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Title: Science in the Kitchen

Author: E. E. Kellogg

Release date: May 1, 2004 [eBook #12238]
Most recently updated: December 14, 2020

Language: English


E-text prepared by Charles Franks, Stephen Schulze,
and the Project Gutenberg Distributed Proofreading Team
from digital images provided by
Michigan State University Libraries

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Superintendent of the Sanitarium School of Cookery and of the Bay View Assembly School of Cookery, and Chairman of the World's Fair Committee on Food Supplies, for Michigan



The interest in scientific cookery, particularly in cookery as related to health, has manifestly increased in this country within the last decade as is evidenced by the success which has attended every intelligent effort for the establishment of schools for instruction in cookery in various parts of the United States. While those in charge of these schools have presented to their pupils excellent opportunities for the acquirement of dexterity in the preparation of toothsome and tempting viands, but little attention has been paid to the science of dietetics, or what might be termed the hygiene of cookery.

A little less than ten years ago the Sanitarium at Battle Creek Mich., established an experimental kitchen and a school of cookery under the supervision of Mrs. Dr. Kellogg, since which time, researches in the various lines of cookery and dietetics have been in constant progress in the experimental kitchen, and regular sessions of the school of cookery have been held. The school has gradually gained in popularity, and the demand for instruction has become so great that classes are in session during almost the entire year.

During this time, Mrs. Kellogg has had constant oversight of the cuisine of both the Sanitarium and the Sanitarium Hospital, preparing bills of fare for the general and diet tables, and supplying constantly new methods and original recipes to meet the changing and growing demands of an institution numbering always from 500 to 700 inmates.

These large opportunities for observation, research, and experience, have gradually developed a system of cookery, the leading features of which are so entirely novel and so much in advance of the methods heretofore in use, that it may be justly styled, A New System of Cookery. It is a singular and lamentable fact, the evil consequences of which are wide-spread, that the preparation of food, although involving both chemical and physical processes, has been less advanced by the results of modern researches and discoveries in chemistry and physics, than any other department of human industry. Iron mining, glass-making, even the homely art of brick-making, and many of the operations of the farm and the dairy, have been advantageously modified by the results of the fruitful labors of modern scientific investigators. But the art of cookery is at least a century behind in the march of scientific progress. The mistress of the kitchen is still groping her way amid the uncertainties of mediæval methods, and daily bemoaning the sad results of the "rule of thumb." The chemistry of cookery is as little known to the average housewife as were the results of modern chemistry to the old alchemists; and the attempt to make wholesome, palatable, and nourishing food by the methods commonly employed, is rarely more successful than that of those misguided alchemists in transmuting lead and copper into silver and gold.

The new cookery brings order from out the confusion of mixtures and messes, often incongruence and incompatible, which surrounds the average cook, by the elucidation of the principles which govern the operations of the kitchen, with the same certainty with which the law of gravity rules the planets.

Those who have made themselves familiar with Mrs. Kellogg's system of cookery, invariably express themselves as trebly astonished: first, at the simplicity of the methods employed; secondly, at the marvelous results both as regards palatableness, wholesomeness, and attractiveness; thirdly, that it had never occurred to them "to do this way before."

This system does not consist simply of a rehash of what is found in every cook book, but of new methods, which are the result of the application of the scientific principles of chemistry and physics to the preparation of food in such a manner as to make it the most nourishing, the most digestible, and the most inviting to the eye and to the palate.

Those who have tested the results of Mrs. Kellogg's system of cookery at the Sanitarium tables, or in their own homes through the instruction of her pupils, have been most enthusiastic in their expressions of satisfaction and commendation. Hundreds of original recipes which have appeared in her department in Good Health, "Science in the Household", have been copied into other journals, and are also quite largely represented in the pages of several cook books which have appeared within the last few years.

The great success which attended the cooking school in connection with the Bay View Assembly (the Michigan Chautauqua), as well as the uniform success which has met the efforts of many of the graduates of the Sanitarium school of cookery who have undertaken to introduce the new system through the means of cooking classes in various parts of the United States, has created a demand for a fuller knowledge of the system.

This volume is the outgrowth of the practical and experimental work, and the popular demand above referred to. Its preparation has occupied the entire leisure time of the author during the last five or six years. No pains or expense has been spared to render the work authoritative on all questions upon which it treats, and in presenting it to the public, the publishers feel the utmost confidence that the work will meet the highest expectations of those who have waited impatiently for its appearance during the months which have elapsed since its preparation was first announced. PUBLISHERS.




Properties of food

Food elements

Uses of food elements

Proper combinations of food

Proper proportion of food elements


Relation of condiments to intemperance

Variety in food

Table topics.

The Digestion of Foods

The digestive organs

The digestion of a mouthful of bread

Salivary digestion

Stomach digestion

Intestinal digestion

Other uses of the digestive fluids


Liver digestion

Time required for digestion

Dr. Beaumont's table made from experiments on Alexis St. Martin

Hygiene of digestion

Hasty eating

Drinking freely at meals

Eating between meals

Simplicity in diet

Eating when tired

Eating too much

How much food is enough

Excess of certain food elements

Deficiency of certain food elements

Food combinations

Table topics.


Evils of bad cookery

The principles of scientific cookery


Making fires

Care of fires

Methods of cooking


Broiling or grilling


The oven thermometer


The boiling point of water

How to raise the boiling point of water

Action of hot and cold water upon foods





Adding foods to boiling liquids


Comparative table of weights and measures

Mixing the material





Cooking utensils

Porcelain ware

Granite ware

Galvanized iron ware

Tests for lead

Adulterated tin

Table topics.

The Household Workshop

Description of a convenient kitchen

The kitchen furniture


A convenient kitchen table

The kitchen sink


Stoves and ranges

Oil and gas stoves

The "Aladdin Cooker"

Kitchen utensils

The tin closet

The dish closet

The pantry

The storeroom

The refrigerator

The water supply

Test for pure water



Kitchen conveniences

The steam cooker

The vegetable press

The lemon drill

The handy waiter

The wall cabinet

The percolate holder

Kneading table

Dish-towel rack

Kitchen brushes

Vegetable brush

Table topics.

The Grains, or Cereals, and their Preparation

General properties of grains

Cooking of grains

The double boiler

Table showing amount of liquid, and time required for cooking different grains

Grains for breakfast

Grains an economical food


Description of a grain of wheat

Preparation and cooking


Pearl wheat

Cracked wheat

Rolled wheat

Boiled wheat

Wheat with raisins

Wheat with fresh fruit

Molded wheat

Finer mill products of wheat



Farina with fig sauce

Farina with fresh fruit

Molded farina

Graham grits

Graham mush

Graham mush No. 2

Graham mush No. 3

Graham mush with dates

Plum porridge

Graham apple mush

Granola mush

Granola fruit mush

Granola peach mush

Bran jelly

The oat, description of





Preparation and cooking of oats


Oatmeal mush

Oatmeal fruit mush

Oatmeal blancmange

Oatmeal Blancmange No. 2

Jellied oatmeal

Mixed mush

Rolled oats

Oatmeal with apple

Oatmeal porridge

Barley, description of


Scotch milled or pot barley

Pearl barley

Suggestions for cooking barley


Baked barley

Pearl barley with raisins

Pearl barley with lemon sauce

Rice, description of

Rice paddy

Preparation and cooking of rice


Steamed rice

Boiled rice

Rice with fig sauce

Orange rice

Rice with raisins

Rice with peaches

Browned rice

Rye, description of

Rye meal

Rye flour


Rolled rye

Rye mush

Maize, or Indian corn, description of

Suggestions for cooking corn


Corn meal mush

Corn meal mush with fruit

Corn meal cubes

Browned mush


Cerealine flakes

Hulled corn

Coarse hominy

Fine hominy or grits

Popped corn

Macaroni, description of




To select macaroni

To prepare and cook macaroni


Homemade macaroni

Boiled macaroni

Macaroni with cream sauce

Macaroni with tomato sauce

Macaroni baked with granola

Eggs and macaroni

Table topics.

Breadstuffs and Bread-making

The origin of bread

Chestnut bread

Peanut bread


Qualities necessary for good bread

Superiority of bread over meat

Graham flour

Wheat meal

Whole_wheat or entire wheat flour

How to select flour

To keep flour

Deleterious adulterations of flour

Tests for adulterated flour

Chemistry of bread-making

Bread made light by fermentation

The process of fermentation

Fermentative agents


Homemade yeasts

How to keep yeast

Bitter yeast

Tests for yeast

Starting the bread

Proportion of materials needed


When to set the sponge

Temperature for bread-making

How to set the sponge

Lightness of the bread

Kneading the dough

How to manipulate the dough in kneading

How many times shall bread be kneaded

Dryness of the surface

Size of loaves

Proper temperature of the oven

How to test the heat of an oven

Care of bread after baking

Best method of keeping bread

Test of good fermented bread

Whole-wheat and Graham breads


Steamed bread

Liquid yeast


Raw potato yeast

Raw potato yeast No. 2

Hop yeast

Boiled potato yeast

Boiled potato yeast No. 2

Fermented breads


Milk bread with white flour

Vienna bread

Water bread

Fruit roll

Fruit loaf

Potato bread

Pulled bread

Whole-wheat bread

Whole-wheat bread No. 2

Miss B's one-rising bread

Potato bread with whole-wheat flour

Rye bread

Graham bread

Graham bread No. 2

Graham bread No. 3

Raised biscuit


Imperial rolls

French rolls


Parker House rolls


Brown bread

Date bread

Fruit loaf with Graham and whole-wheat flour

Raised corn bread

Corn cake

Oatmeal bread

Milk yeast bread

Graham salt rising bread

Unfermented breads

Passover cakes


Evils of chemical bread raising

Rochelle salts in baking powders

General directions

Gem irons

Perforated sheet-iron pan for rolls

Unfermented batter breads

Unfermented dough breads


Whole-wheat puffs

Whole-wheat puffs No. 2

Whole-wheat puffs No. 3

Graham puffs

Graham puffs No. 2

Currant puffs

Graham gems


Rye puffs

Rye puffs No. 2

Rye gems

Blueberry gems

Hominy gems

Sally Lunn gems

Corn puffs

Corn puffs No. 2

Corn puffs No. 3

Corn puffs No. 4

Corn dodgers

Corn dodgers No. 2

Cream corn cakes

Hoe cakes

Oatmeal gems

Snow gems

Pop overs

Granola gems

Bean gems

Breakfast rolls


Cream Graham rolls

Corn mush rolls

Fruit rolls

Cream mush rolls

Beaten biscuit

Cream crisps

Cream crisps No. 2

Graham crisps

Oatmeal crisps

Graham crackers

Fruit crackers

Table topics.


Chemical constituents of

Value as nutrients

Structure of fruits

The jelly-producing principle

Digestibility of fruits

Unripe fruits

Table of fruit analysis

Ripe fruit and digestive disorders

Over-ripe and decayed fruits

Dangerous bacteria on unwashed fruit

Free use of fruit lessens desire for alcoholic stimulants

Beneficial use of fruits in disease



The pear

The quince

The peach

The plum

The prune

The apricot

The cherry

The olive; its cultivation and preservation

The date, description and uses of

The orange

The lemon

The sweet lemon or bergamot

The citron

The lime

The grape-fruit

The pomegranate, its antiquity

The grape

Zante currants

The gooseberry

The currant

The whortleberry

The blueberry

The cranberry

The strawberry

The raspberry

The blackberry

The mulberry

The melon

The fig, its antiquity and cultivation

The banana

Banana meal

The pineapple

Fresh fruit for the table

Selection of fruit for the table

Directions for serving fruits









Peaches and pears

Peaches and cream



Pressed Figs

Raspberries, Blackberries, Dewberries, Blueberries and Whortlberries

Frosted fruit

Keeping fresh fruit

Directions for packing, handling, and keeping fruits

To keep grapes

To keep lemons and oranges

To keep cranberries

Cooked fruit

General suggestions for cooking fruit


Baked apples

Citron apples

Lemon apples

Baked pears

Baked quince

Pippins and quince

Baked apple sauce

Baked apple sauce No. 2

Apples stewed whole

Steamed apples

Compote of apples

Apple compote No. 2

Stewed pears

Smooth apple sauce

Boiled apples with syrup

Stewed apples

Stewed crab apples

Sweet apple sauce with condensed apple juice

Apples with raisins

Apples with apricots

Peaches, pears, cherries, berries, and other small fruits

Baked apples

Baked pears

Baked peaches


Cranberries with raisins

Cranberries with sweet apples

Oranges and apples

Stewed raisins

Dried apples

Dried apples with other dried fruit

Dried apricots and peaches

Evaporated peach sauce

Dried pears

Small fruits


Prune marmalade

Canning fruit

Selection of cans

How to test and sterilize cans

Selection of fruit

Directions for preparing fruit

Cooking fruit for canning

Storing of canned fruit

Mold on canned fruit

Opening of canned fruit

Rules for selecting canned fruit


To can strawberries

To can raspberries, blackberries and other small fruit

To can gooseberries

To can peaches

To can pears

To can plums

To can cherries

To can mixed fruit

Quinces and apples

Plums with sweet apples

To can grapes

To can crab apples

To can apples

To can pineapples

Fruit jellies


Apple jelly

Apple jelly without sugar

Berry and currant jellies

Cherry jelly

Crab apple jelly

Cranberry jelly

Grape jelly

Orange jelly

Peach Jelly

Quince jelly

Plum jelly

Fruit in jelly

Fruit juices, value of

How to prepare fruit juices


Grape juice or unfermented wine

Grape juice No. 2

Another method

Fruit syrup

Currant syrup

Orange syrup

Lemon syrup

Lemon syrup No 2

Blackberry syrup

Fruit ices


Composition and nutritive value of

The almond

Almond bread

The Brazil nut

The cocoanut, its uses in tropical countries

The chestnut

Chestnut flour

The acorn

The hazel nut

The filbert

The cobnut

The walnut

The butternut

The hickory nut

The pecan

The peanut or ground nut


To blanch almonds

Boiled chestnuts

Mashed chestnuts

Baked chestnuts

To keep nuts fresh

Table topics.

The Legumes

Composition and nutritive value

Legumes as a substitute for animal food

Legumin, or vegetable casein

Chinese cheese

Legumes the "pulse" of Scripture

Diet of the pyramid builders

Digestibility of legumes

A fourteenth century recipe

The green legumes

Suggestions for cooking

Slow cooking preferable

Soaking the dry seeds

Effects of hard water upon the legumes

Temperature of water for cooking

Amount of water required

Addition of salt to legumes

Peas, description of

Buying votes with peas

A commemorative dinner

Peas bainocks

Peas sausages

Peas pudding

Time required for cooking


Stewed split peas

Peas puree

Mashed peas

Peas cakes

Dried green peas

Beans, description of

Mention of beans in Scripture

Beans in mythology

Time required for digestion

Method of cooking

Experiment of an English cook

Parboiling beans

Time required to cook


Baked beans

Boiled beans

Beans boiled in a bag

Scalloped beans

Stewed beans

Mashed beans

Stewed Lima beans


Pulp succotash

Lentils, description of

Use of lentils by the ancients

Lentil meal

Preparation for cooking


Lentil puree

Lentils mashed with beans

Lentil gravy with rice

Table topics.


Composition and nutritive value of vegetables

Exclusive diet of vegetables not desirable

To select vegetables

Poison in potato sprouts

Stale vegetables a cause of illness

Keeping vegetables

To freshen withered vegetables

Storing winter vegetables

Preparation and cooking

To clean vegetables for cooking

Methods of cooking

Time required for cooking

Irish potato, description of

The chemistry of cooking

Digestibility of the potato

New potatoes

Preparation and cooking


Potatoes boiled in "jackets"

Boiled potatoes without skins

Steamed potatoes

Roasted potatoes

Baked potatoes

Stuffed potatoes

Stuffed potatoes No. 2

Mashed potatoes

New potatoes

Cracked potatoes

Creamed potatoes

Scalloped potatoes

Stewed potatoes

Potatoes stewed with celery

Potato snow balls

Potato cakes

Potato cakes with egg

Potato puffs

Browned potatoes

Ornamental potatoes

Broiled potatoes

Warmed-over potatoes

Vegetable hash

The sweet potato, description of

Preparation and cooking


Baked sweet potatoes

Baked sweet potatoes No 2

Boiled sweet potatoes

Steamed sweet potatoes

Browned sweet potatoes

Mashed sweet potatoes

Potato hash

Roasted sweet potatoes

To dry sweet potatoes

Turnips, description of

Preparation and cooking


Boiled turnips

Baked turnips

Creamed turnips

Chopped turnips

Mashed turnips

Scalloped turnips

Steamed turnips

Stewed turnips

Turnips in juice

Turnips with cream sauce

Parsnips, description of

Preparation and cooking


Baked parsnips

Baked parsnips No. 2

Boiled parsnips

Browned parsnips

Creamed parsnips

Mashed parsnips

Parsnips with cream sauce

Parsnips with egg sauce

Parsnips with potatoes

Stewed parsnips

Stewed parsnips with celery

Carrots, description of

Preparation and cooking


Boiled carrots

Carrots with egg sauce

Stewed carrots

Beets, description of

Preparation and cooking


Baked beets

Baked beets No. 2

Beets and potatoes

Beet hash

Beet greens

Beet salad or chopped beets

Beet salad No 2

Boiled beets

Stewed beets

Cabbage, description of

Preparation and cooking


Baked cabbage

Boiled cabbage

Cabbage and tomatoes

Cabbage and celery

Cabbage hash

Chopped cabbage or cabbage salad

Mashed cabbage

Stewed cabbage

Cauliflower and Broccoli, description of

Preparation and cooking


Boiled cauliflower

Browned cauliflower

Cauliflower with egg sauce

With tomato sauce

Stewed cauliflower

Scolloped cauliflower

Spinach, description of

Preparation and cooking


To keep celery fresh


Celery salad

Stewed celery

Stewed celery No. 2

Celery with tomato sauce

Celery and potato hash

Asparagus, description of

Preparation and cooking


Asparagus and peas

Asparagus Points

Asparagus on toast

Asparagus with cream sauce

Asparagus with egg sauce

Stewed asparagus

Sea-kale, description of

Lettuce and radish, description of






Preparation and cooking


Mashed squash

Squash with egg sauce

Stewed squash

Winter squash

Winter squash

Preparation and cooking

Time required for cooking


Baked squash

Steamed squash

The pumpkin, description of


Baked pumpkin

Stewed pumpkin

Dried pumpkin

Tomato, description of

Preparation and cooking


Baked tomatoes

Baked tomatoes No. 2

Scalloped tomatoes

Stewed corn and tomatoes

Tomato gravy

Tomato salad

Tomato salad No. 2

Broiled tomatoes

Tomato pudding

Stewed tomatoes

Tomato with okra

Egg plant, description of

Nutritive value


Scalloped egg plant

Baked egg plant

Cucumber, description of


Preparation and cooking

Salsify or vegetable oyster, description of

Preparation and cooking


Scalloped vegetable oysters

Stewed vegetable oysters

Green corn, peas, and beans, description of

General suggestions for selecting and cooking

Recipes for corn:

Baked corn

Baked corn No. 2

Boiled green corn

Stewed corn pulp

Corn cakes

Corn pudding

Roasted green corn

Stewed green corn

Summer succotash

Dried corn

Recipe for peas:

Stewed peas

Recipes for beans:

Lima beans

Shelled beans

String beans

Canning vegetables


Canned corn

Canned corn and tomatoes

Canned peas

Canned tomatoes

Canned tomatoes No. 2

String beans

Canned pumpkin and squash

Table topics.


Value of soup as an article of diet

Superiority of soups made from grain and legumes

Economical value of such soups

Digestibility of soups

Cooking of material for soups

Use of a colander in preparing soups

Quantity of salt required

Flavoring soups

Seasoning of soup

Chinese soup strainer

Whole grains, macaroni, shredded vegetables, etc., for soups

Milk in the preparation of soups

Consistency of soups

Preparation of soups from left-over fragments



Asparagus soup

Baked bean soup

Bean and corn soup

Bean and hominy soup

Bean and potato soup

Bean and tomato soup

Black bean soup

Black bean soup No. 2

Bran stock

Brown soup

Canned green pea soup

Canned corn soup

Carrot soup

Celery soup No 2

Celery soup

Chestnut soup

Combination soup

Combination soup No. 2



Cream pea soup

Cream barley soup

Green corn soup

Green pea soup

Green bean soup

Kornlet soup

Kornlet and tomato soup

Lentil soup

Lentil and parsnip soup

Lima bean soup

Macaroni soup

Oatmeal soup

Parsnip soup

Parsnip soup No. 2

Pea and tomato soup

Plain rice soup

Potato and rice soup

Potato soup

Potato and vermicelli soup

Sago and potato soup

Scotch broth

Split pea soup

Sweet potato soup

Swiss potato soup

Swiss lentil soup

Tomato and macaroni soup

Tomato cream soup

Tomato and okra soup

Tomato soup with vermicelli

Vegetable oyster soup

Vegetable soup

Vegetable soup No. 2

Vegetable soup No. 3

Vegetable soup No. 4

Velvet Soup

Vermicelli soup

Vermicelli soup No 2

White celery soup

Table topics.

Breakfast Dishes

Importance of a good breakfast

Requirements for a good breakfast

Pernicious custom of using fried and indigestible foods for breakfast

Use of salted foods an auxiliary to the drink habit

The ideal breakfast

Use of fruit for breakfast

Grains for breakfast

An appetizing dish

Preparation of zwieback

Preparation of toast


Apple toast

Apricot toast

Asparagus toast

Banana toast

Berry toast

Berry toast No. 2

Celery toast

Cream toast

Cream toast with poached egg

Cherry toast

Gravy toast

Dry toast with hot cream

Grape toast

Lentil toast

Prune toast

Peach toast

Snowflake toast

Tomato toast

Vegetable oyster toast

Miscellaneous breakfast dishes:


Blackberry mush

Dry granola


Macaroni with raisins

Macaroni with kornlet

Peach mush

Rice with lemon

Table topics.


Appropriate and healthful desserts

Objections to the use of desserts

The simplest dessert

General suggestions

Importance of good material

Preparation of dried fruit for dessert

Molded desserts

Suggestions for flavoring:

To prepare almond paste

Cocoanut flavor

Orange and lemon flavor

To color sugar

Fruit desserts


Apple dessert

Apple meringue dessert.

Apple rose cream

Apple snow

Baked apples with cream

Baked sweet apple dessert

Bananas in syrup

Baked bananas

Fresh fruit compote

Grape apples

Peach cream

Prune dessert

Desserts made of fruit with grains, bread, etc.


Apple sandwich

Apple sandwich No. 2

Baked apple pudding

Barley fruit pudding

Barley fig pudding

Blackberry cornstarch pudding

Cocoanut and cornstarch blancmange

Cornstarch blancmange

cornstarch with raisins

Cornstarch with apples

Cornstarch fruit mold

Cornstarch fruit mold No. 2

Cracked wheat pudding

Cracked wheat pudding No. 2

Farina blancmange

Farina fruit mold

Fruit pudding

Jam pudding

Plain fruit pudding or Brown Betty

Prune pudding

Rice meringue

Rice snowball

Rice fruit dessert

Rice dumpling

Rice cream pudding

Rice pudding with raisins

Red rice mold

Rice and fruit dessert

Rice and tapioca pudding

Rice flour mold

Rice and stewed apple dessert

Rice and strawberry dessert

Stewed fruit pudding

Strawberry minute pudding

Sweet apple pudding

Whortleberry pudding

Desserts with tapioca, sago, manioca, and sea moss


Apple tapioca

Apple tapioca No. 2

Banana dessert

Blackberry tapioca

Cherry pudding

Fruit tapioca

Molded tapioca with fruit

Pineapple tapioca

Prune and tapioca pudding

Tapioca and fig pudding

Peach tapioca

Tapioca jelly

Apple sago pudding

Red sago mold

Sago fruit pudding

Sago pudding

Manioca with fruit

Raspberry manioca mold

Sea moss blancmange

Desserts made with gelatin

Gelatine an excellent culture medium

Dangers in the use of gelatine

Quantity to be used


Apples in jelly

Apple shape

Banana dessert

Clear dessert

Fruit foam dessert

Fruit shape

Gelatine custard


Lemon jelly

Jelly with fruit

Orange dessert

Oranges in jelly

Orange jelly

Snow pudding

Desserts with crusts


Apple tart

Gooseberry tart

Cherry tart

Strawberry and other fruit shortcakes

Banana shortcake

Lemon shortcake

Berry shortcake with prepared cream


Raised pie

Baked apple loaf

Custard puddings

Importance of slow cooking

Best utensils for cooking

Custard desserts in cups

To stir beaten eggs into heated milk

To flavor custards and custard puddings


Apple custard

Apple custard No. 2

Apple custard No. 3

Apple cornstarch custard

Apple and bread custard

Almond cornstarch pudding

Almond cream

Apple charlotte

Banana custard

Boiled custard

Boiled custard bread pudding

Bread and fruit custard

Bread custard pudding

Bread and fig pudding

Bread and apricot pudding

Caramel custard

Carrot pudding

Cocoanut cornstarch pudding

Cocoanut custard

Cocoanut rice custard

Corn meal pudding

Corn meal pudding No. 2

Corn meal and fig pudding

Cornstarch meringue

Cracked wheat pudding

Cup custard

Farina custard

Farina pudding

Floating island

Fruit custard

Graham grits pudding

Ground rice pudding

Lemon pudding

Lemon cornstarch pudding

Lemon cornstarch pudding No. 2

Macaroni pudding

Molded rice or snowballs

Orange float

Orange custard

Orange pudding

Peach meringue

Picnic pudding

Plain cornstarch pudding

Plain custard

Prune pudding

Prune whip

Rice apple custard pudding

Rice custard pudding

Rice snow

Rice snow with jelly

Rice with eggs

Snow pudding

Steamed custard

Strawberry charlotte

Pop corn pudding

Sago custard pudding

Sago and fruit custard pudding

Snowball custard

Tapioca custard

Tapioca pudding

Vermicelli pudding

White custard

White custard No. 2

Steamed pudding

Precautions to be observed in steaming puddings


Batter pudding

Bread and fruit custard

Date pudding

Rice balls

Steamed bread custard

Steamed fig pudding

Pastry and cake

Deleterious effects from the use of

Reasons for indigestibility

General directions for making pies


Paste for pies

Corn meal crust

Granola crust

Paste for tart shells

Cream filling

Grape tart

Lemon filling

Tapioca filling

Apple custard pie

Banana pie

Bread pie

Carrot pie

Cocoanut pie

Cocoanut pie No. 2

Cream pie

Cranberry pie

Dried apple pie

Dried apple pie with raisins

Dried apricot pie

Farina pie

Fruit pie

Grape jelly pie

Jelly custard pie

Lemon pie

Lemon meringue custard

One crust peach pie

Orange pie

Peach custard pie

Prune pie

Pumpkin pie

Pumpkin pie No. 2

Pumpkin pie without eggs

Simple custard pie

Squash pie

Squash pie without eggs

Sweet apple custard pie

Sweet potato pie


General suggestions for preparation of

Cake made light with yeast

Cake made light with air


Apple cake

Cocoanut custard cake

Cream cake

Delicate cup cake

Fig layer cake

Fruit jelly cake

Gold and silver cake

Icing for cakes

Orange cake

Fruit cake

Loaf cake

Pineapple cake

Plain buns

Sponge cake

Sugar crisps

Variety cake

Table topics.

Gravies and Sauces

Importance of proper preparation

Accuracy of measurement

Proportion of material necessary

The double boiler for cooking gravies

Flavoring of gravies for vegetables

Gravies and sauces for vegetables


Brown sauce

Cream or white sauce

Celery sauce

Egg sauce

Pease gravy

Tomato gravy

Tomato cream gravy

Sauces for desserts and puddings


Almond sauce

Caramel sauce

Cocoanut sauce

Cream sauce

Cranberry pudding sauce

Custard sauce

Egg sauce

Egg sauce No. 2

Foamy sauce

Fruit cream

Fruit sauce

Fruit sauce No. 2

Lemon pudding sauce

Mock cream

Molasses sauce

Orange sauce

Peach sauce

Plain pudding sauce

Red Sauce

Rose cream

Sago sauce

Whipped cream sauce

Table topics.


Large quantities of fluid prejudicial to digestion

Wholesome beverages

The cup that cheers but not inebriates

Harmful substances contained in tea



Use of tea a cause of sleeplessness and nervous disorders

Tea a stimulant

Tea not a food

Coffee, cocoa, and chocolate


Adulteration of tea and coffee

Substitutes for tea and coffee


Beet coffee

Caramel coffee

Caramel coffee No. 2

Caramel coffee No. 3

Caramel coffee No. 4

Mrs. T's caramel coffee

Parched grain coffee

Wheat, oats, and barley coffee

Recipes for cold beverages:

Blackberry beverage

Fruit beverage

Fruit beverage No. 2


Fruit cordial

Grape beverage


Mixed lemonade

Oatmeal drink


Pineapple beverage

Pineapple lemonade

Pink lemonade



Table topics.

Milk, Cream, and Butter

Milk, chemical composition of

Proportion of food elements

Microscopic examination of milk


Casein coagulated by the introduction of acid

Spontaneous coagulation or souring of milk

Adulteration of milk

Quality of milk influenced by the food of the animal

Diseased milk

Kinds of milk to be avoided

Distribution of germs by milk

Proper utensils for keeping milk

Where to keep milk

Dr. Dougall's experiments on the absorbent properties of milk

Washing of milk dishes

Treatment of milk for cream rising

Temperature at which cream rises best

Importance of sterilizing milk

To sterilize milk for immediate use

To sterilize milk to keep

Condensed milk

Cream, composition of

Changes produced by churning

Skimmed milk, composition of

Buttermilk, composition of

Digestibility of cream

Sterilized cream

Care of milk for producing cream

Homemade creamery

Butter, the composition of

Rancid butter

Tests of good butter

Flavor and color of butter

Artificial butter

Test for oleomargarine

Butter in ancient times

Butter making

Best conditions for the rising of cream

Upon what the keeping qualities of butter depend




Hot milk

Devonshire or clotted cream

Cottage cheese

Cottage cheese from buttermilk

Cottage cheese from sour milk

French butter

Shaken milk

Emulsified butter

Table topics.


Eggs a concentrated food

Composition of the egg

How to choose eggs

Quality of eggs varied by the food of the fowl

QStale eggs

QTest for eggs

How to keep eggs

To beat eggs

Albumen susceptible to temperature

Left-over eggs


Eggs in shell

Eggs in sunshine

Eggs poached in tomatoes

Eggs in cream

Poached or dropped eggs

Poached eggs with cream sauce

Quickly prepared eggs

Scrambled eggs

Steamed eggs

Whirled eggs



Plain omelets

Foam omelets

Fancy omelets

soft omelets

Table topics.


Character of meat

Nutritive value

Excrementitious elements

Flesh food a stimulant

Diseased meats

Jewish customs in regard to meat


Tapeworm and other parasites

Meat unnecessary for health

The excessive use of meat tending to develop the animal propensities

Objections to its use


Calves' brains and other viscera

Meat pies



Comparative nutritious value

Variation and flavor

Composition and digestibility

Selection of meats

Preservation of meats

Jerked beef


Preparation and cooking of meat

Frozen beef

Best methods of cooking






Beef, economy and adaptability in selection of


Broiled beef

Cold meat stew

Pan-broiled steak

Pan-broiled steak No. 2

Roast beef

Smothered beef

Vegetables with stewed beef

Stewed beef


Cause of Strong flavor of


Boiled leg of mutton

Broiled chops

Pot roast lamb

Roast mutton

Stewed mutton

Stewed mutton chop

Stewed mutton chop No. 2

Veal and lamb

Poultry and game

Suggestions for the selection of poultry and game

To dress poultry and birds

To truss a fowl or bird

To stuff a fowl or bird


Birds baked in sweet potatoes

Boiled fowl

Broiled birds

Broiled fowl

Corn and chicken

Pigeons, quails and partridges

Roast chicken

Roast turkey

Smothered chicken

Steamed chicken

Stewed chicken

Fish, two classes of

Difference in nutritive value

Flavor and wholesomeness

Poison fish

Parasites in fish

Fish as a brain food

Salted fish

Shellfish, (Oysters, Clams, Lobsters, Crabs)

Not possessed of high nutritive value

Natural scavengers

Poisonous mussels

How to select and prepare fish

Frozen fish

Methods of cooking


Baked fish

Broiled fish

Meat soup

Preparation of stock

Selection of material for stock

Quantity of materials needed

Uses of scraps

Extracting the juice

Temperature of the water to be used

Correct proportion of water

Time required for cooking

Straining the stock

To remove the fat

Simple Stock or broth

Compound stock or double broth

To clarify soup stock


Asparagus soup

Barley, rice, sago or tapioca soup

Caramel for coloring soup brown

Julienne soup

Tomato soup

White soup

Vermicelli or macaroni soup

Puree with chicken

Tapioca cream soup

Table Topics.

Food for the Sick

Need of care in the preparation of food for the sick

What constitutes proper food for the sick

Knowledge of dietetics an important factor in the education of every woman

No special dishes for all cases

Hot buttered toast and rich jellies objectionable

The simplest food the best

Scrupulous neatness in serving important

To coax a capricious appetite

A "purple" dinner

A "yellow" dinner

To facilitate the serving of hot foods

Cooking utensils


Long-continued cooking needed

Use of the double boiler in the cooking of gruels

Gruel strainer


Arrowroot gruel

Barley gruel

Egg gruel

Egg gruel No. 2

Farina gruel

Flour gruel

Gluten gruel

Gluten gruel No. 2

Gluten cream

Gluten meal gruel

Graham gruel

Graham grits gruel

Gruel of prepared flour

Indian meal gruel

Lemon oatmeal gruel

Milk oatmeal gruel

Milk porridge

Oatmeal gruel

Oatmeal gruel No. 2

Oatmeal gruel No. 3

Peptonized gluten gruel

Raisin gruel

Rice water

Preparations of milk

Milk diet

Advantages of

Quantity of milk needed

Digestibility of milk


Albumenized milk

Hot milk

Junket, or curded milk


Milk and lime water

Peptonized milk for infants

Beef tea, broths, etc.

Nutritive value

Testimony of Dr. Austin Flint


Beef extract

Beef juice

Beef tea

Beef tea and eggs

Beef broth and oatmeal

Bottled beef tea

Chicken broth

Mutton broth

Vegetable broth

Vegetable broth No. 2

Mixed vegetable broth

Recipes for Panada:

Broth panada

Chicken panada

Egg panada

Milk panada

Raisin panada

Grains for the sick


Gluten mush

Tomato gluten

Tomato gluten No. 2

Meats for the sick

Importance of simple preparation


Broiled steak


Chicken jelly

Minced chicken

Mutton chop

Minced steak

Scraped steak

Eggs for the sick


Floated egg

Gluten meal custard

Gluten custard

Steamed eggs

Soft custard

Raw egg

White of egg

White of egg and milk

Refreshing drinks and delicacies for the sick

Nature's delicacies

How to serve

Fruit juices


Acorn coffee

Almond milk

Apple beverage

Apple beverage No. 2

Apple toast water

Baked milk

Barley lemonade

Barley and fruit drinks

Barley milk

Cranberry drink


Crust coffee

Egg cream

Egg cream No. 2

Egg cream No. 3

Egg lemonade

Flaxseed tea

Gum Arabic water

Hot water

Hot lemonade

Irish moss lemonade


Plain lemonade

Slippery elm tea

Toast water

Tamarind water



Diabetic biscuit

Diabetic biscuit No. 2

Gluten meal gems

Jellies and other desserts for the side


Arrowroot jelly

Arrowroot blancmange

Currant jelly

Iceland moss jelly

Iceland moss blancmange

Orange whey

White custard

Table topics.

Food for the Aged and the Very Young

Requisites of food for the aged

Stimulating diet not necessary

Flesh food unsuitable

Bill of fare

Quantity of food for the aged

Heavy meals a tax upon digestion

Cornaro's testimony

Diet for the young

Causes of mortality among young children

Best artificial food

Use of sterilized milk.

Difference between cows' milk and human milk

Common method of preparing cows' milk

Artificial human milk

Artificial human milk No. 2

Artificial human milk No. 3

Peptonized milk

Mucilaginous food excellent in gastro-enteritis

Preparation of food for infants

Time required for digestion of artificial food

Quantity of food for infants

Rules for finding the amount of food needed

Table for the feeding of infants

Interval between feeding

Intervals for feeding at different ages

Manner of feeding artificial foods

Danger from unclean utensils

Diet of older children

An abundance of nitrogenous material important

Flesh food unnecessary

Experiments of Dr. Camman

Testimony of Dr. Clouston

Candy and similar sweets

Eating between meals

Education of the appetite

Inherited appetites and tendencies

Table topics.

Fragments and Left-over Foods

Preserving and utilizing the left-over fragments

Precautions to be observed

Uses of stale bread

To insure perfect preservation of fragments

Preparation of zwieback and croutons

Left-over grains

Left-over vegetables

Left-over meats

Left-over milk

Table topics.

The Art of Dining

Pleasant accessories essential

The dining room

Neatness an essential

Care of the dining room

Furnishings of the dining room

Table talk

A pleasant custom

Table manners

Suggestions for table etiquette

The table

Its appearance and appointments

The table an educator in the household

A well ordered table an incentive to good manners

Ostentation not necessary

Setting the table

The sub-cover


The center piece

Arrangement of dishes

"Dishing up"

Setting the table over night

Warming the dishes

The service of meals

A capital idea

Fruit as the first course at breakfast

To keep the food hot

A employed

General suggestions for waiters

Suggestions concerning dinner parties

Proper form of invitation

Arrangement and adornment of table

A pleasing custom

The menu card

Service for a company dinner

Etiquette of dinner parties

Table topics.

After Mealtime

Clearing the table

Washing the dishes

papier-maché tubs

Ammonia, uses of

Clean dishes not evolved from dirty dishwater

Washing all dishes of one kind together

Washing milk dishes

Uses of the dish mop

Cleaning of grain boilers and mush kettles

Washing of tin dishes

To clean iron ware

To wash wooden ware

Care of steel knives and forks

Draining the dishes

Dishcloths and towels

To make a dish mop

The care of glass and silver

To keep table cutlery from rusting

To wash trays and Japanned ware

Care of the table linen

To remove stains

To dry table linen

To iron table linen

Washing colored table linen

The garbage

Table topics.

A Year's Breakfasts and Dinners

A perplexing problem

Requisites for a well arranged menu

Suggestions for preparing bills of fare

Table of food analyses

Fifty-two weeks' breakfasts and dinners

Average cost

Analysis of various bills of fare

Table topics.

A Batch of Dinners

Holiday dinners

Holiday feasting

Holiday dinners opposed to temperance

Thanksgiving menus

Holiday menus

Picnic dinners

The lunch basket, provision for

Fruit sandwiches

Egg sandwiches


Picnic biscuit

Fig wafers

Suitable beverages

School lunches

Deficiency of food material in the ordinary school lunch

Why the after dinner session of school drags wearily

Simple lunches desirable

Suggestions for putting up the lunch

Creamy rice

Neatness and daintiness essential

The lunch basket

Sabbath dinners

A needed reform

Feasting on the Sabbath, deleterious results of

Simple meals for the Sabbath

A Sabbath bill of fare

Table topics.






































No one thing over which we have control exerts so marked an influence upon our physical prosperity as the food we eat; and it is no exaggeration to say that well-selected and scientifically prepared food renders the partaker whose digestion permits of its being well assimilated, superior to his fellow-mortals in those qualities which will enable him to cope most successfully with life's difficulties, and to fulfill the purpose of existence in the best and truest manner. The brain and other organs of the body are affected by the quality of the blood which nourishes them, and since the blood is made of the food eaten, it follows that the use of poor food will result in poor blood, poor muscles, poor brains, and poor bodies, incapable of first-class work in any capacity. Very few persons, however, ever stop to inquire what particular foods are best adapted to the manufacture of good blood and the maintenance of perfect health; but whatever gratifies the palate or is most conveniently obtained, is cooked and eaten without regard to its dietetic value. Far too many meals partake of the characteristics of the one described in the story told of a clergyman who, when requested to ask a blessing upon a dinner consisting of bread, hot and tinged with saleratus, meat fried to a crisp, potatoes swimming in grease, mince pie, preserves, and pickles, demurred on the ground that the dinner was "not worth a blessing." He might with equal propriety have added, "and not worth eating."

The subject of diet and its relation to human welfare, is one deserving of the most careful consideration. It should be studied as a science, to enable us to choose such materials as are best adapted to our needs under the varying circumstances of climate growth, occupation, and the numerous changing conditions of the human system; as an art, that we may become so skilled in the preparation of the articles selected as to make them both appetizing and healthful. It is an unfortunate fact that even among experienced housekeepers the scientific principles which govern the proper preparation of food, are but little understood, and much unwholesome cookery is the result. The mechanical mixing of ingredients is not sufficient to secure good results; and many of the failures attributed to "poor material," "bad luck," and various other subterfuges to which cooks ignorance of scientific principles. The common method of blindly following recipes, with no knowledge of "the reason why," can hardly fail to be often productive of unsatisfactory results, which to the uninformed seem quite inexplicable.

Cookery, when based upon scientific principles, ceases to be the difficult problem it so often appears. Cause and effect follow each other as certainly in the preparation of food as in other things; and with a knowledge of the underlying principles, and faithfulness in carrying out the necessary details, failure becomes almost an impossibility. There is no department of human activity where applied science offers greater advantages than in that of cookery, and in our presentation of the subjects treated in the following pages, we have endeavored, so far as consistent with the scope of this work, to give special prominence to the scientific principles involved in the successful production of wholesome articles of food. We trust our readers will find these principles so plainly elucidated and the subject so interesting, that they will be stimulated to undertake for themselves further study and research in this most important branch of household science. We have aimed also to give special precedence of space to those most important foods, the legumes, and grains and their products, which in the majority of cook books are given but little consideration or are even left out altogether, believing that our readers will be more interested in learning the many palatable ways in which these especially nutritious and inexpensive foods may be prepared, than in a reiteration of such dishes as usually make up the bulk of the average cook book.

For reasons stated elsewhere (in the chapter on Milk, Cream, and Butter), we have in the preparation of all recipes made use of cream in place of other fats; but lest there be some who may suppose because cream occupies so frequent a place in the recipes, and because of their inability to obtain that article, the recipes are therefore not adapted to their use, we wish to state that a large proportion of the recipes in which it is mentioned as seasoning, or for dressing, will be found to be very palatable with the cream omitted, or by the use of its place of some one of the many substitutes recommended. We ought also to mention in this connection, that wherever cream is recommended, unless otherwise designated, the quality used in the preparation of the recipes is that of single or twelve hour cream sufficiently diluted with milk, so that one fourth of each quart of milk is reckoned as cream. If a richer quality than this be used, the quantity should be diminished in proportion; otherwise, by the excess of fat, a wholesome food may become a rich, unhealthful dish.

In conclusion, the author desires to state that no recipe has been admitted to this work which has not been thoroughly tested by repeated trials, by far the larger share of such being original, either in the combination of the materials used, the method employed, or both materials and method. Care has been taken not to cumber the work with useless and indifferent recipes. It is believed that every recipe will be found valuable, and that the variety offered is sufficiently ample, so that under the most differing circumstances, all may be well served.

We trust therefore that those who undertake to use the work as a guide in their culinary practice, will not consider any given recipe a failure because success does not attend their first efforts. Perseverance and a careful study of the directions given, will assuredly bring success to all who possess the natural or acquired qualities essential for the practice of that most useful of the arts,—"Healthful Cookery."


Battle Creek, April 20, 1892.



T he purposes of food are to promote growth, to supply force and heat, and to furnish material to repair the waste which is constantly taking place in the body. Every breath, every thought, every motion, wears out some portion of the delicate and wonderful house in which we live. Various vital processes remove these worn and useless particles; and to keep the body in health, their loss must be made good by constantly renewed supplies of material properly adapted to replenish the worn and impaired tissues. This renovating material must be supplied through the medium of food and drink, and the best food is that by which the desired end may be most readily and perfectly attained. The great diversity in character of the several tissues of the body, makes it necessary that food should contain a variety of elements, in order that each part may be properly nourished and replenished.

