light brown. This mode
answers for all fish cut into steaks. Season well with salt and
pepper.


SALMON AND CAPER SAUCE.

Two slices of salmon, one-quarter pound butter, one-half teaspoonful
of chopped parsley, one shallot; salt and pepper to taste.

Lay the salmon in a baking dish, place pieces of butter over it, and
add the other ingredients, rubbing a little of the seasoning into the
fish; place it in the oven and baste it frequently; when done, take
it out and drain for a minute or two; lay it in a dish, pour caper
sauce over it and serve. Salmon dressed in this way, with tomato
sauce, is very delicious.


BROILED SALT SALMON OR OTHER SALT FISH.

Soak salmon in tepid or cold water twenty-four hours, changing water
several times, or let stand under faucet of running water. If in a
hurry, or desiring a very salt relish, it may do to soak a short time,
having water warm, and changing, parboiling slightly. At the hour
wanted, broil sharply. Season to suit taste, covering with butter.
This recipe will answer for all kinds of salt fish.


PICKLED SALMON.

Take a fine, fresh salmon, and, having cleaned it, cut it into large
pieces, and boil it in salted water as if for eating. Then drain it,
wrap it in a dry cloth, and set it in a cold place till next day. Then
make the pickle, which must be in proportion to the quantity of fish.
To one quart of the water in which the salmon was boiled, allow two
quarts of the best vinegar, one ounce of whole black pepper, one
nutmeg grated and a dozen blades of mace. Boil all these together in a
kettle closely covered to prevent the flavor from evaporating. When
the vinegar thus prepared is quite cold, pour it over the salmon, and
put on the top a tablespoonful of sweet oil, which will make it keep
the longer.

Cover it closely, put it in a dry, cool place, and it will be good for
many months. This is the nicest way of preserving salmon, and is
approved by all who have tried it.


SMOKED SALMON.

Smoked salmon to be broiled should be put upon the gridiron first,
with the flesh side to the fire.

Smoked salmon is very nice when shaved like smoked beef, and served
with coffee or tea.


FRICASSEE SALMON.

This way of cooking fresh salmon is a pleasant change from the
ordinary modes of cooking it. Cut one and one-half pounds of salmon
into pieces one inch square; put the pieces in a stewpan with half a
cupful of water, a little salt, a little white pepper, one clove, one
blade of mace, three pieces of sugar, one shallot and a heaping
teaspoonful of mustard mixed smoothly with half a teacupful of
vinegar. Let this boil up once and add six tomatoes peeled and cut
into tiny pieces, a few sprigs of parsley finely minced, and one
wine-glassful of sherry. Let all simmer gently for three-quarters of
an hour. Serve very hot, and garnish with dry toast cut in triangular
pieces. This dish is good, very cold, for luncheon or breakfast.


SALMON PATTIES.

Cut cold, cooked salmon into dice. Heat about a pint of the dice in
half a pint of cream. Season to taste with cayenne pepper and salt.
Fill the shells and serve. Cold, cooked fish of any kind may be made
into patties in this way. Use any fish sauce you choose - all are
equally good.


FISH AND OYSTER PIE.

Any remains of cold fish, such as cod or haddock, 2 dozen oysters,
pepper and salt to taste, bread crumbs, sufficient for the quantity of
fish; 1/2 teaspoonful of grated nutmeg, 1 teaspoonful of finely
chopped parsley.

Clear the fish from the bones, and put a layer of it in a pie-dish,
which sprinkle with pepper and salt; then a layer of bread crumbs,
oysters, nutmeg and chopped parsley. Repeat this till the dish is
quite full. You may form a covering either of bread crumbs, which
should be browned, or puff-paste, which should be cut off into long
strips, and laid in cross-bars over the fish, with a line of the paste
first laid round the edge. Before putting on the top, pour in some
made melted butter, or a little thin white sauce, and the
oyster-liquor, and bake.

_Time_. - If of cooked fish, 1/4 hour; if made of fresh fish and
puff-paste, 3/4 hour.


STEAMED FISH.

Secure the tail of the fish in its mouth, the body in a circle; pour
over it half a pint of vinegar, seasoned with pepper and salt; let it
stand an hour in a cool place; pour off the vinegar, and put it in a
steamer over boiling water, and steam twenty minutes, or longer for
large fish. When the meat easily separates from the bone it is done.
Drain well and serve on a very clean white napkin, neatly folded and
placed on the platter; decorate the napkin around the fish with sprigs
of curled parsley, or with fanciful beet cuttings, or alternately with
both.


TO BROIL A SHAD.

Split and wash the shad and afterwards dry it in a cloth. Season it
with salt and pepper. Have ready a bed of clear, bright coals. Grease
your gridiron well, and as soon as it is hot, lay the shad upon it,
the flesh side down; cover with a dripping-pan and broil it for about
a quarter of an hour, or more, according to the thickness. Butter it
well and send it to the table. Covering it while broiling gives it a
more delicious flavor.


BAKED SHAD.

Many people are of the opinion that the very best method of cooking a
shad is to bake it. Stuff it with bread crumbs, salt, pepper, butter
and parsley, and mix this up with the beaten yolk of egg; fill the
fish with it, and sew it up or fasten a string around it. Pour over it
a little water and some butter, and bake as you would a fowl. A shad
will require from an hour to an hour and a quarter to bake. Garnish
with slices of lemon, water cress, etc.