The Food Elements.—The various elements found in food are the following: Starch, sugar, fats, albumen, mineral substances, indigestible substances.

The digestible food elements are often grouped, according to their chemical composition, into three classes; vis., carbonaceous, nitrogenous, and inorganic. The carbonaceous class includes starch, sugar, and fats; the nitrogenous, all albuminous elements; and the inorganic comprises the mineral elements.

Starch is only found in vegetable foods; all grains, most vegetables, and some fruits, contain starch in abundance. Several kinds of sugar are made in nature's laboratory; cane, grape, fruit, and milk sugar. The first is obtained from the sugar-cane, the sap of maple trees, and from the beet root. Grape and fruit sugars are found in most fruits and in honey. Milk sugar is one of the constituents of milk. Glucose, an artificial sugar resembling grape sugar, is now largely manufactured by subjecting the starch of corn or potatoes to a chemical process; but it lacks the sweetness of natural sugars, and is by no means a proper substitute for them. Albumen is found in its purest, uncombined state in the white of an egg, which is almost wholly composed of albumen. It exists, combined with other food elements, in many other foods, both animal and vegetable. It is found abundant in oatmeal, and to some extent in the other grains, and in the juices of vegetables. All natural foods contain elements which in many respects resemble albumen, and are so closely allied to it that for convenience they are usually classified under the general name of "albumen." The chief of these is gluten, which is found in wheat, rye, and barley. Casein, found in peas, beans, and milk, and the fibrin of flesh, are elements of this class.

Fats are found in both animal and vegetable foods. Of animal fats, butter and suet are common examples. In vegetable form, fat is abundant in nuts, peas, beans, in various of the grains, and in a few fruits, as the olive. As furnished by nature in nuts, legumes, grains, fruits, and milk, this element is always found in a state of fine subdivision, which condition is the one best adapted to its digestion. As most commonly used, in the form of free fats, as butter, lard, etc., it is not only difficult of digestion itself, but often interferes with the digestion of the other food elements which are mixed with it. It was doubtless never intended that fats should be so modified from their natural condition and separated from other food elements as to be used as a separate article of food. The same may be said of the other carbonaceous elements, sugar and starch, neither of which, when used alone, is capable of sustaining life, although when combined in a proper and natural manner with other food elements, they perform a most important part in the nutrition of the body. Most foods contain a percentage of the mineral elements. Grains and milk furnish these elements in abundance. The cellulose, or woody tissue, of vegetables, and the bran of wheat, are examples of indigestible elements, which although they cannot be converted into blood in tissue, serve an important purpose by giving bulk to the food.

With the exception of gluten, none of the food elements, when used alone, are capable of supporting life. A true food substance contains some of all the food elements, the amount of each varying in different foods.

Uses of the Food Elements.—Concerning the purpose which these different elements serve, it has been demonstrated by the experiments of eminent physiologists that the carbonaceous elements, which in general comprise the greater bulk of the food, serve three purposes in the body;

1. They furnish material for the production of heat;

2. They are a source of force when taken in connection with other food elements;

3. They replenish the fatty tissues of the body. Of the carbonaceous elements,—starch, sugar, and fats,—fats produce the greatest amount of heat in proportion to quantity; that is, more heat is developed from a pound of fat than from an equal weight of sugar or starch; but this apparent advantage is more than counterbalanced by the fact that fats are much more difficult of digestion than are the other carbonaceous elements, and if relied upon to furnish adequate material for bodily heat, would be productive of much mischief in overtaxing and producing disease of the digestive organs. The fact that nature has made a much more ample provision of starch and sugars than of fats in man's natural diet, would seem to indicate that they were intended to be the chief source of carbonaceous food; nevertheless, fats, when taken in such proportion as nature supplies them, are necessary and important food elements.

The nitrogenous food elements especially nourish the brain, nerves, muscles, and all the more highly vitalized and active tissues of the body, and also serve as a stimulus to tissue change. Hence it may be said that a food deficient in these elements is a particularly poor food.

The inorganic elements, chief of which are the phosphates, in the carbonates of potash, soda, and lime, aid in furnishing the requisite building material for bones and nerves.

Proper Combinations of Foods.—While it is important that our food should contain some of all the various food elements, experiments upon both animals and human beings show it is necessary that these elements, especially the nitrogenous and carbonaceous, be used in certain definite proportions, as the system is only able to appropriate a certain amount of each; and all excess, especially of nitrogenous elements, is not only useless, but even injurious, since to rid the system of the surplus imposes an additional task upon the digestive and excretory organs. The relative proportion of these elements necessary to constitute a food which perfectly meets the requirements of the system, is six of carbonaceous to one of nitrogenous. Scientists have devoted much careful study and experimentation to the determination of the quantities of each of the food elements required for the daily nourishment of individuals under the varying conditions of life, and it has come to be commonly accepted that of the nitrogenous material which should constitute one sixth of the nutrients taken, about three ounces is all that can be made use of in twenty-four hours, by a healthy adult of average weight, doing a moderate amount of work. Many articles of food are, however, deficient in one or the other of these elements, and need to be supplemented by other articles containing the deficient element in superabundance, since to employ a dietary in which any one of the nutritive elements is lacking, although in bulk it may be all the digestive organs can manage, is really starvation, and will in time occasion serious results.

It is thus apparent that much care should be exercised in the selection and combination of food materials. The table on page 484, showing the nutritive values of various foods, should be carefully studied. Such knowledge is of first importance in the education of cooks and housekeepers, since to them falls the selection of the food for the daily needs of the household; and they should not only understand what foods are best suited to supply these needs, but how to combine them in accordance with physiological laws.

Condiments.—By condiments are commonly meant such substances as are added to season food, to give it "a relish" or to stimulate appetite, but which in themselves possess no real food value. To this category belong mustard, ginger, pepper, pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauce, cloves, spices, and other similar substances. That anything is needed to disguise or improve the natural flavor of food, would seem to imply either that the article used was not a proper alimentary substance, or that it did not answer the purpose for which the Creator designed it. True condiments, such as pepper, pepper sauce, ginger, spice, mustard, cinnamon, cloves, etc., are all strong irritants. This may be readily demonstrated by their application to a raw surface. The intense smarting and burning occasioned are ample evidence of the irritating character. Pepper and mustard are capable of producing powerfully irritating effects, even when applied to the healthy skin where wholly intact. It is surprising that it does not occur to the mother who applies a mustard plaster to the feet of her child, to relieve congestion of the brain, that an article which is capable of producing a blister upon the external covering of the body, is quite as capable of producing similar effects when applied to the more sensitive tissues within the body. The irritating effects of these substances upon the stomach are not readily recognized, simply because the stomach is supplied with very few nerves of sensation. That condiments induce an intense degree of irritation of the mucous membrane of the stomach, was abundantly demonstrated by the experiments of Dr. Beaumont upon the unfortunate Alexis St. Martin. Dr. Beaumont records that when St. Martin took mustard, pepper, and similar condiments with his food, the mucous membrane of his stomach became intensely red and congested, appearing very much like an inflamed eye. It is this irritating effect of condiments which gives occasion for their extended use. They create an artificial appetite, similar to the incessant craving of the chronic dyspeptic, whose irritable stomach is seldom satisfied. This fact with regard to condiments is a sufficient argument against their use, being one of the greatest causes of gluttony, since they remove the sense of satiety by which Nature says, "Enough."

To a thoroughly normal and unperverted taste, irritating condiments of all sorts are very obnoxious. It is true that Nature accommodates herself to their use with food to such a degree that they may be employed for years without apparently producing very grave results; but this very condition is a source of injury, since it is nothing more nor less than the going to sleep of the sentinels which nature has posted at the portal of the body, for the purpose of giving warning of danger. The nerves of sensibility have become benumbed to such a degree that they no longer offer remonstrance against irritating substances, and allow the enemy to enter into the citadel of life. The mischievous work is thus insidiously carried on year after year until by and by the individual breaks down with some chronic disorder of the liver, kidneys, or some other important internal organ. Physicians have long observed that in tropical countries where curry powder and other condiments are very extensively used, diseases of the liver, especially acute congestion and inflammation, are exceedingly common, much more so that in countries and among nations where condiments are less freely used. A traveler in Mexico, some time ago, described a favorite Mexican dish as composed of layers of the following ingredients: "Pepper, mustard, ginger, pepper, potato, ginger; mustard, pepper, potato, mustard, ginger, pepper." The common use of such a dish is sufficient cause for the great frequency of diseases of the liver among the Mexicans, noted by physicians traveling in that country. That the use of condiments is wholly a matter of habit is evident from the fact that different nations employ as condiments articles which would be in the highest degree obnoxious to people of other countries. For example, the garlic so freely used in Russian cookery, would be considered by Americans no addition to the natural flavors of food; and still more distasteful would be the asafetida frequently used as a seasoning in the cuisine of Persia and other Asiatic countries.

The use of condiments is unquestionably a strong auxiliary to the formation of a habit of using intoxicating drinks. Persons addicted to the use of intoxicating liquors are, as a rule, fond of stimulating and highly seasoned foods; and although the converse is not always true, yet it is apparent to every thoughtful person, that the use of a diet composed of highly seasoned and irritating food, institutes the conditions necessary for the acquirement of a taste for intoxicating liquors. The false appetite aroused by the use of food that "burns and stings," craves something less insipid than pure cold water to keep up the fever the food has excited. Again, condiments, like all other stimulants, must be continually increased in quantity, or their effect becomes diminished; and this leads directly to a demand for stronger stimulants, both in eating and drinking, until the probable tendency is toward the dram-shop.

A more serious reason why high seasonings leads to intemperance, is in the perversion of the use of the sense of taste. Certain senses are given us to add to our pleasure as well as for the practical, almost indispensable, use they are to us. For instance, the sense of sight is not only useful, but enables us to drink in beauty, if among beautiful surroundings, without doing us any harm. The same of music and other harmonics which may come to us through the sense of hearing. But the sense of taste and was given us to distinguish between wholesome and unwholesome foods, and cannot be used for merely sensuous gratification, without debasing and making of it a gross thing. An education which demands special enjoyment or pleasure through the sense of taste, is wholly artificial; it is coming down to the animal plane, or below it rather; for the instinct of the brute creation teaches it merely to eat to live.

Yet how wide-spread is this habit of sensuous gratification through the sense of taste! If one calls upon a neighbor, he is at once offered refreshments of some kind, as though the greatest blessing of life came from indulging the appetite. This evil is largely due to wrong education, which begins with childhood. When Johnnie sits down to the table, the mother says, "Johnnie, what would you like?" instead of putting plain, wholesome food before the child, and taking it as a matter of course that he will eat it and be satisfied. The child grows to think that he must have what he likes, whether it is good for him or not. It is not strange that an appetite thus pampered in childhood becomes uncontrollable at maturity; for the step from gormandizing to intoxication is much shorter than most people imagine. The natural, unperverted taste of a child will lead him to eat that which is good for him. But how can we expect the children to reform when the parents continually set them bad examples in the matter of eating and drinking?

The cultivation of a taste for spices is a degradation of the sense of taste. Nature never designed that pleasure should be divorced from use. The effects of gratifying the sense of taste differ materially from those of gratifying the higher senses of sight and hearing. What we see is gone; nothing remains but the memory, and the same is true of the sweetest sounds which may reach us through the ears. But what we taste is taken into the stomach and what has thus given us brief pleasure through the gratification of the palate, must make work in the alimentary canal for fourteen hours before it is disposed of.

Variety in Food.—Simplicity of diet should be a point of first consideration with all persons upon whom falls the responsibility of providing the family bills of fare, since the simplest foods are, as a rule, the most healthful. Variety is needed; that is, a judicious mingling of fruits, grains, and vegetables; but the general tendency is to supply our tables with too many kinds and to prepare each dish in the most elaborate manner, until, in many households, the cooking of food has come to be almost the chief end of life. While the preparation of food should be looked upon as of so much importance as to demand the most careful consideration and thought as to its suitability, wholesomeness, nutritive qualities, and digestibility, it should by no means be made to usurp the larger share of one's time, when simpler foods and less labor would afford the partakers equal nourishment and strength.

A great variety of foods at one meal exerts a potent influence in creating a love of eating, and is likewise a constant temptation to overeat. Let us have well-cooked, nutritious, and palatable food, and plenty of it; variety from day to day, but not too great a variety at each meal.

The prevalent custom of loading the table with a great number of viands, upon occasions when guests are to be entertained in our homes, is one to be deplored, since it is neither conducive to good health nor necessary to good cheer, but on the contrary is still laborious and expensive a practice that many are debarred from social intercourse because they cannot afford to entertain after the fashion of their neighbors. Upon this subject a well-known writer has aptly said: "Simplify cookery, thus reducing the cost of living, and how many longing individuals would thereby be enabled to afford themselves the pleasure of culture and social intercourse! When the barbarous practice of stuffing one's guests shall have been abolished, a social gathering will not then imply, as it does now, hard labor, expensive outlay, and dyspepsia. Perhaps when that time arise, we shall be sufficiently civilized to demand pleasures of a higher sort. True, the entertainments will then, in one sense, be more costly, as culture is harder to come by than cake. The profusion of viands now heaped upon the table, betrays poverty of the worst sort. Having nothing better to offer, we offer victuals; and this we do with something of that complacent, satisfied air with which some more northern tribes present their tidbits of whale and walrus."


"Let appetite wear reason's golden chain,
and find in due restrain its luxury."

A man's food, when he has the means and opportunity of selecting it, suggests his moral nature. Many a Christian is trying to do by prayer that which cannot be done except through corrected diet.—Talmage.

Our pious ancestors enacted a law that suicides should be buried where four roads meet, and that a cart-load of stones should be thrown upon the body. Yet, when gentlemen or ladies commit suicide, not by cord or steel, but by turtle soup or lobster salad, they may be buried on consecrated ground, and the public are not ashamed to read an epitaph upon their tombstones false enough to make the marble blush.—Horace Mann.

It is related by a gentleman who had an appointment to breakfast with the late A.T. Stewart, that the butler placed before them both an elaborate bill of fare; the visitor selected a list of rare dishes, and was quite abashed when Mr. Stewart said, "Bring me my usual breakfast,—oatmeal and boiled eggs." He then explained to his friend that he found simple food a necessity to him, otherwise he could not think clearly. That unobscured brain applied to nobler ends would have won higher results, but the principle remains the same.—Sel.

Study simplicity in the number of dishes, and a variety in the character of the meals.—Sel.

I have come to the conclusion that more than half the disease which embitters life is due to avoidable errors in diet, ... and that more mischief, in the form of actual disease, of impaired vigor, and of shortened life, accrues to civilized man from erroneous habits of eating than from the habitual use of alcoholic drink, considerable as I know that evil to be.—Sir Henry Thompson.

The ancient Gauls, who were a very brave, strong, and hearty race, lived very abstemiously. Their food was milk, berries, and herbs. They made bread of nuts. They had a very peculiar fashion of wearing a metal ring around the body, the size of which was regulated by act of Parliament. Any man who outgrew in circumference his metal ring was looked upon as a lazy glutton, and consequently was disgraced.

To keep in health this rule is wise:
Eat only when you need, and relish food,
chew thoroughly that it may do you good,
have it well cooked, unspiced, and undisguised.—Leonardo da Vinci/



I t is important that the housekeeper not only understand the nature and composition of foods, but she should also know something of their digestive properties, since food, to be serviceable, must be not only nutritious, but easily digested. Digestion is the process by which food rendered soluble, and capable of being absorbed for use in carrying on the various vital processes.

The digestive apparatus consists of a long and tortuous tube called the alimentary canal, varying in length from twenty-five to thirty feet, along which are arranged the various digestive organs,—the mouth, the stomach, the liver, and the pancreas,—each of which, together with the intestines, has an important function to perform. In these various organs nature manufactures five wonderful fluids for changing and dissolving the several food elements. The mouth supplies the saliva; in the walls of the stomach are little glands which produce the gastric juice; the pancreatic juice is made by the pancreas; the liver secretes bile; while scattered along the small intestines are minute glands which make the intestinal juice. Each of these fluids has a particular work to do in transforming some part of the food into suitable material for use in the body. The saliva acts upon the starch of the food, changing it into sugar; the gastric juice digests albumen and other nitrogenous elements; the bile digests fat, and aids in the absorption of other food elements after they are digested; the pancreatic juice is not confined in its action to a single element, but digests starch, fats, and the albuminous elements after they have been acted upon by the gastric juice; the intestinal juice is capable of acting upon all digestible food elements.

The Alimentary Canal, a. Esophagus; b. Stomach; c. Cardiac Orifice; d. Pylorus; e. Small Intestine; f. Bile Duct; g. Pancreatic Duct; h. Ascending Colon; i. Transverse Colon; j. Descending Colon; k. Rectum.
The Alimentary Canal

The Digestion of a Mouthful of Bread—A mouthful of bread represents all, or nearly all, the elements of nutrition. Taking a mouthful of bread as a representative of food in general, it may be said that its digestion begins the moment that it enters the mouth, and continues the entire length of the alimentary canal, or until the digestible portion of the food has been completely digested and absorbed. We quote the following brief description of the digestive process from Dr. J.H. Kellogg's Second Book in Physiology[A]:—


Good Health Pub. Co., Battle Creek, Mich.

"Mastication.—The first act of the digestive process is mastication, or chewing the food, the purpose of which is to crush the food and divide it into small particles, so that the various digestive fluids may easily and promptly come into contact with every part of it.

"Salivary Digestion.—During the mastication of the food, the salivary glands are actively pouring out the saliva, which mingles with the food, and by softening it, aids in its division and prepares it for the action of the other digestive fluids. It also acts upon the starch, converting a portion of it into grape-sugar.

"Stomach Digestion.—After receiving the food, the stomach soon begins to pour out the gastric juices, which first makes its appearance in little drops, like beads of sweat upon the face when the perspiration starts. As the quantity increases, the drops run together, trickle down the side of the stomach, and mingle with the food. The muscular walls of the stomach contract upon the food, moving it about with a sort of crushing action, thoroughly mixing the gastric juice with the food. During this process both the openings of the stomach are closed tightly. The gastric juice softens the food, digests albumen, and coagulates milk. The saliva continues its action upon starch for sometime after the food reaches the stomach.

"After the food has remained in the stomach from one to three hours, or even longer, if the digestion is slow, or indigestible foods have been eaten, the contractions of the stomach become so vigorous that the more fluid portions of the food are squeezed out through the pylorus, the lower orifice of the stomach, thus escaping into the intestine. The pylorus does not exercise any sort of intelligence in the selection of food, as was once supposed. The increasing acidity of the contents of the stomach causes its muscular walls to contract with increasing vigor, until finally those portions of the food which may be less perfectly broken up, but which the stomach has been unable to digest, are forced through the pylorus.

"Intestinal Digestion.—As it leaves the stomach, the partially digested mass of food is intensely acid, from the large quantity of gastric juices which it contains. Intestinal digestion cannot begin until the food becomes alkaline. The alkaline bile neutralizes the gastric juice, and renders the digesting mass slightly alkaline. The bile also acts upon the fatty elements of the food, converting them into an emulsion. The pancreatic juice converts the starch into grape-sugar, even acting upon raw starch. It also digest fats and albumen. The intestinal juice continues the work begun by the other digestive fluids, and, in addition, digests cane-sugar, converting it into grape-sugar.

"Other Uses of the Digestive Fluids.—In addition to the uses which we have already stated, several of the digestive fluids possess other interesting properties. The saliva aids the stomach by stimulating its glands to make gastric juice. The gastric juice and the bile are excellent antiseptics, by which the food is preserved from fermentation while undergoing digestion. The bile also stimulates the movements of the intestines by which the food is moved along, and aids absorption. It is remarkable and interesting that a fluid so useful as the bile should be at the same time composed of waste matters which are being removed from the body. This is an illustration of the wonderful economy shown by nature in her operations.

"The food is moved along the alimentary canal, from the stomach downward, by successive contractions of the muscular walls of the intestines, known as peristaltic movements, which occur with great regularity during digestion.

"Absorption.—The absorption of the food begins as soon as any portion has been digested. Even in the mouth and the esophagus a small amount is absorbed. The entire mucous membrane lining the digestive canal is furnished with a rich supply of blood-vessels, by which the greater part of the digestive food is absorbed.

"Liver Digestion.—The liver as well as the stomach is a digestive organ, and in a double sense. It not only secretes a digestive fluid, the bile, but it acts upon the food brought to it by the portal vein, and regulates the supply of digested food to the general system. It converts a large share of the grape-sugar and partially digested starch brought to it into a kind of liver starch, termed glycogen, which it stores up in its tissues. During the interval between the meals, the liver gradually redigests the glycogen, reconverting it into sugar, and thus supplying it to the blood in small quantities, instead of allowing the entire amount formed in digestion to enter the circulation at once. If too large an amount of sugar entered the system at once, it would be unable to use it all, and would be compelled to get rid of a considerable portion through the kidneys. The liver also completes the digestion of albumen and other food elements."

Time Required for Digestion.—The length of time required for stomach digestion varies with different food substances. The following table shows the time necessary for the stomach digestion of some of the more commonly used foods:—

Beans, pod, boiled230
Bread, wheaten330
Bread, corn315
Apples, sour and raw200
Apples, sweet and raw130
Parsnips, boiled230
Beets, boiled345
Potatoes, Irish, boiled330
Potatoes, Irish, baked230
Cabbage, raw230
Cabbage, boiled430
Milk, boiled200
Milk, raw215
Eggs, hard boiled330
Eggs, soft boiled300
Eggs, fried330
Eggs, raw200
Eggs, whipped130
Salmon, salted, boiled400
Oysters, raw255
Oysters, stewed330
Beef, lean, rare roasted300
Beefsteak, boiled300
Beef, lean, fried400
Beef, salted, boiled415
Pork, roasted515
Pork, salted, fried415
Mutton, roasted315
Mutton, broiled300
Veal, broiled400
Veal, fried430
Fowls, boiled400
Duck, roasted430
Butter, melted330
Soup, marrowbone415
Soup, bean300
Soup, mutton330
Chicken, boiled300

The time required for the digestion of food also depends upon the condition under which the food is eaten. Healthy stomach digestion requires at least five hours for its completion, and the stomach should have an hour for rest before another meal. If fresh food is taken before that which preceded it is digested, the portion of food remaining in the stomach is likely to undergo fermentation, thus rendering the whole mass of food unfit for the nutrition of the body, besides fostering various disturbances of digestion. It has been shown by recent observations that the length of time required for food to pass through the entire digestive process to which it is subjected in the mouth, stomach, and small intestines, is from twelve to fourteen hours.

Hygiene of Digestion.—With the stomach and other digestive organs in a state of perfect health, one is entirely unconscious of their existence, save when of feeling of hunger calls attention to the fact that food is required, or satiety warns us that a sufficient amount or too much has been eaten. Perfect digestion can only be maintained by careful observance of the rules of health in regard to habits of eating.

On the subject of Hygiene of Digestion, we again quote a few paragraphs from Dr. Kellogg's work on Physiology, in which is given a concise summary of the more important points relating to this:—

"The hygiene of digestion has to do with the quality and quantity of food eaten, in the manner of eating it.

"Hasty Eating.—If the food is eaten too rapidly, it will not be properly divided, and when swallowed in coarse lumps, the digestive fluids cannot readily act upon it. On account of the insufficient mastication, the saliva will be deficient in quantity, and, as a consequence, the starch will not be well digested, and the stomach will not secrete a sufficient amount of gastric juice. It is not well to eat only soft or liquid food, as we are likely to swallow it without proper chewing. A considerable proportion of hard food, which requires thorough mastication, should be eaten at every meal.

"Drinking Freely at Meals is harmful, as it not only encourages hasty eating, but dilutes the gastric juice, and thus lessens its activity. The food should be chewed until sufficiently moistened by saliva to allow it to be swallowed. When large quantities of fluid are taken into the stomach, digestion does not begin until a considerable portion of the fluid has been absorbed. If cold foods or drinks are taken with the meal, such as ice-cream, ice-water, iced milk or tea, the stomach is chilled, and a long delay in the digestive process is occasioned.

"The Indians of Brazil carefully abstain from drinking when eating, and the same custom prevails among many other savage tribes.

"Eating between Meals.—The habit of eating apples, nuts, fruits, confectionery, etc., between meals is exceedingly harmful, and certain to produce loss of appetite and indigestion. The stomach as well as the muscles and other organs of the body requires rest. The frequency with which meals should be taken depends somewhat upon the age and occupation of an individual. Infants take their food at short intervals, and owing to its simple character, are able to digest it very quickly. Adults should not take food oftener than three times a day; and persons whose employment is sedentary say, in many cases at least, adopt with advantage the plan of the ancient Greeks, who ate but twice a day. The latter custom is quite general among the higher classes in France and Spain, and in several South American countries.

"Simplicity in Diet.—Taking too many kinds of food at a meal is a common fault which is often a cause of disease of the digestive-organs. Those nations are the most hardy and enduring whose dietary is most simple. The Scotch peasantry live chiefly upon oatmeal, the Irish upon potatoes, milk, and oatmeal, the Italian upon peas, beans, macaroni, and chestnuts; yet all these are noted for remarkable health and endurance. The natives of the Canary Islands, an exceedingly well-developed and vigorous race, subsist almost chiefly upon a food which they call gofio, consisting of parched grain, coarsely ground in a mortar and mixed with water.

"Eating when Tired.—It is not well to eat when exhausted by violent exercise, as the system is not prepared to do the work of digestion well. Sleeping immediately after eating is also a harmful practice. The process of digestion cannot well be performed during sleep, and sleep is disturbed by the ineffective efforts of the digestive organs. Hence the well-known evil effects of late suppers.

"Eating too Much.—Hasty eating is the greatest cause of over-eating. When one eats too rapidly, the food is crowded into the stomach so fast that nature has no time to cry, 'Enough,' by taking away the appetite before too much has been eaten. When an excess of food is taken, it is likely to ferment or sour before it can be digested. One who eats too much usually feels dull after eating.

"How Much Food is Enough?—The proper quantity for each person to take is what he is able to digest and utilize. This amount of various with each individual, at different times. The amount needed will vary with the amount of work done, mental or muscular; with the weather or the season of the year, more food being required in cold than in warm weather: with the age of an individual, very old and very young persons requiring less food than those of middle age. An unperverted appetite, not artificially stimulated, is a safe guide. Drowsiness, dullness, and heaviness at the stomach are indications of an excess of eating, and naturally suggest a lessening of the quantity of food, unless the symptoms are known to arise from some other cause.

"Excess of Certain Food Elements.—When sugar is too freely used, either with food or in the form of sweetmeats or candies, indigestion, and even more serious disease, is likely to result. Fats, when freely used, give rise to indigestion and 'biliousness.' An excess of albumen from the too free use of meat is harmful. Only a limited amount of this element can be used; an excess is treated as waste matter, and must be removed from the system by the liver and the kidneys. The majority of persons would enjoy better health by using meat more moderately than is customary in this country.

"Deficiency of Certain Food Elements.—A diet deficient in any important food element is even more detrimental to health than a diet in which certain elements are in excess.

"The popular notion that beef-tea and meat extracts contain the nourishing elements of meat in a concentrated form, is a dangerous error. Undoubtedly many sick persons have been starved by being fed exclusively upon these articles, which are almost wholly composed of waste substances. Prof. Paule Bernard, of Paris, found that dogs fed upon meat extracts died sooner than those which received only water."

Food combinations.—Some persons, especially those of weak digestive powers, often experience inconvenience in the use of certain foods, owing to their improper combinations with other articles. Many foods which are digested easily when partaken of alone or in harmonious combinations, create much disturbance when eaten at the same meal with several different articles of food, or with some particular article with which they are especially incompatible. The following food combinations are among the best, the relative excellence of each being indicated by the order in which they are named: Milk and grains; grains and eggs; grains and vegetables or meats; grains and fruits.

Persons with sound stomachs and vigorous digestion will seldom experience inconvenience in making use of other and more varied combinations, but dyspeptics and persons troubled with slow digestion will find it to their advantage to select from the bill of fare such articles as best accord with each other, and to avoid such combinations as fruits and vegetables, milk and vegetables, milk and meats, sugar and milk, meat or vegetables, fats with fruits, meats, or vegetables, or cooked with grains.


Now good digestion waits on appetite, and health on both—Shakespeare.

We live not upon what we eat, but upon what we digest.—Abernethy.

If we consider the amount of ill temper, despondency, and general unhappiness which arises from want of proper digestion and assimilation of our food, it seems obviously well worth while to put forth every effort, and undergo any sacrifice, for the purpose of avoiding indigestion, with its resulting bodily ills; and yet year after year, from the cradle to the grave, we go on violating the plainest and simplest laws of health at the temptation of Cooks, caterers, and confectioners, whose share in shortening the average term of human life is probably nearly equal to that of the combined armies and navies of the world.—Richardson.

Almost every human malady is connected, either by highway or byway, with the stomach.—Sir Francis Head.

It is a well-established fact that a leg of mutton caused a revolution in the affairs of Europe. Just before the battle of Leipsic, Napoleon the Great insisted on dining on boiled mutton, although his physicians warned him that it would disagree with him. The emperor's brain resented the liberty taken with its colleague, the stomach; the monarch's equilibrium was overturned, the battle lost, and a new page opened in history.—Sel.

Galloping consumption at the dinner table is one of the national disorders.—Sel.

The kitchen (that is, your stomach) being out of order, the garret (the head) cannot be right, and every room in the house becomes affected. Remedy the evil in the kitchen, and all will be right in parlor and chamber. If you put improper food into the stomach, you play the mischief with it, and with the whole machine besides.—Abernethy.

Cattle know when to go home from grazing, but a foolish man never knows his stomachs measures.—Scandinavian proverb.

Enough is as good as a feast.

Simplicity of diet is the characteristic of the dwellers in the Orient. According to Niebuhr, the sheik of the desert wants only a dish of pillau, or boiled rice, which he eats without fork or spoon. Notwithstanding their frugal fare, these sons of the desert are among the most hearty and enduring of all members of the human family. A traveler tells of seeing one of them run up to the top of the tallest pyramid and back in six minutes.

One fourth of what we eat keeps us, and the other three fourths we keep at the peril of our lives.—Abernethy.



I t is not enough that good and proper food material be provided; it must have such preparation as will increase and not diminish its alimentary value. The unwholesomeness of food is quite as often due to bad cookery as to improper selection of material. Proper cookery renders good food material more digestible. When scientifically done, cooking changes each of the food elements, with the exception of fats, in much the same manner as do the digestive juices, and at the same time it breaks up the food by dissolving the soluble portions, so that its elements are more readily acted upon by the digestive fluids. Cookery, however, often fails to attain the desired end; and the best material is rendered useless and unwholesome by a improper preparation.

It is rare to find a table, some portion of the food upon which is not rendered unwholesome either by improper preparatory treatment, or by the addition of some deleterious substance. This is doubtless due to the fact that the preparation of food being such a commonplace matter, its important relations to health, mind, and body have been overlooked, and it has been regarded as a menial service which might be undertaken with little or no preparation, and without attention to matters other than those which relate to the pleasure of the eye and the palate. With taste only as a criterion, it is so easy to disguise the results of careless and improper cookery of food by the use of flavors and condiments, as well as to palm off upon the digestive organs all sorts of inferior material, that poor cookery has come to be the rule rather than the exception.

Another reason for this prevalence of bad cookery, is to be found in the fact that in so many homes the cooking is intrusted to an ignorant class of persons having no knowledge whatever of the scientific principles involved in this most important and practical of arts. An ethical problem which we have been unable to solve is the fact that women who would never think of trusting the care of their fine china and bric-a-brac to unskilled hands, unhesitatingly intrust to persons who are almost wholly untrained, the preparation of their daily food. There is no department of life where superior intelligence is more needed than in the selection and preparation of food, upon which so largely depend the health and physical welfare of the family circle.

The evils of bad cookery and ill-selected food are manifold, so many, in fact, that it has been calculated that they far exceed the mischief arising from the use of strong drink; indeed, one of the evils of unwholesome food is its decided tendency to create a craving for intoxicants. Bad cookery causes indigestion, indigestion causes thirst, and thirst perpetuates drunkenness. Any one who has suffered from a fit of indigestion, and can recollect the accompanying headache and the lowness of spirits, varying in degree from dejection or ill-humor to the most extreme melancholy, until the intellectual faculties seemed dazed, and the moral feelings blunted, will hardly wonder that when such a condition becomes chronic, as is often the case from the use of improperly prepared food, the victim is easily led to resort to stimulants to drown depression and enliven the spirits.

A thorough practical knowledge of simple, wholesome cookery ought to form a part of the education of every young woman, whatever her station in life. No position in life is more responsible than that of the person who arranges the bills of fare and selects the food for the household; and what higher mission can one conceive than to intelligently prepare the wherewithal to make shoulders strong to bear life's burdens and heads clear to solve its intricate problems? what worthier work than to help in the building up of bodies into pure temples fit for guests of noble thoughts and high purposes? Surely, no one should undertake such important work without a knowledge of the principles involved.


Cookery is the art of preparing food for the table by dressing, or by the application of heat in some manner.

Fuels.—Artificial heat is commonly produced by combustion, caused by the chemical action of the oxygen of the air upon the hydrogen and carbon found in fuel. The different fuels in common use for cooking purposes are hard wood, soft wood, charcoal, anthracite coal, bituminous coal, coke, lignite, kerosene oil, gasoline, and gas. As to their respective values, much depends upon the purpose for which they are to be used. Wood charcoal produces a greater amount of heat than an equal weight of any other fuel. Soft wood burns quicker and gives a more intense heat than hard wood, and hence is best for a quick fire. Hard wood burns slowly, produces a larger mass of coals, and is best where long-continued heat is desired. Anthracite coal kindles slowly, and burns with little flame or smoke, but its vapor is sulphurous, and on that account it should never be burned in an open stove, nor in one with an imperfect draft. Its heat is steady and intense. Bituminous coal ignites readily, burns with considerable flame and smoke, and gives a much less intense heat than anthracite, Lignite, or brown coal, is much less valuable as fuel. Coke is useful when a short, quick fire is needed. Kerosene and gas are convenient and economical fuels.

Making Fires.—If coal is the fuel to be used, first clean out the stove by shaking the grate and removing all ashes and cinders. Remove the stove covers, and brush the soot and ashes out of all the flues and draft holes into the fire-box. Place a large handful of shavings or loosely twisted or crumpled papers upon the grate, over which lay some fine pieces of dry kindling-wood, arranged crosswise to permit a free draft, then a few sticks of hard wood, so placed as to allow plenty of air spaces. Be sure that the wood extends out to both ends of the fire-box. Replace the covers, and if the stove needs blacking, mix the polish, and apply it, rubbing with a dry brush until nearly dry, then light the fuel, as a little heat will facilitate the polishing. When the wood is burning briskly, place a shovelful or two of rather small pieces of coal upon the wood, and, as they ignite, gradually add more, until there is a clear, bright body of fire, remembering, however, never to fill the stove above the fire bricks; then partly close the direct draft. When wood or soft coal is used, the fuel may be added at the same time with the kindling.

Care of Fires.—Much fuel is wasted through the loss of heat from too much draft. Only just enough air should be supplied to promote combustion. A coal fire, when well kindled, needs only air enough to keep it burning. When the coal becomes red all through, it has parted with the most of its heat, and the fire will soon die unless replenished. To keep a steady fire, add but a small amount of fuel at a time, and repeat often enough to prevent any sensible decrease of the degree of heat. Rake the fire from the bottom, and keep it clear of ashes and cinders. If a very hot fire is needed, open the drafts; at other times, keep them closed, or partially so, and not waste fuel. There is no economy in allowing a fire to get low before fuel is added; for the fresh fuel cools the fire to a temperature so low that it is not useful, and thus occasions a direct waste of all fuel necessary to again raise the heat to the proper degree, to say nothing of the waste of time and patience. The addition of small quantities of fuel at short intervals so long as continuous heat is needed, is far better than to let the fuel burn nearly out, and then add a larger quantity. The improper management of the drafts and dampers has also much to do with waste of fuel. As stoves are generally constructed, it is necessary for the heat to pass over the top, down the back, and under the bottom of the oven before escaping into the flue, in order to properly heat the oven for baking. In order to force the heat to make this circuit, the direct draft of the stove needs to be closed. With this precaution observed, a quick fire from a small amount of fuel, used before its force is spent, will produce better results than a fire-box full under other circumstances.

An item of economy for those who are large users of coal, is the careful sifting of the cinders from the ashes. They can be used to good advantage to put first upon the kindlings, when building the fire, as they ignite more readily than fresh coal, and give a greater, quicker heat, although much less enduring.

Methods of Cooking.—A proper source of heat having been secured, the next step is to apply it to the food in some manner. The principal methods commonly employed are roasting, broiling, baking, boiling, stewing, simmering, steaming, and frying.

Roasting is cooking food in its own juices before an open fire. A clear fire with intense heat is necessary.

Broiling, or grilling, is cooking by radiant heat over glowing coals. This method is only adapted to thin pieces of food with a considerable amount of surface. Larger and more compact foods should be roasted or baked. Roasting and broiling are allied in principle. In both, the work is chiefly done by the radiation of heat directly upon the surface of the food, although some heat is communicated by the hot air surrounding the food. The intense heat applied to the food soon sears its outer surfaces, and thus prevents the escape of its juices. If care be taken frequently to turn the food so that its entire surface will be thus acted upon, the interior of the mass is cooked by its own juices.

Baking is the cooking of food by dry heat in a closed oven. Only foods containing a considerable degree of moisture are adapted for cooking by this method. The hot, dry air which fills the oven is always thirsting for moisture, and will take from every moist substance to which it has access a quantity of water proportionate to its degree of heat. Foods containing but a small amount of moisture, unless protected in some manner from the action of the heated air, or in some way supplied with moisture during the cooking process, come from the oven dry, hard, and unpalatable.

Proper cooking by this method depends greatly upon the facility with which the heat of the oven can be regulated. When oil or gas is the fuel used, it is an easy matter to secure and maintain almost any degree of heat desirable, but with a wood or coal stove, especial care and painstaking are necessary.

It is of the first importance that the mechanism of the oven to be used, be thoroughly understood by the cook, and she should test its heating capacity under various conditions, with a light, quick fire and with a more steady one; she should carefully note the kind and amount of fuel requisite to produce a certain degree of heat; in short, she should thoroughly know her "machine" and its capabilities before attempting to use it for the cooking of food. An oven thermometer is of the utmost value for testing the heat, but unfortunately, such thermometers are not common. They are obtainable in England, although quite expensive. It is also possible at the present time to obtain ranges with a very reliable thermometer attachment to the oven door.

An Oven Thermometer
An Oven Thermometer

A cook of good judgment by careful observation and comparison of results, can soon learn to form quite a correct idea of the heat of her oven by the length of time she can hold her hand inside it without discomfort, but since much depends upon the construction of stoves and the kind of fuel used, and since the degree of heat bearable will vary with every hand that tries it, each person who depends upon this test must make her own standard. When the heat of the oven is found to be too great, it may be lessened by placing in it a dish of cold water.

Boiling is the cooking of food in a boiling liquid. Water is the usual medium employed for this purpose. When water is heated, as its temperature is increased, minute bubbles of air which have been dissolved by it are given off. As the temperature rises, bubbles of steam will begin to form at the bottom of the vessel. At first these will be condensed as they rise into the cooler water above, causing a simmering sound; but as the heat increases, the bubbles will rise higher and higher before collapsing, and in a short time will pass entirely through the water, escaping from its surface, causing more or less agitation, according to the rapidity with which they are formed. Water boils when the bubbles thus rise to the surface, and steam is thrown off. If the temperature is now tested, it will be found to be about 212° F. When water begins to boil, it is impossible to increase its temperature, as the steam carries off the heat as rapidly as it is communicated to the water. The only way in which the temperature can be raised, is by the confinement of the steam; but owing to its enormous expansive force, this is not practicable with ordinary cooking utensils. The mechanical action of the water is increased by rapid bubbling, but not the heat; and to boil anything violently does not expedite the cooking process, save that by the mechanical action of the water the food is broken into smaller pieces, which are for this reason more readily softened. But violent boiling occasions an enormous waste of fuel, and by driving away in the steam the volatile and savory elements of the food, renders it much less palatable, if not altogether tasteless. The solvent properties of water are so increased by heat that it permeates the food, rendering its hard and tough constituents soft and easy of digestion.

The liquids mostly employed in the cooking of foods are water and milk. Water is best suited for the cooking of most foods, but for such farinaceous foods as rice, macaroni, and farina, milk, or at least part milk, is preferable, as it adds to their nutritive value. In using milk for cooking purposes, it should be remembered that being more dense than water, when heated, less steam escapes, and consequently it boils sooner than does water. Then, too, milk being more dense, when it is used alone for cooking, a little larger quantity of fluid will be required than when water is used.

The boiling point for water at the sea level is 212°. At all points above the sea level, water boils at a temperature below 212°, the exact temperature depending upon the altitude. At the top of Mt. Blanc, an altitude of 15,000 feet, water boils at 185°. The boiling point is lowered one degree for every 600 feet increase in altitude. The boiling point may be increased by adding soluble substances to the water. A saturated solution of common baking soda boils at 220°. A saturated solution of chloride of sodium boils at 227°. A similar solution of sal-ammoniac boils at 238°. Of course such solutions cannot be used advantageously, except as a means of cooking articles placed in hermetically sealed vessels and immersed in the liquid.

Different effects upon food are produced by the use of hard and soft water. Peas and beans boiled in hard water containing lime or gypsum, will not become tender, because these chemical substances harden vegetable casein, of which element peas and beans are largely composed. For extracting the juices of meat and the soluble parts of other foods, soft water is best, as it more readily penetrates the tissue; but when it is desired to preserve the articles whole, and retain their juices and flavors, hard water is preferable.

Foods should be put to cook in cold or boiling water, in accordance with the object to be attained in their cooking. Foods from which it is desirable to extract the nutrient properties, as for broths, extracts, etc., should be put to cook in cold water. Foods to be kept intact as nearly as may be, should be put to cook in boiling water.

Hot and cold water act differently upon the different food elements. Starch is but slightly acted upon by cold water. When starch is added to several times its bulk of hot water, all the starch granules burst on approaching the boiling point, and swell to such a degree as to occupy nearly the whole volume of the water, forming a pasty mess. Sugar is dissolved readily in the either hot or cold water. Cold water extracts albumen. Hot water coagulates it.

Steaming, as its name implies, is the cooking of food by the use of steam. There are several ways of steaming, the most common of which is by placing the food in a perforated dish over a vessel of boiling water. For foods not needing the solvent powers of water, or which already contain a large amount of moisture, this method is preferable to boiling. Another form of cooking, which is usually termed steaming, is that of placing the food, with or without water, as needed, in a closed vessel which is placed inside another vessel containing boiling water. Such an apparatus is termed a double boiler. Food cooked in its own juices in a covered dish in a hot oven, is sometimes spoken of as being steamed or smothered.

Stewing is the prolonged cooking of food in a small quantity of liquid, the temperature of which is just below the boiling point. Stewing should not be confounded with simmering, which is slow, steady boiling. The proper temperature for stewing is most easily secured by the use of the double boiler. The water in the outer vessel boils, while that in the inner vessel does not, being kept a little below the temperature of the water from which its heat is obtained, by the constant evaporation at a temperature a little below the boiling point.

Frying, which is the cooking of food in hot fat, is a method not to be recommended—Unlike all the other food elements, fat is rendered less digestible by cooking. Doubtless it is for this reason that nature has provided those foods which require the most prolonged cooking to fit them for use with only a small proportion of fat, and it would seem to indicate that any food to be subjected to a high degree of heat should not be mixed and compounded largely of fats. The ordinary way of frying, which the French call sauteing, is by the use of only a little fat in a shallow pan, into which the food is put and cooked first on one side and then the other. Scarcely anything could be more unwholesome than food prepared in this manner. A morsel of food encrusted with fat remains undigested in the stomach because fat is not acted upon by the gastric juice, and its combination with the other food elements of which the morsel is composed interferes with their digestion also. If such foods are habitually used, digestion soon becomes slow and the gastric juice so deficient in quantity that fermentation and putrefactive changes are occasioned, resulting in serious disturbance of health. In the process of frying, the action of the heat partially decomposes the fat; in consequence, various poisonous substances are formed, highly detrimental to the digestion of the partaker of the food.

Adding Foods to Boiling Liquids.—Much of the soddenness of improperly cooked foods might be avoided, if the following facts were kept in mind:—

When vegetables, or other foods of ordinary temperature, are put into boiling water, the temperature of the water is lowered in proportion to the quantity and the temperature of the food thus introduced, and will not again boil until the mass of food shall have absorbed more heat from the fire. The result of this is that the food is apt to become more or less water-soaked before the process of cooking begins. This difficulty may be avoided by introducing but small quantities of the food at one time, so as not to greatly lower the temperature of the liquid, and then allowing the latter to boil between the introduction of each fresh supply, or by heating the food before adding it to the liquid.

Evaporation is another principle often overlooked in the cooking of food, and many a sauce or gravy is spoiled because the liquid, heated in a shallow pan, from which evaporation is rapid, loses so much in bulk that the amount of thickening requisite for the given quantity of fluid, and which, had less evaporation occurred, would have made it of the proper consistency, makes the sauce thick and unpalatable. Evaporation is much less, in slow boiling, than in more rapid cooking.

Measuring.—One of the most important principles to be observed in the preparation of food for cooking, is accuracy in measuring. Many an excellent recipe proves a failure simply from lack of care in this respect. Measures are generally more convenient than weights, and are more commonly used. The common kitchen cup, which holds a half pint, is the one usually taken as the standard; if any other size is used, the ingredients for the entire recipe should be measured by the same. The following points should be observed in measuring:—

1. The teaspoons and tablespoons to be used in measuring, are the silver spoons in general use.

2. Any material like flour, sugar, salt, that has been packed, should either be sifted or stirred up lightly before measuring.

3. A cupful of dry material is measured level with the top of the cup, without being packed down.

4. A cupful of liquid is all the cup will contain without running over. Hold the cup in a saucer while measuring, to prevent spilling the liquid upon the floor or table.

Comparative Table of Weights and Measures.—The following comparative table of weights and measurements will aid in estimating different materials:—

One heaping tablespoonful of sugar weighs one ounce.

Two round tablespoonfuls of flour weigh one ounce.

Two cupfuls of granulated sugar weigh one pound.

Two cupfuls of meal weigh one pound.

Four cupfuls of sifted flour weigh one pound.

One pint of oatmeal, cracked wheat, or other coarse grains, weighs about one pound.

One pint of liquid weighs one pound.

One pint of meat chopped and packed solid weighs one pound.

Seven heaping tablespoonfuls of sugar = one cupful.

Five heaping tablespoonfuls of flour = one cupful.

Two cupfuls of liquid or dry material = one pint

Four cupfuls of liquid or dry material = one quart.

Mixing Materials.—In the compounding of recipes, various modes are employed for mingling together the different ingredients, chief of which are stirring, beating, and kneading.

By stirring is meant a continuous motion round and round with a spoon, without lifting it from the mixture, except to scrape occasionally from the sides of the dish any portion of the material that may cling to it. It is not necessary that the stirring should be all in one direction, as many cooks suppose. The object of the stirring is to thoroughly blend the ingredients, and this may be accomplished as well by stirring—in one direction as in another.

Beating is for the purpose of incorporating as much air in the mixture as possible. It should be done by dipping the spoon in and out, cutting clear through and lifting from the bottom with each stroke. The process must be continuous, and must never be interspersed with any stirring if it is desired to retain the air within the mixture.

Kneading is the mode by which materials already in the form of dough are more thoroughly blended together; it also serves to incorporate air. The process is more fully described in the chapter on "Bread,"

Temperature.—Many a cook fails and knows not why, because she does not understand the influence of temperature upon materials and food. Flour and liquids for unfermented breads cannot be too cold, while for bread prepared with yeast, success is largely dependent upon a warm and equable temperature throughout the entire process.

Cooking Utensils.—The earliest cookery was probably accomplished without the aid of any utensils, the food being roasted by burying it in hot ashes or cooked by the aid of heated stones; but modern cookery necessitates the use of a greater or less variety of cooking utensils to facilitate the preparation of food, most of which are so familiar to the reader as to need no description. (A list of those needed for use will be found on page 66.) Most of these utensils are manufactured from some kind of metal, as iron, tin, copper, brass, etc. All metals are dissolvable in certain substances, and some of those employed for making household utensils are capable of forming most poisonous compounds when used for cooking certain foods. This fact should lead to great care on the part of the housewife, both in purchasing and in using utensils for cooking purposes.

Iron utensils, although they are, when new, apt to discolor and impart a disagreeable flavor to food cooked in them, are not objectionable from a health standpoint, if kept clean and free from rust. Iron rust is the result of the combination of the iron with oxygen, for which it has so great an affinity that it will decompose water to get oxygen to unite with; hence it is that iron utensils rust so quickly when not carefully dried after using, or if left where they can collect moisture. This is the reason why a coating of tallow, which serves to exclude the air and moisture, will preserve ironware not in daily use from rusting.

"Porcelain ware" is iron lined with a hard, smooth enamel, and makes safe and very desirable cooking utensils. German porcelain ware is unexcelled for culinary purposes.

"Granite ware" is a material quite recently come into use, the composition of which is a secret, although pronounced by eminent chemists to be free from all injurious qualities. Utensils made from it are light in weight, easily kept clean, and for most cooking purposes, are far superior to those made from any other material.

What is termed "galvanized iron" is unsuitable for cooking utensils, it being simply sheet iron coated with zinc, an exceedingly unsafe metal to be used for cooking purposes.

Tin, which is simply thin sheet iron coated with tin by dipping several times into vats of the melted metal, is largely employed in the manufacture of cooking utensils. Tinware is acted upon by acids, and when used for holding or cooking any acid foods, like sour milk, sour fruits, tomatoes, etc., harmful substances are liable to be formed, varying in quantity and harmfulness with the nature of the acid contained in the food.

In these days of fraud and adulteration, nearly all the cheaper grades of tinware contain a greater or less amount of lead in their composition, which owing to its greater abundance and less price, is used as an adulterant of tin. Lead is also used in the solder with which the parts of tinware are united. The action of acids upon lead form very poisonous compounds, and all lead-adulterated utensils should be wholly discarded for cooking purposes.

Test for Lead-Adulterated Tin.—Place upon the metal a small drop of nitric acid, spreading it to the size of a dime, dry with gentle heat, apply a drop of water, then add a small crystal of iodide of potash. If lead is present, a yellowish color will be seen very soon after the addition of the iodide. Lead glazing, which is frequently employed on crockery and ironware in the manufacture of cooking utensils, may also be detected in the same manner.

Cooking utensils made of copper are not to be recommended from the point of healthfulness, although many cooks esteem them because copper is a better conductor of heat than iron or tin. The acids of many fruits combine with copper to form extremely poisonous substances. Fatty substances, as well as salt and sugar, act upon copper to a greater or less degree, also vegetables containing sulfur in their composition and produce harmful compounds.

Utensils made of brass, which is a compound of copper and zinc, are not safe to use for cooking purposes.


Bad cooking diminishes happiness and shortens life.—Wisdom of Ages.

Says Mrs. Partington: "Many a fair home has been desiccated by poor cooking, and a man's table has been the rock on which his happiness has split."

SIGNIFICANT FACT.—Lady—"Have you had much experience as a cook?" Applicant—"Oh, indeed I have. I was the cook of Mr. and Mrs. Peterby for three years."

L.—"Why did you leave them?"

A.—"I didn't leave them. They left me. They both died."

L.—"What of?"


Cooking is generally bad because people falling to routine; habit dulls their appreciation, and they do not think about what they are eating.—Didsbury.

Lilly (Secretary of the cooking class)—"Now girls, we've learned nine cakes, two kinds of angel food, and seven pies. What next?"

Susie (engaged)—"Dick's father says I must learn to bake bread."

Indignant chorus—"Bread? How absurd! What are bakers for?"

It is told of Philip Hecgnet, a French, physician who lived in the 17th, century, that when calling upon his wealthy patients, he used often to go to the kitchen and pantry, embrace the cooks and butlers, and exhort them to do their duty well. "I owe you so much gratitude, my dear friends," he would say; "you are so useful to us doctors; for if you did not keep on poisoning the people, we should all have to go to the poorhouse."

There are innumerable books of recipes for cooking, but unless the cook is master of the principles of his art, and unless he knows the why and the wherefore of its processes, he cannot choose a recipe intelligently and execute it successfully.—Richard Estcourt.

They who provide the food for the world, decide the health of the world. You have only to go on some errands amid the taverns and hotels of the United States and Great Britain, to appreciate the fact that a vast multitude of the human race are slaughtered by incompetent cookery. Though a young woman may have taken lessons in music, and may have taken lessons in painting, and lessons in astronomy, she is not well educated unless she has taken lessons in dough!—Talmage.



I t is a mistake to suppose that any room, however small and unpleasantly situated, is "good enough" for a kitchen. This is the room where housekeepers pass a great portion of their time, and it should be one of the brightest and most convenient rooms in the house; for upon the results of no other department of woman's domain depend so greatly the health and comfort of the family as upon those involved in this "household workshop." The character of a person's work is more or less dependent upon his surroundings, hence is it to be greatly wondered at that a woman immured in a small, close, dimly-lighted room, whose only outlook may be the back alley or the woodshed, supplies her household with products far below the standard of health and housewifely skill?

Every kitchen should have windows on two sides of the room, and the sun should have free entrance through them; the windows should open from the top to allow a complete change of air, for light and fresh air are among the chief essentials to success in all departments of the household. Good drainage should also be provided, and the ventilation of the kitchen ought to be even more carefully attended to than that of a sleeping room. The ventilation of the kitchen should be so ample as to thoroughly remove all gases and odors, which, together with steam from boiling and other cooking processes, generally invade and render to some degree unhealthful every other portion of the house. It is the steam from the kitchen which gives a fusty odor to the parlor air and provides a wet-sheet pack for the occupant of the "spare bed." The only way of wholly eradicating this evil, is the adoption of the suggestion of the sanitary philosopher who places the kitchen at the top of the house.

To lessen to discomforts from heat, a ventilator may be placed above the range, that shall carry out of the room all superfluous heat, and aid in removing the steam and odors from cooking food. The simplest form of such a ventilator this inverted hopper of sheet iron fitted above the range, the upper and smaller end opening into a large flue adjacent to the smoke flue for the range. Care must be taken, however, to provide an ample ventilating shaft for this purpose, since a strong draft is required to secure the desired results.

There should be ample space for tables, chairs, range, sink, and cupboards, yet the room should not be so large as to necessitate too many steps. A very good size for the ordinary dwelling is 16 x 18 feet.

Undoubtedly much of the distaste for, and neglect of, "housework," so often deplored in these days, arises from unpleasant surroundings. If the kitchen be light, airy, and tidy, and the utensils bright and clean, the work of compounding those articles of food which grace the table and satisfy the appetite will be a pleasant task, and one entirely worthy of the most intelligent and cultivated woman.

It is desirable, from a sanitary standpoint, that the kitchen floor be made impervious to moisture; hence, concrete or tile floors are better than wooden floors. If wooden floors are used, they should be constructed of narrow boards of hard wood, carefully joined and thoroughly saturated with hot linseed oil, well rubbed in to give polish to the surface.

Cleanliness is the great desideratum, and this can be best attained by having all woodwork in and about the kitchen coated with varnish; substances which cause stain and grease spots, do not penetrate the wood when varnished, and can be easily removed with a damp cloth. Paint is preferable to whitewash or calcimine for the walls, since it is less affected by steam, and can be more readily cleaned. A carpet on a kitchen floor is as out of place as a kitchen sink would be in a parlor.

The elements of beauty should not be lacking in the kitchen. Pictures and fancy articles are inappropriate; but a few pots of easily cultivated flowers on the window ledge or arranged upon brackets about the window in winter, and a window box arranged as a jardiniere, with vines and blooming plants in summer, will greatly brighten the room, and thus serve to lighten the task of those whose daily labor confines them to the precincts of the kitchen.

The Kitchen Furniture.—The furniture for a kitchen should not be cumbersome, and should be so made and dressed as to be easily cleaned. There should be plenty of cupboards, and each for the sake of order, should be devoted to a special purpose. Cupboards with sliding doors are much superior to closets. They should be placed upon casters so as to be easily moved, as they, are thus not only more convenient, but admit of more thorough cleanliness.

Cupboards used for the storage of food should be well ventilated; otherwise, they furnish choice conditions for the development of mold and germs. Movable cupboards may be ventilated by means of openings in the top, and doors covered with very fine wire gauze which will admit the air but keep out flies and dust. All stationary cupboards and closets should have a ventilating flue connected with the main shaft by which the house is ventilated, or directly communicating with the outer air.

No kitchen can be regarded as well furnished without a good timepiece as an aid to punctuality and economy of time. An eight-day clock with large dial and plain case is the most suitable.

Every kitchen should also be provided with a slate, with sponge and pencil attached, on one side of which the market orders and other memoranda may be jotted down, and on the other the bills of fare for the day or week. In households where servants are kept, the slate will save many a vexatious blunder and unnecessary call to the kitchen, while if one is herself mistress, cook, and housekeeper, it may prove an invaluable aid and time-saver if thus used.

A Convenient Kitchen Table.

A Convenient Kitchen Table.

Lack of sufficient table room is often a great source of inconvenience to the housekeeper. To avoid this, arrange swinging tables or shelves at convenient points upon the wall, which may be put up or let down as occasion demands. For ordinary kitchen uses, small tables of suitable height on easy-rolling casters, and with zinc tops, are the most convenient and most easily kept clean. It is quite as well that they be made without drawers, which are too apt to become receptacles for a heterogeneous mass of rubbish. If desirable to have some handy place for keeping articles which are frequently required for use, an arrangement similar to that represented in the accompanying cut may be made at very small expense. It may be also an advantage to arrange small shelves about and above the range, on which may be kept various articles necessary for cooking purposes.

One of the most indispensable articles of furnishing for a well-appointed kitchen, is a sink; however, a sink must be properly constructed and well cared for, or it is likely to become a source of great danger to the health of the inmates of the household. Earthen-ware is the best material for kitchen sinks. Iron is very serviceable, but corrodes, and if painted or enameled, this soon wears off. Wood is objectionable from a sanitary standpoint. A sink made of wood lined with copper answers well for a long time if properly cared for.

The sink should if possible stand out from the wall, so as to allow free access to all sides of it for the sake of cleanliness, and under no circumstances should there be any inclosure of woodwork or cupboards underneath to serve as a storage place for pots and kettles and all kinds of rubbish, dust, and germs. It should be supported on legs, and the space below should be open for inspection at all times. The pipes and fixtures should be selected and placed by a competent plumber.

Great pains should be taken to keep the pipes clean and well disinfected. Refuse of all kinds should be kept out. Thoughtless housekeepers and careless domestics often allow greasy water and bits of table waste to find their way into the pipes. Drain pipes usually have a bend, or trap, through which water containing no sediment flows freely; but the melted grease which often passes into the pipes mixed with hot water, becomes cooled and solid as it descends, adhering to the pipes, and gradually accumulating until the drain is blocked, or the water passes through very slowly. A grease-lined pipe is a hotbed for disease germs.

Water containing much grease should be cooled and the grease removed before being turned into the kitchen sink, while bits of refuse should be disposed of elsewhere, since prevention of mischief is in this case, as in most others, far easier than cure. It is customary for housekeepers to pour a hot solution of soda or potash down the sink pipes occasionally, to dissolve any grease which may tend to obstruct the passage; but this is only a partial safeguard, as there is no certainty that all the grease will be dissolved, and any particles adhering to the pipes very soon undergo putrefaction.

A frequent flushing with hot water is important; besides which the pipes should be disinfected two or three times a week by pouring down a gallon of water holding in solution a pound of good chloride of lime.

Stoves and Ranges.—The furnishing of a modern kitchen would be quite incomplete without some form of stove or range. The multiplicity of these articles, manufactured each with some especial merit of its own, renders it a somewhat difficult task to make a choice among them. Much must, however, depend upon the kind of fuel to be used, the size of the household, and various other circumstances which make it necessary for each individual housekeeper to decide for herself what is best adapted to her wants. It may be said, in brief, that economy of fuel, simplicity of construction, and efficiency in use are the chief points to be considered in the selection of stoves and ranges.

A stove or range of plain finish is to be preferred, because it is much easier to keep clean, and will be likely to present a better appearance after a few months' wear than one of more elaborate pattern. But whatever stove or range is selected, its mechanism should be thoroughly understood in every particular, and it should be tested with dampers open, with dampers closed, and in every possible way, until one is perfectly sure she understands its action under all conditions.

Oil and Gas Stoves.—In many households, oil, gas, and gasoline stoves have largely taken the place of the kitchen range, especially during the hot weather of summer. They can be used for nearly every purpose for which a wood or a coal range is used; they require much less labor and litter, and can be instantly started into full force and as quickly turned out when no longer required, while the fact that the heat can be regulated with exactness, makes them superior for certain processes of cooking to any other stove. But while these stoves are convenient and economical, especially in small families, they should be used with much care. Aside from the danger from explosion, which is by no means inconsiderable in the use of gasoline and oil stoves, they are not, unless well cared for altogether healthful. Unless the precaution is taken to use them in well-ventilated rooms or to connect them with a chimney, they vitiate the atmosphere to a considerable extent with the products of combustion. Oil stoves, unless the wicks are kept well trimmed, are apt to smoke, and this smoke is not only disagreeable, but extremely irritating to the mucous membrane of the nose and throat. Oil stoves are constructed on the same principle as ordinary oil lamps, and require the same care and attention.

Quite recently there has been invented by Prof. Edward Atkinson a very unique apparatus for cooking by means of the heat of an ordinary kerosene lamp, called the "Aladdin Cooker." The food to be cooked is placed in a chamber around which hot water, heated by the flame of the lamp, circulates. The uniform heat thus obtained performs the process of cooking, slowly, but most satisfactorily and economically, the result being far superior to that obtained by the ordinary method of cooking by quick heat. The cooker is only used for stewing and steaming; but Mr. Atkinson has also invented an oven in which the heat is conveyed to the place where it is needed by a column of hot air instead of hot water. With this oven, which consists of an outer oven made of non-conducting material, and an inner oven made of sheet iron, with an intervening space between, through which the hot air circulates, no smoke or odor from the lamp can reach the interior.

Kitchen. Utensils.—The list of necessary kitchen utensils must of course be governed somewhat by individual circumstances, but it should not be curtailed for the sake of display in some other department, where less depends upon the results. A good kitchen outfit is one of the foundation-stones of good housekeeping. The following are some of the most essential:—

Two dish pans; two or more papier-maché tubs for washing glassware; one kneading board; one bread board; one pair scales, with weights; scrubbing and stove brushes; brooms; dustpans; roller for towel; washbowl; soap dish; vegetable brushes.

A Double Boiler.
A Double Boiler.

For the Tin Closet.-One dipper; one egg-beater; one two-quart pail; one four-quart pail; six brick-loaf bread pans; three shallow tins; three granite-ware pie tins; two perforated sheet iron pans for rolls, etc.; one set of measures, pint, quart, and two quart; two colanders; two fine wire strainers; one flour sifter; one apple corer; one set patty pans; two dripping pans; two sets gem irons; one set muffin rings; one toaster; one broiler; the six saucepans, different sizes; two steamers; six milk-pans; one dozen basins, different sizes; one chopping bowl and knife; six double boilers; two funnels, large and small; one can opener; griddle; kettles, iron and granite ware; two water baths.

For the Dish Closet.—One half dozen iron-stone china cups; three quart bowls; three pint bowls; two large mixing bowls; two quart bowls with lip; six deep plates; three kitchen pitchers; one glass rolling pin; six wooden and six iron spoons, assorted sizes; six kitchen teaspoons; one stone baking pot; glass jars for stores; crocks and jars.

The Pantry.—The pantry and china closet should have direct light and good ventilation. The dark, dingy places sometimes used for this purpose are germ breeders. There should be plenty of shelf room and cupboards for the fine glass and china-ware, with a well-arranged sink for washing the dishes. The sink for this purpose is preferably one lined with tinned or planished copper; for dishes will be less liable to become injured and broken then when washed in an iron or earthen-ware sink. Extension or folding shelves are a great convenience, and can be arranged for the sink if desired. The accompanying cuts illustrate a sink of four compartments for dish-washing, devised by the writer for use in the Sanitarium Domestic Economy kitchen, which can be closed and used as a table. Two zinc trays fit the top, upon which to place the dish drainers. If preferred, the top might be arranged as a drainer, by making it of well-seasoned hard wood, with a number of inclined grooves to allow the water to run into the sink. If the house be heated by steam, a plate-warmer is an important part of the pantry furnishing.

Compartment Sink for Dish-Washing. Open.

Compartment Sink for Dish-Washing. Open.

The Storeroom.—If possible to do so, locate the room for the keeping of the kitchen supplies on the cool side of the house. Plenty of light, good ventilation, and absolute cleanliness are essential, as the slightest contamination of air is likely to render the food supply unfit for use.

The refrigerator should not be connected with the kitchen drain pipe, and the greatest care should be taken to keep it clean and sweet. It should be thoroughly scrubbed with borax or sal-soda and water, and well aired, at least once a week. Strongly flavored foods and milk should not be kept in the same refrigerator. The ice to be used should always be carefully washed before putting in the refrigerator. Care should also be taken to replenish it before the previous supply is entirely melted, as the temperature rises when the ice becomes low, and double the quantity will be required to cool the refrigerator that would be necessary to keep it of uniform temperature if added before the ice was entirely out.

The Water Supply.—The water used for drinking and cooking purposes should receive equal consideration with the food supply, and from whatever source obtained, it should be frequently tested for impurities, since that which looks the most refreshing may be contaminated with organic poison of the most treacherous character.

Compartment Sink for Dish-Washing. Closed.

Compartment Sink for Dish-Washing. Closed.

A good and simple test solution, which any housewife can use, may be prepared by dissolving twelve grains of caustic potash and three of permanganate of potash in an ounce of distilled water, or filtered soft water. Add a drop of this solution to a glass of the water to be tested. If the pink color imparted by the solution disappears at once, add another drop of the solution, and continue adding drop by drop until the pink color will remain for half an hour or more. The amount of the solution necessary to security permanent color is very fair index to the quality of the water. If the color imparted by the first one or two drops disappears within a half hour, the water should be rejected as probably dangerous. Water which is suspected of being impure may be rendered safe by boiling. Filters are only of service in removing suspended particles and the unpleasant taste of rain water; a really dangerous water is not rendered safe by filtering in the ordinary manner.

Cellars.—Sanitarians tell us that cellars should never be built under dwelling houses. Because of improper construction and neglect, they are undoubtedly the cause of much disease and many deaths. A basement beneath the house is advantageous, but the greatest of care should be given to construct it in accord with sanitary laws. It should be thoroughly drained that there may be no source of dampness, but should not be connected with a sewer or a cesspool. It should have walls so made as to be impervious to air and water. An ordinary brick or stone wall is inefficient unless well covered with good Portland cement polished smooth. The floors should likewise be covered with cement, otherwise the cellar is likely to be filled with impure air derived from the soil, commonly spoken of as "ground air," and which offers a constant menace to the health of those who live over cellars with uncemented walls and floors.

Light and ventilation are quite as essential to the healthfulness of a cellar as to other rooms of the dwelling. Constantly during warm weather, and at least once a day during the winter season, windows should be opened wide, thus effecting a free interchange of air. All mold and mustiness should be kept out by thorough ventilation and frequent coats of whitewash to the walls. Vegetables and other decomposable articles, if stored in the basement, should be frequently sorted, and all decaying substances promptly removed. This is of the utmost importance, since the germs and foul gases arising from decomposing food stuffs form a deadly source of contamination through every crack and crevice.


In these days of invention and progress, much thought and ingenuity have been expended in making and perfecting labor-saving articles and utensils, which serve to make housework less of a burden and more of a delight.

The Steam-Cooker.
Vegetable Press.
The Steam-Cooker.
Vegetable Press.

The Steam-Cooker.—One of the most unique of these conveniences is the steam-cooker, one kind of which is illustrated by the accompanying cut. Steaming is, for many foods, a most economical and satisfactory method of cooking. Especially is this true respecting fruits, grains, and vegetables, the latter of which often have the larger proportion of their best nutritive elements dissolved and thrown away in the water in which they are boiled. In the majority of households it is, however, the method least depended upon, because the ordinary steamer over a pot of boiling water requires too much attention, takes up too much stove room, and creates too much steam in the kitchen, to prove a general favorite. The steam-cooker has an escape-steam tube through which all excess of steam and odors passes into the fire, and thus its different compartments may contain and cook an entire dinner, if need be, and over one stove hole or one burner of an oil or gasoline stove.

The Vegetable Press.—The accompanying cut represents this handy utensil, which is equally useful as a potato and vegetable masher; as a sauce, gruel, and gravy strainer; as a fruit press, and for many other purposes for which a colander or strainer is needed, while it economizes both time and labor.

Lemon Drill.
The Handy Waiter.
Lemon Drill.
The Handy Waiter.

Lemon Drill.—This little article for extracting the juice of the lemon, and which can be purchased of most hardware dealers, is quite superior to the more commonly used lemon squeezer. Being made of glass, its use is not open to the danger that the use of metal squeezer is are from poisonous combinations of the acid and metal, while the juice extracted is free from pulp, seeds, and the oil of the skin.

A Handy Waiter.—In many households where no help is employed, a labor-saving device like the one represented in the accompanying illustration, will be found of great service. It is a light double table on easy-rolling casters, and can be readily constructed by anyone handy in the use of tools. If preferred, the top may be covered with zinc. In setting or clearing the table, the dishes may be placed on the lower shelf, with the food on the top, and the table rolled from pantry to dining room, and from dining room to kitchen; thus accomplishing, with one trip, what is ordinarily done with hundreds of steps by the weary housewife. If desirable to reset the table at once after a meal, the waiter will be found most serviceable as a place whereon the glassware and silverware may be washed. It is equally serviceable for holding the utensils and material needed when cooking; being so easily moved, they can be rolled to the stove and is always convenient.

Wall cabinet.—where cupboard space is limited, or where for convenience it is desirable to have some provision for supplies and utensils near the range and baking table, a wall cabinet offers a most convenient arrangement. It may be made of a size to fit in any convenient niche, and constructed plainly or made as ornamental as one pleases, with doors to exclude the dust, shelves on which to keep tin cans filled with rice, oatmeal, cracked wheat, and other grains; glass jars of raisins, sugar, citron, cornstarch, etc.; hooks on which may hang the measures, egg-beater, potato masher, and such frequently needed utensils; and with drawers for paring knives, spoons, and similar articles, the wall cabinet becomes a multum in parvo of convenience which would greatly facilitate work in many households.

Wall Cabinet.

Wall Cabinet.

Percolate Holder.—The accompanying cut illustrates an easily-constructed device for holding a jelly bag or percolate. It may be so made as to be easily screwed to any ordinary table, and will save the housekeeper far more than its cost in time and patience.

Percolate Holder.

Percolate Holder.

Kneading Table.—Much of the tiresome labor of bread-making can be avoided if one is supplied with some convenient table similar to the one represented in the cut, wherein the needed material and utensils may be kept in readiness at all times. The table illustrated has two large tin drawers, each divided into two compartments, in which may be kept corn meal, entire wheat, and Graham and white flours. Two drawers above provide a place for rolling-pin, bread mallet, gem irons, spoons, etc., while a narrow compartment just beneath the hardwood top affords a place for the kneading board. The table being on casters is easily moved to any part of the kitchen for use.

Kneading Table.

Kneading Table.

Dish-Towel Rack.—Nothing adds more to the ease and facility with which the frequent dish-washings of the household may be accomplished than clean, well-dried towels. For quick drying,—an item of great importance if one would keep the towels fresh and sweet,—the towel rack represented in the cut, and which can be made by any carpenter, is a most handy device. When not in use, it can be turned up against the wall as illustrated. It is light, affords sufficient drying space so that no towel need be hung on top of another, and projecting out from the wall as it does, the free circulation of air between the towels soon dries them.

Dish-Towel Rack.

Dish-Towel Rack.

Vegetable Brush. Vegetable Brush. Kitchen Brushes.—These useful little articles can be put to such a variety of uses that they are among the chiefest of household conveniences. They are also so inexpensive, costing but five cents apiece without handles and seven cents with handles, that no housewife can afford to be without a supply of them. For the washing of dishes with handles, the outside of iron kettles, and other cooking utensils made of iron, they are especially serviceable. The smaller sizes are likewise excellent for cleaning cut glass ware, Majolica ware,—in fact, any kind of ware with raised figures or corrugated surfaces. For cleaning a grater, nothing is superior to one of these little brushes. Such a brush is also most serviceable for washing celery, as the corrugated surface of the stalk makes a thorough cleaning with the hands a difficult operation. Then if one uses a brush with handle, ice water, which adds to the crispness of the celery, may be used for the cleaning, as there will be no necessity for putting the hands in the water. A small whisk broom is also valuable for the same purpose. Such vegetables as potatoes, turnips, etc., are best cleaned with a brush. It makes the work less disagreeable, as the hands need not be soiled by the process, and in no other way can the cleaning be so well and thoroughly done.

All brushes after being used should be carefully scalded and placed brush downward in a wire sponge basket, or hung up on hooks. If left around carelessly, they soon acquire the musty smell of a neglected dishcloth.


The kitchen is a chemical laboratory, in which are conducted a number of chemical processes by which our food is converted from its crudest state to condition more suitable for digestion and nutrition, and made more agreeable to the palate.—Prof. Matthew Williams.

Half the trouble between mistresses and maids arises from the disagreeable surroundings to which servants are confined. There is no place more dismal than the ordinary kitchen in city dwellings. It is half underground, ill-lighted, and unwholesome. What wonder, then, in the absence of sunlight, there is a lack of sunny temper and cheerful service? An ill-lighted kitchen is almost sure to be a dirty one, where germs will thrive and multiply. Let sanitary kitchens be provided, and we shall have more patient mistresses and more willing servants.—Sel.

A sluggish housemaid exclaimed, when scolded for the uncleanliness of her kitchen, "I'm sure the room would be clean enough if it were not for the nasty sun, which is always showing the dirty corners."—Sel.

If we would look for ready hands and willing hearts in our kitchens, we should make them pleasant and inviting for those who literally bear the "burden and heat of the day" in this department of our homes, where, emphatically, "woman's work is never done." We should no longer be satisfied to locate our kitchens in the most undesirable corner of the house. We should demand ample light,—sunshine if possible,—and justly too; for the very light itself is inspiring to the worker. It will stir up cheer and breed content in the minds of those whose lot is cast in this work-a-day room.—Sel.

Any invention on the part of the housekeeper intended to be a substitute for watchfulness, will prove a delusion and a snare.—Sel.

"The first wealth is health," says Emerson.

A knowledge of sanitary principles should be regarded as an essential part of every woman's education, and obedience to sanitary laws should be ranked, as it was in the Mosaic code, as a religious duty.—Sel.

Much of the air of the house comes from the cellar. A heated house acts like a chimney. A German experimenter states that one half of the cellar air makes its way into the first story, one third into the second, and one fifth into the third.



C ereal is the name given to those seeds used as food (wheat, rye, oats, barley, corn, rice, etc.), which are produced by plants belonging to the vast order known as the grass family. They are used for food both in the unground state and in various forms of mill products.

The grains are pre-eminently nutritious, and when well prepared, easily digested foods. In composition they are all similar, but variations in their constituent elements and the relative amounts of these various elements, give them different degrees of alimentary value. They each contain one or more of the nitrogenous elements,—gluten, albumen, caseine, and fibrin,—together with starch, dextrine, sugar, and fatty matter, and also mineral elements and woody matter, or cellulose. The combined nutritive value of the grain foods is nearly three times that of beef, mutton, or poultry. As regards the proportion of the food elements necessary to meet the various requirements of the system, grains approach more nearly the proper standard than most other foods; indeed, wheat contains exactly the correct proportion of the food elements.

Being thus in themselves so nearly perfect foods, and when properly prepared, exceedingly palatable and easy of digestion, it is a matter of surprise that they are not more generally used; yet scarcely one family in fifty makes any use of the grains, save in the form of flour, or an occasional dish of rice or oatmeal. This use of grains is far too meager to adequately represent their value as an article of diet. Variety in the use of grains is as necessary as in the use of other food material, and the numerous grain preparations now to be found in market render it quite possible to make this class of foods a staple article of diet, if so desired, without their becoming at all monotonous.

In olden times the grains were largely depended upon as a staple food, and it is a fact well authenticated by history that the highest condition of man has always been associated with wheat-consuming nations. The ancient Spartans, whose powers of endurance are proverbial, were fed on a grain diet, and the Roman soldiers who under Caesar conquered the world, carried each a bag of parched grain in his pocket as his daily ration.

Other nationalities at the present time make extensive use of the various grains. Rice used in connection with some of the leguminous seeds, forms the staple article of diet for a large proportion of the human race. Rice, unlike the other grain foods, is deficient in the nitrogenous elements, and for this reason its use needs to be supplemented by other articles containing an excess of the nitrogenous material. It is for this reason, doubtless, that the Hindoos use lentils, and the Chinese eat peas and beans in connection with rice.

We frequently meet people who say they cannot use the grains,—that they do not agree with them. With all deference to the opinion of such people, it may be stated that the difficulty often lies in the fact that the grain was either not properly cooked, not properly eaten, or not properly accompanied. A grain, simply because it is a grain, is by no means warranted to faithfully fulfil its mission unless properly treated. Like many another good thing excellent in itself, if found in bad company, it is prone to create mischief, and in many cases the root of the whole difficulty may be found in the excessive amount of sugar used with the grain.

Sugar is not needed with grains to increase their alimentary value. The starch which constitutes a large proportion of their food elements must itself be converted into sugar by the digestive processes before assimilation, hence the addition of cane sugar only increases the burden of the digestive organs, for the pleasure of the palate. The Asiatics, who subsist largely upon rice, use no sugar upon it, and why should it be considered requisite for the enjoyment of wheat, rye, oatmeal, barley, and other grains, any more than it is for our enjoyment of bread or other articles made from these same grains? Undoubtedly the use of grains would become more universal if they were served with less or no sugar. The continued use of sugar upon grains has a tendency to cloy the appetite, just as the constant use of cake or sweetened bread in the place of ordinary bread would do. Plenty of nice, sweet cream or fruit juice, is a sufficient dressing, and there are few persons who after a short trial would not come to enjoy the grains without sugar, and would then as soon think of dispensing with a meal altogether as to dispense with the grains.

Even when served without sugar, the grains may not prove altogether healthful unless they are properly eaten. Because they are made soft by the process of cooking and on this account do not require masticating to break them up, the first process of digestion or insalivation is usually overlooked. But it must be remembered that grains are largely composed of starch, and that starch must be mixed with the saliva, or it will remain undigested in the stomach, since the gastric juice only digests the nitrogenous elements. For this reason it is desirable to eat the grains in connection with some hard food. Whole-wheat wafers, nicely toasted to make them crisp and tender, toasted rolls, and unfermented zwieback, are excellent for this purpose. Break two or three wafers into rather small pieces over each individual dish before pouring on the cream. In this way, a morsel of the hard food may be taken with each spoonful of the grains. The combination of foods thus secured, is most pleasing. This is a specially advantageous method of serving grains for children, who are so liable to swallow their food without proper mastication.

Cooking of Grains.—All grains, with the exception of rice, and the various grain meals, require prolonged cooking with gentle and continuous heat, in order to so disintegrate their tissues and change their starch into dextrine as to render them easy of digestion. Even the so-called "steam-cooked" grains, advertised to be ready for use in five or ten minutes, require a much longer cooking to properly fit them for digestion. These so-called quickly prepared grains are simply steamed before grinding, which has the effect to destroy any low organisms contained in the grain. They are then crushed and shredded. Bicarbonate of soda and lime is added to help dissolve the albuminoids, and sometimes diastase to aid the conversion of the starch into sugar; but there is nothing in this preparatory process that so alters the chemical nature of the grain as to make it possible to cook it ready for easy digestion in five or ten minutes. An insufficiently cooked grain, although it may be palatable, is not in a condition to be readily acted upon by the digestive fluids, and is in consequence left undigested to act as a mechanical irritant.

A Double Boiler.
A Double Boiler.

For the proper cooking of grains the double boiler is the best and most convenient utensil for ordinary purposes. If one does not possess a double boiler, a very fair substitute may be improvised by using a covered earthen crock placed within a kettle of boiling water, or by using two pails, a smaller within a larger one containing boiling water.

A closed steamer or steam-cooker is also valuable for the cooking of grains. Grains may be cooked in an ordinary kettle, but the difficulties to be encountered, in order to prolong the cooking sufficiently and prevent burning, make it the least desirable utensil for this purpose.

Water is the liquid usually employed for cooking grains, but many of them are richer and finer flavored when milk is mixed with the water,—one part to two of water. Especially is this true of rice, hominy, and farina. When water is used, soft water is preferable to hard. No salt is necessary, but if used at all, it is generally added to the water before stirring in the grain or meal.

The quantity of liquid required varies with the different grains, the manner in which they are milled, the method by which they are cooked, and the consistency desired for the cooked grain, more liquid being required for a porridge than for a mush. The following table gives the time necessary for cooking and the quantity of liquid required for the various grains, with the exception of rice, when cooked in a double boiler or closed steamer, to produce a mush of ordinary consistency. If an ordinary kettle is used for cooking the grains, a larger quantity of water will be needed:—


Quantity of
Hours to
Graham Grits1 part4 parts3 to 5
Rolled Wheat1 "3 "3 to 4
Cracked Wheat1 "4-1/2 "3 to 4
Pearl Wheat1 "4 "4 to 5
Whole Wheat1 "5 "6 to 8
Rolled Oats1 "3 "3 to 4
Coarse Oatmeal1 "4 "4 to 6
Rolled Rye1 "3 "3 to 4
Pearl Barley1 "5 "4 to 5
Coarse Hominy1 "5 "6 to 10
Fine Hominy1 "4 "4 to 6
Cerealine1 "1 part1/2

All grains should be carefully looked over before being put to cook.

In the cooking of grains, the following points should be observed:—

1. Measure both liquid and grain accurately with the same utensil, or with two of equal size.

2. Have the water boiling when the grain is introduced, but do not allow it to boil for a long time previous, until it is considerably evaporated, as that will change the proportion of water and grain sufficiently to alter the consistency of the mush when cooked. Introduce the grain slowly, so as not to stop the sinking to the bottom, and the whole becomes thickened. If the grain is cooked in a double boiler, this first boiling should be done with the inner dish directly over the fire, and when the grain has thickened or become "set," as it is termed, the dish should at once be placed in the outer boiler, the water in which should be boiling. It will then require no further care during the entire cooking, safe to keep the outer boiler filled and the water boiling. If the grain is to be cooked in a steam-cooker, as soon as set it may be turned into a china or an earthen dish, suitable for use on the table, and placed at once in the steamer to complete the cooking. If an ordinary kettle is used, it is well to place it upon an iron ring or brick on some part of the range were it will just simmer, for the remainder of the cooking.

3. Stir the grain continuously until it has set, but not at all afterward. Grains are much more appetizing if, while properly softened, they can still be made to retain their original form. Stirring renders the preparation pasty, and destroys its appearance. Grains cooked in a double boiler will require no stirring, and there will be little danger of their being lumpy, underdone on top, and scorched at the bottom, as is so often the case when cooked in a single boiler.

4. Cook continuously. If it be necessary to replenish the water in the outer boiler at anytime, let it be done with water of boiling temperature. If it is desired to have the mush quite thick and dry, the boiler should be left uncovered during the latter part of the cooking. If preferred moist, keep the cover on.

In the preparation of all mushes with meal or flour, it is a good plan to make the material into a batter with a portion of the liquid retained from the quantity given, before introducing it into the boiling water. This prevents the tendency to cook in lumps, so frequent when dry meal is scattered into boiling liquid. Care must be taken, however, to add the moistened portion very slowly, stirring vigorously meantime, so that the boiling will not be checked. Use warm water for moistening. The other directions given for the whole or broken grains are applicable to the ground products.

Grains for Breakfast.—Since hasty preparation will not suffice for the grains, they cannot be conveniently cooked in the morning in time for breakfast. This difficulty may be obviated by cooking the day previous, and reheating in the following way:—

Place the grain, when sufficiently cooked, in the refrigerator or in some place where it will cool quickly (as slow cooling might cause fermentation), to remain overnight. If cooked in a porcelain-lined or granite-ware double boiler, it may be left undisturbed, if uncovered. If cooked in tin or iron, turn the grain into a large earthen or china dish. To heat in the morning, fill the outer boiler with boiling water, place the inner dish containing the grain therein, and steam until thoroughly heated. No stirring and no additional liquid will be necessary, and if placed upon the stove when beginning the preparations for breakfast, it will be ready for serving in good season. If the grain has been kept in an earthen dish, it may best be reheated by placing that inside the steam cooker or an ordinary steamer over a kettle of boiling water.

Cracked wheat, pearl wheat, oatmeal, and other course grain preparations to be reheated, require for cooking a half cup of water in addition to the quantity given in the table. For rolled wheat, rolled oats, rolled rye, and other crushed grains, no more is needed. Grains may be used for breakfast without reheating, if served with hot milk or cream. If one has an Aladdin oven, the problem of grains for breakfast may be easily solved by cooking them all night, and if started late in the evening, they may be thus cooked over a single burner oil stove with the flame turned low.

Grains an economical food.—While grains are pre-eminently among the most nutritious of foods, they are also among the most economical, the average price being from five to seven cents a pound, and even less when purchased in bulk. If it be objected that they require much fuel to secure the prolonged cooking necessary, we would say that a few cents' worth of oil a week and a small lamp stove will accomplish the cooking in a most efficient manner. For a hot-weather food there are few articles which give greater satisfaction and require less time and labor on the part of the housewife than grains, cooked by the aid of a small lamp stove.


Description.—Wheat is the most important of the grain foods. It is probably a native of Southwestern Asia, though like most grains cultivated from the earliest periods, its history is extremely obscure.

Wheat is of two principal kinds, characterized as soft and hard wheat, though there are hundreds of named varieties of the grain. The distinction between many of these is due to variation in the relative proportions of starch and nitrogenous matter. Some contain not more than eight per cent of nitrogenous elements, while others contain eighteen or twenty per cent, with a corresponding decrease in carbonaceous elements. This difference depends upon the soil, cultivation, season, climate, and other conditions under which the grain is produced.

The structure of the wheat grain consists of an external tegument of a hard, woody nature, so coherent that it appears in the form of scales or bran when the wheat is ground, and an inner portion, more soft and friable, consisting of several cellular layers. The layer nearest the outer husk contains vegetable fibrin and fatty matter. The second layer is largely composed of gluten cells; while the center comprising the bulk of the grain, is chiefly made up of starch granules with a small proportion of gluten.

Sectional View of Wheat Kernel.
Sectional View of Wheat Kernel.

The structure of a wheat kernel is well illustrated in the accompanying cut. As will be seen, the different food elements are situated in different parts of the grain, and not uniformly distributed throughout its structure. The outer husk of the berry is composed wholly of innutritious and indigestible matter, but the thin layers which lie next this outer covering contain the larger proportion of the nitrogenous elements to be found in the entire kernel. The central portion consists almost wholly of farinaceous matter.