_Dressing for Baked Shad._ - Boil up the gravy in which the shad was
baked, put in a large tablespoonful of catsup, a tablespoonful of
brown flour which has been wet with cold water, the juice of a lemon,
and a glass of sherry or Madeira wine. Serve in a sauce boat.


TO COOK A SHAD ROE.

Drop into boiling water and cook gently for twenty minutes; then take
from the fire and drain. Butter a tin plate and lay the drained roe
upon it. Dredge well with salt and pepper and spread soft butter over
it; then dredge thickly with flour. Cook in the oven for half an hour,
basting frequently with salt, pepper, flour, butter and water.


TO COOK SHAD ROE. (Another Way.)

First partly boil them in a small covered pan, take out and season
them with salt, a little pepper, dredge with flour and fry as any
fish.


BOILED BASS.

After thoroughly cleaning it place in a saucepan with enough water to
cover it; add two tablespoonfuls of salt; set the saucepan over the
fire, and when it has boiled about five minutes try to pull out one of
the fins; if it loosens easily from the body carefully take the fish
out of the water, lay it on a platter, surround it with half a dozen
hard-boiled eggs, and serve it with a sauce.


BOILED BLUEFISH.

Boiled the same as BASS.


BAKED BLUEFISH.

Baked the same as BAKED SHAD - see page 55.


FRIED EELS.

After cleaning the eels well, cut them in pieces two inches long; wash
them and wipe them dry; roll them in wheat flour or rolled cracker,
and fry, as directed for other fish, in hot lard or beef dripping,
salted. They should be browned all over and thoroughly done.

Eels are sometimes dipped in batter and then fried, or into egg and
bread crumbs. Serve with crisped parsley.


SHEEPSHEAD WITH DRAWN BUTTER.

Select a medium-sized fish, clean it thoroughly, and rub a little salt
over it; wrap it in a cloth and put it in a steamer; place this over a
pot of fast-boiling water and steam one hour; then lay it whole upon a
hot side-dish, garnish with tufts of parsley and slices of lemon, and
serve with drawn butter, prepared as follows: Take two ounces of
butter and roll it into small balls, dredge these with flour; put
one-fourth of them in a saucepan, and as they begin to melt, whisk
them; add the remainder, one at a time, until thoroughly smooth; while
stirring, add a tablespoonful of lemon juice, half a tablespoonful of
chopped parsley; pour into a hot sauce boat and serve.


BAKED WHITE FISH.

Thoroughly clean the fish; cut off the head or not, as preferred; cut
out the backbone from the head to within two inches of the tail, and
stuff with the following: Soak stale bread in water, squeeze dry; cut
in pieces a large onion, fry in butter, chop fine; add the bread, two
ounces of butter, salt, pepper and a little parsley or sage; heat
through, and when taken off the fire, add the yolks of two well-beaten
eggs; stuff the fish rather full, sew up with fine twine, and wrap
with several coils of white tape. Rub the fish over slightly with
butter; just cover the bottom of a baking pan with hot water, and
place the fish in it, standing back upward, and bent in the form of an
S. Serve with the following dressing: Reduce the yolks of two
hard-boiled eggs to a smooth paste with two tablespoonfuls good salad
oil; stir in half a teaspoon English mustard, and add pepper and
vinegar to taste.


HALIBUT BOILED.

The cut next to the tail-piece is the best to boil. Rub a little salt
over it, soak it for fifteen minutes in vinegar and cold water, then
wash it and scrape it until quite clean; tie it in a cloth and boil
slowly over a moderate fire, allowing seven minutes' boiling to each
pound of fish; when it is half-cooked, turn it over in the pot; serve
with drawn butter or egg sauce.

Boiled halibut minced with boiled potatoes and a little butter and
milk makes an excellent breakfast dish.


STEAMED HALIBUT.

Select a three-pound piece of white halibut, cover it with a cloth and
place it in a steamer; set the steamer over a pot of fast-boiling
water and steam two hours; place it on a hot dish surrounded with a
border of parsley and serve with egg sauce.


FRIED HALIBUT. No. 1.

Select choice, firm slices from this large and delicate looking fish,
and, after carefully washing and drying with a soft towel, with a
sharp knife take off the skin. Beat up two eggs and roll out some
brittle crackers upon the kneading board until they are as fine as
dust. Dip each slice into the beaten egg, then into the cracker crumbs
(after you have salted and peppered the fish), and place them in a hot
frying pan half full of boiling lard, in which a little butter has
been added to make the fish brown nicely; turn and brown both sides,
remove from frying pan and drain. Serve hot.


FRIED HALIBUT. No. 2.

First fry a few thin slices of salt pork until brown in an iron frying
pan; then take it up on a hot platter and keep it warm until the
halibut is fried. After washing and drying two pounds of sliced
halibut, sprinkle it with salt and pepper, dredge it well with flour,
put it into the hot pork drippings and fry brown on both sides; then
serve the pork with the fish.

Halibut broiled in slices is a very good way of cooking it, broiled
the same as Spanish mackerel.


BAKED HALIBUT.

Take a nice piece of halibut weighing five or six pounds and lay it in
salt water for two hours. Wipe it dry and score the outer skin. Set it
in a dripping pan in a moderately hot oven and bake an hour, basting
often with butter and water heated together in a sauce pan or tin cup.
When a fork will penetrate it easily, it is done. It should be a fine,



Online LibraryMrs.F.L. GilletteThe Whitehouse Cookbook (1887) The Whole Comprising a Comprehensive Cyclopedia of Information for the Home → online text (page 4 of 52)