Phosphates and other mineral matter are present to some extent throughout the entire grain, but preponderates in the external part. Here is also found a peculiar, soluble, active principle called diastase, which possesses the power of converting starch into sugar. The dark color and marked flavor of Graham bread is undoubtedly due to the influence of this element.

Until within a few years the unground grain was rarely used as an article of food, but people are beginning to appreciate its wholesomeness, and cracked, rolled, and pearled wheats are coming rapidly into favor. Cracked wheat is the grain cleaned and then cut into two or more pieces; in rolled wheat the grains are mashed between rollers, by which process they are thoroughly softened in every part, and are then easily cooked. Pearl wheat is the whole grain cleaned and dressed. The whole grain is also cooked sometimes in its natural state.

Preparation and cooking.—Few articles of food show greater difference between good and poor cooking than the various grains. Dry, harsh, or underdone, they are as unwholesome as unpalatable. Like most of the grains, wheat, with the exception of new wheat boiled whole, should be put into boiling water and allowed to cook continuously but slowly until done. Any of the unground preparations require prolonged cooking. The average length of time and the approximate amount of water needed in cooking one cupful of the various wheat preparations in a double boiler is stated on page 82.


Pearl Wheat.—Heat a quart of water to boiling in the inner dish of a double boiler, and stir into it one cup or one-half pint of pearl wheat. Let it boil rapidly until thickened and the wheat has ceased settling, then place in the outer boiler, in which the water should be boiling, and cook continuously from three to four hours.

Cracked Wheat.—Cracked wheat may be cooked in the same manner as pearl wheat, by using four and one-half parts of water to one of grain. The length of time required to cook it thoroughly is about the same as for pearl wheat.

Rolled Wheat.—This preparation of wheat requires only three parts water to one of wheat. It should be cooked in the same way as pearled wheat, but requires only three hours' cooking.

Boiled Wheat (sometimes called frumenty).—Select newly-cut wheat, well rubbed or threshed out. Look it over carefully, wash, and put to cook in five times its measure of cold water. Let it come to a boil, and cook gently until the grains burst open, and it can be readily mashed between the thumb and finger. This will require from four to ten hours, depending upon the age and variety of the wheat used. When done, it should be even full of a rich, thick liquor. If necessary, add more boiling water, but stir as little as possible. It may be served with cream, the same as other wheat preparations. It is also excellent served with lemon and other fruit sauces.

Wheat with Raisins.—Raisins or Zante currants may be added to any of the foregoing recipes, if desired. The raisins or currants should be well steamed previously, however, and stirred in lightly and evenly just before dishing. If cooked with the grain, they become soft, broken, and insipid. Figs, well steamed and chopped, may be added in the same way.

Wheat with Fresh Fruit.—Fresh whortleberries, blueberries, and blackberries stirred into any of the well-cooked wheat preparations just before serving, make a very desirable addition. A most delicious dish may be prepared by stirring into well-cooked cracked wheat a few spoonfuls of rather thick cream and some fresh wild blackberries. Serve hot.

Molded wheat.—Cracked wheat, rolled wheat, or pearl wheat, cooked according to the foregoing recipes, and turned into molds until cold, makes a very palatable dessert, and may be served with sugar and cream or with fruit juice. Bits of jelly placed on top of the molds in the form of stars or crosses, add to the appearance. Molded grains are also very nice served with fresh berries, either mashed or whole, arranged around the mold.


The grain of wheat is inclosed in a woody envelope. The cellular layers just beneath contain the largest proportion of nitrogenous matter, in the form of gluten, and are hard of pulverization, while the starchy heart of the grain is easily crumbled into fine dust. Thus it will be readily understood that when the grain is subjected to an equal pulverizing force, the several portions will be likely to be crushed into particles of different sizes. The outer husk being toughest, will be the least affected, the nitrogenous or glutenous portion will be much finer, while the brittle starch will be reduced to powder. This first simple product of grinding is termed wheat meal, unbolted, or Graham flour, and of course contains all the elements of the grain. In ordinary milling, however, this is subjected to various siftings, boltings, or dressings, to separate the finer from the coarser particles, and then subdivided into various grades of flour, which vary much in composition and properties. The coarser product contains the largest proportion of nutrients, while in the finer portions there is an exclusion of a large part of the nitrogenous element of the grain. The outer portions of the wheat kernel, which contain the greater part of the nitrogenous element, are darker in color than the central, starchy portion. It will be apparent, then, that the finer and whiter the flour, the less nutriment it is likely to contain, and that in the use of superfine white flour the eye is gratified at the expense of the body.

A preparation called farina, is made from the central portion of wheat, freed from bran, and crushed into granules. Another preparation, called Graham grits, is prepared by granulating the outer layers of the kernel together with the germ of the wheat. This preparation, comparatively a new one, includes the most nutritious properties of the grain, and its granular form renders it excellent for mushes as well as for other purposes. Farina is scarcely more nutritious than white flour, and should not be used as a staple food. Graham grits contains the best elements of the wheat grain in good proportion, and is one of the best preparations of wheat. Other preparations of wheat somewhat similar in character are farinose, germlet, etc.


Farina.—Heat a pint of milk and one of water, or if preferred, a quart of milk, in the inner cup of a double boiler; and when boiling, stir in five tablespoonfuls of farina, moistened evenly with a little milk. Let it boil rapidly until well set, which will be in about five or eight minutes; then place in the outer boiler, and cook one hour. Serve cold or hot with a dressing of cream or fruit juices. Farina may be cooked in water alone, but on account of its lack of nutritive elements, it is more valuable if prepared with milk.

Farina with Fig Sauce.—Cook the farina as in the foregoing recipe, and serve hot with a fig sauce prepared as follows:—

Carefully look over, washed, and chop or cut quite finally, enough good figs to make a cupful. Stew in a pint of water, to which has been added a tablespoonful of sugar, until they are one homogeneous mass. If the figs are not of the best quality and do not readily soften, it is well, after stewing for a time, to rub them through a colander or vegetable press to break up the tough portions and make a smooth sauce. Put a spoonful of the hot fig sauce on each individual dish of farina, and serve with cream or without dressing.

Farina with Fresh Fruit.—Cook the farina as previously directed. Have some sliced yellow peaches, mellow sweet apples, or bananas in a dish, turn the farina over them, stir up lightly with a fork, and serve hot with cream.

Molded Farina.—Farina to be used cold may be cooked in the same manner as before described, with two or three tablespoonfuls of sugar added at the same time with the farina, and when done, molded in cups previously wet with a little cold water. Serve with a dressing of fruit juice, whipped cream flavored with lemon, or mock cream flavored with cocoanut.

Graham Grits.—To four parts of water boiling in the inner dish of a double boiler add slowly, so as not to stop the boiling of the water, one part of Graham grits. Stir until thickened, then place in the outer boiler, and steam from three to five hours. Serve hot with cream, or mold in cups previously dipped in cold water, and serve with a dressing of fruit juice. The fig sauce prepared as previously directed, is also excellent with Graham grits.

Graham Mush No. 1.—Good flour is the first requisite for making good Graham mush. Poor Graham flour cannot be made into first-class mush. Flour made from the best white winter wheat is perhaps the best. It may be used either sifted or unsifted, as preferred. The proportion of flour and liquid to be used will necessarily vary somewhat with the quality of the flour, but in general, three parts water to one of flour will be needed. Too much flour not only makes the mush too thick, but gives it an underdone taste. Stir the dried flour rapidly into boiling water, (which should not cease to boil during the process), until a thick porridge is obtained. It is well to have it a little thinner at first than is desirable for serving, as it will thicken by cooking. Cook slowly at least one hour. A longer time makes it more digestible.

Left-over Graham mush is nice spread on rather shallow tins, and simply heated quickly in a hot oven.

Graham Mush No. 2.—Moisten one pint of good Graham flour with a pint of warm water, or enough to make a batter thin enough to pour. (The quantity of water needed will vary a little with the fineness and quality of the flour.) Pour this batter into a quart of water boiling in the inner cup of a double boiler. Remember to add the batter sufficiently slow, so as not to stop the boiling of the water. When thickened, put into the outer boiler, and cook for one hour.

Graham Mush No. 3.—Prepare in the same way as above, using milk or part milk in the place of water. Left-over Graham mush at breakfast, which has been prepared with water, is very nice if, while it is still warm, a small quantity of hot milk is well stirred into it, and it is then set by to be reheated in a double boiler for dinner.

Graham mush with Dates.—Prepare a mush as for Graham mush No. 2. When done, place in the dish in which the mush is to be served, some nice, fresh dates from which the stones have been removed. Pour the mush over them, and stir up lightly, taking care not to break the fruit, and serve. Raisins previously steamed, or figs steamed and cut into pieces, may be used instead of dates. Serve hot with cream, or mold, and serve cold.

Plum Porridge.—Prepare a Graham mush as previously directed, and when done, add to it a cup of well-steamed raisins and sufficient rich milk to thin it to the consistency of porridge.

Graham Apple Mush.—Prepare a smooth apple sauce of rather tart apples. Sweeten it slightly, and thin with boiling water. Have this mixture boiling, and add to it Graham flour, either sprinkled in dry or moistened with water, sufficient to make a well-thickened mush. Cook, and serve hot with cream.

Granola Mush.—Granola, a cooked preparation of wheat and oats, manufactured by the Sanatarium Food Co., makes a most appetizing and quickly prepared breakfast dish. Into a quart of boiling water sprinkle a pint of granola. Cook for two or three minutes, and serve hot with cream.

Granola Fruit Mush.—Prepare the mush as directed, and stir into it, when done, a large cupful of nicely-steamed, seedless raisins. Serve hot with cream. Milk may be used instead of water, if preferred.

Granola Peach Mush.—Instead of the raisins as directed in the foregoing recipe, add to the mush, when done, a pint of sliced yellow peaches. Finely-cut, mellow sweet apples, sliced bananas, and blueberries may be used in a similar way.

Bran Jelly.—Select some clean wheat bran, sprinkle it slowly into boiling water as for Graham mush, stirring briskly meanwhile with a wooden spoon, until the whole is about the consistency of thick gruel. Cook slowly in a double boiler for two hours. Strain through a fine wire sieve placed over the top of a basin. When strained, reheat to boiling. Then stir into it a spoonful or so of sifted Graham flour, rubbed smooth in a little cold water. Boil up once; turn into molds previously wet in cold water, and when cool, serve with cream or fruit juice.


Description.—The native country of the plant from which our common varieties of the oat are derived, is unknown. Oat grains have been found among the remains of the lake-dwellers in Switzerland, and it is probable that this plant was cultivated by the prehistoric inhabitants of Central Europe.

The ancient Greeks and Romans used oats, ranking them next in value to barley, which they esteemed above all other cereals. Although principally grown as food for horses, the oat, when divested of its husk and broken by a process of milling, is an exceedingly nutritious and valuable article of diet for human beings; and there is no article of food that has increased in general favor more rapidly in the last few years than this grain.

The Scotch have long been famed for their large consumption of oatmeal. It forms the staple article of diet for the peasantry, to which fact is generally attributed the fine physique and uniform health for which they, as a race, are particularly noted. It is related that Dr. Johnson, of dictionary fame, who never lost an opportunity to disparage the Scotch, on one occasion defined oats as, "In Scotland, food for men; in England, food for horses." He was well answered by an indignant Scotchman who replied, "Yes; and where can you find such fine men as in Scotland, or such horses as in England?"

Oatmeal justly ranks high as an alimentary substance. It contains about the same proportion of nitrogenous elements as wheat, and with the exception of maize, is richer in fatty matter than any other of the cultivated cereals. In general structure the oat resembles wheat.

To prepare oats for food, the husk, which is wholly indigestible in character, must be thoroughly removed. To accomplish this, the grain is first kiln-dried to loosen the husk, and afterward submitted to a process of milling. Denuded of its integument, the nutritive part of the grain is termed groats; broken into finer particles, it constitutes what is known as oatmeal; rolled oats, or avena, is prepared by a process which crushes the kernels. Oatmeal varies also in degrees of trituration, some kinds being ground much finer than others. The more finely-ground products are sometimes adulterated with barley meal, which is cheaper than oatmeal and less nutritious. The black specks which are sometimes found in oatmeal are particles of black oats which have been ground in connection with the other.

Oatmeal lacks the tenacity of wheaten flour, and cannot, without the addition of some other flour, be made into light bread. It is, however, largely consumed by the inhabitants of Scotland and the north of England, in the form of oatcakes. The oatmeal is mixed with water, kneaded thoroughly, then rolled into very thin cakes, and baked on an iron plate or griddle suspended over a fire. So much, however, depends upon the kneading, that it is said that the common inquiry before the engagement of a domestic servant in Scotland, is whether or not she is a good kneader of oatcakes.

The most common use of oatmeal in this country is in the form of mush or porridge. For this the coarser grades of meal are preferable. For people in health, there is no more wholesome article of diet than oatmeal cooked in this way and eaten with milk. For growing children, it is one of the best of foods, containing, as it does, a large proportion of bone and muscle-forming material, while to almost all persons who have become accustomed to its use, it is extremely palatable. The time required for its digestion is somewhat longer than that of wheaten meal prepared in the same manner. It is apt to disagree with certain classes of dyspeptics, having a tendency to produce acidity, though it is serviceable as an article of diet in some forms of indigestion. The manner of its preparation for the table has very much to do with its wholesomeness. Indeed, many objectionable dishes are prepared from it. One of these, called brose, much used in Scotland, is made by simply stirring oatmeal into some hot liquid, as beef broth, or the water in which a vegetable has been boiled. The result is a coarse, pasty mass of almost raw oatmeal, an extremely indigestible compound, the use of which causes water brash. A preparation called sowens, or flummery, made by macerating the husks of the oats in water from twenty-four to thirty-six hours, until the mixture ferments, then boiling down to the consistency of gruel, is a popular article of food among the Scotch and Welsh peasantry. When boiled down still more, so it will form a firm jelly when cold, the preparation is called budrum.

Preparation and Cooking.—Oatmeal requires much cooking in order to break its starch cells; and the coarser the meal, the longer it should be allowed to cook. A common fault in the use of oatmeal is that it is served in an underdone state, which makes a coarse, indigestible dish of what, with more lengthy preparation, would be an agreeable and nutritious food. Like most of the grains, it is best put into boiling soft water, and allowed to cook continuously and slowly. It is greatly injured by stirring, and it is therefore preferably cooked in a double boiler or closed steamer. If it is necessary to use an ordinary kettle, place it on some part of the range where the contents will only simmer; or a hot brick may be placed under it to keep it from cooking too fast. It may be cooked the day previous, and warmed for use the same as other grains.


Oatmeal Mush.—Heat a quart of water to boiling in the inner dish of a double boiler, sift into it one cup of coarse oatmeal, and boil rapidly, stirring continuously until it sets; then place in the outer boiler, the water in which should be boiling, and cook three hours or longer. Serve with cream.

Oatmeal fruit mush.—Prepare the oatmeal as directed above, and stir in lightly, when dishing for the table, some sliced mellow and juicy raw sweet apples. Strawberry apples and other slightly tart apples are likewise excellent for the purpose. Well-ripened peaches and bananas may also be used, if care is taken to preserve the slices whole, so as to present an appetizing appearance. Both this and the plain oatmeal mush are best eaten with toasted whole-wheat wafers or some other hard food.

Oatmeal Blancmange No. 1.—Soak a cupful of coarse oatmeal over night in a pint and a half of water. In the morning, beat the oatmeal well with a spoon, and afterwards pass all the soluble portion through a fine strainer. Place the liquid in the inner dish of a double boiler, and cook for half an hour. Turn into cups, cool fifteen or twenty minutes, and serve warm with cream and sugar, or a dressing of fruit juice. A lemon sauce prepared as directed on page 354 likewise makes an excellent dressing.

Oatmeal Blancmange No. 2.—Take a pint of well-cooked oatmeal, add to it a pint of milk, part cream if obtainable. Beat well together, and strain through a fine wire sieve. Turn the liquid into a saucepan, and boil for a few moments, until it is thick enough to drop from the point of a spoon; then turn into cups previously wet in cold water, and mold. Serve with a dressing of fruit juice or whipped cream slightly sweetened and flavored with lemon.

Jellied Oatmeal.—Cook oatmeal or rolled oats with an additional cup or cup and a half of water, and when done, turned into cups and mold. Serve cold with hot cream.

Mixed Mush.—A cup and a half of rolled wheat, mixed with one-half cup of coarse oatmeal, and cooked the same as oatmeal, forms a mush preferred by some to oatmeal alone.

Rolled Oats.—This preparation of oats should be cooked the same as oatmeal, but requires only three parts water to one of rolled oats, when cooked in a double boiler.

Oatmeal with Apple.—Cold oatmeal which has been left over may be made into an appetising dish by molding in alternate layers with nicely-steamed tart apple, sprinkled lightly with sugar. Serve with cream. Other cooked fruit, such as cherries, evaporated peaches, and apricots may be used in the same way. A very pleasing dish is made by using between the layers ripe yellow peaches and plums sliced together, and lightly sprinkled with sugar.

Oatmeal Porridge.—Into a quart and a half of water, which should be boiling in the inner dish of a double boiler, sprinkle one cup of rather coarse oatmeal. Boil rapidly, stirring meanwhile until the grain is set; then place in the outer boiler, and cook continuously for three hours or longer. A half cup of cream added just before serving, is a desirable addition.


Description.—Barley is stated by historians to be the oldest of all cultivated grains. It seems to have been the principal bread plant among the ancient Hebrews, Greeks, and Romans. The Jews especially held the grain in high esteem, and sacred history usually uses it interchangeably with wheat, when speaking of the fruits of the Earth.

Among the early Greeks and Romans, barley was almost the only food of the common people and the soldiers. The flour was made into gruel, after the following recipe: "Dry, near the fire or in the oven, twenty pounds of barley flour, then parch it. Add three pounds of linseed meal, half a pound of coriander seeds, two ounces of salt, and the water necessary." If an especially delectable dish was desired, a little millet was also added to give the paste more "cohesion and delicacy." Barley was also used whole as a food, in which case it was first parched, which is still the manner of preparing it in some parts of Palestine and many districts of India, also in the Canary Islands, where it is known as gofio. Of this custom a lady from Palestine writes: "The reapers, during barley harvest, take bunches of the half-ripe grain, and singe, or parch, it over a fire of thorns. The milk being still in the grain, it is very sweet, and is considered a delicacy."

In the time of Charles I, barley meal took the place of wheat almost entirely as the food of the common people in England. In some parts of Europe, India, and other Eastern countries, it is still largely consumed as the ordinary farinaceous food of the peasantry and soldiers. The early settlers of New England also largely used it for bread making. At the present day only a very insignificant quantity of barley is used for food purposes in this country, and most of this in the unground state.

Barley is less nutritious than wheat, and to many people is less agreeable in flavor. It is likewise somewhat inferior in point of digestibility. Its starch cells being less soluble, they offer more resistance to the gastric juice.

There are several distinct species of barley, but that most commonly cultivated is designated as two-rowed, or two-eared barley. In general structure, the barley grain resembles wheat and oats.

Simply deprived of its outer husk, the grain is termed Scotch milled or pot barley. Subjected still further to the process by which the fibrous outer coat of the grain is removed, it constitutes what is known as pearl barley. Pearl barley ground into flour is known as patent barley. Barley flour, owing to the fact that it contains so small a proportion of gluten, needs to be mixed with wheaten flour for bread-making purposes. When added in small quantity to whole-wheat bread, it has a tendency to keep the loaf moist, and is thought by some to improve the flavor.

The most general use made of this cereal as a food, is in the form of pearl, or Scotch, barley. When well boiled, barley requires about two hours for digestion.

General Suggestions for Cooking Barley.—The conditions requisite for cooking barley are essentially the same as for oatmeal. It is best cooked slowly. Four parts of water to one of grain will be needed for steaming or cooking in a double boiler, and from four to five hours' time will be required, unless the grain has been previously soaked for several hours, in which case three hours will do. If the strong flavor of the grain is objected to, it may be soaked over night and cooked in fresh water. This method will, however, be a sacrifice of some of the nutriment contained in the grain. Barley thus soaked will require only three parts water to one of barley for cooking.


Baked Barley.—Soak six tablespoonfuls of barley in cold water over night. In the morning, turn off the water, and put the barley in an earthen pudding dish, and pour three and one half pints of boiling water over it; add salt if desired, and bake in a moderately quick oven about two and one half hours, or till perfectly soft, and all the water is absorbed. When about half done, add four or five tablespoonfuls of sugar mixed with grated lemon peel. It may be eaten warm, but is very nice molded in cups and served cold with cream.

Pearl Barley with Raisins.—Carefully look over and wash a cupful of pearl barley. Cook in a double boiler in five cups of boiling water for four hours. Just before serving, add a cupful of raisins which have been prepared by pouring boiling water over them and allowing them to stand until swollen. Serve hot, with cream.

Pearl Barley with Lemon Sauce.—Pearl barley cooked in the same manner, but without the addition of the raisins, is excellent served with cream or with a lemon sauce prepared as directed on page 354.


Description.—Rice is one of the most abundantly used and most digestible of all the cereals. It grows wild in India, and it is probable that this is its native home. It is, however, now cultivated in most tropical and sub-tropical climates, and is said to supply the principal food for nearly one third of the human race. It is mentioned in history several hundred years before Christ. According to Soyer, an old writer on foods, the Greeks and Romans held rice in high esteem, believing it to be a panacea for chest and lung diseases.

The grain is so largely grown and used by the Chinese that "fan," their word for rice, has come to enter into many compound words. A beggar is called a "tou-fan-tee," that is, "the rice-seeking one." The ordinary salutation, "Che-fan," which answers to our "How do you do?" means, "Have you eaten your rice?"

Rice requires a wet soil, and the fields in which the grain is raised, sometimes called "paddy" fields, are periodically irrigated. Before ripening, the water is drained off, and the crop is then cut with a sickle, made into shocks, stacked, threshed, and cleaned, much like wheat. The rice kernel is inclosed within two coverings, a course outer husk, which is easily removed, and an inner, reddish, siliceous coating.

"Paddy" is the name given in India to the rice grain when inclosed in its husk. The same is termed "rough rice" in this country. The outer husk of the rice is usually removed in the process of threshing, but the inner red skin, or hull, adheres very closely, and is removed by rubbing and pounding. The rough rice is first ground between large stones, and then conveyed into mortars, and pounded with iron-shod pestles. Thence, by fanning and screening, the husk is fully removed, and the grain divided into three different grades, whole, middlings, and small whole grains, and polished ready for market. The middlings consist of the larger broken pieces of the grain; the small rice, of the small fragments mixed with the chit of the grain. The broken rice, well dried, is sometimes ground into flour of different degrees of fineness. The small rice is much sweeter and somewhat superior in point of nutritive value to the large or head rice usually met with in commerce.

Rice is characterized by a large percentage of starch, and is so deficient in other food elements that if used alone, unless consumed in very large quantities, it will not furnish the requisite amount of nitrogenous material necessary for a perfect health food. For this reason, it is necessary to supplement its use with some other food containing an excess of nitrogenous elements, as peas, beans, milk, etc. Associated with other articles rich in albuminous elements, rice is exceedingly valuable, and one of the most easily digested foods. Boiled or steamed rice requires but a little over one hour for digestion.

Preparation and Cooking.—Rice needs to be thoroughly washed to remove the earthy taste it is so apt to have. A good way to do this is to put it into a colander, in a deep pan of water. Rub the rice well with the hands, lifting the colander in and out the water, and changing the water until it is clear; then drain. In this way the grit is deposited in the water, and the rice left thoroughly clean.

The best method of cooking rice is by steaming it. If boiled in much water, it loses a portion of its already small percentage of nitrogenous elements. It requires much less time for cooking than any of the other grains. Like all the dried grains and seeds, rice swells in cooking to several times its original bulk. When cooked, each grain of rice should be separate and distinct, yet perfectly tender.


Steamed Rice.—Soak a cup of rice in one and a fourth cups of water for an hour, then add a cup of milk, turn into an earthen dish suitable for serving it from at table, and place in a steam-cooker or a covered steamer over a kettle of boiling water, and steam for an hour. It should be stirred with a fork occasionally, for the first ten or fifteen minutes.

Boiled Rice (Japanese method).—Thoroughly cleanse the rice by washing in several waters, and soak it overnight. In the morning, drain it, and put to cook in an equal quantity of boiling water, that is, a pint of water for a pint of rice. For cooking, a stewpan with tightly fitting cover should be used. Heat the water to boiling, then add the rice, and after stirring, put on the cover, which is not again to be removed during the boiling. At first, as the water boils, steam will puff out freely from under the cover, but when the water has nearly evaporated, which will be in eight to ten minutes, according to the age and quality of the rice, only a faint suggestion of steam will be observed, and the stewpan must then be removed from over the fire to some place on the range, where it will not burn, to swell and dry for fifteen or twenty minutes.

Rice to be boiled in the ordinary manner requires two quarts of boiling water to one cupful of rice. It should be boiled rapidly until tender, then drained at once, and set in a moderate oven to become dry. Picking and lifting lightly occasionally with a fork will make it more flaky and dry. Care must be taken, however, not to mash the rice grains.

Rice With Fig Sauce.—Steam a cupful of best rice as directed above, and when done, serve with a fig sauce prepared as directed on page 89. Dish a spoonful of the fig sauce with each saucer of rice, and serve with plenty of cream. Rice served in this way requires no sugar for dressing, and is a most wholesome breakfast dish.

Orange Rice.—Wash and steam the rice according to directions already given. Prepare some oranges by separating into sections and cutting each section in halves, removing the seeds and all the white portion. Sprinkle the oranges lightly with sugar, and let them stand while the rice is cooking. Serve a portion of the orange on each saucerful of rice.

Rice with raisins.—Carefully wash a cupful of rice, soak it, and cook as directed for Steamed Rice. After the rice has began to swell, but before it has softened, stir into it lightly, using a fork for the purpose, a cupful of raisins, or Zante currents. Serve with cream.

Rice with Peaches.—Steam the rice as previously directed, and when done, serve with cream and a nicely ripened peach pared and sliced on each individual dish.

Browned Rice.—Spread a cupful of rice on a shallow baking tin, and put into a moderately hot oven to brown. It will need to be stirred frequently to prevent burning and to secure a uniformity of color. Each rice kernel, when sufficiently browned, should be of a yellowish brown, about the color of ripened wheat. Steam the same as directed for ordinary rice, using only two cups of water for each cup of browned rice, and omitting the preliminary soaking. When properly cooked, each kernel will be separated, dry, and mealy. Rice prepared in this manner is undoubtedly more digestible than when cooked without browning.


Description.—Rye is much more largely grown and used in European countries that in America. In appearance it closely resembles wheat, although somewhat darker in color and smaller in size. Bread made from rye constitutes the staple food of the people in many parts of Europe. In nutritive value such bread nearly equals that made from wheat, but it has an acid taste not relished by persons unaccustomed to its use.

Rye is found in market deprived of its husk and crushed or rolled, and also in the form of meal and flour.


Rolled Rye.—Into three parts water boiling in the inner dish of a double boiler, stir one part rolled rye. Boil rapidly until set, stirring meanwhile, then place in the outer boiler, and cook for three or more hours.

Rye Mush.—Stir a cupful of rye meal to a smooth batter with a cupful of water, then turn it slowly into three cupfuls of water, which should be boiling on the range, in the inner dish of a double boiler. Stir until thickened, then place in the outer boiler, and cook for an hour or longer.


Description.—There can be little doubt that maize is of American origin. The discoverers of the new world found it cultivated by the aborigines, and from the fact that corn was the generic term then largely used to designate grain (in old English, "corn" means grain), they named it "Indian corn." Since that time it has been carried to nearly every part of the globe, and probably it is more extensively used than any other one of the cereals, with the exception of rice. This is undoubtedly due to the fact that it is the most prolific of the grains, and is adapted to the widest range of climate.

Maize was the chief food of the slaves of Brazil, as it used to be of those in our own Southern States, and is very largely consumed in Mexico and Peru. It was used very little in Europe until the Irish famine in 1847; since then, it has become a staple food with the poorer classes.

The varieties of corn are almost too numerous to be counted. For general purposes, however, they may be classified as field corn, sweet corn, and pop corn.

Corn is characterized by an excess of fatty matter, containing upwards of three times the amount of that element to be found in wheat. Corn requires stronger powers of digestion than wheat, and is unsuited to some stomachs.

The skin of the corn kernel is thin, and when subjected to milling processes, is included in the grinding. When well ground, it can be digested, with the exception of the siliceous coating.

Sweet corn and some of the field varieties, form a nutritious and favorite food while green. The mature grain is used in many forms. The whole grain, hulled, is an agreeable food. Hulled, broken, or split to various degrees of fineness, it is known according to the size to which the grain has been reduced as hominy, fine hominy, or grits; or, if finer still, as samp. Subjected to a process of still finer trituration, it forms meal. Cornstarch consists of the farinaceous portions of the grain.

On account of the large proportion of fatty matter contained in maize, it acquires, if kept for some time and unpleasant, rancid taste, occasioned by the usual change which takes place in fat when exposed to the atmosphere.

The new process granular meal, which is prepared from corn dried for a long period before grinding, becomes rank less quickly than that ground in the old way.

Maize meal is very largely consumed in the form of mush or porridge. This, in Ireland, is termed "stirabout;" in Italy it is called "polenta;" and in British Honduras it is known as "corn lob."

General Suggestions for Cooking—Most of the various preparations from maize require prolonged cooking to render them wholesome; this is equally true respecting mushes prepared from samp or meal, a dish which unfortunately some cook in bygone days saw fit to term "hasty pudding." Unthinking people since, supposing it to have been so named because of the little time required to cook it, have commonly prepared it in fifteen or twenty minutes, whereas from one to two hours, or even longer, are necessary to cook it properly. Hulled corn, hominy, and grits, all require prolonged cooking. The time for cooking these preparations may be somewhat lessened if they are previously soaked over night. They should, however, be cooked in the same water in which they are soaked.


Corn meal mush.—stir together one pint of cornmeal, one tablespoonful of flour, and one pint of cold milk. Turn this slowly, stirring well meanwhile, into one quart of boiling water, which should not cease to boil during the introduction of the batter. Cook three or four hours. If milk is not obtainable, water alone may be used, in which case two tablespoonfuls of flour will be needed. Cook in a double boiler.

Corn Meal Mush with Fruit.—Mush prepared in the above manner may have some well-steamed raisins or chopped figs added to it just before serving.

Corn meal cubes.—Left-over corn meal mush may be made into an appetizing dish by first slicing into rather thick slices, then cutting into cubes about one inch squares. Put the cubes into a tureen and turn over them a quantity of hot milk or cream. Cover the dish, let them stand until thoroughly heated through, then serve.

Browned Mush.—Slice cold corn meal mush rather thin, brush each slice with thick, sweet cream, and brown in a moderate oven until well heated through.

Samp.—Use one part of samp to four and one half parts of boiling water. It is the best plan to reserve enough of the water to moisten the samp before adding it to the boiling water, as it is much less likely to cook in lumps. Boil rapidly, stirring continuously, until the mush has well set, then slowly for from two to three hours.

Cerealine Flakes.—Into one measure of boiling liquid stir an equal measure of cerealine flakes, and cook in a double boiler from one half to three fourths of an hour.

Hulled Corn.To Hull the Corn.—Put enough wood ashes into a large kettle to half fill it; then nearly fill with hot water, and boil ten minutes. Drain off the water from the ashes, turn it into a kettle, and pour in four quarts of clean, shelled field corn, white varieties preferred. Boil till the hulls rub off. Skim the corn out of the lye water, and put it into a tub of fresh cold water. To remove the hulls, scrub the corn well with a new stiff brush broom kept for the purpose, changing the water often. Put through half a dozen or more waters, and then take the corn out by handfuls, rubbing each well between the hands to loosen the remaining hulls, and drop again into clear water. Pick out all hulls. Cleanse the corn through several more waters if it is to be dried and kept before using. Well hulled corn is found in the markets.

To Cook.—If it is to be cooked at once, it should be parboiled in clear water twice, and then put into new water and cooked till tender. It should be nearly or quite dry when done. It may be served with milk or cream.

Coarse Hominy.—For coarse hominy use four parts of water or milk and water to one of grain. It is best steamed or cooked in a double boiler, though it may be boiled in a kettle over a slow fire. The only objection to this method is the need of frequent stirring to prevent sticking, which breaks and mashes the hominy. From four to five hours' slow cooking will be necessary, unless the grain has been previously soaked; then about one hour less will be required.

Fine Hominy or Grits.—This preparation is cooked in the same manner as the foregoing, using three and one half or four parts of water to one of the grain. Four or five hours will be necessary for cooking the unsoaked grits.

Popped Corn.—The small, translucent varieties of maize known as "pop corn," possessed the property, when gently roasted, of bursting open, or turning inside out, a process which is owing to the following facts: Corn contains an excess of fatty matter. By proper means this fat can be separated from the grain, and it is then a thick, pale oil. When oils are heated sufficiently in a vessel closed from the air, they are turned into gas, which occupies many times the bulk of the oil. When pop corn is gradually heated, and made so hot that the oil inside of the kernel turns to gas, being unable to escape through the hull of the kernel, the pressure finally becomes strong enough to burst the grain, and the explosion is so violent as to shatter it in a most curious manner.

Popped corn forms an excellent food, the starch of the grain being will cooked. It should, however, be eaten in connection with other food at mealtime, and not as a delicacy between meals. Ground pop corn is considered a delectable dish eaten with milk or cream; it also forms the base of several excellent puddings.

To pop the corn, shell and place in a wire "popper" over a bed of bright coals, or on the top of a hot stove; stir or shake continuously, so that each kernel may be subjected to the same degree of heat on all sides, until it begins to burst open. If a popper is not attainable, a common iron skillet covered tightly, and very lightly oiled on the bottom, may be used for the purpose. The corn must be very dry to begin with, and if good, nearly every kernel will pop open nicely. It should be used within twenty-four hours after popping.


Description.—Macaroni is a product of wheat prepared from a hard, clean, glutenous grain. The grain is ground into a meal called semolina, from which the bran is excluded. This is made into a tasty dough by mixing with hot water in the proportion of two thirds semolina to one third water. The dough after being thoroughly mixed is put into a shallow vat and kneaded and rolled by machinery. When well rolled, it is made to assume varying shapes by being forced by a powerful plunger through the perforated head of strong steel or iron cylinders arranged above a fire, so that the dough is partially baked as it issues from the holes. It is afterwards hung over rods or laid upon frames covered with cloth, and dried. It is called by different names according to its shape. If in the shape of large, hollow cylinders, it is macaroni; if smaller in diameter, it is spaghetti; if fine, vermicelli; if the paste is cut into fancy patterns, it is termed pasta d'Italia.

Macaroni was formerly made only in Italy, but at present is manufactured to a considerable extent in the United States. The product, however, is in general greatly inferior to that imported from Italy, owing to the difference in the character of the wheat from which it is made, the Italian macaroni being produced from a hard, semi-translucent wheat, rich in nitrogenous elements, and which is only grown successfully in a hot climate. Like all cereal foods, macaroni should be kept in a perfectly dry storeroom.

To Select Macaroni.—Good macaroni will keep in good condition for years. It is rough, elastic, and hard; while the inferior article is smooth, soft, breaks easily, becomes moldy with keeping. Inferior macaroni contains a large percentage of starch, and but a small amount of gluten. When put into hot water, it assumes a white, pasty appearance, and splits in cooking. Good macaroni when put into hot water absorbs a portion of the water, swells to nearly double its size, but perfectly retains its shape. Inferior macaroni is usually sold a few cents cheaper per pound than the genuine article. It contains a much smaller amount of gluten. The best quality of any shape one pleases can be bought in most markets for ten or fifteen cents a pound.

To Prepare and Cook Macaroni.—Do not wash macaroni. If dusty, wipe with a clean, dry cloth. Break into pieces of convenient size. Always put to cook in boiling liquid, taking care to have plenty of water in the saucepan (as it absorbs a large quantity), and cook until tender. The length of time required may vary from twenty minutes, if fresh, to one hour if stale. When tender, turn into a colander and drain, and pour cold water through it to prevent the tubes from sticking together. The fluid used for cooking may be water, milk, or a mixture of both; also soup stock, tomato juice, or any preferred liquid.

Macaroni serves as an important adjunct to the making of various soups, and also forms the basis of other palatable dishes.


Home-Made Macaroni.—To four cupfuls of flour, add one egg well beaten, and enough water to make a dough that can be rolled. Roll thin on a breadboard and cut into strips. Dry in the sun. The best arrangement for this purpose is a wooden frame to which a square of cheese-cloth has been tightly tacked, upon which the macaroni may be laid in such a way as not to touch, and afterwards covered with a cheese-cloth to keep off the dust during the drying.

Boiled Macaroni.—Break sticks of macaroni into pieces about an inch in length, sufficient to fill a large cup; put it into boiling water and cook until tender. When done, drained thoroughly, then add a pint of milk, part cream if it can be afforded, a little salt and one well-beaten egg; stir over the fire until it thickens, and serve hot.

Macaroni with Cream Sauce.—Cook the macaroni as directed in the proceeding, and serve with a cream sauce prepared by heating a scant pint of rich milk to boiling, in a double boiler. When boiling, add a heaping tablespoonful of flour, rubbed smoothed in a little milk and one fourth teaspoonful of salt. If desired, the sauce may be flavored by steeping in the milk before thickening for ten or fifteen minutes, a slice of onion or a few bits of celery, and then removing with a fork.

Macaroni with Tomato Sauce.—Break a dozen sticks of macaroni into two-inch lengths, and drop into boiling milk and water, equal parts. Let it boil for an hour, or until perfectly tender. In the meantime prepare the sauce by rubbing a pint of stewed or canned tomatoes through a colander to remove all seeds and fragments. Heat to boiling, thicken with a little flour; a tablespoonful to the pint will be about the requisite proportion. Add salt and if desired, a half cup of very thin sweet cream. Dish the macaroni into individual dishes, and serve with a small quantity of the sauce poured over each dish.

Macaroni Baked with Granola.—Break macaroni into pieces about an inch in length sufficient to fill a large cup, and cook until tender in boiling milk and water. When done, drain and put a layer of the macaroni in the bottom of an earthen pudding dish, and sprinkle over it a scant teaspoonful of granola. Add a second and third layer and sprinkle each with granola; then turn over the whole a custard sauce prepared by mixing together a pint of milk, the well beaten yolks of two eggs or one whole egg, and one-fourth of a teaspoonful of salt. Care should be taken to arrange the macaroni in layers loosely, so that the sauce will readily permeate the whole. Bake for a few minutes only, until the custard has well set, and serve.

Eggs and macaroni.—Break fifteen whole sticks of macaroni into two-inch lengths, and put to cook in boiling water. While the macaroni is cooking, boil the yolks of four eggs until mealy. The whole egg may be used if caught so the yolks are mealy in the whites simply jellied, not hardened. When the macaroni is done, drain and put a layer of it arranged loosely in the bottom of an earthen pudding dish. Slice the cooked egg yolks and spread a layer of them over the macaroni. Fill the dish with alternate layers of macaroni and egg, taking care to have the top layer of macaroni. Pour over the whole a cream sauce prepared as follows: Heat one and three fourths cup of rich milk to boiling, add one fourth teaspoonful of salt and one heaping spoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk. Cook until thickened, then turn over the macaroni. Sprinkle the top with grated bread crumbs, and brown in a hot oven for eight or ten minutes. Serve hot.


Sir Isaac Newton, when writing his grail work, "Principia," lived wholly upon a vegetable, diet.

ROBERT COLLYER once remarked; "One great reason why I never had a really sick day in my life was that as boy I lived on oatmeal and milk and brown bread, potatoes and a bit of meat when I could get it, and then oatmeal again."

HOT-WEATHER DIET.—The sultry period of our summer, although comparatively slight and of short duration, is nevertheless felt by some people to be extremely oppressive, but this is mainly due to the practice of eating much animal food or fatty matters, conjoined as it often is with the habit of drinking freely of fluids containing more or less alcoholics. Living on cereals, vegetables, and fruits, and abstaining from alcoholic drinks, the same persons would probably enjoy the temperature, and be free from the thirst which is the natural result of consuming needlessly heating food.—Sir Henry Thompson.

Mistress (arranging for dinner)—"Didn't the macaroni come from the grocer's, Bridget?"

Bridget—"Yis, mum, but oi sint it back. Every won av thim leetle stims wuz impty."

Some years since, a great railroad corporation in the West, having occasion to change the gauge of its road throughout a distance of some five hundred miles, employed a force of 3,000 workmen upon the job, who worked from very early in the morning until late at night. Alcoholic drinks were strictly prohibited, but a thin gruel made of oatmeal and water was kept on hand and freely partaken of by the men to quench their thirst. The results were admirable; not a single workmen gave out under the severe strain, and not one lost a day from sickness. Thus this large body of men were kept well and in perfect strength and spirits, and the work was done in considerably less time than that counted on for its completion.

In Scotch households oatmeal porridge is as inevitable as breakfast itself, except perhaps on Sundays, as this anecdote will illustrate. A mother and child were passing along a street in Glasgow, when this conversation was overheard:—

"What day is the morn, mither?"

"Sabbath, laddie."

"An' will wi hae tea to breakfast, mither?"

"Aye, laddie, gin we're spared."

"An' gin we're no spared, will we hae parrich?"



A lthough the grains form most nutritious and palatable dishes when cooked in their unground state, this is not always the most convenient way of making; use of them. Mankind from earliest antiquity has sought to give these wonderful products of nature a more portable and convenient form by converting them into what is termed bread, a word derived from the verb bray, to pound, beat, or grind small, indicative of the ancient manner of preparing the grain for making bread. Probably the earliest form of bread was simply the whole grain moistened and then exposed to heat. Afterward, the grains were roasted and ground, or pounded between stones, and unleavened bread was made by mixing this crude flour with water, and baking in the form of cakes. Among the many ingenious arrangements used by the ancients for baking this bread, was a sort of portable oven in shape something like a pitcher, in the inside of which a fire was made. When the oven was well heated, a paste made of meal and water was applied to the outside. Such bread was baked very quickly and taken off in small, thin sheets like wafers. A flat cake was the common form in which most of the bread of olden times was baked; being too brittle to be cut with a knife, the common mode of dividing it was by breaking and hence the expression "breaking bread" so common in Scripture.

Various substances have been and are employed for making this needful article. Until the last few decades, barley was the grain most universally used. Chestnuts, ground to a flour, are made into bread in regions where these nuts abound. Quite recently, an immense peanut crop in the Southern States was utilized for bread-making purposes. In ancient times, the Thracians made to bread from a flour made from the water coltran, a prickly root of triangular form. In Syria, mulberries were dried and grounded to flour. Rice, moss, palm tree piths, and starch producing roots are used by different nationalities in the preparation of bread. In many parts of Sweden, bread is made from dried fish, using one half fish flour and one half barley flour; and in winter, flour made from the bark of trees is added. Desiccated tomatoes, potatoes, and other vegetables are also mixed with the cereals for bread-making. In India, the lower classes make their bread chiefly from millet. Moss bread is made in Iceland from the reindeer moss, which toward autumn becomes soft, tender, and moist, with a taste like wheat bran. It contains a large quantity of starch, and the Icelanders gather, dry, pulverize it, and thus prepare it for bread-making. The ancient Egyptians often made their bread from equal parts of the whole grain and meal.

The breadstuff's most universally used among civilized nations at the present time are barley, rye, oats, maize, buckwheat, rice, and wheat, of which the last has acquired a decided preference.

If made in the proper manner and from suitable material, bread is, with the exception of milk, the article best fitted for the nourishment of the body, and if need be, can supply the place of all other foods. Good bread does not cloy the appetite as do many other articles of food, and the simplest bill of fare which includes light, wholesome bread, is far more satisfying than an elaborate meal without it. Were the tables of our land supplied with good, nutritious, well-baked bread, there would be less desire for cake, pastry, and other indigestible particles, which, under the present system of cookery, are allowed to compensate for the inferior quality and poor preparation of more wholesome foods.

Bread has been proverbially styled the "staff of life." In nearly all ancient languages the entomology of the word "bread" signifies all, indicating; that the bread of earlier periods was in truth what it should be at the present time,—a staff upon which all the functions of life might with safety depend.

Notwithstanding the important part bread was designed to play in the economy of life, it would be hardly possible to mention another aliment which so universally falls below the standard either through the manner of its preparation or in the material used.

Bread, to answer the requirements of a good, wholesome article of food, beside being palatable, must be light, porous, and friable, so that it can be easily insalivated and digested. It should not contain ingredients which will in any way be injurious if taken into the system, but should contain as many as possible of the elements of nutrition. Wheat, the substance from which bread is most generally made, contains all the necessary food elements in proper proportions to meet the requirements of nutrition, and bread should also contain them. The flour, however, must be made from the whole grain of the wheat, with the exception of the outer husk.

What is ordinarily termed fine flour has a large part of the most nutritive properties of the grain left out, and unless this deficiency is made up by other foods, the use of bread made from such material will leave the most vital tissues of the body poorly nourished, and tend to produce innumerable bad results. People who eat bread made from fine white flour naturally crave the food elements which have been eliminated from the wheat, and are thus led to an excessive consumption of meat, and the nerve-starvation and consequent irritability thus induced may also lead to the use of alcoholic drinks. We believe that one of the strongest barriers women could erect against the inroads of intemperance would be to supply the tables of the land with good bread made from flour of the entire wheat.

The superiority of bread made from the entire wheat or unbolted meal has been attested by many notable examples in history. In England, under the administration of William Pitt, there was for several years such a scarcity of wheat that to make it hold out longer, a law was passed by Parliament that the army should be supplied with bread made of unbolted flour. This occasioned much murmuring on the part of the soldiers, but nevertheless the health of the army improved so greatly as to be a subject of surprise. The officers and the physicians at last publicly declared that the soldiers had never before been so robust and healthy.

According to the eminent Prof. Liebig, whole-wheat bread contains 60 per cent more of the phosphate or bone forming material than does meat, and 200 per cent more gluten than white bread. To the lack of these elements in a food so generally used as white flour bread, is undoubtedly due the great prevalence of early decaying teeth, rickets, and other bone diseases. Indeed, so many are the evils attendant upon a continued use of fine flour bread that we can in a great measure agree with a writer of the last century who says, in a quaint essay still to be seen at the British Museum, that "fine flour, spirituous liquors, and strong ale-house beer are the foundations of almost all the poverty and all the evils that affect the labouring part of mankind."

Bread made from the entire wheat is looked upon with far more favor than formerly, and it is no longer necessary to use the crude products of the grain for its manufacture, since modern invention has worked such a revolution in milling processes that it is now possible to obtain a fine flour containing all the nutritious elements of the grain. The old-time millstone has been largely superceded by machinery with which the entire grain may be reduced to fine flour without the loss of any of its valuable properties. To be sure, the manufacture of fine white flour of the old sort, is still continued, and doubtless will be continued so long as color takes precedence over food value. The improved processes of milling have, however, enabled the millers to utilize a much larger proportion of the nutritious elements of the grain than formerly, and still preserve that whiteness is so pleasing to many consumers. Although it is true that there are brands of white flour which possess a large percentage of the nutrient properties of the wheat, it is likewise true that flour which contains all the nutritive elements is not white.

Of flours made from the entire grain there are essentially two different varieties, that which is termed unbolted wheat meal or Graham flour, and that called wheat-berry, whole-wheat, or entire-wheat flour. The principal difference between the two consists in the preliminary treatment of the wheat kernel before reduction, Graham flour containing more or less of the flinty bran, which is wholly innutritious and to a sensitive stomach somewhat irritating. In the manufacture of whole or entire-wheat flour, the outer, flinty bran is first removed by special machinery, and then the entire grain pulverized, by some of approved method, to different grades of fineness. The absence of the indigestible bran renders the entire-wheat flour superior in this respect to Graham, though for many persons the latter is to preferred.

How to Select Flour.—The first requisite in the making of good bread is good flour. The quality of a brand of flour will of course depend much upon the kind of grain from which it is prepared—whether new or old, perfect, or deteriorated by rust, mold, or exposure, and also upon the thoroughness with which it has been cleansed from dust, chaff, and all foreign substances, as well as upon the method by which it is ground. It is not possible to judge with regard to all these particulars by the appearance of the flour, but in general, good flour will be sweet, dry, and free from any sour or musty smell or taste. Take up a handful, and if it falls from the hand light and elastic, it is pretty sure to be good. If it will retain the imprint of the fingers and falls and a compact mass or a damp, clammy, or sticky to the touch, it is by no means the best. When and knead a little of it between the fingers; if it works soft and sticky, it is poor. Good flour, when made into dough, is elastic, and will retain its shape. This elastic property of good flour is due to the gluten which it contains. The more gluten and the stronger it is, the better the flour. The gluten of good flour will swell to several times its original bulk, while that of poor flour will not.

In buying white flour, do not select that which is pure white with a bluish tinge, but that which is of a creamy, yellowish-white tint. While the kinds of flour that contain the entire nutritive properties of the wheat will necessarily be darker in color, we would caution the reader not to suppose that because flour is dark in color it is for that reason good, and rich in nutritive elements. There are many other causes from which flour may be dark, such as the use of uncleansed or dark varieties of wheat, and the large admixture of bran and other grains; many unscrupulous millers and flour dealers make use of this fact to palm off upon their unsuspecting customers an inferior article. Much of the so-called Graham flour is nothing more than poor flour mixed with bran, and is in every way inferior to good white flour. Fine flour or made from the entire wheat may generally be distinguished from a spurious article by taking a small portion into the mouth and chewing it. Raw flour made from the entire grain has a sweet taste, and a rich, nutty flavor the same as that experienced in chewing a whole grain of wheat, and produces a goodly quantity of gum or gluten, while a spurious article tastes flat and insipid like starch, or has a bitter, pungent taste consequent upon the presence of impurities. This bitter taste is noticeable in bread made from such flour. A given quantity of poor flour will not make as much bread as the same quantity of good flour, so that adulteration may also be detected in this way. Doubtless much of the prejudice against the use of whole-wheat flour has arisen from the use of a spurious article.

As it is not always possible to determine accurately without the aid of chemistry and a microscope whether flour is genuine, the only safe way is to purchase the product of reliable mills.

It is always best to obtain a small quantity of flour first, and put it to the test of bread-making; then, if satisfactory, purchase that brand so long as it proves good. It is true economy to buy a flour known to be good even though it may cost more than some others. It is not wise to purchase too large a quantity at once unless one has exceptionally good facilities for storage, as flour is subject to many deteriorating influences. It is estimated that a barrel of good flour contains sufficient bread material to last one person one year; and from this standard it can be easily estimated in what proportion it is best to purchase.

To Keep Flour.—Flour should always be kept in a tight receptacle, and in a cool, dry, well-ventilated place. It should not be allowed to remain in close proximity to any substances of strong odor, as it very readily absorbs odors and gaseous impurities. A damp atmosphere will cause it to absorb moisture, and as a result the gluten will lose some of its tenacity and become sticky, and bread made from the flour will be coarser and inferior in quality. Flour which has absorbed dampness from any cause should be sifted into a large tray, spread out thin and exposed to the hot sun, or placed in a warming oven for a few hours.

Deleterious Adulterations of Flour.—Besides the fraud frequently practiced of compounding whole-wheat flour from inferior mill products, white flour is sometimes adulterated—more commonly, however, in European countries that in this—with such substances as alum, ground rice, plaster of Paris, and whiting. Alum is doubtless the most commonly used of all these substances, for the reason that it gives the bread a whiter color and causes the flour to absorb and retain a larger amount of water than it would otherwise hold. This enables the user to make, from an inferior brand of flour, bread which resembles that made from a better quality. Such adulteration is exceedingly injurious, as are other mineral substances used for a similar purpose.

The presence of alum in flour or bread may be detected in the following way: Macerate a half slice of bread in three or four tablespoonfuls of water; strain off the water, and add to it twenty drops of a strong solution of logwood, made either from the fresh chips or the extract. Then add a large teaspoonful of a strong solution of carbonate of ammonium. If alum is present, the mixture will change from pink to lavender blue.

The Journal of Trade gives the following simple mode of testing for this adulterant: "Persons can test the bread they buy for themselves, by taking a piece of it and soaking it in water. Take this water and mix it with an equal part of fresh milk, and if the bread contains alum, the mixture will coagulate. If a better test is required, boil the mixture, and it will form perfect clot."

Whiting can be detected by dipping the ends of the thumb and forefinger in sweet oil and rubbing the flour between them. If whiting is present, the flour will become sticky like putty, and remain white; whereas pure flour, when so rubbed, becomes darker in color, but not sticky. Plaster of Paris, chalk, and other alkaline adulterants may be detected by a few drops of lemon juice: if either be present, effervescence will take place.

Chemistry of Bread-Making.—Good flour alone will not insure good bread. As much depends upon its preparation as upon the selection of material; for the very best of flour may be transformed into the poorest of bread through improper or careless preparation. Good bread cannot be produced at random. It is not the fruit of any luck or chance, but the practical result of certain fixed laws and principles to which all may conform.

The first step in the conversion of flour into bread is to incorporate with it a given amount of fluid, by which each atom of flour is surrounded with a thin film of moisture, in order to hydrate the starch, to dissolve the sugar and albumen, and to develop the adhesiveness of the gluten, thus binding the whole into one coherent mass termed dough, a word from a verb meaning to wet or moisten. If nothing more be done, and this simple form of dough be baked, the starch granules will be ruptured by the heat and thus properly prepared for food; but the moistening will have developed the glue-like property of the gluten to the extent of firmly cementing the particles of flour together, so that the mass will be hard and tough, and almost incapable of mastication. If, however, the dough be thoroughly kneaded, rolled very thin, made into small cakes, and then quickly baked with sufficient heat, the result will be a brittle kind of bread termed unleavened bread, which, although it requires a lengthy process of mastication, is more wholesome and digestible than soft bread, which is likely to be swallowed insufficiently insalivated.

The gluten of wheat flour, beside being adhesive, is likewise remarkably elastic. This is the reason why wheat flour is much more easily made into light bread than the product of other cereals which contain less or a different quality of gluten. Now if while the atoms of flour are supplied with moisture, they are likewise supplied with some form of gaseous substance, the elastic walls of the gluten cells will become distended, causing the dough to "rise," or grow in bulk, and at the same time become light, or porous, in texture.

This making of bread light is usually accomplished by the introduction of air into the dough, or by carbonic acid gas generated within the mass, either before or during the baking, by a fermentative or chemical process.

When air is the agency used, the gluten, by its glue-like properties, catches and retains the air for a short period; and if heat is applied before the air, which is lighter than the dough, rises and escapes, it will expand, and in expanding distend the elastic glutinous mass, causing it to puff up or rise. If the heat is sufficient to harden the gluten quickly, so that the air cells throughout the whole mass become firmly fixed before the air escapes, the result will be a light, porous bread. If the heat is not sufficient, the air does not properly expand; or if before a sufficient crust is formed to retain the air and form a framework of support for the dough, the heat is lessened or withdrawn, the air will escape, or contract to its former volume, allowing the distended glutinous cell walls to collapse; in either case the bread will be heavy.

If carbonic acid gas, generated within the dough by means of fermentation or by the use of chemical substances, be the means used to lighten the mass, the gluten by virtue of its tenacity holds the bubbles of gas as they are generated, and prevents the large and small ones from uniting, or from rising to the surface, as they seek to do, being lighter than the dough. Being thus caught where they are generated, and the proper conditions supplied to expand them, they swell or raise the dough, which is then termed a loaf. (This word "loaf" is from the Anglo-Saxon hlifian, to raise or lift up.) The structure is rendered permanent by the application of heat in baking.


For general use, the most convenient form of bread is usually considered to be that made from wheat flour, raised or made light by some method of fermentation, although in point of nutritive value and healthfulness, it does not equal light, unfermented, or aërated bread made without the aid of chemicals.

The Process of Fermentation.—Fermentation is a process of decomposition, and hence more or less destructive to the substances subjected to its influence. When animal and vegetable substances containing large amounts of nitrogenous elements are in a moist state and exposed to air, they very soon undergo a change, the result of which is decomposition or decay. This is occasioned by the action of germs, which feed upon nitrogenous substances, as do the various species of fungi. Meat, eggs, milk, and other foods rich in nitrogenous elements can be preserved but a short time if exposed to the atmosphere. The carbonaceous elements are different in this respect. When pure starch, sugar, or fat is exposed to the air in a moistened state, they exhibit the very little tendency to change or decay. Yet if placed in contact with decomposing substances containing nitrogen, they soon begin to change, and are themselves decomposed and destroyed. This communication of the condition of change from one class of substances to another, is termed fermentation. If a fermenting substance be added to a watery solution containing sugar, the sugar will be changed or decomposed, and two new substances, alcohol and carbonic acid gas, are produced.

The different stages of fermentation are noted scientifically as alcoholic, acetous, and putrefactive. The first is the name given to the change which takes place in the saccharine matter of the dough, which results in the formation of alcohol and carbonic acid gas. This same change takes place in the saccharine matter of fruits under the proper with conditions of warmth, air, and moisture, and is utilized in the production of wines and fermented liquors.

In bread-making, the alcohol and carbonic acid gas produced during the fermentation, are formed from sugar,—that originally contained in the flour and the additional quantity formed from starch during the fermenting process. It is evident, therefore, that bread cannot be fermented without some loss in natural sweetness and nutritive value, and bread made after this method should be managed so as to deteriorate the material as little as possible.

If this fermentation continues long enough, the acetous fermentation is set up, and acetic acid, the essential element of vinegar, is formed and the dough becomes sour. If the process of fermentation is very much prolonged, the putrefactive change is set up, and the gluten is more or less decomposed.

If the dough be baked during the alcoholic and carbonic-acid stage of fermentation, the gas will render the loaf light and porous. The alcohol will be dissipated by the heat during the baking, or evaporated shortly afterward, provided the baking be thorough. If the fermentation is allowed to proceed until the acetous fermentation has begun, the loaf, when baked, will be "sad" and heavy, since there is no longer any gas to puff it up. If, however, during the first or alcoholic stage of fermentation, new material be added, the same kind of fermentation will continue for a certain period longer.

These facts serve to show that great care and attention are necessary to produce good bread by a fermentative process. If the fermentation has not been allowed to proceed far enough to generate a sufficient amount of gas to permeate the whole mass, the result will be a heavy loaf; and if allowed to proceed too far, acid fermentation begins, the gas escapes, and we have sour as well as heavy bread. It is not enough, however, to prevent bread from reaching the acetous or sour stage of fermentation. Bread may be over-fermented when there is no appreciable sourness developed. Fermentation may be carried so far as to destroy much of the richness and sweetness of the loaf, and yet be arrested by the baking process just before the acetous stage begins, so that it will be light and porous, but decidedly lacking in flavor and substance. Over-fermentation also develops in the bread various bitter substances which obscure the natural sweetness of the bread and give to it an unpleasant flavor. Many of these substances are more or less harmful in character, and include many poisons known as ptomaines, a class of chemical compounds produced by germs whenever fermentation or decomposition of organic matter takes place. Much skill is required to determine at what point to arrest the fermentation, in order to save the sweetness and richness of the bread.

Fermentative Agents.—Fermentation in vegetable matter is always accompanied by the growth of living organisms. The development of these minute organisms is the exciting cause of fermentation and putrefaction. The germs or spores of some of these fermenting agents are always present in the air. It is well known to housekeepers that if a batter of flour and water and a little salt be kept in a jar of water at a temperature of from 100° to 110°, it will ferment in the course of five or six hours. Scientists assure us that this fermentation is occasioned by the introduction of the spores of certain species of fungi which are continually floating in the atmosphere, and the proper conditions of warmth and moisture being supplied, they at once begin to grow and multiply. This method of securing fermentation is utilized by housewives in making what is termed salt-rising bread. The raising of dough by this process is lengthy and uncertain, and a far more convenient method is to accelerate the fermentation by the addition of some active ferment. The ancient method of accomplishing this was by adding to the dough a leaven, a portion of old dough which had been kept until it had begun to ferment; but since the investigations of modern chemistry have made clear the properties of yeast, that has come to be considered the best agent for setting up the process of alcoholic fermentation in bread. The use of leaven is still practiced to somewhat in some European countries. The bread produced with leaven, although light and spongy in texture, has an unpleasant, sour taste, and is much less wholesome than that produced with fresh yeast.

Yeast is a collection of living organisms or plants belonging to the family of fungi, which, like all other plants, require warmth, moisture, and food, in order to promote growth, and when properly supplied with these, they begin to grow and multiply rapidly. Fermentation will not take place at a temperature below 30°, it proceeds slowly at 45°, but from 70° to 90° it goes on rapidly. Fermentation may be arrested by the exhaustion of either the fermenting agent or the food supply, or by exposure to heat at the temperature of boiling water. This latter fact enables the housewife to arrest the process of fermentation, when the loaf has become sufficiently light, by baking it in a hot oven. Heat destroys most of the yeast cells; a few, however, remain in the loaf unchanged, and it is for this reason that yeast bread is considered less wholesome for dyspeptics than light unleavened bread. It is apparent, then, that the more thoroughly fermented bread is baked, the more wholesome it will be, from the more complete destruction of the yeast germs which it contains.

Yeast.—Next to good flour, the most important requisite in the manufacture of fermented bread is good yeast. The best of flour used in conjunction with poor yeast will not produce good bread. The most convenient and reliable kind of marketable yeast, when fresh, is the compressed yeast. The dry though they are always ready for use, the quality of the bread they produce is generally inferior to that made with either compressed yeast or good liquid yeast. If this sort of yeast must be depended upon, the cakes known as "Yeast Foam" are the best of any with which we are acquainted.

Of homemade yeasts there are almost as many varieties as there are cooks. Their comparative value depends mainly upon the length of time they will keep good, or the facility with which they can be prepared. Essentially the same principles are involved in the making of them all; viz., the introduction of a small quantity of fresh, lively yeast into a mixture of some form of starch (obtained from flour, potato, or a combination of both) and water, with or without the addition of such other substances as will promote fermentation, or aid in preventing the yeast from souring. Under proper conditions of warmth, the small amount of original yeast begins to supply itself with food at once by converting the starch into dextrine, and then into grape sugar, and multiplies itself with great rapidity, and will continue to do so as long as there is material to supply it with the means of growth. While its growth is rapid, its decay is equally so; and unless some means of preservation be employed, the yeast will die, and the mixture become sour and foul. Ordinarily it can be kept good for several days, and under the best conditions, even three or four weeks. After it has been kept from four to six hours, it should be placed in some receptacle as nearly air-tight as possible and set in the cellar or refrigerator, where it can be kept at a temperature not conducive to fermentation. Thus the little yeast organisms will remain in a quiescent state, but yet alive and capable of multiplying themselves when again surrounded with favorable conditions.

The yeast should be kept in glass or glazed earthen ware. The vessel containing it should be washed and scalded with scrupulous care before new yeast is put in, since the smallest particle of sour or spoiled yeast will ruin the fresh supply in a very short time. It is generally conceded that yeast will keep longer if the material of which it is made be mixed with liquid of a boiling temperature, or cooked for a few minutes at boiling heat before adding the yeast. The reason for this undoubtedly lies in the fact that the boiling kills foreign germs, and thus prevents early souring or putrefaction. The yeast must not be added, however, until the liquid has cooled to a little more than blood heat, as too great heat will kill the yeast cells.

The starch of the potato is thought to furnish better material for the promotion of yeast growth than that of wheat flour; but whether the potato be first cooked, mashed, and then combined with the other ingredients, or grated raw and then cooked in boiling water, makes little difference so far as results are concerned, though the latter method may have the advantage of taking less time. If potatoes are used for this purpose, they should be perfectly mature. New ones will not answer.

Sugar assists in promoting the growth of the yeast plant, and a small amount is usually employed in making yeast. Hops serve to prevent the yeast from souring, and an infusion of them is frequently used for this purpose.

While it is essential that the water used should be boiling, it is also necessary that the mixture should cooled to a lukewarm temperature before the introduction of the original yeast, as intense heat will kill the yeast plant. Freezing cold will likewise produced the same result. While a cool temperature is one of the requisites for keeping yeast fresh, care must be taken, especially in winter, that it does not get chilled.

When yeast is needed for bread, it is always the best plan to take a cup to the cellar or refrigerator for the desired quantity, and re-cover the jar as quickly as possible. A half hour in a hot kitchen would be quite likely to spoiled it. Always shake or stir the whole well before measuring out the yeast. In making yeast, used earthen bowls for mixing, porcelain-lined or granite-ware utensils for boiling, and silver or wooden spoons for stirring.

Bitter Yeast.—It sometimes happens that an excessive use of hops in the making of yeast gives to it so bitter a flavor as to communicate a disagreeable taste to the bread. To correct this bitterness, mix with the yeast a considerable quantity of water, and let it stand for some hours, when the thickest portion will have settled at the bottom. The water, which will have extracted much of the bitterness, can then be turned off and thrown away. Yeast also sometimes becomes a bitter from long keeping. Freshly burnt charcoal thrown into the yeast is said to absorb the odors and offensive matter and render the yeast more sweet; however, we do not recommend the use of any yeast so stale as to need sweetening or purifying. Yeast that is new and fresh is always best; old and stale yeast, even though it may still possess the property of raising the dough, will give an unpleasant taste to the bread, and is much less wholesome.

Tests for Yeast.—Liquid yeast, when good, is light in color and looks foamy and effervescent; it has a pungent odor somewhat similar to weak ammonia, and if tasted will have a sharp, biting flavor. Yeast is poor when it looks dull and watery, and has a sour odor. Compressed yeast, if good, breaks off dry and looks white; if poor, it appears moist and stringy.

If there is any question as to the quality of yeast, it is always best to test it before use by adding a little flour to a small quantity and setting it in a warm place. If it begins to ferment in the course of fifteen or twenty minutes, it is good.

Starting the Bread.—Having secured good yeast, it is necessary in some way to diffuse it through the bread material so that it will set up an active fermentation, which, by the evolution of gas, will render the whole mass light and porous. As fermentation is more sure, more rapid, and requires less yeast to start it when set in action in a thin mixture than when introduced into stiff dough, the more common method of starting fermented bread is by "setting a sponge;" viz., preparing a batter of flour and liquid, to which potato is sometimes added, and into which the yeast is introduced. Some cooks, in making the batter, use the whole amount of liquid needed for the bread, and as the sponge rises, add flour in small quantities, beating it back, and allowing it to rise a second, third, or even fourth time, until sufficient flour has been added to knead; others use only half the liquid in preparing the sponge, and when it has well risen, prepare a second one by adding the remainder of the liquid and fresh flour, in which case the fermented batter acts as a double portion of yeast and raises the second sponge very quickly. The requisite amount of flour is then added, the dough kneaded, and the whole allowed to rise a third time in the loaf. Other cooks dispense altogether with the sponge, adding to the liquid at first the requisite amount of flour, kneading it thoroughly and allowing it to rise once in mass and again after molding into loaves. As to the superiority of one method over another, much depends upon their adaptability to the time and convenience of the user; light bread can be produced by either method. Less yeast but more time will be required when the bread is started with a sponge. The end to be attained by all is a complete and equal diffusion of gas bubbles generated during fermentation throughout the whole mass of dough.

The preferable method of combining the materials needed for the batter is by first mingling the yeast with the water or milk. If condensed or dry yeast is used, previously dissolve it well in a half cupful or less of lukewarm water. Stir the flour slowly into the liquid mixture and beat it very thoroughly so that the yeast shall be evenly distributed throughout the whole.

Proportion of Materials Needed.—The material needed for making: the bread should all be carefully measured out beforehand and the flour well sifted. Many housekeepers fail in producing good bread, because they guess at the quantity of material to be used, particularly the flour, and with the same quantity of liquid will one time use much more flour that at another, thus making the results exceedingly variable. With this same brand of flour, this same quantity should always be used to produce a given amount of bread. This amount will depend upon the quality of the material used. Good flour will absorb a larger quantity of liquids than that of an inferior quality, and the amount of liquid a given quantity of flour will take up determines the quantity of bread that can be produced from it. This amount is chiefly dependent upon the proportion of gluten contained in the flour. One hundred pounds of good flour will absorb sufficient water to produce one hundred and fifty pounds of bread. One reason why bread retains so much water is that during the baking a portion of starch is converted into gum, which holds water more strongly than starch. Again: the gluten, when wet, is not easily dried, while the dry crust which forms around the bread in baking is merely impervious to water, and, like the skin of a baking potato, prevents the moisture from escaping.

Kinds of flour vary so considerably in respect to their absorbent properties that it is not possible to state the exact proportions of flour and liquid required; approximately, three heaping measures of flour for one scant measure of liquid, including the yeast, will in general be found a good proportion. Bread made from the entire wheat will require from one half to one cupful less flour than that made of white flour. A quart of liquid, including the yeast, is sufficient for three ordinary-sized loaves. One half or two thirds of a cup of homemade yeast, according to its strength, or one half a cake of compressed yeast dissolved in a half cup of lukewarm water, will be sufficient for one quart of liquid. It is a common mistake to use too much yeast. It lessens the time required, but the result is less satisfactory. Bread to be set over night requires less yeast.

Whether water or milk should be used for bread-making, depends upon taste and convenience. Bread retains more nearly the natural flavor of the grain if made with water, and is less apt to sour; at the same time, bread made with milk is more tender than that made with water. Bread made with milk requires from one half to one cupful less of flour.

Potatoes are sometimes used in conjunction with flour for bread-making. They are by no means necessary when good flour is used, but bread made from inferior flour is improved by their use. Only potatoes that are fully matured should be used for this purpose, and they should be well cooked and smoothly mashed. Neither sugar nor salt is essential for the production of good bread, though most cook books recommend the use of one or both. The proportion of the former should not exceed one even tablespoonful to three pints of flour, and the very smallest amount of salt, never more than a half teaspoonful, and better less. No butter or other free fat is required; the tenderness of texture produced by its use can be secured as well by the use of unskimmed milk and thorough kneading.

Utensils.—For bread-making purposes, earthen or china ware is preferable to either tin or wooden utensils: being a poor conductor, it protects the sponge from the cold air much more effectually than tin, and is much more easily kept clean and sweet than wood. The utensil should be kept exclusively for the purpose of bread-making, and should never be allowed to contain any sour substance. The bowl should be thoroughly scalded before and after each using. Use silver or granite-ware spoons for stirring the bread. Iron and tin discolor the sponge. For measuring the material, particularly the liquid and the yeast, half-pint cups, divided by marks into thirds and fourths, as shown in the cut, are especially serviceable.

Measuring Cup
Measuring Cup
Measuring Cup.
Measuring Cup.

When to Set the Sponge.—The time to set the sponge for bread-making is a point each housekeeper must determine for herself. The fact before stated, that temperature controls the activity of fermentation, and that it is retarded or accelerated according to the conditions of warmth, enables the housewife, by keeping the bread-mixture at a temperature of about 50° F., to set her bread in the evening, if desired, and find it light and ready for further attention in the morning. In winter, the sponge will need to be prepared early in the evening and kept during the night at as even a temperature as possible. A good way to accomplish this is to cover the bowl with a clean napkin and afterwards wrap it about very closely with several folds of a woolen blanket. In extremely cold weather bottles of hot water may be placed around the bowl outside the wrappings. In case this plan is employed, care must be taken to have sufficient wrappings between the bread and the bottles to prevent undue heat, and the bottles should be covered with an additional blanket to aid in retaining the heat as long as possible.

If the sponge is set in the evening, if in very warm weather, it should be started as late as practicable, and left in a rather cool place. Cover closely to exclude the air, but do not wrap in flannel as in winter. It will be likely to need attention early in the morning.

Temperature for Bread-Making.—Except in very warm weather, the ferment or sponge should be started with liquid at a lukewarm temperature.

The liquid should never be so cold as to chill the yeast. Milk, if used, should be first sterilized by scalding, and then cooled before using.

After the sponge is prepared, the greatest care must be taken to keep it at an equable temperature. From 70° to 90° is the best range of temperature, 75° being considered the golden mean throughout the entire fermentative process of bread-making.

After fermentation has well begun, it will continue, but much more slowly if the temperature be gradually lowered to 45° or 50°. If it is necessary to hasten the rising, the temperature can be raised to 80° or 85°, but it will necessitate careful watching, as it will be liable to over-ferment, and become sour. Cold arrests the process of fermentation, while too great heat carries forward the work too rapidly. Too much stress cannot be laid upon the importance of an equable temperature. The housewife who permits the fermentation to proceed very slowly one hour, forces it rapidly by increased heat the next, and perhaps allows it to subside to a chilling temperature the third, will never be sure of good bread.

Putting the bowl containing the sponge into a dish of warm (not hot) water, or keeping it in the warming oven, or on the back of the range, are all methods which may bring about good results, provided the same degree of heat can be maintained continuously; but if the fire is one which must be increased or diminished to suit the exigencies of household details, nothing but the closest and most careful attention will keep the sponge at uniform temperature. The better way is to cover the bowl with a napkin, and in cold weather wrap closely in several thicknesses of flannel, and place on a stand behind the stove, or in some place not exposed to draughts. A bread-raiser purposely arranged for keeping the bread at proper temperature is a great convenience. Two small and rather thick earthen ware crocks of the same size, serve very well for this purpose. Scald both with hot water, and while still warm, put the sponge in one, invert the other for a cover, and leave in a warm room. All flour used in the bread should be warm when added.

Lightness of the Bread.—The time required for bread in its different stages to grow light will vary according to the quantity and strength of the yeast used and the amount of warmth supplied. A thin batter is light enough when in appearance it resembles throughout a mass of sea foam. It will not greatly increase in bulk, but will be in the state of constant activity, sending up little bubbles of gas and emitting a sharp, pungent odor like fresh yeast.

When the thicker batter or second sponge is sufficiently light, it will have risen to nearly double its original bulk and become cracked over the top like "crazed" china. It should never be allowed to rise to the point of sinking or caving in, and should be kneaded as soon as ready. If for any reason it is not possible to knead the bread at once when it has arrived at this stage, do not allow it to stand, but take a knife or spoon and gently beat it back a little. This dissipates some of the gas and reduces the volume somewhat. Let it rise again, which it will do in a short time, if it has not been allowed to become too light. If dough that has been kneaded and allowed to rise in mass, becomes sufficiently light at some inopportune moment for shaping into loaves, it may be kept from becoming too light and souring, by taking a knife and cutting it away from the sides of the bowl and gradually working it over toward the center. Re-cover and put in a warm place. It will soon assume its former bulk. This "cutting down" may be repeated several times if necessary, provided the bread has not been allowed to become too light at any time, and some cook's recommend it as a uniform practice. We do not, however, except in case of necessity; since, though it may possibly make the bread more light, the long-continued fermentation destroys more than is necessary of the food elements of the flour, and develops an unnecessary amount of the products of fermentation. Lightness is not the only requisite for bread, and should be secured with as little deterioration of the flour as possible.

An important point in the preparation of bread is to decide when it is sufficiently light after having been molded and placed in pans. The length of time cannot be given, because it will vary with the temperature, the quality of the flour, and the quantity added during the kneading. At a temperature of 75°, an hour or an hour and a half is about the average length of time needed. A loaf should nearly double its size after being placed in a pan, before baking; when perfectly risen, the bread feels light when lifted and weighed upon the hand. It is better to begin the baking before it has perfectly risen them to wait until it has become so light as to commence to fall, since if the fermentation proceeds too far, the sweetness of the grain will be destroyed, and the bread will be tasteless and innutritious, even if it does not reach the acetous stage.

The exercise of a little judgment and careful attention to detail will soon enable a person successfully to determine the proper degree of lightness of bread in its various stages. Bread which passes the extreme point of fermentation, or in common phrase gets "too light," will have a strong acid odor, and will pull away from the bowl in a stringy mass, having a watery appearance very different from the fine, spongy texture of properly risen dough. The acidity of such dough may be neutralized by the addition of an alkali, and housewives who through carelessness and inattention have allowed their bread to become "sour," often resort to saleratus or soda to neutralize the acid. The result of such treatment is unwholesome bread, wholly unfit for food. It is better economy to throw away bread material which needs to be sweetened with soda than to run the risk of injury to health by using it.

Kneading the Dough.—As fresh flour is added during the bread-making, it is necessary to mix it in thoroughly. As long as the batter is thin, this can be done by thoroughly beating the mixture with the addition of material; but when it is a thick dough, some other method must be adopted to bring about the desired result. The usual way is by mixing the dough to a proper consistency, and working it with the hands. This is termed kneading. Much of the excellence of bread depends upon the thoroughness of this kneading, since if the yeast is not intimately and equally mixed with every particle of flour, the bread will not be uniform; some portions will be heavy and compact, while others will be full of large, open cavities, from the excessive liberation of gas.

The length of time required for kneading depends upon the perfection with which the yeast cells have been previously diffused throughout the sponge, and upon the quality of the flour used in preparing the bread, much less time being required for kneading dough made from good flour. Some consider an hour none too long to knead bread. Such a lengthy process may be advantageous, since one of the objects of kneading is to render the glutinous parts of the flour so elastic that the dough may be capable of expanding to several times its bulk without cracking or breaking, but excellent results can be obtained from good flour with less labor. Bread has been kneaded all that is necessary when it will work clean of the board, and when, after a smart blow with the fist in the center of the mass, it will spring back to its original shape like an India rubber ball. Its elasticity is the surest test of its goodness; and when dough has been thus perfectly kneaded, it can be molded into any shape, rolled, twisted, or braided with ease. Chopping, cutting, stretching, and pulling—the dough are other methods for accomplishing the same end.

If a large mass is to be kneaded, it is better to divide it into several portions and knead each separately. It is less laborious and more likely to result in an equal diffusion of the yeast. Bread is often spoiled by the addition of too much flour during kneading. Dough should always be kneaded as soft as it can be handled, and only sufficient flour added to prevent its sticking to the board. Stiff bread is close in texture, and after a day or two becomes dry and hard.

How to Manipulate the Dough in Kneading.—Sprinkle the board well with flour, and scrape the dough from the bowl with a knife. Dust the hands with flour, and then draw the dough with a rolling motion from the farthest side toward you, using the finger tips for the purpose, but pressing firmly down upon the mass with the palm of the hands. Reach forward again with the finger tips, and again press the ball of the hands upon the dough. Continue this process of manipulation until the mass is very much elongated; then turn at right angles and repeat the process, taking care that the finger tips do not break through the light film which will form upon the outside of soft dough when well managed. Keep the dough constantly in motion until it is smooth, elastic, and fine-grained. The hands and the board may need a light dusting of flour at frequent intervals. If the dough sticks, lift it quickly, and clean the board, that it may be kept smooth. The dough will not stick if kept in constant motion. Do not rub off little wads of dough either from the hands or the board and keep kneading them into the loaf; they will seriously injure the uniform texture of the bread.

How Many Times Shall Bread be Kneaded?—As the objects to be attained in kneading dough are to render the gluten more elastic and thoroughly to diffuse the yeast, it will be seen that there has been sufficient kneading when all the flour necessary for the bread has been added. Furthermore, it must be apparent that continued manipulation of the dough at this stage will dissipate and press out the little vesicles of gas held in place by the elastic gluten, and thus lose in part what so much pains has been taken to secure. At whatever stage the requisite amount of flour be added, the dough should then be thoroughly kneaded once for all. If allowed to rise in bulk, when light it should be shaped into loaves with the greatest care, handled lightly, and worked as little as possible, and if at all diminished, allowed to rise again before baking.

Dryness of the Surface.—Bread in all stages should be covered over the top, since it rises much more evenly, and does not have a stiff, dried surface, as when placed in a warm place exposed to air. It sometimes happens that this precaution is forgotten or not sufficiently attended to, and a dry crust forms and over the dough, which, if kneaded into the loaves, leaves hard, dry spots in the bread. In case of such a mishap, take the dry crust off, dissolve it in a little warm water, add flour enough to mold, make it into a small loaf, and raise it separately.

Size of Loaves.—The lightness of the bread after baking depends upon the perfection with which the little air-cells, formed during the fermenting process, have become fixed by the heat during the baking. The heat expands the carbonic acid gas contained within the open spaces in the dough, and at the same time checks further development of gas by destroying the yeast plant. The sooner, then, that the cells can be made permanent after the arrest of fermentation, the more light and porous the bread will be. Although this fixing of the cells is largely dependent upon the degree of heat maintained, it likewise in a measure depends upon the size of the loaf, as the heat will penetrate and fix the cells of a small loaf throughout much sooner than, those of a large one. Therefore, bake in small loaves, and have a separate pan for each, as that admits of an equal degree of heat to all sides. This aids in a more rapid fixing of the air-cells and likewise gives more crust, which is the sweetest and most digestible part of the bread.

Sheet-iron pans, about eight inches in length, four in width, and five in depth, are the most satisfactory. After the dough is molded, divide it into loaves which will fill such pans to the depth of two inches. Let them rise until double their first volume, and then put them in the oven. In baking, the loaves will rise still higher, and if about five inches high when done, will have expanded to about the right proportions.

Bread Pan
Bread Pan.

Proper Temperature of the Oven.—The objects to be attained in the baking of bread are to break up the starch and gluten cells of the Sour so as to make them easily digestible, to destroy the yeast plant, and render permanent the cells formed by the action of the carbonic acid gas. To accomplish well these ends, the loaf must be surrounded by a temperature ranging from 400° to 600°. The oven should be one in which the heat is equal in all parts, and which can be kept at a steady, uniform heat. Old-fashioned brick ovens were superior in this respect to most modern ranges. The fire for baking bread should be of sufficient strength to keep the oven heated for at least an hour. If the oven has tendency to become too hot upon the bottom, a thin, open grate, broiler, or toasting rack, should be placed underneath the tins to allow a circulation of air and avoid danger of burning. If the heat be insufficient, fermentation will not cease until the bread has become sour; the cells will be imperfectly fixed or entirely collapsed; too little of the moisture will have evaporated, and the result will be a soft, wet, and pasty or sour loaf. If the heat be too great, the bread will be baked before it has perfectly risen, or a thick, burned crust will be produced, forming a non-conducting covering to the loaf, which will prevent the heat from permeating the interior, and thus the loaf will have an overdone exterior, but will be raw and doughy within. If, however, the temperature of the oven be just right, the loaf will continue for a little time to enlarge, owing to the expansion of the carbonic acid gas, the conversion of the water into steam, and the vaporizing of the alcohol, which rises in a gaseous form and is driven off by the heat; a nicely browned crust will be formed over the surface, the result of the rapid evaporation of water from the surface and consequent consolidation of the dough of this portion of the loaf, and a chemical change caused by the action of the heat upon the starch by which is converted into dextrine, finally assuming a brown color due to the production of a substance known to the chemist as assama.

Bread is often spoiled in the baking. The dough may be made of the best of flour and yeast, mixed and kneaded in the most perfect manner, and may have risen to the proper degree of lightness' before going to the oven, yet if the oven is either too hot or not hot enough, the bread will be of an inferior quality.

Without an oven thermometer, there is no accurate means of determining the temperature of the oven; but housekeepers resort to various means to form a judgment about it. The baker's old-fashioned method is to throw a handful of flour on the oven bottom. If it blackens without igniting, the heat is deemed sufficient. Since the object for which the heat is desired is to cook the flour, not to burn it, it might be supposed that this would indicate too high a temperature; but the flour within the loaf to be baked is combined with a certain amount of moisture, the evaporation of which lowers the temperature of the bread considerably below that of the surrounding heated atmosphere. The temperature of the inner portion of the loaf cannot exceed 212° so long as it continues moist. Bread might be perfectly cooked at this temperature by steam, but it would lack that most digestible portion of the loaf, the crust.

A common way of ascertaining if the heat of the oven is sufficient, is to hold the bare arm inside it for a few seconds. If the arm cannot be held within while thirty is counted, it is too hot to begin with. The following test is more accurate: For rolls, the oven should be hot enough to brown a teaspoonful of flour in one minute, and for loaves in five minutes.

The temperature should be high enough to arrest the fermentation, which it will do at a point considerably below the boiling point of water, and at the same time to form a shell or crust, which will so support the dough as to prevent it from sinking or collapsing when the evolution of carbonic acid gas shall cease; but it should not be hot enough to brown the crust within ten or fifteen minutes. The heat should increase for the first fifteen minutes, remain steady for the next fifteen minutes, and may then gradually decrease during the remainder of the baking. If by any mischance the oven be so hot as to brown the crust too soon, cover the loaf with a clean paper for a few minutes. Be careful that no draught reaches the bread while baking; open the oven door very seldom, and not at all for the first ten minutes. If it is necessary to turn the loaf, try to do so without bringing it to the air. From three fourths of an hour to an hour is usually a sufficient length of time to bake an ordinary sized loaf. Be careful not to remove the bread from the oven until perfectly done. It is better to allow it to bake ten minutes too long than not long enough. The crust of bread, when done, should be equally browned all over.

The common test for well-baked bread is to tap it on the bottom with the finger; if it is light and well done, it will sound hollow; heavy bread will have a dull sound. A thoroughly baked loaf will not burn the hand when lifted upon it from the pan.

Care of Bread after Baking.—When done, remove the loaves from the tins, and tilt them upon edge so that the air may circulate freely on all sides of them to prevent "sweating." Do not, however, lay them on a pine shelf or table to absorb the odor of the wood. A large tin dripping pan turned over upon the table does very well to tilt them on. If they are turned often, so that they will not soften on one side, but a fine wire bread cooler is the best thing. If this is not obtainable, a fair substitute can be easily improvised by tacking window-screen wire to a light frame of sufficient size to hold the requisite number of loaves. If the bread is left exposed to the air until cold, the crust will be crisp; if a soft crust is desired, it can be secured by brushing the top of the loaf while hot, with tepid water, and covering with several thicknesses of a clean bread cloth.

If by accident any portion of the crust is burnt, grate it away as soon as cold; this is preferable to cutting or clipping it off.

Best Method of Keeping Bread.—When the bread is quite cold, put it away in a bread box, which should be of tin, or of wood lined with tin, convenient in form and supplied with a well-fitting cover. Never use an unlined wooden box of any kind, as it cannot easily be kept fresh and free from musty odors, which bread so readily absorbs.

Stone and earthen ware are not open to this objection, but they are likely to collect moisture, and hence are not equal to a tin receptacle. Do not keep bread in the cellar or any other damp place, nor in a close closet, where there are other foods from which it can absorb odors. The bread box should be kept well covered, and free from crumbs and stale bits. It should be carefully washed in boiling soapsuds, scalded, and dried, every two or three days. If cloths are used to wrap or cover the bread, they too should be washed and scalded every week, and oftener if at any time the loaf about which they are wrapped becomes moldy or musty.

Test of Good Fermented Bread.—A loaf of good bread, well risen and perfectly baked, may be taken in the hands, and, with the thumb on the top crust and fingers upon the bottom of the loaf, pressed to less than half its thickness, and when the pressure is removed, it will immediately expand like a sponge, to its former proportions.

Good yeast bread, while it should be firm and preserve a certain amount of moisture, will, when cold, crumble easily when rubbed between the fingers. If, instead, it forms a close, soggy mass, it may be regarded as indigestible. This is one reason why hot, new yeast bread and biscuit are so indigestible. In demonstration of this, take a small lump of new bread, gently roll it into a ball, and put into a glass of water, adding a similar quantity of stale bread of the same kind also. The latter will crumble away very soon, while the former will retain its form for hours, reminding one of its condition in the stomach, "as hard as a bullet," for a long time resisting the action of the gastric juice, although, meanwhile, the yeast germs which have not been killed in the oven are converting the mass into a lump of yeast, by which the whole contents of the stomach are soured. A soluble article like salt or sugar in fine powdered form is much more easily and quickly dissolved than the same article in solid lumps, and so it is with food. The apparent dryness of stale bread is not caused by its loss of moisture; for if carefully weighed, stale bread will be found to contain almost exactly the same proportion of water as new bread that has become cold. The moisture has only passed into a state of concealment, as may be demonstrated by subjecting a stale loaf inclosed in a tightly-sealed receptacle to a temperature equal to boiling heat in an oven for half an hour, when it will again have the appearance of new bread.

Hot bread eaten with butter is still more unwholesome, for the reason that the melted grease fills up the pores of the bread, and further interferes with the action of the digestive fluids.

Whole-Wheat and Graham Breads.—The same general principles are involved in the making of bread with whole-wheat and Graham flours as in the production of bread from white flour. Good material and good care are absolutely essential.

Whole-wheat flour ferments more readily and rises more quickly than does white flour, hence bread made with it needs more careful management, as it is more liable to sour. The novice in bread-making should not undertake the preparation of bread with whole-wheat flour, until she has thoroughly mastered all the details of the art by practical experience, and can produce a perfect loaf from white flour.

Breads from whole-wheat and Graham flours require less yeast and less flour than bread prepared from white flour. A slower process of fermentation is also advantageous.

Such breads will be lighter if at least one third white flour be employed in their manufacture. When the bread is made with a sponge, this white flour may be utilised for the purpose. Thus the length of time the whole-wheat flour will be undergoing fermentation will be somewhat lessened, and its liability to become sour diminished. This plan is a preferable one for beginners in bread-making.

Graham and whole-wheat flour breads must be kneaded longer than white-flour bread, and require a hotter oven at first and a longer time for baking. Much Graham and whole-wheat bread is served insufficiently baked, probably owing to the fact that, being dark in color, the crust appears brown very soon, thus deluding the cook into supposing that the loaf is well baked. For thorough baking, from one to one and a half hours are needed, according to the size of the loaf and the heat of the oven.

Toast.—Toasting, if properly done, renders bread more digestible, the starch being converted into dextrine by the toasting process; but by the ordinary method of preparing toast, that of simply browning each side, only the surfaces of the slices are really toasted, while the action of the heat upon the interior of the slice, it is rendered exactly in the condition of new bread, and consequently quite as indigestible. If butter is added while the toast is hot, we have all the dyspepsia-producing elements of new bread and butter combined. Although considered to be the dish par excellence for invalids, nothing could be more unwholesome than such toast. To properly toast the bread, the drying and browning should extend throughout the entire thickness of the slice. Bread may be thus toasted before an open fire, but the process would be such a lengthy and troublesome one, it is far better to secure the same results by browning the bread in a moderate oven.

Such toast is sometimes called zwieback (twice baked), and when prepared from good whole-wheat bread, is one of the most nourishing and digestible of foods. Directions for its preparation and use will be found in the chapter on "Breakfast Dishes."

Steamed Bread.—Steaming stale bread is as open to objection as the surface toasting of bread, if steamed so as to be yielding and adhesive. It is not, perhaps, as unwholesome as new bread, but bread is best eaten in a condition dry and hard enough to require chewing, that its starch may be so changed by the action of the saliva as to be easily digested.



Raw Potato Yeast.—Mix one fourth of a cup of flour, the same of white sugar, and a teaspoonful of salt to a paste with a little water. Pare three medium-size, fresh, and sound potatoes, and grate them as rapidly as possible into the paste; mix all quickly together with a silver spoon, then pour three pints of boiling water slowly over the mixture, stirring well at the same time. If this does not rupture the starch cells of the flour and potatoes so that the mixture becomes thickened to the consistency of starch, turn it into a granite-ware kettle and boil up for a minute, stirring well to keep it from sticking and burning. If it becomes too much thickened, add a little more boiling water. It is impossible to give the exact amount of water, since the quality of the flour will vary, and likewise the size of the potatoes; but three pints is an approximate proportion. Strain the mixture through a fine colander into an earthen bread bowl, and let it cool. When lukewarm, add one cup of good, lively yeast. Cover with a napkin, and keep in a moderately warm place for several hours, or until it ceases to ferment. As it begins to ferment, stir it well occasionally, and when well fermented, turn into a clean glass or earthen jar. The next morning cover closely, and put in the cellar or refrigerator, not, however, in contact with the ice. It is best to reserve enough for the first baking in some smaller jar, so that the larger portion need not be opened so soon. Always shake the yeast before using.

Raw Potato Yeast No. 2.—This is made in the same manner as the preceding, with this exception, that one fourth of a cup of loose hops tied in a clean muslin bag, is boiled in the water for five minutes before pouring it into the potato and flour mixture. Many think the addition of the hops aids in keeping the yeast sweet for a longer period. But potato yeast may be kept sweet for two weeks without hops, if cared for, and is preferred by those who dislike the peculiar flavor of the bread made from hop yeast.

Hop Yeast.—Put half a cup of loose hops, or an eighth of an ounce of the pressed hops (put up by the Shakers and sold by druggists), into a granite-ware kettle; pour over it a quart of boiling water, and simmer about five minutes. Meanwhile stir to a smooth paste in a tin basin or another saucepan, a cup of flour, and a little cold water. Line a colander with a thin cloth, and strain the boiling infusion of hops through it onto the flour paste, stirring continually. Boil this thin starch a few minutes, until it thickens, stirring constantly that no lumps be formed. Turn it into a large earthen bowl, add a tablespoonful of salt and two of white sugar, and when it has cooled to blood heat, add one half cup of lively yeast, stirring all well together. Cover the bowl with a napkin, and let it stand in some moderately warm place twenty-four hours, or until it ceases to ferment or send up bubbles, beating back occasionally as it rises; then put into a wide-mouthed glass or earthen jar, which has been previously scalded and dried, cover closely, and set in a cool place. Yeast made in this manner will keep sweet for two weeks in summer and longer in winter.

Boiled Potato Yeast.—Peel four large potatoes, and put them to boil in two quarts of cold water. Tie two loose handfuls of hops securely in a piece of muslin, and place in the water to boil with the potatoes. When the potatoes are tender, remove them with a perforated skimmer, leaving the water still boiling. Mash them, and work in four tablespoons of flour and two of sugar. Over this mixture pour gradually the boiling hop infusion, stirring constantly, that it may form a smooth paste, and set it aside to cool. When lukewarm, add a gill of lively yeast, and proceed as in the preceding recipe.

Boiled Potato Yeast No. 2.—To one teacupful of very smoothly mashed, mealy potato, add three teaspoonfuls of white sugar, one teaspoonful of salt, and one cup of lively yeast, or one cake of Yeast Foam, dissolved in a very little water. The potatoes should be warm, but not hot enough to destroy the yeast. Allow this to stand until light, when it is ready for use.


In the preparation of breads after the following recipes, the measure of flour should be heaping.


Milk Bread With White Flour.—Scald and cool on pint of unskimmed milk. Add to the milk when lukewarm, one fourth of a cup, or three tablespoonfuls, of liquid yeast, and three cups of flour. Give the batter a vigorous beating, turn it into a clean bread bowl or a small earthen crock, cover, and let it rise over night. In the morning, when well risen, add two or three cupfuls of warm flour, or sufficient to knead. Knead well until the dough is sufficiently elastic to rebound when struck forcibly with the fist. Allow it to rise again in mass; then shape into loaves; place in pans; let it stand until light, and bake. If undesirable to set the bread over night, and additional tablespoonfuls or two of cheese may be used, to facilitate the rising.

Vienna Bread.—Into a pint of milk sterilized by scalding, turn a cup and a half of boiling water. When lukewarm, add one half cup of warm water, in which has been dissolved a cake of compressed yeast, and a quart of white flour. Beat the batter thus made very thoroughly, and allow it to rise for one hour; then add white flour until the dough is of a consistency to knead. Knead well, and allow it to rise again for about three hours, or until very light. Shape into four loaves, handling lightly. Let it rise again in the pans, and bake. During the baking, wash the tops of the loaves with a sponge dipped in milk, to glaze them.

Water Bread.—Dissolve a tablespoonful of sugar in a pint of boiling water. When lukewarm, add one fourth of a cup full of liquid yeast, and sufficient flour to make a batter thick enough to drop from the spoon. Beat vigorously for ten minutes, turn into a clean, well-scalded bread bowl, cover (wrapping in a blanket if in cold weather), and let it rise over night. In the morning, when well risen, add flour to knead. Knead well for half an hour, cover, and let it become light in mass. When light, shape into loaves, allow it to rise again, and bake.

Fruit Roll.—Take some bread dough prepared as for Milk Bread, which has been sufficiently kneaded and is ready to mold, and roll to about one inch in thickness. Spread over it some dates which have been washed, dried, and stoned, raisins, currants, or chopped figs. Roll it up tightly into a loaf. Let and it rise until very light, and bake.

Fruit Loaf.—Set a sponge with one pint of rich milk, one fourth cup of yeast, and a pint of flour, over night. In the morning, add two cups of Zante currents, one cup of sugar, and three cups of flour, or enough to make a rather stiff dough. Knead well, and set to rise; when light, mold into loaves; let it rise again, and bake.

Potato Bread.—Cook and mash perfectly smooth, potatoes to make a cupful. Add a teaspoonful of best white sugar, one cup and a half of warm water, and when the mixture is lukewarm, one half cup of yeast, prepared as directed for Boiled Potato Yeast No. 2, and flour to make a very thick batter. Allow it to rise over night. In the morning, add a pint of warm water and flour enough to knead. The dough will need to be considerably stiffer than when no potato is used, or the result will be a bread too moist for easy digestion. Knead well. Let it rise, mold into four loaves, and when again light, bake.

Pulled Bread.—Remove a loaf from the oven when about half baked, and lightly pull the partially set dough into pieces of irregular shape, about half the size of one's fist. Do not smooth or mold the pieces; bake in a slow oven until browned and crisp throughout.

Whole Wheat Bread.—The materials needed for the bread are: one pint of milk, scalded and cooled, one quart of wheat berry flour, one pint Minnesota spring wheat flour, one third cup of a soft yeast, or one fourth cake of compressed yeast, dissolved in one third cup of cold water. Stir enough flour into the milk to make a stiff batter, put in the yeast, and let it rise until foamy. Have the milk so warm that, when the flour is put in, the batter will be of a lukewarm temperature. Wrap in a thick blanket, and keep at an equable temperature. When light, stir in, slowly, warm flour to make a soft dough. Knead for fifteen minutes, and return to the bowl (which has been washed and oiled) to rise again. When risen to double its size, form into two loaves, place in separate pans, let rise again, and bake from three fourths to one and one half hours, according to the heat of the oven.

Whole-Wheat Bread No. 2.—Scald one pint of unskimmed milk; when lukewarm, add one half cup of liquid yeast, or one fourth cake of compressed yeast, dissolved in one half cup of warm water, and a pint of Pillsbury's best white flour. Beat this batter thoroughly, and allow it to rise. When well risen, add three and two thirds cups of wheat berry flour. Knead thoroughly, and allow it to become light in mass; then shape into two loaves, allow it to rise again, and bake.

Miss. B's One-Rising Bread.—Sift and measure three and three fourths cups of wheat berry flour. Scald and cool a pint of unskimmed milk. When lukewarm, add one tablespoonful of lively liquid yeast. By slow degrees add the flour, beating vigorously until too stiff to use a spoon, then knead thoroughly for half an hour, shape into a loaf, place in a bread pan, cover with a napkin in warm weather, wrap well with blankets in cold weather, and let rise over night. In the morning, when perfectly light, pat in a well heated oven, and bake.

Potato Bread with Whole Wheat Flour.—Take a half gill of liquid yeast made as for Boiled Potato Yeast No. 2, and add milk, sterilised and cooled to lukewarm, to make a pint. And one cup of well-mashed, mealy potato and one cup of white flour, or enough to make a rather thick batter Beat thoroughly, cover, and set to rise. When well risen, add sufficient whole-wheat flour to knead. The quantity will vary somewhat with the brand of flour used, but about four and one fourth cupfuls will in general be needed. Knead well, let it rise in mass and again in the loaf, and bake.

Rye Bread.—Prepare a sponge over night with white flour as for Water Bread. In the morning, when light, add another tablespoonful of sugar, and rye flour to knead. Proceed as directed for the Water Bread, taking care to use only enough rye flour to make the dough Just stiff enough to mold. Use white flour for dusting than kneading board, as the rye flour is sticky.

Graham Bread.—Take two tablespoonfuls of lively liquid yeast, or a little less than one fourth cake of compressed yeast, dissolved in a little milk, and add new milk, scalded and cooled to lukewarm, to make one pint. Add one pint of white flour, beat very thoroughly, and set to rise. When very light, add three find one half cupfuls of sifted Graham flour, or enough to make a dough that can be molded. Knead well for half an hour. Place in a clean, slightly oiled bread bowl, cover, and allow it to rise. When light, shape into a loaf: allow it to rise again, and bake.

Graham Bread No. 2.—Mix well one pint of white and two pints of best Graham flour. Prepare a batter with a scant pint of milk, scalded and cooled, two table spoonfuls of liquid yeast, or a little less than one fourth of a cake of compressed yeast, dissolved in two table spoonfuls of milk, and a portion of the mixed flour. Give it a vigorous beating, and put it in a warm place to rise. When well risen, add more flour to make a dough sufficiently stiff to knead. There will be some variation in the amount required, dependent upon the brands of flour used, but in general, two and one half pints of the flour will be enough for preparing the sponge and kneading the dough. Knead thoroughly for twenty-five or thirty minutes. Put into a clean and slightly oiled bread bowl, cover, and set to rise again. When double its first bulk, mold into a loaf; allow it to rise again, and bake.

Graham Bread No. 3.—Mix three pounds each of Graham and Minnesota spring wheat flour. Make a sponge of one and a half pints of warm water, one half cake compressed yeast, well dissolved in the water, and flour to form a batter. Let this rise. When well risen, add one and a half pints more of warm water, one half cup full of New Orleans molasses, and sufficient flour to knead. Work the bread thoroughly, allow it to rise in mass; then mold, place in pans, and let it rise again. The amount of material given is sufficient for four loaves of bread.

Raised Biscuit.—These may be made from dough prepared by any of the preceding recipes for bread. They will be more tender if made with milk, and if the dough is prepared expressly for biscuits, one third cream may be used. When the dough has been thoroughly kneaded the last time, divide into small, equal-sized pieces. A quantity of dough sufficient for one loaf of bread should be divided into twelve or sixteen such portions. Shape into smooth, round biscuits, fit closely into a shallow pan, and let them rise until very light. Biscuit should be allowed to become lighter than bread before putting in the oven, since, being so much smaller, fermentation is arrested much sooner, and they do not rise as much in the oven as does bread.

Rolls.—Well kneaded and risen bread dough is made into a variety of small forms termed rolls, by rolling with the hands or with a rolling-pin, and afterward cutting or folding into any shape desired, the particular manner by which they are folded and shaped giving to the rolls their characteristic names. Dough prepared with rich milk or part cream makes the best rolls. It may be divided into small, irregular portions, about one inch in thickness, and shaped by taking each piece separately in the left hand, then with the thumb and first finger of the right hand, slightly stretch one of the points of the piece and draw it over the left thumb toward the center of the roll, holding it there with the left thumb. Turn the dough and repeat the operation until you have been all around the dough, and each point has been drawn in; then place on the pan to rise. Allow the rolls to become very light, and bake. Rolls prepared in this manner are termed Imperial Rolls, and if the folding has been properly done, when well baked they will be composed of a succession of light layers, which can be readily separated.

French Rolls may be made by shaping each portion of dough into small oval rolls quite tapering at each end, allowing them to become light, and baking far enough apart so that one will not touch another.

If, when the dough is light and ready to shape, it be rolled on the board until about one eighth of an inch in thickness, and cut into five-inch squares, then divided through the center into triangles, rolled up, beginning with the wide side, and placed in the pan to rise in semicircular shape, the rolls are called Crescents.

What are termed Parker House Rolls may be made from well-risen dough prepared with milk, rolled upon the board to a uniform thickness of about one forth inch; cut into round or oval shapes with the cutter; folded, one third over the other two thirds; allowed to rise until very light, and baked.

The light, rolled dough, may be formed into a Braid by cutting into strips six inches in length and one in width, joining the ends of each three, and braiding.

The heat of the oven should be somewhat greater for roils and biscuit than for bread. The time required will depend upon the heat and the size of the roll, but it will seldom exceed one half hour. Neither rolls nor biscuits should be eaten hot, as they are then open to the same objections as other new yeast bread.

Brown Bread.—To one and one fourth cups of new milk which has been scalded and cooled, add one fourth of a cup of lively yeast, three tablespoonfuls of sugar, and one cup each of white flour, rye flour or sifted rye meal, and yellow corn meal. With different brands of flour there may need to be some variation in the quantity of liquid to be used. The mixture should be thick enough to shape. Allow it to rise until light and cracked over the top; put into a bread pan, and when again well risen, bake for an hour and a half or two hours in an oven sufficiently hot at first to arrest fermentation and fix the bread cells, afterwards allowing the heat to diminish somewhat, to permit a slower and longer baking. Graham flour may be used in place of rye, if preferred.

Date Bread.—Take a pint of light white bread sponge prepared with milk, add two tablespoons of sugar, and Graham flour to make a very stiff batter. And last a cupful of stoned dates. Turn into a bread pan. Let it rise, and bake.

Fruit Loaf With Graham and Whole-Wheat Flour.—Dissolve one fourth cake of compressed yeast in a pint of sterilized milk; and a pint of white flour; heat thoroughly, and set to rise. When well risen, add three and one fourth cups of flour (Graham and whole-wheat, equal proportions, thoroughly mixed), or sufficient to knead. Knead well for half an hour, and just at the last add a cup of raisins, well washed, dried, and dusted with flour. Let the loaf rise in mass; then shape, put in the pan, allow it to become light again, and bake.

Raised Corn Bread.—Into two cupfuls of hot mush made from white granular corn meal, stir two cupfuls of cold water. Beat well, and add one half cup of liquid yeast, or one half cake of compressed yeast, dissolved in one half cup of warm water, and two teaspoonfuls of granulated sugar. Stir in white or sifted Graham flour to make it stiff enough to knead. Knead very thoroughly, and put in a warm place to rise. When light, molded into three loaves, put into pans, and allow it to rise again. When well risen, bake at least for three fourths of an hour.

Corn Cake.—Sterilise a cupful of rich milk or thin cream. Cool to lukewarm, and dissolve in it half a cake of compressed yeast Add two small cupfuls of white flour; beat very thoroughly, and put in a warm place to rise. When light, add a cup of lukewarm water or milk, and two cups of best yellow cornmeal. Turn into a shallow square pan, and leave until again well risen. Bake in a quick oven. A tablespoonful of sugar may be added with the corn meal, if desired.

Oatmeal bread.—Mix a quart of well-cooked oatmeal mush with a pint of water, beating it perfectly smooth; add a cupful of liquid yeast and flour to make a stiff batter. Cover, and let it rise. When light, add sufficient flour to mold; knead as soft as possible, for twenty or thirty minutes; shape into four or more loaves, let it rise again, and bake.

Milk Yeast Bread.—Prepare the yeast the day before by scalding three heaping teaspoonfuls of fresh cornmeal with boiling milk. Set in a warm place until light (from seven to ten hours); then put in a cool place until needed for use. Start the bread by making a rather thick batter with one cupful of warm water, one teaspoonful of the prepared yeast, and white flour. Put in a warm place to rise. When light, add to it a cupful of flour scalded with a cupful of boiling milk, and enough more flour to make the whole into a rather stiff batter. Cover, and allow it to rise. When again well risen, add flour enough to knead. Knead well; shape into a loaf; let it rise, and bake. Three or four cupfuls of white flour will be needed for all purposes with the amount of liquid given; more liquid and flour may be added in forming the second sponge if a larger quantity of bread is desired. In preparing both yeast and bread, all utensils used should first be sterilized by scalding in hot sal-soda water.

Graham Salt-Rising Bread.—Put two tablespoonfuls of milk into a half-pint cup, add boiling water to fill the cup half full, one half teaspoonful of sugar, one fourth teaspoonful of salt, and white flour to make a rather stiff batter. Let it rise over night. In the morning, when well risen, add a cup and a half of warm water, or milk scalded and cooled, and sufficient white flour to form a rather stiff batter. Cover, and allow it again to rise. When light, add enough sifted Graham flour to knead. When well kneaded, shape into a loaf; allow it to become light again in the pan, and bake. All utensils used should be first well sterilized by scalding in hot sal-soda water.


The earliest forms of bread were made without fermentation. Grain was broken as fine as possible by pounding on smooth stones, made into dough with pure water, thoroughly kneaded, and baked in some convenient way. Such was the "unleavened breads" or "Passover cakes" of the Israelites. In many countries this bread is the only kind used. Unleavened bread made from barley and oats is largely used by the Irish and Scotch peasantry. In Sweden an unleavened bread is made of rye meal and water, flavored with anise seed, and baked in large, thin cakes, a foot or more in diameter.

Mexican Woman Making Tortillas

Mexican Woman Making Tortillas

Some savage tribes subsists chiefly upon excellent corn bread, made simply of meal and water. Unleavened bread made of corn, called tortillas, forms the staple diet of the Mexican Indians. The corn, previously softened by soaking in lime water, is ground to a fine paste between a stone slab and roller called a metate, then patted and tossed from hand to hand until flattened into thin, wafer-like cakes, and baked over a quick fire, on a thin iron plate or a flat stone.

Unquestionably, unleavened bread, well kneaded and properly baked, is the most wholesome of all breads, but harder to masticate than that made light by fermentation, but this is an advantage; for it insures more thorough mixing with that important digestive agent, the saliva, than is usually given to more easily softened food.

Stone Metate.

Stone Metate.

What is usually termed unfermented bread, however, is prepared with flour and liquid, to which shortening—of some kind is added, and the whole made light by the liberation of gas generated within the dough during the process of baking. This is brought about either by mixing with the flour certain chemical substances, which, when wet and brought into contact, act upon each other so as to set free carbonic acid gas, which expands and puffs up the loaf; or by introducing into the dough some volatile substance as carbonate of ammonia, which the heat during baking will, cause to vaporize, and which in rising produces the same result.

Carbonic acid gas maybe for this purpose developed by the chemical decomposition of bicarbonate of potassa (saleratus), or bicarbonate of soda, by some acid such as sour milk, hydrochloric acid, tartaric acid, nitrate of potassa, or the acid phosphate of lime.

The chemical process of bread-raising originally consisted in adding to the dough definite proportions of muriatic acid and carbonate of soda, by the union of which carbonic acid gas and common salt were produced. This process was soon abandoned, however, on account of the propensity exhibited by the acid for eating holes in the fingers of the baker as well as in his bread pans; and a more convenient one for hands and pans, that of using soda or salaratus with cream of tartar or sour milk, was substituted. When there is an excess of soda, a portion of it remains in the loaf uncombined, giving to the bread a yellow color and an alkaline taste, and doing mischief to the delicate coating of the stomach. Alkalies, the class of chemicals to which soda and salaratus belong, when pure and strong, are powerful corrosive poisons. The acid used with the alkali to liberate the carbonic-acid gas in the process of bread-making, if rightly proportioned, destroys this poisonous property, and unites with it to form a new compound, which, although not a poison, is yet unwholesome.

We can hardly speak too strongly in condemnation of the use of chemicals in bread-making, when we reflect that the majority of housewives who combine sour milk and salaratus, or cream of tartar and soda, more frequently than otherwise guess at the proportions, or measure them by some "rule of thumb," without stopping to consider that although two cups of sour milk may at one time be sufficiently acid to neutralize a teaspoonful of saleratus, milk may vary in degree of acidity to such an extent that the same quantity will be quite insufficient for the purpose at another time; or that though a teaspoonful of some brand of cream of tartar will neutralize a half teaspoonful of one kind of soda, similar measures will not always bring about the same result. Very seldom, indeed, will the proportions be sufficiently exact to perfectly neutralise the alkali, since chemicals are subject to variations in degree of strength, both on account of the method by which they are manufactured and the length of time they have been kept, to say nothing of adulterations to which they may have been subjected, and which are so common that it is almost impossible to find unadulterated cream of tartar in the market.

Baking powders are essentially composed of bicarbonate of soda and cream of tartar, mixed in the proper proportions to exactly neutralize each other, and if they were always pure, would certainly be as good as soda and cream of tartar in any form, and possess the added advantage of perfect proportions; but as was demonstrated not long ago by the government chemist, nearly every variety of baking powder in the market is largely adulterated with cheaper and harmful substances. Alum, a most frequent constituent of such baking powders, is exceedingly injurious to the stomach. Out of several hundred brands of baking powder examined, only one was found pure.

Even when in their purest state, these chemicals are not harmless, as is so generally believed. It is a very prevalent idea that when soda is neutralized by an acid, both chemical compounds are in some way destroyed or vaporized in the process, and in some occult manner escape from the bread during the process of baking. This is altogether an error. The alkali and acid neutralize each other chemically, but they do not destroy each other. Their union forms a salt, exactly the same as the Rochelle salts of medicine, a mild purgative, and if we could collected from the bread and weigh or measure it, we would find nearly as much of it as there was of the baking powder in the first place. If two teaspoonfuls of baking powder to the quart of flour be used, we have remaining in the bread made with that amount of flour 165 grains of crystallized Rochelle salts, or 45 grains more than this to be found in a Seidlitz powder. It may be sometimes useful to take a dose of salts, but the daily consumption of such chemical substances in bread can hardly be considered compatible with the conditions necessary for the maintenance of health. These chemical substances are unusable by the system, and must all be removed by the liver and excretory organs, thus imposing upon them an extra and unnecessary burden. It has also been determined by scientific experimentation that the chemicals found in baking powders in bread retard digestion.

Gem Irons
Gem Irons.

These substances are, fortunately, not needed for the production of good light bread. The purpose of their use is the production of a gas; but air is a gas much more economical and abundant than carbonic-acid gas, and which, when introduced into bread and subjected to heat, has the property of expanding, and in doing, puffing up the bread and making it light. Bread made light with air is vastly superior to that compounded with soda or baking powder, in point of healthfulness, and when well prepared, will equal it in lightness and palatableness. The only difficulty lies in catching and holding the air until it has accomplished the desired results. But a thorough understanding of the necessary conditions and a little practice will soon enable one to attain sufficient skill in this direction to secure most satisfactory results.

Perforated Sheet Iron Pan for Rolls.
Perforated Sheet Iron Pan for Rolls.

General Directions.—All materials used for making aërated bread should be of the very best quality. Poor flour will not produce good bread by this or by any other process. Aërated breads are of two kinds: those baked while in the form of a batter, and such as are made into a dough before baking.

All breads, whether fermented or unfermented, are lighter if baked in some small form, and this is particularly true of unfermented breads made light with air. For this reason, breads made into a dough are best baked in the form of rolls, biscuits, or crackers, and batter breads in small iron cups similar to those in the accompanying illustration. These cups or "gem irons" as they are sometimes called, are to be obtained in various shapes and sizes, but for this purpose the more shallow cups are preferable. For baking the dough breads a perforated sheet of Russia iron or heavy tin, which any tinner can make to fit the oven, is the most serviceable, as it permits the hot air free access to all sides of the bread at once. If such is not obtainable, the upper oven grate, carefully washed and scoured, may be used Perforated pie tins also answer very well for this purpose.

The heat of the oven for baking should be sufficient to form a slight crust over all sides of the bread before the air escapes, but not sufficient to brown it within the first fifteen minutes. To aid in forming the crust on the sides and bottom of batter breads, the iron cups should be heated previous to introducing the batter. The degree of heat required for baking will be about the same as for fermented rolls and biscuit, and the fire should be so arranged as to keep a steady but not greatly increasing heat.

Making Unfermented Bread.

Making Unfermented Bread.

Air is incorporated into batter breads by brisk and continuous agitating and beating; into dough breads by thorough kneading, chopping, or pounding.

Whatever the process by which the air is incorporated, it must be continuous. For this reason it is especially essential in making aërated bread that every thing be in readiness before commencing to put the bread together. All the materials should be measured out, the utensils to be used in readiness, and the oven properly heated. Success is also dependent upon the dexterity with which the materials when ready are put together. Batter bread often proves a failure although the beating is kept up without cessation, because it is done slowly and carelessly, or interspersed with stirring, thus permitting the air to escape between the strokes.

If the bread is to be baked at once, the greater the dispatch with which it can be gotten into a properly-heated oven the lighter it will be. Crackers, rolls and other forms of dough breads often lack in lightness because they were allowed to stand some time before baking. The same is true of batter breads. If, for any reason, it is necessary to keep such breads for any length of time after being prepared, before baking, set the dish containing them directly on ice.

The lightness of aërated bread depends not only upon the amount of air incorporated in its preparation, but also upon the expansion of the air during the baking. The colder the air, the greater will be its expansion upon the application of heat. The colder the materials employed, then, for the bread-making, the colder will be the air confined within it, and the lighter will be the bread. For this reason, in making batter bread, it will be found a good plan, when there is time, to put the materials together, and place the dish containing the mixture on ice for an hour or two, or even over night. When ready to use, beat thoroughly for ten or fifteen minutes to incorporate air, and bake in heated irons. Rolls and other breads made into a dough, may be kneaded and shaped and put upon ice to become cold. Thus treated, less kneading is necessary than when prepared to be baked at once.

Many of the recipes given for the batter breads include eggs. The yolk is not particularly essential, and if it can be put to other uses, may be left out. The white of an egg, because of its viscous nature, when beaten, serves as a sort of trap to catch and hold air, and added to the bread, aids in making it light. Very nice light bread may be made without eggs, but the novice in making aërated breads will, perhaps, find it an advantage first to become perfectly familiar with the processes and conditions involved, by using the recipes with eggs before attempting those without, which are somewhat more dependent for success upon skill and practice.

When egg is used in the bread, less heating of the irons will be necessary, and not so hot an oven as when made without.

If the bread, when baked, appears light, but with large holes in the center, it is probable that either the irons or the oven was too hot at first. If the bread after baking, seems sticky or dough-like in the interior, it is an indication that either it was insufficiently baked, or that not enough flour in proportion to the liquid has been used. It should be stated, that although the recipes given have been prepared with the greatest care, and with the same brands of flour, careful measurement, and proper conditions, prove successful every time, yet with different brands of flour some variation in quantity may needed,—a trifle more or less,—dependent upon the absorbent properties of the flour, and if eggs are used, upon the size of the eggs.

A heavy bread may be the result of the use of poor flour, too much flour, careless or insufficient beating, so that not enough air was incorporated, or an oven not sufficiently hot to form a crust over the bread before the air escaped. Breads made into a dough, if moist and clammy, require more flour or longer baking. Too much flour will make them stiff and hard.

The length of time requisite for baking aërated breads made with whole-wheat, wheat berry, or Graham flours, will vary from forty minutes to one hour, according to the kind and form in which the bread is baked, and the heat of the oven.

The irons in which batter breads are to be baked should not be smeared with grease; if necessary to oil them at all, they should only be wiped out lightly with a clean, oiled cloth. Irons well cared for, carefully washed, and occasionally scoured with Sapolio to keep them perfectly smooth, will require no greasing whatever.

In filling the irons, care should be taken to fill each cup at first as full as it is intended to have; it, as the heat of the irons begins the cooking of the batter as soon as it is put in, and an additional quantity added has a tendency to make the bread less light.


Whole-Wheat Puffs.—Put the yolk of an egg into a basin, and beat the white in a separate dish to a stiff froth. Add to the yolk, one half a cupful of rather thin sweet cream and one cupful of skim milk. Beat the egg, cream, and milk together until perfectly mingled and foamy with air bubbles; then add, gradually, beating well at the same time, one pint of wheat berry flour. Continue the beating vigorously and without interruption for eight or ten minutes; then stir in, lightly, the white of the egg. Do not beat again after the white of the egg is added, but turn at once into heated, shallow irons, and bake for an hour in a moderately quick oven. If properly made and carefully baked, these puffs will be of a fine, even texture throughout, and as light as bread raised by fermentation.

Whole-Wheat Puffs No. 2.—Make a batter by beating together until perfectly smooth the yolk of one egg, one and one half cups of new or unskimmed milk, and one pint of whole-wheat flour. Place the dish containing it directly upon ice, and leave for an hour or longer. The bread may be prepared and left on the ice over night, if desired for breakfast. When ready to bake the puffs, whip the white of the egg to a stiff froth, and after vigorously beating the batter for ten minutes, stir in lightly the white of the egg; turn at once into heated irons, and bake. If preferred, one third white flour and two thirds sifted Graham flour may be used in the place of the wheat berry flour.

Whole-Wheat Puffs No. 3.—Take one cupful of sweet cream (twelve-hour cream), one half cupful of soft ice water, and two slightly rounded cupfuls of wheat berry flour. Beat the material well together, and set the dish containing it on ice for an hour or more before using. When ready to bake, beat the mixture vigorously for ten minutes, then turn into heated iron cups (shallow ones are best), and bake for about an hour in a quick oven.

Graham Puffs.—Beat together vigorously until full of air bubbles, one pint of unskimmed milk, the yolk of one egg, and one pint and three or four tablespoonfuls of Graham flour, added a little at a time. When the mixture is light and foamy throughout, stir in lightly and evenly the white of the egg, beaten to a stiff froth; turn into heated irons, and bake in a rather quick oven. Instead of all Graham, one third white flour may be used if preferred.

Graham Puffs No. 2.—Beat the yolks of two eggs in two cupfuls of ice water; then add gradually, beating well meantime, three and one fourth cupfuls of Graham flour. Continue the beating, after all the flour is added, until the mixture is light and full of air bubbles. Add last the whites of the eggs, beaten to a stiff froth, and bake at once in heated irons.

Currant Puffs.—Prepare the puffs as directed in any of the foregoing recipes with the addition of one cup of Zante currants which have been well washed, dried, and floured.

Graham Gems.—Into two cupfuls of unskimmed milk which has been made very cold by standing on ice, stir gradually, sprinkling it from the hand, three and one fourth cupfuls of Graham flour. Beat vigorously for ten minutes or longer, until the batter is perfectly smooth and full of air bubbles. Turn at once into hissing hot gem irons, and bake in a hot oven. If preferred, the batter may be prepared, and the dish containing it placed on ice for an hour or longer; then well beaten and baked. Graham gems may be made in this manner with soft water instead of milk, but such, in general, will need a little more flour than when made with milk. With some ovens, it will be found an advantage in baking these gems to place them on the upper grate for the first ten minutes or until the top has been slightly crusted, and then change to the bottom of the oven for the baking.

Crusts.—Beat together very thoroughly one cupful of ice-cold milk, and one cupful of Graham flour. When very light and full of air bubbles, turn into hot iron cups, and bake twenty-five or thirty minutes. The best irons for this purpose are the shallow oblong, or round cups of the same size at the bottom as at the top. Only a very little batter should be put in each cup. The quantity given is sufficient for one dozen crusts.

Rye Puffs.—Beat together the same as for whole-wheat puffs one cupful of milk, one tablespoonful of sugar, and the yolk of an egg. Add one cupful of good rye flour, mixed with one half cupful of Graham flour, and stir in lastly the well beaten white of the egg. Bake at once, in heated gem-irons.

Rye Puffs No. 2.—Beat together until well mingled one pint of thin cream and the yolk of one egg. Add gradually, beating meanwhile, four cups of rye flour. Continue to beat vigorously for ten minutes, then add the stiffly-beaten white of the egg, and bake in heated irons.

Rye Gems.—Mix together one cupful of corn meal and one cupful of rye meal. Stir the mixed meal into one and a half cupfuls of ice water. Beat the batter vigorously for ten or fifteen minutes, then turn into hot irons, and bake.

Blueberry Gems.—To one cupful of rich milk add one tablespoonful of sugar, and the yolk of an egg. Beat well till full of air bubbles; then add gradually one cupful of Graham flour, and one cupful of white flour, or white corn meal. Beat vigorously until light; stir in the beaten white of the egg, and one cupful of fresh, sound blueberries. Bake in heated irons, in a moderately quick oven. Chopped or sour apples may be used in place of the berries.

Hominy Gems.—Beat one egg until very light, add to it one tablespoonful of thick sweet cream, a little salt if desired, and two cupfuls of cooked hominy (fine). Thin the mixture with one cupful or less of boiling water until it will form easily, beat well, and bake in heated irons.

Sally Lunn Gems.—Beat together the yolk of one egg, two tablespoonfuls of sugar, and one cupful of thin, ice-cold, sweet cream. Add slowly, beating at the same time, one cup and two tablespoonfuls of sifted Graham flour. Beat vigorously, until full of air bubbles, add the white of the egg beaten stiffly, and bake in heated irons.

Corn Puffs.—Mingle the yolk of one egg with one cupful of rich milk. Add to the liquid one cupful of flour, one-half cupful of fine, yellow corn meal, and one-fourth cupful of sugar, all of which have previously been well mixed together. Place the batter on ice for an hour, or until very cold. Then beat it vigorously five or ten minutes, till full of air bubbles; stir in lightly the stiffly beaten white of the egg, and put at once into heated irons. Bake in a moderately quick oven, thirty or forty minutes.

Corn Puffs No. 2.—Scald two cupfuls of fine white corn meal with boiling water. When cold, add three tablespoonfuls of thin sweet cream, and the yolk of one egg. Beat well, and stir in lastly the white of the egg, beaten to a stiff froth. The batter should be sufficiently thin to drop easily from a spoon, but not thin enough to pour. Bake in heated irons, in a moderately quick oven.

Corn Puffs No. 3.—Take one cupful of cold mashed potato, and one cupful of milk, rubbed together through a colander to remove all lumps. Add the yolk of one well beaten, egg, and then stir in slowly, beating vigorously meantime, one cupful of good corn meal. Lastly, stir in the white of the egg beaten to a stiff froth, and bake in heated irons, in a rather quick oven.

Corn Puffs No. 4.—Beat together one and one-half cupfuls of unskimmed milk and the yolks of two eggs, until thoroughly blended. Add two cupfuls of flour, and one cupful best granular corn meal. Beat the batter thoroughly; stir in lightly the whites of the eggs, beaten to a stiff froth, turn into heated irons, and bake.

Corn Dodgers.—Scald one cupful of best granular corn meal, with which a tablespoonful of sugar has been sifted, with one cup of boiling milk. Beat until smooth, and drop on a griddle, in cakes about one inch in thickness, and bake slowly for an hour. Turn when brown.

Corn Dodgers No. 2.—Mix one tablespoonful of sugar with two cups best corn meal. Scald with one cup of boiling water. Add rich milk to make a batter thin enough to drop from a spoon. Lastly, add one egg, yolk and white beaten separately, and bake on a griddle in the oven from three fourth of an hour to one hour.

Cream Corn Cakes.—Into one cup of thin cream stir one and one half cups of granular corn meal, or enough to make a stiff batter; beat well, drop into heated irons, and bake.

Hoe Cakes.—Scald one pint of white corn meal, with which, if desired, a tablespoonful of sugar, and one half teaspoonful of salt have been mixed, with boiling milk, or water enough to make a batter sufficiently thick not to spread. Drop on a hot griddle, in large or small cakes, as preferred, about one half inch in thickness. Cook slowly, and when well browned on the under side, turn over. The cake may be cooked slowly, until well done throughout, or, as the portion underneath becomes well browned the first browned crust may be peeled off with a knife, and the cake again turned. As rapidly as a crust becomes formed and browned, one may be removed, and the cake turned, until the whole is all browned. The thin wafer-like crusts are excellent served with hot milk or cream.

Oatmeal Gems.—To one cupful of well-cooked oatmeal add one half cupful of rich milk or thin cream, and the yolk of one egg. Beat all together thoroughly; then add, continuing to beat, one and one third cupfuls of Graham flour, and lastly the stiffly beaten white of the egg. Bake in heated irons. If preferred, one cupful of white flour may be used in place of the Graham.

Snow Gems.—Beat together lightly but thoroughly two parts clean, freshly fallen, dry snow, and one part best granular corn meal. Turn into hot gem irons and bake quickly. The snow should not be packed in measuring, and the bread should be prepared before the snow melts.

Pop Overs.—For the preparation of these, one egg, one cupful of milk, and one scant cupful of white flour are required. Beat the egg, yolk and white separately. Add to the yolk, when well beaten, one half of the milk, and sift in the flour a little at a time, stirring until the whole is a perfectly smooth paste. Add the remainder of the milk gradually, beating well until the whole is an absolutely smooth, light batter about the thickness of cream. Stir in the stiffly beaten white of the egg, and bake in hot earthen cups or muffin rings, and to prevent them from sticking, sift flour into the rings after slightly oiling, afterward turning them upside down to shake off all of the loose flour.

Granola Gems.—Into three fourths of a cup of rich milk stir one cup of Granola (prepared by the Sanitarium Food Co.). Drop into heated irons, and bake for twenty or thirty minutes.

Bean Gems.—Prepare the gems in the same manner as for Whole-Wheat Puffs, using one half cup of milk, one egg, one cup of cooked beans which have been rubbed through a colander and salted, and one cup and one tablespoonful of white flour. A little variation in the quantity of the flour may be necessary, dependent upon the moisture contained in the beans, although care should be taken to have them quite dry.

Breakfast Rolls.—Sift a pint and a half of Graham flour into a bowl, and into it stir a cupful of very cold thin cream or unskimmed milk. Pour the liquid into the flour slowly, a few spoonfuls at a time, mixing each spoonful to a dough with the flour as fast as poured in. When all the liquid has been added, gather the fragments of dough together, knead thoroughly for ten minutes or longer, until perfectly smooth and elastic. The quantity of flour will vary somewhat with the quality, but in general, the quantity given will be quite sufficient for mixing the dough and dusting the board. When well kneaded, divide into two portions; roll each over and over with the hands, until a long roll about once inch in diameter is formed; cut this into two-inch lengths, prick with a fork and place on perforated tins, far enough apart so that one will not touch another when baking. Each roll should be as smooth and perfect as possible, and with no dry flour adhering. Bake at once, or let stand on ice for twenty minutes. The rolls should not be allowed to stand after forming, unless on ice. From thirty to forty minutes will be required for baking. When done, spread on the table to cool, but do not pile one on top of another.

Very nice rolls may be made in the same manner, using for the wetting ice-cold soft water. They requite a longer kneading, are more crisp, but less tender than those made with cream.

With some brands of Graham flour the rolls will be much lighter if one third white flour be used. Whole-wheat flour may be used in place of Graham, if preferred.

Sticks.—Prepare, and knead the dough the same as for rolls. When ready to form, roll the dough much smaller; scarcely larger than one's little finger, and cut into three or four-inch lengths. Bake the same as rolls, for about twenty minutes.

Cream Graham Rolls.—To one half cup cold cream add one half cup of soft ice water. Make into a dough with three cups of Graham flour, sprinkling in slowly with the hands, beating at the same time, so as to incorporate as much air as possible, until the dough is too stiff to be stirred; then knead thoroughly, form into rolls, and bake.

Corn Mush Rolls.—Make a dough of one cup of corn meal mush, one half cup of cream, and two and one half cups of white flour; knead thoroughly, shape into rolls, and bake.

Fruit Rolls.—Prepare the rolls as directed in the recipe for Breakfast Rolls, and when well kneaded, work into the dough a half cupful of Zante currants which have been well washed, dried, and floured. Form the rolls in the usual manner, and bake.

Cream Mush Rolls.—Into a cupful of cold Graham mush beat thoroughly three tablespoonfuls of thick, sweet cream. Add sufficient Graham flour to make a rather stiff dough, knead thoroughly, shape into roils, and bake. Corn meal, farina, and other mushes may be used in the place of the Graham mush, if preferred.

Beaten Biscuit.—Into a quart of whole-wheat flour mix a large cup of must be very stiff, and rendered soft and pliable by thorough kneading and afterward pounding with a mallet for at least half an hour in the following manner: Pound the dough oat flat, and until of the same thickness throughout; dredge lightly with flour; double the dough over evenly and pound quickly around the outside, to fasten the edges together and thus retain the air within the dough. When well worked, the dough will appear flaky and brittle, and pulling a piece off it quickly will cause a sharp, snapping sound. Mold into small biscuits, making an indenture in the center of each with the thumb, prick well with a fork, and place on perforated sheets, with a space between, and put at once into the oven. The oven should be of the same temperature as for rolls. If they are "sad" inside when cold, they were not well baked, as they should be light and tender. If preferred, use one third white flour, instead of all whole-wheat. Excellent results are also obtained by chopping instead of pounding the dough.

Cream Crisps.—Make a dough of one cupful of thin cream, and a little more than three cups of Graham flour. Knead until smooth, then divide the dough into several pieces, and place in a dish on ice for an hour, or until ice cold. Roll each piece separately and quickly as thin as brown paper. Cut with a knife into squares, prick with a fork, and bake on perforated tins, until lightly browned on both sides.

Cream Crisps No. 2.—Into two and one half cups of cold cream or rich milk, sprinkle slowly with the hands, beating meanwhile to incorporate air, four cups of best Graham flour, sifted with one half cup of granulated sugar. Add flour to knead; about two and one fourth cups will be required. When well kneaded, divide into several portions, roll each as thin as a knife blade, cut into squares, prick well with a fork, and bake.

Graham Crisps.—Into one half cupful of ice-cold soft water, stir slowly, so as to incorporate as much air as possible, enough Graham flour to make a dough stiff enough to knead. A tablespoonful of sugar may be added to the water before stirring in the flour, if desired. After kneading fifteen minutes, divide the dough into six portions; roll each as thin as brown paper, prick with a fork, and bake on perforated tins, turning often until both sides are a light, even brown. Break into irregular pieces and serve.

Oatmeal Crisps.—Make a dough with one cupful of oatmeal porridge and Graham flour. Knead thoroughly, roll very thin, and bake as directed for Graham Crisps. A tablespoonful of sugar may be added if desired.

Graham Crackers.—Make a dough of one cup of cream and Graham flour sufficient to make a soft dough. Knead thoroughly, and place on ice for half an hour; then roll thin, cut into small cakes with a cookie-cutter, prick with a fork, and bake on floured pans, in a brisk oven. A tablespoonful of sugar may be added if desired.

Fruit Crackers.—Prepare a dough with one cup of cold sweet cream and three cups of Graham flour, knead well, and divide into two portions. Roll each quite thin. Spread one thickly with dates or figs seeded and chopped; place the other one on top and press together with the rolling pin. Cut into squares and bake. An additional one fourth of a cup of flour will doubtless be needed for dusting the board and kneading.


Behind the nutty loaf is the mill wheel; behind the mill is the wheat field; on the wheat field rests the sunlight; above the sun is God.—James Russell Lowell.

Bread forms one of the most important parts of the ration of the German soldier. In time of peace, the private soldier is supplied day by day with one pound and nine ounces of bread; when fighting for the Fatherland, every man is entitled to a free ration of over two pounds of bread, and field bakery trains and steam ovens for providing the large amount of bread required, form a recognized part of the equipment of the German army.

The wandering Arab lives almost entirely upon bread, with a few dates as a relish.

According to Count Rumford, the Bavarian wood-chopper, one of the most hardy and hard-working men in the world, receives for his weekly rations one large loaf of rye bread and a small quantity of roasted meal. Of the meal he makes an infusion, to which he adds a little salt, and with the mixture, which he calls burned soup, he eats his rye bread. No beer, no beef, no other food than that mentioned, and no drink but water; and yet he can do more work and enjoys a better digestion and possesses stronger muscles than the average American or Englishman, with their varied dietary.

The following truthful bit of Scandinavian history well illustrates the influence of habits of frugality upon national character: "The Danes were approaching, and one of the Swedish bishops asked how many men the province of Dalarna could furnish.

"'At least twenty thousand,' was the reply; 'for the old men are just as strong and brave as the young ones.'

"'But what do they live upon?'

"'Upon bread and water. They take little account of hunger and thirst, and when corn is lacking, they make their bread out of tree bark.'

"'Nay,' said the bishop, 'a people who eat tree bark and drink water, the devil himself could not vanquish!' and neither were they vanquished. Their progress was one series of triumphs, till they placed Gustavus Vasa on the throne of Sweden."

The word biscuit embodies the process by which this form of bread was made from time immemorial down to within the last century. Bis (twice), and coctus (cooked), show that they were twice baked.

Fragments of unfermented bread were discovered in the Swiss lake-dwellings, which belong to the Neolithic age.

Fermented bread is seldom seen in Northern Europe and Asia except among the rich or the nobility. At one time, the captain of an English vessel requested a baker of Gottenburg to bake a large quantity of loaves of raised bread. The baker refused to undertake an order of such magnitude, saying it would be quite impossible to dispose of so much, until the captain agreed to take and pay for it all.

I made a study of the ancient and indispensable art of bread-making, consulting such authorities as offered, going back to the primitive days and first invention of the unleavened kind, and traveling gradually down in my studies through that accidental souring of the dough which it is supposed taught the leavening process, and through the various fermentations thereafter till I came to "good, sweet, wholesome bread,"—the staff of life. Leaven, which some deemed the soul of bread, the spiritus which fills its cellular tissues, which is religiously preserved like the vestal fire,—some precious bottleful, I suppose, brought over in the Mayflower, did the business for America, and its influence is still rising, swelling, spreading in cerulean billows over the land,—this seed I regularly and faithfully procured from the village, until one morning I forgot the rules and scalded my yeast; by which accident I discovered that even this was not indispensable, and I have gladly omitted it ever since. Neither did I put any soda or other acid or alkali into my bread. It would seem that I made it according to the recipe which Marcus Porcius Cato gave about two centuries before Christ: "Make kneaded bread thus: Wash your hands and trough well. Put the meal into the trough, add water gradually, and knead it thoroughly. When you have needed it well, mold it, and bake it under a cover," that is in a baking kettle.—Thoreau in Walden.



O f all the articles which enter the list of foods, none are more wholesome and pleasing than the fruits which nature so abundantly provides. Their delicate hues and perfect outlines appeal to our sense of beauty, while their delicious flavors gratify our appetite. Our markets are supplied with an almost unlimited variety of both native and tropical fruits, and it might be supposed that they would always appear upon the daily bill of fare; yet in the majority of homes this is rarely the case. People are inclined to consider fruit, unless the product of their own gardens, a luxury too expensive for common use. Many who use a plentiful supply, never think of placing it upon their tables, unless cooked. Ripe fruit is a most healthful article of diet when partaken of at seasonable times; but to eat it, or any other food, between meals, is a gross breach of the requirements of good digestion.

Fruits contain from seventy-five to ninety-five per cent of water, and a meager proportion of nitrogenous matter; hence their value as nutrients, except in a few instances, is rather small; but they supply a variety of agreeable acids which refresh and give tone to the system, and their abundant and proper use does much to keep the vital machinery in good working order.

Aside from the skin and seeds, all fruits consist essentially of two parts,—the cellulose structure containing the juice, and the juice itself. The latter is water, with a small proportion of fruit sugar (from one to twenty per cent in different varieties), and vegetable acids. These acids are either free, or combined with potash and lime in the form of acid salts. They are mallic, citric, tartaric, and pectic acids. The last-named is the jelly-producing principle.

While the juice, as we commonly find it, is readily transformable for use in the system, the cellular structure of the fruit is not so easily digested. In some fruits, as the strawberry, grape, and banana, the cell walls are so delicate as to be easily broken up; but in watermelons, apples, and oranges, the cells are coarser, and form a larger bulk of the fruit, hence are less easily digested. As a rule, other points being equal, the fruits which yield the richest and largest quantity of juices, and also possess a cellular framework the least perceptible on mastication, are the most readily digested. A certain amount of waste matter is an advantage, to give bulk to our food; but persons with weak stomachs, who cannot eat certain kinds of fruit, are often able to digest the juice when taken alone.

Unripe fruits differ from ripe fruits in that they contain, starch, which during ripening is changed into sugar, and generally some proportion of tannic acid, which gives them their astringency. The characteristic constituent of unripe fruit, however, is pectose, an element insoluble in water, but which, as maturation proceeds, is transformed into pectic and pectosic acids. These are soluble in boiling water, and upon cooling, yield gelatinous solutions. Their presence makes it possible to convert the juice of ripe fruits into jelly. Raw starch in any form is indigestible, hence unripe fruit should never be eaten uncooked. As fruit matures, the changes it undergoes are such as best fit for consumption and digestion. The following table shows the composition of the fruits in common use:—


Water.Albumen.Sugar.Free Acid.Pectose.Cellulose.Mineral Matter.
Oranges86.0[A]8 to 10XXXX
Bananas73.94.819.7[B](Fat.) 0.6X0.20.8
Turkey Figs17.56.157.5(Fat.) 0.98.4[C]7.32.3

[Table Note A: Small quantities of albumen, citric acid, citrate of potash, cellulose, etc.]

[Table Note B: Sugar and pectose.]

[Table Note C: Starch, pectose, etc.]

There is a prevailing notion that the free use of fruits, especially in summer, excites derangement of the digestive organs. When such derangement occurs, it is far more likely to have been occasioned by the way in which the fruit was eaten than by the fruit itself. Perhaps it was taken as a surfeit dish at the end of a meal. It may have been eaten in combination with rich, oily foods, pastry, strong coffee, and other indigestible viands, which, in themselves, often excite an attack of indigestion. Possibly it was partaken of between meals, or late at night, with ice cream and other confections, or it was swallowed without sufficient mastication. Certainly, it is not marvelous that stomach and bowel disorders do result under such circumstances. The innocent fruit, like many other good things, being found in "bad company," is blamed accordingly. An excess of any food at meals or between meals, is likely to prove injurious, and fruits present no exception to this rule. Fruit taken at seasonable times and in suitable quantities, alone or in combination with proper foods, gives us one of the most agreeable and healthful articles of diet. Fruit, fats, and meats do not affiliate, and they are liable to create a disturbance whenever taken together.

Partially decayed, stale, and over-ripe, as well as unripe fruit, should never be eaten. According to M. Pasteur, the French scientist, all fruits and vegetables, when undergoing even incipient decay, contain numerous germs, which, introduced into the system, are liable to produce disturbances or disease. Perfectly fresh, ripe fruit, with proper limitations as to quantity and occasion, may be taken into a normal stomach with impunity at any season.

It is especially important that all fruits to be eaten should not only be sound in quality, but should be made perfectly clean by washing if necessary, since fruit grown near the ground is liable to be covered with dangerous bacteria (such as cause typhoid fever or diphtheria), which exist in the soil or in the material used in fertilizing it.

Most fruits, properly used, aid digestion either directly or indirectly. The juicy ones act as dilutents, and their free use lessens the desire for alcohol and other stimulants. According to German analysts, the apple contains a larger percentage of phosphorus than any other fruit, or than any vegetable. In warm weather and in warm climates, when foods are not needed for a heat-producing purpose, the diet may well consist largely of fruits and succulent vegetables, eaten in combination with bread and grains. In case of liver and kidney affections, rheumatism, and gout, the use of fruit is considered very beneficial by many scientific authorities.

To serve its best purpose, raw fruit should be eaten without sugar or other condiments, or with the addition of as small a quantity as possible.

It is a disputed question whether fruits should begin or end the meal; but it is generally conceded by those who have given the matter attention, that fruit eaten at the beginning of a meal is itself the more readily digested, and aids in the digestion of other foods, since fruits, like soups, have the property of stimulating the flow of the digestive juices. Something, however, must depend upon the character of the fruit; oranges, melons, and like juicy fruits, are especially useful as appetizers to begin the meal, while bananas and similar fruits agree better if taken with other food, so as to secure thorough mixture with saliva. This is true of all fruits, except such pulpy fruits as strawberries, peaches, melons, grapes, and oranges. It is often erroneously asserted that fruit as dessert is injurious to digestion. For those people, however, who regulate their bill of fare in accordance with the principles of hygiene, a simple course of fruit is not only wholesome, but is all that is needed after a dinner; and much time, labor, and health will be saved when housekeepers are content to serve desserts which nature supplies all ready for use, instead of those harmful combinations in the preparing of which they spend hours of tiresome toil.

Description.—For convenience, fruits may be grouped together; as, pomaceous fruits, including the apple, quince, pear, etc.; the drupaceous fruits, those provided with a hard stone surrounded by a fleshy pulp, as the peach, apricot, plum, cherry, olive, and date; the orange or citron group, including the orange, lemon, lime, citron, grape fruit, shaddock, and pomegranate; the baccate or berry kind, comprising the grape, gooseberry, currant, cranberry, whortleberry, blueberry, and others; the arterio group, to which belong raspberries, strawberries, dewberries, and blackberries; the fig group; the gourd group, including—melons and cantaloupes; and foreign fruits.

It is impossible, in the brief scope of this work, to enumerate the infinite varieties of fruit; but we will briefly speak of some of the most common found in the gardens and markets of this latitude.

Apples.—The origin and first home of the apple, is unknown. If tradition is to be believed, it was the inauspicious fruit to which may be traced all the miseries of mankind. In pictures of the temptation in the garden of Eden, our mother Eve is generally represented as holding an apple in her hand.

We find the apple mentioned in the mythologies of the Greeks, Druids, and Scandinavians. The Thebans offered apples instead of sheep as a sacrifice to Hercules, a custom derived from the following circumstance:—

"At one time, when a sacrifice was necessary, the river Asopus had so inundated the country that it was impossible to take a sheep across it for the purpose, when some youths, recollecting that the Greek word melon signified both sheep and an apple, stuck wooden pegs into the fruit to represent legs, and brought this vegetable quadruped as a substitute for the usual offering. After this date, the apple was considered as especially devoted to Hercules."

In ancient times, Greece produced most excellent apples. They were the favorite dessert of Phillip of Macedon and Alexander the Great, the latter causing them to be served at all meals. Doubtless they came to be used to excess; for it is recorded of the Athenian lawgiver, Solon, that he made a decree prohibiting a bridegroom from partaking of more than one at his marriage banquet, a law which was zealously kept by the Greeks, and finally adopted by the Persians. In Homer's time the apple was regarded as one of the precious fruits. It was extensively cultivated by the Romans, who gave to new varieties the names of many eminent citizens, and after the conquest of Gaul, introduced its culture into Southwestern Europe, whence it has come to be widely diffused throughout all parts of the temperate zone.

Apples were introduced into the United States by the early settlers, and the first trees were planted on an island in Boston Harbor, which still retains the name of Apple Island. The wild crab tree is the parent of most of the cultivated varieties.

The Pear.—The origin of the pear, like that of the apple, is shrouded in obscurity, though Egypt, Greece, and Palestine dispute for the honor of having given birth to the tree which bears this prince of fruits. Theophrastus, a Greek philosopher of the fourth century, speaks of the pear in terms of highest praise; and Galen, the father of medical science, mentions the pear in his writings as possessing "qualities which benefit the stomach." The pear tree is one of the most hardy of all fruit trees, and has been known to live several hundred years.

The Quince.—This fruit appears to have been a native of Crete, from whence it was introduced into ancient Greece; and was largely cultivated by both Greeks and Romans. In Persia, the fruit is edible in its raw state; but in this country it never ripens sufficiently to be palatable without being cooked. The fruit is highly fragrant and exceedingly acid, and for these reasons it is largely employed to flavor other fruits.

The Peach.—This fruit, as its botanical name, prinus Persica, indicates, is a native of Persia, and was brought from that country to Greece, from whence it passed into Italy. It is frequently mentioned by ancient writers, and was regarded with much esteem by the people of Asia. The Romans, however, had the singular notion that peaches gathered in Persia contained a deadly poison, but if once transplanted to another soil, this injurious effect was lost. In composition, the peach is notable for the small quantity of saccharine matter it contains in comparison with other fruits.

The Plum.—The plum is one of the earliest of known fruits. Thebes, Memphis, and Damascus were noted for the great number of their plum trees in the early centuries. Plum trees grow wild in Asia, America, and the South of Europe, and from these a large variety of domestic plum fruits have been cultivated.

Plums are more liable than most other fruits to produce disorders of digestion, and when eaten raw should be carefully selected, that they be neither unripe nor unripe. Cooking renders them less objectionable.

The Prune.—The plum when dried is often called by its French cognomen, prune. The larger and sweeter varieties are generally selected for drying, and when good and properly cooked, are the most wholesome of prepared fruits.

The Apricot.—This fruit seems to be intermediate between the peach and the plum, resembling the former externally, while the stone is like that of the plum. The apricot originated in Armenia, and the tree which bears the fruit was termed by the Romans "the tree of Armenia." It was introduced into England in the time of Henry VIII. The apricot is cultivated to some extent in the United States, but it requires too much care to permit of its being largely grown, except in certain sections.

The Cherry.—The common garden cherry is supposed to have been derived from the two species of wild fruit, and historians tell us that we are indebted to the agricultural experiments of Mithridates, the great king of ancient Pontus, for this much esteemed fruit. It is a native of Asia Minor, and its birthplace.

The Olive.—From time immemorial the olive has been associated with history. The Scriptures make frequent reference to it, and its cultivation was considered of first importance among the Jews, who used its oil for culinary and a great variety of other purposes. Ancient mythology venerated the olive tree above all others, and invested it with many charming bits of fiction. Grecian poets sang its praises, and early Roman writers speak of it with high esteem. In appearance and size the fruit is much like the plum; when ripe, it is very dark green, almost black, and possesses a strong, and, to many people, disagreeable flavor. The pulp abounds in a bland oil, for the production of which it is extensively cultivated in Syria, Egypt, Italy, Spain, and Southern France. The fruit itself is also pickled and preserved in various ways, but, like all other similar commodities when thus prepared, it is by no means a wholesome article of food.

The Date.—The date is the fruit of the palm tree so often mentioned in the Sacred Writings, and is indigenous to Africa and portions of Asia. The fruit grows in bunches which often weigh from twenty to twenty-five pounds, and a single tree will bear from one to three thousand pounds in a season. The date is very sweet and nutritious. It forms a stable article of diet for the inhabitants of some parts of Egypt, Arabia, and Persia, and frequently forms the chief food of their horses, dogs, and camels. The Arabs reduce dried dates to a meal, and make therefrom a bread, which often constitutes their sole food on long journeys through the Great Desert. The inhabitants of the countries where the date tree flourishes, put its various productions to innumerable uses. From its leaves they make baskets, bags, mats, combs, and brushes; from its stalks, fences for their gardens; from its fibers, thread, rope, and rigging; from its sap, a spirituous liquor; from its fruit, food for man and beast; while the body of the tree furnishes them with fuel. The prepared fruit is largely imported to this country. That which is large, smooth, and of a soft reddish yellow tinge, with a whitish membrane between the flesh and stone, is considered the best.

The Orange.—According to some authors, the far-famed "golden fruit of the Hesperides," which Hercules stole, was the orange; but it seems highly improbable that it was known to writers of antiquity. It is supposed to be indigenous to Central and Eastern Asia. Whatever its nativity, it has now spread over all the warmer regions of the earth. The orange tree is very hardy in its own habitat, and is one of the most prolific of all fruit-bearing trees, a single tree having been known to produce twenty thousand good oranges in a season. Orange trees attain great age. There are those in Italy and Spain which are known to have flourished for six hundred years. Numerous varieties of the orange are grown, and are imported to our markets from every part of the globe. Florida oranges are among the best, and when obtained in their perfection, are the most luscious of all fruits.

The Lemon.—This fruit is supposed to be a native of the North of India, although it is grown in nearly all sub-tropical climates. In general, the fruit is very acid, but in a variety known as the sweet lemon, or bergamot (said to be a hybrid of the orange and lemon), the juice is sweet. The sour lemon is highly valued for its antiscorbutic properties, and is largely employed as a flavoring ingredient in culinary preparations, and in making a popular refreshing beverage.

The Citron.—The citron is a fruit very similar to the lemon, though larger in size and less succulent. It is supposed to be identical with the Hebrew tappuach, and to be the fruit which is mentioned in the English version of the Old Testament as "apple." The citron is not suitable for eating in its raw state, though its juice is used in connection with water and sugar to form an excellent acid drink. Its rind, which is very thick, with a warty and furrowed exterior, is prepared in sugar and largely used for flavoring purposes.

The Lime.—The fruit of the lime is similar to the lemon, though much smaller in size. It is a native of Eastern Asia, but has long been cultivated in the South of Europe and other sub-tropical countries. The fruit is seldom used except for making acidulous drinks, for which it is often given the preference over the lemon.

The Grape Fruit.—This fruit, a variety of shaddock, belongs to the great citrus family, of which there are one hundred and sixty-nine known varieties. The shaddock proper, however, is a much larger fruit, frequently weighing from ten to fourteen pounds. Although a certain quantity of grape fruit is brought from the West Indies, our principal supply is derived from Florida. It is from two to four times the size of an ordinary orange, and grows in clusters. It is rapidly gaining in favor with fruit lovers. Its juice has a moderately acid taste and makes a pleasing beverage. The pulp, carefully separated, is also much esteemed.

The Pomegranate.—This fruit has been cultivated in Asia from earliest antiquity, and is still quite generally grown in most tropical climes. In the Scriptures it is mentioned with the vine, fig, and olive, among the pleasant fruits of the promised land. It is about the size of a large peach, of a fine golden color, with a rosy tinge on one side. The rind is thick and leathery. The central portion is composed of little globules of pulp and seeds inclosed in a thin membrane, each seed being about the size of a red currant. It is sub-acid, and slightly bitter in taste. The rind is strongly astringent, and often used as a medicine.

The Grape.—Undoubtedly the grape was one of the first fruits eaten by mankind, and one highly valued from antiquity down to the present time. Although this fruit is often sadly perverted in the manufacture of wine, when rightly used it is one of the most excellent of all fruits. The skins and seeds are indigestible and should be rejected, but the fresh, juicy pulp is particularly wholesome and refreshing. Several hundred varieties of the grape are cultivated. Some particularly sweet varieties are made into raisins, by exposure to the sun or to artificial heat. Sun-dried grapes make the best raisins. The so-called English or Zante currant belongs to the grape family, and is the dried fruit of a vine which grows in the Ionian Islands and yields a very small berry. The name currant, as applied to these fruits, is a corruption of the word Corinth, where the fruit was formerly grown.

The Gooseberry.—The gooseberry probably derives its name from gorse or goss, a prickly shrub that grows wild in thickets and on hillsides in Europe, Asia, and America. It was known to the ancients, and is mentioned in the writings of Theocritus and Pliny. Gooseberries were a favorite dish with some of the emperors, and were extensively cultivated in gardens during the Middle Ages. The gooseberry is a wholesome and agreeable fruit, and by cultivation may be brought to a high state of perfection in size and flavor.

The Currant.—This fruit derives its name from its resemblance to the small grapes of Corinth, sometimes called Corinthus, and is indigenous to America, Asia, and Europe. The fruit is sharply acid, though very pleasant to the taste. Cultivation has produced white currants from the red, and in a distinct species of the fruit grown in Northern Europe and Russia, the currants are black or yellow.

The Whortleberry and Blueberry.—These are both species of the same fruit, which grows in woods and waste places in the North of Europe and America. Of the latter species there are two varieties, the high-bush and the low-bush, which are equally palatable. The fruit is very sweet and pleasant to the taste, and is one of the most wholesome of all berries.

The Cranberry.—A German writer of note insists that the original name of this fruit was cram-berry, because after dinner, when one was filled with other food, such was its pleasant and seductive flavor that he could still "cram" quite a quantity thereof, in defiance of all dietetic laws. Other writers consider the name a corruption of craneberry, so called because it is eagerly sought after by the cranes and other birds which frequent the swamps and marshes where it chiefly grows. The fruit is extremely acid, and is highly valued for sauces and jellies. Cranberries are among the most convenient fruits for keeping. Freezing does not seem to hurt them, and they may be kept frozen all winter, or in water without freezing, in the cellar, or other cool places, for a long period.

The Strawberry.—The flavor of antiquity rests upon the wild strawberry. Its fruit was peddled by itinerant dealers about the streets of ancient Grecian and Roman cities. Virgil sings of it in pastoral poems, and Ovid mentions it in words of praise. The name by which the fruit was known to the Greeks indicates its size; with the Latins its name was symbolic of its perfume. The name strawberry probably came from the old Saxon streawberige, either from some resemblance of the stems to straw, of from the fact that the berries have the appearance when growing of being strewn upon the ground. In olden times, children strung the berries upon straws, and sold so many "straws of berries" for a penny, from which fact it is possible the name may have been derived. The strawberry is indigenous to the temperate regions of both the Eastern and Western Hemispheres, but it seems to have been matured in gardens, only within the last two centuries.

The Raspberry.—This fruit grows in both a wild and a cultivated state. It derives its name from the rough rasps or spines with which the bushes are covered. Among the ancients it was called "the bramble of Mt. Ida," because it was abundant upon that mountain. It is a hardy fruit, found in most parts of the world, and is of two special varieties, the black and the red.

The Blackberry.—This fruit is a native of America and the greater part of Europe. There are one hundred and fifty-one named species, although the high-blackberry and the low-blackberry, or dewberry, are said to have furnished the best cultivated varieties.

The Mulberry.—Different varieties of the mulberry tree produce white, red, and black mulberries of fine aromatic flavor, and acidulous or sweet taste. Persia is supposed to be the native home of this fruit, from whence it was carried, at an early date, to Asia Minor and to Greece. The Hebrews were evidently well acquainted with it. It was also cultivated by the farmers of Attica and Peloponnesus. The ancient mulberry was considered the wisest and most prudent of trees, because it took care not to put forth the smallest bud until the cold of winter had disappeared, not to return. Then, however, it lost no time, but budded and blossomed in a day. Several varieties are found in the United States.

The Melon.—This is the generic name for all the members of the gourd tribe known as cantaloupes, muskmelons, and watermelons. The fruit varies greatly in size and color, and in the character of the rind. When fresh and perfectly ripe, melons are among the most delicious of edible fruits.

The Fig.—In the most ancient histories, the fig tree is referred to as among the most desirable productions of the earth. It was the only tree in the garden of Eden of which the Sacred Writings make particular mention. Among the inhabitants of ancient Syria and Greece, it formed one of the principal articles of food. Its cultivation was, and is still, extensively carried on in nearly all Eastern countries; also in Spain, Southern France, and some portions of the United States. The fruit is pear-shaped, and consists of a pulpy mass full of little seeds. Dried and compressed figs are largely imported, and are to be found in all markets. Those brought from Smyrna are reputed to be the best.

The Banana.—This is essentially a tropical fruit growing very generally in the East, the West Indies, South American countries, and some of the Southern States. The plant is an annual, sending up stems to the height of ten or fifteen feet, while drooping from the top are enormous leaves three or four feet in length, and looking, as one writer has aptly said, like "great, green quill pens." It is planted in fields like corn, which in its young growth it much resembles. Each plant produces a single cluster of from eighty to one hundred or more bananas, often weighing in the aggregate as high as seventy pounds. The banana is exceedingly productive. According to Humboldt, a space of 1,000 feet, which will yield only 38 pounds of wheat, or 462 pounds of potatoes, will produce 4,000 pounds of bananas, and in a much shorter period of time. It is more nutritious than the majority of fruits, and in tropical countries is highly valued as a food, affording in some localities the chief alimentary support of the people. Its great importance as a food product is shown by the fact that three or four good sized bananas are equal in nutritive value to a pound of bread. The amount of albumen contained in a pound of bananas is about the same as that found in a pound of rice, and the total nutritive value of one pound of bananas is only a trifle less than that of an equal quantity of the best beefsteak.

The unripe fruit, which contains a considerable percentage of starch, is often dried in the oven and eaten as bread, which, in this state, it considerably resembles in taste and appearance. Thus prepared, it may be kept for a long time, and is very serviceable for use on long journeys. The variety of the banana thus used is, however, a much larger kind than any of those ordinarily found in our Northern markets, and is known as the plantain. The dried plantain, powdered, furnishes a meal of fragrant odor and bland taste, not unlike common wheat flour. It is said to be easy of digestion, and two pounds of the dry meal or six pounds of the fruit is the daily allowance for a laborer in tropical America.

The Pineapple.—This delicious fruit is a native of South America, where it grows wild in the forests. It is cultivated largely in tropical America, the West Indies, and some portions of Europe. The fruit grows singly from the center of a small plant having fifteen or more long, narrow, serrated, ridged, sharp-pointed leaves, seemingly growing from the root. In general appearance it resembles the century plant, though so much smaller that twelve thousand pineapple plants may be grown on one acre. From the fibers of the leaves is made a costly and valuable fabric called pina muslin.

Nothing can surpass the rich, delicate flavor of the wild pineapple as found in its native habitat. It is in every way quite equal to the best cultivated variety. The most excellent pineapples are imported from the West Indies, but are seldom found in perfection in out Northern markets.


All fruit for serving should be perfectly ripe and sound. Immature fruit is never wholesome, and owing to the large percentage of water in its composition, fruit is very prone to change; hence over-ripe fruit should not be eaten, as it is liable to ferment and decompose in the digestive tract.

Fruit which has begun, however slightly, to decay, should be rejected. Juice circulates through its tissues in much the same manner as the blood circulates through animal tissues, though not so rapidly and freely. The circulation is sufficient, however, to convey to all parts the products of decomposition, when only a small portion has undergone decay, and although serious results do not always follow the use of such fruit, it certainly is not first-class food.

If intended to be eaten raw, fruit should be well ripened before gathering, and should be perfectly fresh. Fruit that has stood day after day in a dish upon the table, in a warm room, is far less wholesome and tempting than that brought fresh from the storeroom or cellar. All fruits should be thoroughly cleansed before serving. Such fruit as cherries, grapes, and currants may be best washed by placing in a colander, and dipping in and out of a pan of water until perfectly clean, draining and drying before serving.


Apples.—In serving these, the "queen of all fruits," much opportunity is afforded for a display of taste in their arrangement. After wiping clean with a damp towel, they may be piled in a fruit basket, with a few sprigs of green leaves here and there between their rosy cheeks. The feathery tops of carrots and celery are pretty for this purpose. Oranges and apples so arranged, make a highly ornamental dish.

Raw mellow sweet apples make a delicious dish when pared, sliced, and served with cream.

Bananas.—Cut the ends from the fruit and serve whole, piled in a basket with oranges, grapes, or plums. Another way is to peel, slice, and serve with thin cream. Bananas are also very nice sliced, sprinkled lightly with sugar, and before it had quite dissolved, covered with orange juice. Sliced bananas, lightly sprinkled with sugar, alternating in layers with sections of oranges, make a most delicious dessert.

Cherries.—Serve on stems, piled in a basket or high dish, with bits of green leaves and vines between. Rows of different colored cherries, arranged in pyramidal form, make also a handsome dish.

Currants.—Large whole clusters may be served on the stem, and when it is possible to obtain both red and white varieties, they make a most attractive dish. Put them into cold water for a little time, cool thoroughly, and drain well before using. Currants, if picked from the stems after being carefully washed and drained, may be served lightly sprinkled with sugar. Currants and raspberries served together, half and half, or one third currants two thirds raspberries, are excellent. Only the ripest of currants should be used.

Gooseberries.—When fresh and ripe, the gooseberry is one of the most delicious of small fruits. Serve with stems on. Drop into cold water for a few moments, drain, and pile in a glass dish for the table.

Grapes.—Grapes need always to be washed before serving. Drop the bunches into ice water, let them remain ten of fifteen minutes, then drain and serve. An attractive dish may be made by arranging bunches of different colored grapes together on a plate edged with grape leaves.

Melons.—Watermelons should be served very cold. After being well washed on the outside, put on ice until needed. Cut off a slice at the ends, that each half may stand upright on a plate, and then cut around in even slices. Instead of cutting through the center into even halves, the melon may be cut in points back and forth around the entire circumference, so that when separated, each half will appear like a crown. Another way is to take out the central portion with a spoon, in cone-shaped pieces, and arrange on a plate with a few bits of ice. Other melons may be served in halves, with the seeds removed. The rough skin of the cantaloupe should be thoroughly scrubbed with a vegetable brush, then rinsed and wiped, after which bury the melon in broken ice till serving time; divide into eighths or sixteenths, remove the seeds, reconstruct the melon, and serve surrounded with ice, on a folded napkin, or arranged on a bed of grape leaves. Do not cool the melon by placing ice upon the flesh, as the moisture injures the delicate flavor.

Oranges.—Serve whole or cut the skin into eighths, halfway down, separating it from the fruit, and curling it inward, thus showing half the orange white and the other half yellow; or cut the skin into eighths, two-thirds down, and after loosening from the fruit, leave them spread open like the petals of a lily. Oranges sliced and mixed with well ripened strawberries, in the proportion of three oranges to a quart of berries, make—a palatable dessert.

Peaches and Pears.—Pick out the finest, and wipe the wool from the peaches. Edge a plate with uniform sized leaves of foliage plant of the same tints as the fruit, and pile the fruit artistically upon it, tucking sprays or tips of the plant between. Bits of ice may also be intermingled. Yellow Bartlett pears and rosy-cheeked peaches arranged in this way are most ornamental.

Peaches and Cream.—Pare the peaches just as late as practicable, since they become discolored by standing. Always use a silver knife, as steel soon blackens and discolors the fruit. If sugar is to be used, do not add it until the time for serving, as it will start the juice, and likewise turn the fruit brown, destroying much of its rich flavor. Keep on ice until needed for the table. Add cream with each person's dish.

Pineapples.—The pineapple when fresh and ripened to perfection, is as mellow and juicy as a ripe peach, and needs no cooking to fit it for the table. Of course it must be pared, and have the eyes and fibrous center removed. Then it may be sliced in generous pieces and piled upon a plate, or cut into smaller portions and served in saucers. No condiments are necessary; even the use of sugar detracts from its delicate flavor. Pineapples found in our Northern markets are, however, generally so hard and tough as to require cooking, or are valuable only for their juice, which may be extracted and used for flavoring other fruits. When sufficiently mellow to be eaten raw, they are usually so tart as to seem to require a light sprinkling of sugar to suit most tastes. Pineapples pared, cut into dice or small pieces, lightly sprinkled with sugar, to which just before serving, a cup of orange juice is added, form a delicious dish.

Plums.—Plums make a most artistic fruit piece, served whole and arranged with bunches of choice green grapes, in a basket or glass dish. A fine edge may be made from the velvety leaves of dark purple foliage plants.

Pressed Figs.—Look over carefully, and select only such as are perfectly good. They may be served dry, mixed with bunches of raisins, or steamed over a kettle of boiling water. Steamed figs make an excellent breakfast dish, and are considered much more wholesome then when used dry. Steamed raisins are likewise superior to dried raisins.

Raspberries, Blackberries, Dewberries, Blueberries and Whortleberries, require careful looking over to remove all insects, stems, and over-ripe fruit. Blueberries and whortleberries frequently need to be washed. They are then drained by spreading on a sieve or colander. Perfectly ripe, they are more healthful without condiments; but sugar and cream are usually considered indispensable.

If necessary to wash strawberries, they should be put into cold water, a few at a time, pushed down lightly beneath the water several times until entirely clean, then taken out one by one, hulled, and used at once. Like all other small fruits and berries they are more wholesome served without cream, but if cream is used, each person should be allowed to add it to his own dish, as it quickly curdles and renders the whole dish unsightly; if allowed to stand, it also impairs the flavor of the fruit.

Frosted Fruit.—Prepare a mixture of the beaten white of egg, sugar, and a very little cold water. Dip nice bunches of clean currants, cherries, or grapes into the mixture; drain nearly dry, and roll lightly in powdered sugar. Lay them on white paper to dry. Plums, apricots, and peaches may be dipped in the mixture, gently sprinkled with sugar, then allowed to dry. This method of preparing fruit is not to be commended for its wholesomeness, but it is sometimes desirable for ornament.


Of the numerous varieties of fruits grown in this country, apples and pears are about the only ones that can be kept for any length of time without artificial means. As soon as fruit has attained its maturity, a gradual change or breaking down of tissues begins. In some fruits this process follows rapidly; in other it is gradual. There is a certain point at which the fruits are best suited for use. We call it mellowness, and say that the fruit is in "good eating condition." When this stage has been reached, deterioration and rotting soon follow. In some fruits, as the peach, plum, and early varieties of apples and pears, these changes occur within a few days after maturity, and it is quite useless to attempt to keep them; in others, like the later varieties of apples and pears, the changes are slow but none the less certain. To keep such fruits we must endeavor to retard or prolong the process of change, by avoiding all conditions likely to hasten decay. Even with ordinary care, sound fruit will keep for quite a length of time; but it can be preserved in better condition and for a longer period by careful attention to the following practical points:—

1. If the fruit is of a late variety, allow it to remain on the tree as long as practicable without freezing.

2. Always pick and handle the fruit with the greatest care.

3. Gather the fruit on a dry, cool day, and place in heaps or bins for two or three weeks.

4. Carefully sort and pack in barrels, placing those most mellow and those of different varieties in different barrels; head the barrels, label, and place in a cool, dry place where the temperature will remain equable. Some consider it better to keep fruit in thin layers upon broad shelves in a cool place. This plan allows frequent inspection and removal of all affected fruit without disturbance of the remainder.

5. Warmth and moisture are the conditions most favorable to decomposition, and should be especially guarded against.

6. The best temperature for keeping fruit is about 34° F., or 2° above freezing.

Another method which is highly recommended is to sprinkle a layer of sawdust on the bottom of a box, and then put in a layer of apples, not allowing them to tough each other. Upon this pack more sawdust; then another layer of apples, and so on until the box is filled. After packing, place up from the ground, in a cellar or storeroom, and they will keep perfectly, retaining their freshness and flavor until brought out. The Practical Farmer gives the following rough but good way to store and keep apples: "Spread plenty of buckwheat chaff on the barn floor, and on this place the apples, filling the interstices with the chaff. Cover with the chaff and then with straw two or three feet deep. The advantage of this is that covering and bedding in chaff excludes cold, prevents air currents, maintains a uniform temperature, absorbs the moisture of decay, and prevents the decay produced by moisture."

The ordinary cellar underneath the dwelling house is too warm and damp for the proper preservation of fruit, and some other place should be provided if possible. A writer in the American Agriculturist thus calls attention to an additional reason why fruit should not be stored beneath living-rooms: "After late apples are stored for the winter, a gradual change begins within the fruit. It absorbs oxygen from the air of the room, and gives off carbonic acid gas. Another change results in the formation of water, which is given off as moisture. The taking up of oxygen by the fruit and the giving off of carbonic acid, in a short time so vitiates the atmosphere of the room in which the fruit is kept, that it will at once extinguish a candle, and destroy animal life. An atmosphere of this kind tends to preserve the fruit. There being little or no oxygen left in the air of the room, the process of decay is arrested. Hence it is desirable that the room be air tight, in order to maintain such an atmosphere."

The production of carbonic acid shows that a cellar in or under a dwelling, is an improper place for storing fresh fruit. When the gas is present in the air in sufficient proportion, it causes death, and a very small quantity will cause headache, listlessness, and other unpleasant effects. No doubt many troubles attributed to malaria, are due to gases from vegetables and fruits stored in the cellar. A fruit cellar should be underneath some other building rather than the dwelling, or a fruit house may be built entirely above the ground. A house to keep fruit properly must be built upon the principle of a refrigerator. Its walls, floor, and ceiling should be double, and the space between filled with sawdust. The doors and windows should be double; and as light is undesirable, the windows should be provided with shutters. There should be a small stove for use if needed to keep a proper temperature in severe weather.

To Keep Grapes.—Select such bunches as are perfect, rejecting all upon which there are any bruised grapes, or from which a grape has fallen. Spread them upon shelves in a cool place for a week or two. Then pack in boxes in sawdust which has been recently well dried in an oven. Bran which has been dried may also be used. Dry cotton is employed by some. Keep in a cool place.

Some consider the following a more efficient method: select perfect bunches, and dip the broken end of the stems in melted paraffine or sealing wax. Wrap separately in tissue paper, hang in a cool place, or pack in sawdust.

To Keep Lemons and Oranges.—Lemons may be kept fresh for weeks by placing them in a vessel of cold water in a very cool cellar or ice house. Change the water every day. Oranges may be kept in the same way. The usual method employed by growers for keeping these fruits is to wrap each one separately in tissue paper, and put in a cool, dry place.

To Keep Cranberries.—Put them in water and keep in a cool place where they will not freeze. Change the water often, and sort out berries which may have become spoiled.


Perfectly ripe fruit is, as a rule, more desirable used fresh than in any other way. Fruits which are immature, require cooking. Stewing and baking are the simplest methods of preparation.

General Suggestions for Cooking Fruit.—The utensils for stewing should be porcelain-lined, or granite ware. Fruit cooked in tin loses much of its delicate flavor; while if it be acid, and the tin of poor quality, there is always danger that the acid of the fruit acting upon the metal will form a poisonous compound. Cover with a china plate or granite-ware cover, never with a tin one, as the steam will condense and run down into the kettle, discoloring the contents. Use only silver knives for preparing the fruit, and silver or wooden spoons for stirring. Prepare just before cooking, if you would preserve the fruit perfect in flavor, and unimpaired by discoloration. In preparing apples, pears, and quinces for stewing, it is better to divide the fruit into halves or quarters before paring. The fruit is more easily handled, can be pared thinner and cored more quickly. Peaches, apricots, and plums, if divided and stoned before paring, can be much more easily kept whole.

Cook in a small quantity of boiling water, and if economy is a point to be considered, do not add sugar until the fruit is done. Sugar boiled with an acid will be converted into glucose, two and one half pounds of which only equal one pound of cane sugar in sweetening properties. It will require a much larger amount of sugar to sweeten fruit if added before the cooking process is completed. Fruit should be cooked by stewing, or by gentle simmering; hard boiling will destroy the fine flavor of all fruits, and especially of berries and other small fruits. Cinnamon, cloves, or other spices, should not be added, as their stronger flavors deaden or obliterate the natural flavor, which should always be preserved as perfectly as possible. If desirable to add some foreign flavor, let it be the flavor of another fruit, or the perfume of flowers. For Instance, flavor apple with lemon, pineapple, quince, or rose water.

Unripe fruit is improved by making the cooking quite lengthy, which acts in the place of the ripening process, changing the starchy matter to saccharine elements. In cooking fruit, try to preserve its natural form. The more nearly whole it is, the better it looks, and the more natural will be its flavor.

Apples are best cooked by baking. Pears and quinces are also excellent baked. The oven should be only moderately hot; if the heat is too great, they brown on the outside before they are done throughout. In cooking fruit by any method, pains should be taken to cook together such as are of the same variety, size, and degree of hardness; if it is to be cut in pieces, care should be taken to have the pieces of uniform size.


Baked Apples.—Moderately tart apples or very juicy sweet ones are best for baking. Select ripe apples, free from imperfections, and of nearly equal size. Wipe carefully and remove the blossom ends. Water sufficient to cover bottom of the baking dish, should be added if the fruit is not very juicy. If the apples are sour and quite firm, a good way is to pare them before baking, and then place them in an earthen pie dish with a little hot water. If they incline to brown too quickly, cover the tops with a granite-ware pie dish. If the syrup dries out, add a little more hot water. When done, set them away till nearly cold, then transfer to a glass dish, pour the syrup, which should be thick and amber colored, over them. Sour apples are excellent pared, cored, and baked with the centers filled with sugar, jelly, or a mixture or chopped raisins and dates. They should be put into a shallow earthen dish with water sufficient to cover the bottom, and baked in a quick oven, basting often with the syrup. Sweet apples are best baked without paring. Baked apples are usually served as a relish, but with a dressing of cream they make a most delicious dessert.

Citron Apples.—Select a few tart apples of the same degree of hardness, and remove the cores. Unless the skins are very tender, it is better to pare them. Fill the cavities with sugar, first placing in each apple a few bits of chopped citron. If the skins have been removed, place the stuffed apples on a flat earthen dish with a tablespoonful of water on the bottom; cover closely, and bake till perfectly tender, but not till they have fallen to pieces. If the skins are left on, they may be baked without covering. When cold, serve in separate dishes, with or without a spoonful or two of whipped cream on each apple.

Lemon Apples.—Prepare tart apples the same as for citron apples. Fill the cavities made by removing the cores with a mixture of grated lemon and sugar, squeeze a few drops of lemon juice over each apple, and bake. Serve with or without whipped cream.

Baked Pears.—Hard pears make an excellent dessert when baked. Pare, halve, remove seeds, and place in a shallow earthen dish, with a cup of water to each two quarts of fruit. If the pears are sour, a little sugar may be added. Bake, closely covered, in a moderate oven until tender. Serve with sugar and cream. Tart pears are the best for baking, as the sweet varieties are often tasteless.

Baked Quinces.—Pare and remove the cores. Fill the cavities with sugar, put in a shallow earthen dish, and add water to cover the bottom; bake till soft, basting often with the syrup. If the syrup dries out before the fruit is perfectly tender, add a little more hot water.

Pippins and Quince.—Pare and quarter nice golden pippins, and cook in boiling water until reduced to a jelly. Add two or three quinces sliced, and simmer slowly in the jelly until the quince is tender. Add sugar to taste. Serve cold.

Baked Apple Sauce.—Pare, core, and quarter apples to fill an earthen crock or deep pudding dish, taking care to use apples of the same degree of hardness, and pieces of the same size. For two quarts of fruit thus prepared, add a cup of water, and if the apples are sour, a cup of sugar. Cover closely, and bake in a moderate oven several hours, or until of a dark red color.

Sweet apples and quinces in the proportion of two parts of apple to one of quince, baked in this way, are also good. Cut the apples into quarters, but slice the quinces much thinner, as they are more difficult to cook. Put a layer of quince on the bottom of the dish, alternating with a layer of apple, until the dish is full. Add cold water to half cover the fruit, and stew in the oven well covered, without stirring, until tender.

Pears may be cooked in a similar way, and both apples and pears thus cooked may be canned while hot and kept for a long period.

Baked Apple Sauce No. 2.—Prepare nice tart apples as for No. 1. Bake, with a small quantity of water, in a covered pudding dish, in a moderate oven, until soft. Mash with a spoon, add sugar, and when cold, a little grated orange rind.

Apples Stewed Whole.—Take six large red apples, wash carefully, and put in a fruit kettle with just enough boiling water to cover. Cover the kettle, and cook slowly until the apples are soft, with the skins broken and the juice a rich red color. After removing the apples, boil the juice to a syrup, sweeten, and pour over the apples.

Steamed Apples.—Select pound sweets of uniform size, wipe, cut out the blossom-ends, and pack in a large pudding dish. Pour in a cupful of water, cover the dish closely, set in a moderate oven, and steam till the apples are tender. Remove from the dish, and pour the liquor over them frequently as they cool.

Compote of Apples.—Pare and extract the cores from moderately tart, juicy apples. Place them in a deep pudding dish with just enough water to cover them. Cover, place in a moderate oven, and stew until they are tender. Remove the apples and place in a deep dish to keep hot. Measure the juice and pour it into a saucepan, add a few bits of lemon rind, and boil up until thickened almost like a jelly. While the juice is boiling, heat some sugar, one tablespoonful to each cup of juice, in the oven, and add to the juice when thickened. Pour scalding hot over the apples, and cover until cold.

Apple Compote No. 2.—Pare eight or ten rather tart, finely flavored and easy-cooking apples, carefully removing the cores, and put them into a broad, shallow, granite-ware saucepan with just enough hot water to cover the bottom. Cover tightly and place over the fire. The steam will cook the apples tender in a short time. Do not allow them to fall to pieces. Make a syrup by dissolving one cup of sugar in a pint of hot water. Add three teaspoonfuls of the juice of canned pineapple, and pour over the apples while both are hot.

Stewed Pears.—Select some fine Bartlett pears which are ripe, but have hardly begun to soften; remove the skins, cut in halves or quarters, and take out the seeds. Put loosely in a granite-ware kettle, and add a pint of water for three and a half quarts of fruit. Cover closely, and when it begins to boil, set it where it will just simmer until the top pieces are tender. Serve cold. Sugar will not be necessary if the fruit is of good quality.

Smooth Apple Sauce.—If fruit is not sufficiently perfect to be cut into uniform quarters, a good way to prepare it is to pare, core, and slice into thin slices. Cook in as small a quantity of water as possible, the fruit covered closely, so that the top portion will steam tender as soon as the bottom, and when done rub through a colander, or beat smooth with a wooden spoon or an egg beater. Let it cool before adding sugar. A little lemon peel may be added to the fruit just long enough before it is done to flavor it, if desired.

Boiled Apples with Syrup.—Halve and remove the cores of a half dozen nice apples, leaving the skins on. Boil till tender in sufficient water to cover them. Take out with a fork into a glass dish. Add to the juice three or four slices of a large lemon; boil for ten or fifteen minutes; sweeten to taste; then pour over the apples, and cool.

Stewed Apples.—Select fine fruit of a sub-acid flavor and not over-ripe. Pare, remove the cores and all blemishes, and divide into sixths if large, into quarters if small. Put into a porcelain or granite-ware kettle with enough boiling water to cook and leave a good liquor. Cover, and simmer gently, without stirring, from one to two hours. Do not add sugar till cold. Be careful not to break the fruit in serving.

Stewed Crab Apples.—Select perfect fruit. Wash and stew in but little water until they are very soft. Rub through a coarse sieve or colander to remove the seeds and skins. Sweeten to taste.

Sweet Apple Sauce with Condensed Apple Juice.—For the juice, wash, divide, and core rather tart apples and cook until softened with one cup of water for every six pounds of fruit. When soft, put into a percolater and drain off the juice or extract it with a fruit press. Boil until it is reduced one half. Skim if needed while boiling, and if not perfectly clear allow it to settle before using. A considerable quantity of the juice may be thus prepared and put into stone jars, to be used as needed. For the sauce, pare, core, and quarter sweet apples. Put into a porcelain kettle with enough of the condensed juice to cover. Cook slowly until tender.

Apples with Raisins.—Pare, core, and quarter a dozen or more medium sized sour apples. Clean thoroughly one fourth as many raisins as apples, and turn over them a quart of boiling water. Let them steep until well swollen, then add the apples, and cook until tender. Sugar to sweeten may be added if desired, although little will be needed unless the apples are very tart. Dried apples soaked over night may be made much more palatable by stewing with raisins or English currants, in the same way.

Apples with Apricots.—Pare, core, and quarter some nice, sour apples. Put them to cook with two halves of dried apricot for each apple. When tender, make smooth by beating or rubbing through a colander, and sweeten. Dried apples may be used in place of fresh ones.

Peaches, Plums, Cherries, Berries, and all small fruits may be cooked for sauce by stewing in a small amount of water, adding sugar to sweeten when done.

Baked Apples.—Take any good tart apples; peel, cut in halves, and remove the cores. Scatter a few spoonfuls of sugar in the bottom of a dish, and lay the apples in, flat side down; add a teacupful of cold water, and bake till tender. Let stand in the dish till cold, then take up the pieces in a vegetable dish, and poor over them what juice remains. Sweet apples are good baked in this way without sugar.

Baked Pears.—Peel ripe pears; cut in halves, and pack in layers in a stone ware jar. Strew a little sugar over each layer, and add a small cupful of water, to prevent burning. Cover tightly, and bake three or four hours in a well-heated oven. Let them get very cold, and serve with sweet cream.

Baked Peaches.—Peaches which are ripe but too hard for eating, are nice baked. Pare, remove the stones, and place in loose layers in a shallow, earthen pudding dish with a little water. Sprinkle each layer lightly with sugar, cover and bake.

Cranberries.—Cranberries make an excellent sauce, but the skins are rather hard of digestion, and it is best to exclude them. Stew in the proportion of a quart of berries to a pint of water, simmering gently until the skins have all burst, and the quantity is reduced to a pint. Put through a colander to remove the skins, and when nearly cool, add for the quart of berries two thirds of a cup of sugar.

Cranberries with Raisins.—Cook the cranberries as in the preceding recipe, and when rubbed through the colander, add for every pound of cranberries before cooking, one fourth pound of raisins which have been steeped for half an hour in just sufficient boiling water to cover. A little less sugar will be needed to sweeten than when served without the raisins.

Cranberries and Sweet Apples.—Stew equal parts of cranberries and sweet apples together. Mash, rub through a fine sieve or colander to remove the skins and make the whole homogeneous. This makes a very palatable sauce without the addition of sugar. California prunes and cranberries stewed together in equal proportion, in a small quantity of water, also make a nice sauce without sugar.

Oranges and Apples.—The mild, easy cooking, tart varieties of apples make an excellent sauce stewed with one third sliced oranges from which the seeds have been removed. Pare, core, and slice the apples, and cook gently so as to preserve the form of both fruits until the apples are tender. Add sugar to sweeten, and if desired a very little of the grated yellow of the orange rind.

Stewed Raisins.—Soak a pint of good raisins, cleaned and freed from stems, in cold water for several hours. When ready to cook, put them, with the water in which they were soaked, in a fruit kettle and simmer until the skins are tender. Three or four good-sized figs, chopped quite fine, cooked with the raisins, gives an additional richness and thickness of juice. No sugar will be needed.

Dried Apples.—Good apples properly dried make a very palatable sauce; but unfortunately the fruit generally selected for drying is of so inferior a quality that if cooked in its fresh state it would not be good. The dried fruit in most of our markets needs to be looked over carefully, and thoroughly washed before using. Put into a granite-ware kettle, cover with boiling water, and cook gently until tender. Fresh steam-dried or evaporated apples will cook in from one half to three fourths of an hour; if older, they may require from one to two more hours. Add boiling water, as needed, during the cooking. If when tender they are lacking in juice, add a little boiling water long enough before lifting from the fire to allow it to boil up once. If the fruit is very poor, a few very thin slices of the yellow portion of lemon or orange rind added a half hour before it is done, will sometimes be an improvement.

Dried Apples with Other Dried Fruit.—An excellent sauce may be made by cooking a few dried plums with dried or evaporated apples. Only enough of the plums to give a flavor to the apples will be needed; a handful of the former to a pound of apples will be sufficient. Dried cherries, raisins, English currants, dried apricots, prunelles, and peaches are also excellent used in combination with dried apples.

Dried Apricots and Peaches.—These fruits, if dried with the skins on, need, in addition to the preparation for cooking recommended for dried apples, a thorough rubbing with the fingers, while being washed, to remove the down. Put into boiling water in about the proportion of two parts of fruit to three of water. If the fruit was pared before drying, a little more water will be required. Cook quickly, but gently, until just tender, and take from the fire as soon as done. If too soft, they will be mushy and insipid.

Evaporated Peach Sauce.—Soak the peaches over night in just enough water to cover. In the morning put to cook in boiling water. When tender, sweeten and beat perfectly smooth with an egg beater.

Dried Pears.—These may be treated in the same way as dried apples.

Small Fruits.—These when dried must be carefully examined, thoroughly washed, and then cooked rather quickly in boiling water. They swell but little, do not require much water, and usually cook in a few minutes. They should be taken from the fire as soon as soft, as long standing makes them insipid.

Prunes.—Use only the best selected prunes. Clean by putting them into warm water; let them stand a few minutes, rubbing them gently between the hands to make sure that all dust and dirt is removed; rinse, and if rather dry and hard, put them into three parts of water to one of prunes; cover closely, and let them simmer for several hours. If the prunes are quite easily cooked, less water may be used. They will be tender, with a thick juice. The sweet varieties need no sugar whatever. Many persons who cannot eat fruit cooked with sugar, can safely partake of sweet prunes cooked in this way. A slice of lemon added just before the prunes are done, is thought an improvement.

Prune Marmalade.—Cook sweet California prunes as directed above. When well done, rub through a colander to remove the skins and stones. No sugar is necessary. If the pulp is too thin when cold, it may be covered in an earthen pudding dish and stewed down by placing in a pan of hot water in a moderate oven.


Fresh fruit is so desirable, while at the same time the season during which most varieties can be obtained is so transient, that various methods are resorted to for preserving it in as nearly a natural state as possible. The old-fashioned plans of pickling in salt, alcohol, or vinegar, or preserving in equal quantities of sugar, are eminently unhygienic. Quite as much to be condemned is the more modern process of keeping fruit by adding to it some preserving agent, like salicylic acid or other chemicals. Salicylic acid is an antiseptic, and like many other substances, such as carbolic acid, creosote, etc., has the power of preventing the decay of organic substances. Salicylic acid holds the preference over other drugs of this class, because it imparts no unpleasant flavor to the fruit. It is nevertheless a powerful and irritating drug, and when taken, even in small doses, produces intense burning in the stomach, and occasions serious disturbances of the heart and other organs. Its habitual use produces grave diseases.

What is sold as antifermentive is simply the well-known antiseptic, salicylate of soda. It should be self-evident to one at all acquainted with the philosophy of animal existence, that an agent which will prevent fermentation and decay must be sufficiently powerful in its influence to prevent digestion also.

The fermentation and decay of fruits as well as that of all other organic substances, is occasioned by the action of those minute living organisms which scientists call germs, and which are everywhere present. These germs are very much less active in a dry, cold atmosphere, and fruit may be preserved for quite a long period by refrigeration, an arrangement whereby the external air is excluded, and the surrounding atmosphere kept at an equal temperature of about 40° F. The most efficient and wholesome method of preserving fruit, however, is destruction of the germs and entire exclusion from the air. The germs are destroyed at a boiling temperature; hence, if fruit be heated to boiling, and when in this condition sealed in air-tight receptacles, it will keep for an unlimited period.


Canning consists in sealing in air-tight cans or jars, fruit which has been previously boiled. It is a very simple process, but requires a thorough understanding of the scientific principles involved, and careful management, to make it successful. The result of painstaking effort is so satisfactory, however, it is well worth all the trouble, and fruit canning need not be a difficult matter if attention is given to the following details:—

Select self-sealing glass cans of some good variety. Tin cans give more trouble filling and sealing, are liable to affect the flavor of the fruit, and unless manufactured from the best of material, to impair its wholesomeness. Glass cans may be used more than once, and are thus much more economical. Those with glass covers, or porcelain-lined covers, are best. Test the cans to see if they are perfect, with good rubbers and covers that fit closely, by partly filling them with cold water, screwing on the tops, and placing bottom upward upon the table for some time before using. If none of the water leaks out, they may be considered in good condition. If the cans have been previously used, examine them with special care to see that both cans and covers have been carefully cleaned, then thoroughly sterilize them, and fit with new rubbers when necessary.

Cans and covers should be sterilized by boiling in water for half an hour, or by baking in an oven, at a temperature sufficient to scorch paper, for two hours. The cans should be placed in the water or oven when cold, and the temperature allowed to rise gradually, to avoid breaking. They should be allowed to cool gradually, for the same purpose.

Select only the best of fruit, such as is perfect in flavor and neither green nor over-ripe. Fruit which has been shipped from a distance, and which is consequently not perfectly fresh, contains germs in active growth, and if the least bit musty, it will be almost sure to spoil, even though the greatest care may be taken in canning.

Poor fruit will not be improved by canning; over-ripe fruit will be insipid and mushy; and though cooking will soften hard fruit, it cannot impart to it the delicate flavors which belong to that which is in its prime. The larger varieties of fruit should not be quite soft enough for eating. Choose a dry day for gathering, and put up at once, handling as little as possible. Try to keep it clean enough to avoid washing. If the fruit is to be pared, use a silver knife for the purpose, as steel is apt to discolor the fruit. If the fruit is one needing to be divided or stoned, it will be less likely to become broken if divided before paring.

Cook the fruit slowly in a porcelain-lined or granite-ware kettle, using as little water as possible. It is better to cook only small quantities at a time in one kettle. Steaming in the cans is preferable to stewing, where the fruit is at all soft. To do this, carefully fill the cans with fresh fruit, packing it quite closely, if the fruit is large, and set the cans in a boiler partly filled with cold water, with something underneath them to prevent breaking,—muffin rings, straw, or thick cloth, or anything to keep them from resting on the bottom of the boiler (a rack made by nailing together strips of lath is very convenient); screw the covers on the cans so the water cannot boil into them, but not so tightly as to prevent the escape of steam; heat the water to boiling, and steam the fruit until tender. Peaches, pears, crab apples, etc., to be canned with a syrup, may be advantageously cooked by placing on a napkin dropped into the boiling syrup.

Fruit for canning should be so thoroughly cooked that every portion of it will have been subjected to a sufficient degree of heat to destroy all germs within the fruit, but overcooking should be avoided. The length of time required for cooking fruits for canning, varies with the kind and quality of fruit and the manner of cooking. Fruit is more frequently spoiled by being cooked an insufficient length of time, than by overcooking. Prolonged cooking at a boiling temperature is necessary for the destruction of certain kinds of germs capable of inducing fermentation. Fifteen minutes may be considered as the shortest time for which even the most delicate fruits should be subjected to the temperature of boiling water, and thirty minutes will be required by most fruits. Fruits which are not perfectly fresh, or which have been shipped some distance, should be cooked not less than thirty minutes. The boiling should be very slow, however, as hard, rapid boiling will break up the fruit, and much of its fine flavor will be lost in the steam.

Cooking the sugar with the fruit at the time of canning, is not to be recommended from an economical standpoint; but fruit thus prepared is more likely to keep well than when cooked without sugar; not, however, because of the preservative influence of the sugar, which is too small in amount to prevent the action of germs, as in the case of preserves, but because the addition of sugar to the water or fruit juice increases its specific gravity, and thus raises the boiling point. From experiments made, I have found that the temperature of the fruit is ordinarily raised about 5° by the addition of the amount of sugar needed for sweetening sub-acid fruit. By the aid of this additional degree of heat, the germs are more certainly destroyed, and the sterilization of the fruit will be accomplished in a shorter time.

Another advantage gained in cooking sugar with the fruit at the time of canning, is that the fruit may be cooked for a longer time without destroying its form, as the sugar abstracts the juice of the fruit, and thus slightly hardens it and prevents its falling in pieces.

The temperature to which the fruit is subjected may also be increased by the same method as that elsewhere described for sterilizing milk, the covers of the cans being screwed down tightly before they are placed in the sterilizer, or as soon as the boiling point is approached, so that the steam issues freely from the can. See page 396. If this method is employed, it must be remembered that the cans should not be removed from the sterilizer until after they have become cold, or nearly so, by being allowed to stand over night.

Use the best sugar, two tablespoonfuls to a quart of fruit is sufficient for most sub-acid fruits, as berries and peaches; plums, cherries, strawberries, and currants require from five to eight tablespoonfuls of sugar to a quart. Have the sugar hot, by spreading it on tins and heating in the oven, stirring occasionally. See that; it does not scorch. Add it when the fruit is boiling. Pears, peaches, apples, etc., which contain a much smaller quantity of juice than do berries, may be canned in a syrup prepared by dissolving a cup of sugar in two or three cups of water. Perfect fruit, properly canned, will keep without sugar, and the natural 'flavor of the fruit is more perfectly retained when the sugar is left out, adding the necessary amount when opened for use.

If the fruit is to be cooked previous to being put in the cans, the cans should be heated before the introduction of the fruit, which should be put in at a boiling temperature. Various methods are employed for this purpose. Some wrap the can in a towel wrung out of hot water, keeping a silver spoon inside while it is being filled; others employ dry heat by keeping the cans in a moderately hot oven while the fruit is cooking.

Another and surer way is to fill a large dishpan nearly full of scalding (not boiling) water, then gradually introduce each can, previously baked, into the water, dip it full of water, and set it right side up in the pan. Repeat the process with other cans until four or five are ready. Put the covers likewise into boiling water. Have in readiness for use a granite-ware funnel and dipper, also in boiling water; a cloth for wiping the outside of the cans, a silver fork or spoon, a dish for emptyings, and a broad shallow pan on one side of the range, half filled with boiling water, in which to set the cans while being filled. When everything is in readiness, the fruit properly cooked, and at a boiling temperature, turn one of the cans down in the water, roll it over once or twice, empty it, and set in the shallow pan of hot water; adjust the funnel, and then place first in the can a quantity of juice, so that when the fruit is put in, no vacant places will be left for air, which is sometimes quite troublesome if this precaution is not taken; then add the fruit. If any bubbles of air chance to be left, work them out with a fork or spoon handle, which first dip in boiling water, and then quickly introduce down the sides of the jar and through the fruit in such a way that not a bubble will remain. Fill the can to overflowing, remembering that any vacuum invites the air to enter; use boiling water or syrup when there is not enough juice. Skim all froth from the fruit, adding more juice if necessary; wipe the juice from the top of the can, adjust the rubber, put on the top, and screw it down as quickly as possible. If the fruit is cooked in the cans, as soon as it is sufficiently heated, fill the can completely full with boiling juice, syrup, or water; run the handle of a silver spoon around the inside of the can, to make sure the juice entirely surrounds every portion of fruit, and that no spaces for air remain, put on the rubbers, wipe off all juice, and seal quickly.

Canning Utensils.

Canning Utensils.

As the fruit cools, the cover can be tightened, and this should be promptly done again and again as the glass contracts, so that no air may be allowed to enter.

If convenient to fill the cans directly from the stove, the fruit may be kept at boiling heat by placing the kettle on a lamp stove on the table, on which the other utensils are in readiness. Many failures in fruit canning are due to neglect to have the fruit boiling hot when put into the cans.

When the cans are filled, set them away from currents of air, and not on a very cold surface, to avoid danger of cracking. A good way is to set the cans on a wet towel, and cover with a woolen cloth as a protection from draughts.

After the cans have cooled, and the tops have been screwed down tightly, place them in a cool place, bottom upward, and watch closely for a few days. If the juice begins to leak out, or any appearance of fermentation is seen, it is a sign that the work has failed, and the only thing to do is to open the can immediately, boil the fruit, and use as quickly as possible; recanning will not save it unless boiled a long time. If no signs of spoiling are observed within two or three weeks, the fruit may be safely stored away in a dark, cool place. If one has no dark storeroom, it is an advantage to wrap each can in brown paper, to keep out the light.

Sometimes the fruit will settle so that a little space appears at the top. If you are perfectly sure that the can is tight, do not open to refill, as you will be unable to make it quite as tight again, unless you reheat the fruit, in which case you would be liable to have the same thing occur again. Air is dangerous because it is likely to contain germs, though in itself harmless.

If mold is observed upon the top of a can, it should be opened, and the fruit boiled and used at once, after carefully skimming out all the moldy portions. If there is evidence of fermentation, the fruit should be thrown away, as it contains alcohol.

If care be taken to provide good cans, thoroughly sterilized, and with perfectly fitting covers; to use only fruit in good condition; to have it thoroughly cooked, and at boiling temperature when put into the can; to have the cans well baked and heated, filled completely and to overflowing, and sealed at once while the fruit is still near boiling temperature, there will be little likelihood of failure.

Opening Canned Fruit.—Canned fruit is best opened a short time before needed, that is may be will aërated; and if it has been canned without sugar, it should have the necessary quantity added, so that it may be well dissolved before using.

Fruit purchased in tin cans should be selected with the utmost care, since unscrupulous dealers sometimes use cans which render the fruit wholly—unfit for food.

The following rules which we quote from a popular scientific journal should be 'carefully observed in selecting canned fruit:—

"Reject every can that does not have the name of the manufacturer or firm upon it, as well as the name of the company and the town where manufactured. All 'Standards' have this. When the wholesale dealer is ashamed to have his name on the goods, be shy of him.

"Reject every article of canned goods which does not show the line of resin around the edge of the solder of the cap, the same as is seen on the seam at the side of the can.

"Press up the bottom of the can; if decomposition is beginning, the tin will rattle the same as the bottom of your sewing-machine oil can does. If the goods are sound, it will be solid, and there will be no rattle to the tin.

"Reject every can that show any rust around the cap on the inside of the head of the can. Old and battered cans should be rejected; as, if they have been used several times, the contents are liable to contain small amounts of tin or lead"


To Can Strawberries.—These are generally considered more difficult to can than most other berries. Use none but sound fruit, and put up the day they are picked, if possible. Heat the fruit slowly to the boiling point, and cook fifteen minutes or longer, adding the sugar hot, if any be used, after the fruit is boiling. Strawberries, while cooking, have a tendency to rise to the top, and unless they are kept poshed down, will not be cooked uniformly, which is doubtless one reason they sometimes fail to keep well. The froth should also be kept skimmed off. Fill the cans as directed on page 197, taking special care to let out every air bubble, and to remove every particle of froth from the top of the can before sealing. If the berries are of good size, the may be cooked in the cans, adding a boiling syrup prepared with one cup of water and one of sugar for each quart can of fruit.

If after the cans are cold, the fruit rises to the top, as it frequently does, take the cans and gently shake until the fruit is well saturated with the juice and falls by its own weight to the bottom, or low enough to be entirely covered with the liquid.

To Can Raspberries, Blackberries, and Other Small Fruits.—Select none but good, sound berries; those freshly picked are best; reject any green, over-ripe, mashed, or worm-eaten fruit. If necessary to wash the berries, do so by putting a quart at a time in a colander, and dipping the dish carefully into a pan of clean water, letting it stand for a moment. If the water is very dirty, repeat the process in a second water. Drain thoroughly, and if to be cooked previous to putting in the cans, put into a porcelain kettle with a very small quantity of water, and heat slowly to boiling. If sugar is to be used, have it hot, but do not add it until the fruit is boiling; and before doing so, if there is much juice, dip out the surplus, and leave the berries with only a small quantity, as the sugar will have a tendency to draw out more juice, thus furnishing plenty for syrup.

Raspberries are so juicy that they need scarcely more than a pint of water to two quarts of fruit.

The fruit may be steamed in the cans if preferred. When thoroughly scalded, if sugar is to be used, fill the can with a boiling syrup made by dissolving the requisite amount of sugar in water; if to be canned without sugar, fill up the can with boiling water or juice.

Seal the fruit according to directions previously given.

To Can Gooseberries.—Select such as are smooth and turning red, but not fully ripe; wash and remove the stems and blossom ends. For three quarts of fruit allow one quart of water. Heat slowly to boiling; cook fifteen minutes, add a cupful of sugar which has been heated dry in the oven: boil two or three minutes longer, and can.

To Can Peaches.—Select fruit which is perfectly ripe and sound, but not much softened. Free-stone peaches are the best. Put a few at a time in a wire basket, and dip into boiling water for a moment, and then into cold water, to cool fruit sufficiently to handle with comfort. The skins may then be rubbed or peeled off easily, if done quickly, and the fruit divided into halves; or wipe with a clean cloth to remove all dirt and the wool, and with a silver knife cut in halves, remove the stone, and then pare each piece, dropping into cold water at once to prevent discoloration. Peaches cut before being pared are less likely to break in pieces while removing the stones. When ready, pour a cupful of water in the bottom of the kettle, and fill with peaches, scattering sugar among the layers in the proportion of a heaping tablespoonful to a quart of fruit. Heat slowly, boil fifteen minutes or longer till a silver fork can be easily passed through the pieces; can in the usual way and seal; or, fill the cans with the halved peaches, and place them in a boiler of warm water with something underneath to avoid breaking; cook until perfectly tender. Have ready a boiling syrup prepared with one half cup of sugar and two cups of water, and pour into each can all that it will hold, remove air bubbles, cover and seal. A few of the pits may be cooked in the syrup, and removed before adding to the fruit, when their special flavor is desired.

ANOTHER METHOD.—After paring and halving the fruit, lay a clean napkin in the bottom of a steamer; fill with fruit. Steam until a fork will easily penetrate the pieces. Have ready a boiling syrup prepared as directed above, put a few spoonfuls in the bottom of the hot cans, and dip each piece of fruit gently in the hot syrup; then as carefully place it in the jars. Fill with the syrup, and finish in the usual way.

Peaches canned without sugar, retain more nearly their natural flavor. To prepare in this way, allow one half pint of water to each pound of fruit. Cook slowly until tender, and can in the usual manner. When wanted for the table, open an hour before needed, and sprinkle lightly with sugar.

To Can Pears.—The pears should be perfectly ripened, but not soft. Pare with a silver knife, halve or quarter, remove the seeds and drop into a pan of cold water to prevent discoloration. Prepare a syrup, allowing a cup of sugar and a quart of water to each two quarts of fruit. When the syrup boils, put the pears into it very carefully, so as not to bruise or break them, and cook until they look clear and can be easily pierced with a fork. Have the cans heated, and put in first a little of the syrup, then pack in the pears very carefully; fill to overflowing with the scalding syrup, and finish as previously directed. The tougher and harder varieties of pears must be cooked till nearly tender in hot water, or steamed over a kettle of boiling water, before adding to the syrup, and may then be finished as above. If it is desirable to keep the pears whole, cook only those of a uniform size together; or if of assorted sizes, put the larger ones into the syrup a few minutes before the smaller ones. Some prefer boiling the kins of the pears in the water of which the syrup is to be made, and skimming them out before putting in the sugar. This is thought to impart a finer flavor. Pears which are very sweet, or nearly tasteless, may be improved by using the juice of a large lemon for each quart of syrup. Pears may be cooked in the cans, if preferred.

To Can Plums.—Green Gages and Damsons are best for canning. Wipe clean with a soft cloth. Allow a half cup of water and the same of sugar to every three quarts of fruit, in preparing a syrup. Pick each plum with a silver fork to prevent it from bursting, and while the syrup is heating, turn in the fruit, and boil until thoroughly done. Dip carefully into hot jars, fill with syrup, and cover immediately.

To Can Cherries.—These may be put up whole in the same way as plums, or pitted and treated as directed for berries, allowing about two quarts of water and a scant pint of sugar to five quarts of solid fruit, for the tart varieties, and not quite half as much sugar for the sweeter ones.

To Can Mixed Fruit.—There are some fruits with so little flavor that when cooked they are apt to taste insipid, and are much improved by canning with some acid or strongly flavored fruits.

Blackberries put up with equal quantities of blue or red plums, or in the proportion of one to three of the sour fruit, are much better than either of these fruits canned separately. Black caps are much better if canned with currants, in the proportion of one part currants to four of black caps.

Red and black raspberries, cherries and raspberries, are also excellent combinations.

Quinces with Apples.—Pare and cut an equal quantity of firm sweet apples and quinces. First stew the quinces till they are tender in sufficient water to cover. Take them out, and cook the apples in the same water. Lay the apples and quinces in alternate layers in a porcelain kettle or crock. Have ready a hot syrup made with one part sugar to two and a half parts water, pour over the fruit, and let it stand all night. The next day reheat to boiling, and can.

Quinces and sweet apples may be canned in the same way as directed below for plums and sweet apples, using equal parts of apples and quinces, and adding sugar when opened.

Plums with Sweet Apples.—Prepare the plums, and stew in water enough to cover. When tender, skim out, add to the juice an equal quantity of quartered sweet apples, and stew until nearly tender. Add the plumbs again, boil together for a few minutes, and can. When wanted for the table, open, sprinkle with sugar if any seems needed, let stand awhile and serve.

To Can Grapes.—Grapes have so many seeds that they do not form a very palatable sauce when canned entire. Pick carefully from the stems, wash in a colander the same as directed for berries, and drain. Remove the skins, dropping them into one earthen crock and the pulp into another. Place both crocks in kettles of hot water over the stove, and heat slowly, stirring the pulp occasionally until the seeds will come out clean.

Then rub the pulp through a colander, add the skins to it, and a cupful of sugar for each quart of pulp. Return to the fire, boil twenty minutes until the skins are tender, and can; or, if preferred, the whole grapes may be heated, and when well scalded so that the seeds are loosened, pressed through a colander, thus rejecting both seeds and skins, boiled, then sweetened if desired, and canned.

To Can Crab Apples.—These may be cooked whole, and canned the same way as plums.

To Can Apples.—Prepare and can the same as pears, when fresh and fine in flavor. If old and rather tasteless, the following is a good way:—several thin slices of the yellow part of the rind, four cups of sugar, and three pints of boiling water. Pare and quarter the apples, or if small, only halve them, and cook gently in a broad-bottomed closely-covered saucepan, with as little water as possible, till tender, but not broken; then pour the syrup over them, heat all to boiling, and can at once. The apples may be cooked by steaming over a kettle of hot water, if preferred. Care must be taken to cook those of the same degree of hardness together. The slices of lemon rind should be removed from the syrup before using.

To Can Pineapples.—The writer has had no experience in canning this fruit, but the following method is given on good authority: Pare very carefully with a silver knife, remove all the "eyes" and black specks; then cut the sections in which the "eyes" were, in solid pieces clear down to the core. By doing this all the valuable part of the fruit is saved, leaving its hard, woody center. As, however, this contains considerable juice, it should be taken in the hands and wrung as one wrings a cloth, till the juice is extracted, then thrown away. Prepare a syrup with one part sugar and two parts water, using what juice has been obtained in place of so much water. Let it boil up, skim clean, then add the fruit. Boil just as little as possible and have the fruit tender, as pineapples loses its flavor by overcooking more readily than any other fruit. Put into hot cans, and seal.


The excess of sugar commonly employed in preparing jellies often renders them the least wholesome of fruit preparations, and we cannot recommend our readers to spend a great amount of time in putting up a large stock of such articles.

The juice of some fruits taken at the right stage of maturity may be evaporated to a jelly without sugar, but the process is a more lengthy one, and requires a much larger quantity of juice than when sugar is used.

Success in the preparation of fruit jellies depends chiefly upon the amount of pectose contained in the fruit. Such fruits as peaches, cherries, and others containing but a small proportion of pectose, cannot be made into a firm jelly. All fruit for jelly should, if possible, be freshly picked, and before it is over-ripe, as it has then a much better flavor. The pectose, the jelly-producing element, deteriorates with age, so that jelly made from over-ripe fruit is less certain to "form." If the fruit is under-ripe, it will be too acid to give a pleasant flavor. Examine carefully, as for canning, rejecting all wormy, knotty, unripe, or partially decayed fruit. If necessary to wash, drain very thoroughly.

Apples, quinces, and similar fruits may require to be first cooked in a small amount of water. The juice of berries, currants, and grapes, may be best extracted by putting the fruit in a granite-ware double boiler, or a covered earthen crock placed inside a kettle of boiling water, mashing as much as possible with a spoon, and steaming without the addition of water until the fruit is well scalded and broken.

For straining the juice, have a funnel-shaped bag made of coarse flannel or strong, coarse linen crash. The bag will be found more handy if a small hoop of wire is sewn around the top and two tapes attached to hang it by while the hot juice is draining, or a wooden frame to support the bag may be easily constructed like the one shown on page 74. A dish to receive the juice should be placed underneath the bag, which should first be wrung out of hot water, and the scalded fruit, a small quantity at a time, turned in; then with two large spoons press the sides of the bag well, moving the fruit around in the bag to get out all the juice, and removing the pressed pulp and skins each time before putting in a fresh supply of the hot fruit. If a very clear jelly is desired, the juice must be allowed to drain out without pressing or squeezing. The juice of berries, grapes, and currants may be extracted without the fruit being first scalded, if preferred, by putting the fruit into an earthen or granite-ware dish, and mashing well with a wooden potato masher, then putting into a jelly bag and allowing the juice to drain off for several hours.

When strained, if the jelly is to be prepared with sugar, measure the juice and pour it into a granite or porcelain fruit kettle with a very broad bottom, so that as much surface can be on the stove possible. It is better to boil the juice in quantities of not more than two or three quarts at a time, unless one has some utensil in which a larger quantity can be cooked with no greater depth of liquid than the above quantity would give in a common fruit kettle. The purpose of the boiling is to evaporate the water from the juice, and this can best be accomplished before the sugar is added. The sugar, if boiled with the juice, also darkens the jelly.

The average length of time required for boiling the juice of most berries, currants, and grapes, extracted as previously directed, before adding the sugar, is twenty minutes from the time it begins to bubble all over its surface. It is well to test the jelly occasionally, however, by dropping a small quantity on a plate to cool, since the quantity of juice and the rapidity with which it is boiled, may necessitate some variation in time. In wet season, fruits of all kinds absorb more moisture and a little longer boiling may be necessary. The same is true of the juice of fruits gathered after a heavy rain. Jellies prepared with sugar are generally made of equal measures of juice, measured before boiling, and sugar; but a very scant measure of sugar is sufficient, and a less amount will suffice for many fruits. White granulated sugar is best for all jellies. While the juice is heating, spread the sugar evenly on shallow tins, and heat in the oven, stirring occasionally to keep it from scorching. If portions melt, no great harm will be done, as the melted portions will form in lumps when turned into the juice, and can be removed with a spoon. When the juice has boiled twenty minutes, turn in the sugar, which should be so hot that the hand cannot be borne in it with comfort, stirring rapidly until it is all dissolved. Let the syrup boil again for three or four minutes, then take immediately from the fire. Heat the jelly glasses (those with glass covers are best), by rolling in hot water, and place them in a shallow pan partially filled with hot water, or stand them on a wet, folded towel while filling. If it is desired to have the jelly exceptionally clear and nice, it may be turned through a bag of cheese cloth, previously wrung out of hot water, into the jelly glasses. If the covers of the glasses are not tight fitting, a piece of firm paper should be fitted over the top before putting on the cover, to make it air tight. Pint self-sealing fruit cans are excellent for storing jelly, and if it is sealed in them in the same manner as canned fruit, will keep perfectly, and obviate any supposed necessity for the use of brandied paper as a preservative measure. Label each variety, and keep in some cool, dry place. If the jelly is not sufficiently firm when first made, set the glasses in the sunshine for several days, until the jelly becomes more firm. This is better than reheating and boiling again, as it destroys less of the flavor of the fruit.


Apple Jelly.—Cut nice tart apples in quarters, but unless wormy, do not peel or core. Put into a porcelain kettle with a cup of water for each six pounds of fruit, and simmer very slowly until the apples are thoroughly cooked. Turn into a jelly-bag, and drain off the juice. If very tart, allow three fourths of a pound of sugar to each pint of juice. If sub-acid, one half pound will be sufficient. Put the sugar into the oven to heat. Clean the kettle, and boil the juice therein twenty minutes after it begins to boil thoroughly. Add the sugar, stirring until well dissolved, let it boil up once again, and remove from the fire. The juice of one lemon may be used with the apples, and a few bits of lemon rind, the yellow portion only, cooked with them to give them a flavor, if liked. One third cranberry juice makes a pleasing combination.

Apple Jelly without Sugar.—Select juicy, white fleshed, sub-acid fruit, perfectly sound and mature but not mellow. The snow apple is one of the best varieties for this purpose. Wash well, slice, and core without removing the skins, and cook as directed in the preceding recipe. Drain off the juice, and if a very clear jelly is desired, filter it through a piece of cheese cloth previously wrung out of hot water. Boil the juice,—rapidly at first, but more gently as it becomes thickened,—until of the desired consistency. The time required will vary with the quantity of juice, the shallowness of the dish in which it is boiled, and the heat employed. One hour at least, will be required for one or two quarts of juice. When the juice has become considerably evaporated, test it frequently by dipping a few drops on a plate to cool; and when it jellies sufficiently, remove at once from the fire. A much larger quantity of juice will be needed for jelly prepared in this manner than when sugar is used, about two quarts of juice being required for one half pint of jelly. Such jelly, however, has a most delicious flavor, and is excellent served with grains. Diluted with water, it forms a most pleasing beverage.

Berry and Currant Jellies.—Express the juice according to the directions already given. For strawberries, red raspberries, and currants, allow three fourths of a pound of sugar to a pint of juice. Black raspberries, if used alone, need less sugar. Strawberry and black raspberry juice make better jelly if a little lemon juice is used. The juice of one lemon to each pint of fruit juice will be needed for black raspberries. Two parts red or black raspberries with one part currants, make a better jelly than either alone. Boil the juice of strawberries, red raspberries, and currants twenty minutes, add the sugar, and finish, as previously directed. Black raspberry juice is much thicker, and requires less boiling.

Cherry Jelly.—Jelly may be prepared from cherries by using with the juice of cherries an equal amount of apple juice, which gives an additional amount of pectose to the juice and does not perceptibly change the flavor.

Crab Apple Jelly.—Choose the best Siberian crab apples; cut into pieces, but do not pare or remove seeds. Place in a porcelain-lined or granite-ware double boiler, with a cup of water for each six pounds of fruit, and let them remain on the back of the range, with the water slowly boiling, seven or eight hours. Leave in the boiler or turn into a large china bowl, and keep well covered, all night. In the morning drain off the juice and proceed as for apple jelly, using from one half to three fourths of a pound of sugar to one of juice.

Cranberry Jelly.—Scald the berries and express the juice for other jellies. Measure the juice, and allow three fourths of a pound of sugar to one of juice. Boil twenty minutes, add the sugar hot, and finish as directed for other jellies.

Grape Jelly.—Jelly from ripe grapes may be prepared in the same manner as that made from the juice of berries. Jelly from green grapes needs one half measure more of sugar.

Orange Jelly.—Express the juice of rather tart oranges, and use with it an equal quantity of the juice of sub-acid apples, prepared in the manner directed for apple jelly. For each pint of the mixed juice, use one half pound of sugar and proceed as for other jellies.

Peach Jelly.—Stone, pare, and slice the peaches, and steam them in a double boiler. Express the juice, and add for each pint of peach juice the juice of one lemon. Measure the juice and sugar, using three fourths of a pound of sugar for each pint of juice, and proceed as already directed. Jelly prepared from peaches will not be so firm as many fruit jellies, owing to the small amount of pectose contained in their composition.

A mixture of apples and peaches, in the proportion of one third of the former to two thirds of the latter, makes a firmer jelly than peaches alone. The apples should be pared and cored, so that their flavor will not interfere with that of the peaches.

Quince Jelly.—Clean thoroughly good sound fruit, and slice thin. Put into a double boiler with one cup of water for each five pounds of fruit, and cook until softened. Express the juice, and proceed as with other jellies, allowing three fourths of a pound of sugar to each pint of juice. Tart or sweet apples may be used with quinces, in equal proportions, and make a jelly of more pleasant flavor than quinces used alone. The seeds of quinces contain considerable gelatinous substance, and should be cooked with the quince for jelly making.

Plum Jelly.—Use Damsons or Green Gages. Stone, and make in the same way as for berry and other small fruit jellies.

Fruit in Jelly.—Prepare some apple jelly without sugar. When boiled sufficiently to form, add to it, as it begins to cool, some nice, stoned dates or seeded raisins. Orange jelly may be used instead of the apple jelly, if preferred.


As sauces for desserts and for summer beverages for sick or well, the pure juices of fruits are most wholesome and delicious. So useful are they and so little trouble to prepare, that no housewife should allow the fruit season to pass by without putting up a full stock. Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, currants, grapes, and cherries are especially desirable. In preparing them, select only the best fruit, ripe, but not over-ripe. Extract the juice by mashing the fruit and slowly heating in the inner cup of a double boiler, till the fruit is well scalded; too long heating will injure its color. Strain through a jelly bag and let it drain slowly for a long time, but do not squeeze, else some of the pulp will be forced through. Reheat slowly to boiling and can the same as fruit. It may be put up with or without sugar. If sugar is to be used, add it hot as for jelly, after the juice is strained and reheated to boiling. For strawberries and currants, raspberries and cherries, use one cup of sugar to a quart of juice. Black raspberries and grapes require less sugar, while blueberries and blackberries require none at all, or not more than a tablespoonful to the quart. A mixed juice, of one part currants and two parts red or black raspberries, has a very superior flavor.


Grape Juice, or Unfermented Wine.—Take twenty-five pounds of some well ripened very juicy variety of grapes, like the Concord. Pick them from the stems, wash thoroughly, and scald without the addition of water, in double boilers until the grapes burst open; cool, turn into stout jelly bags, and drain off the juice without squeezing. Let the juice stand and settle; turn off the top, leaving any sediment there may be. Add to the juice about four pounds of best granulated sugar, reheat to boiling, skim carefully, and can the same as fruit. Keep in a cool, dark place. The wine, if to be sealed in bottles, will require a corker, and the corks should first be boiled in hot water and the bottles well sterilized.

Grape Juice No. 2.—Take grapes of the best quality, picked fresh from the vines. Wash well after stripping from the stems, rejecting any imperfect fruit. Put them in a porcelain or granite fruit kettle with one pint of water to every three quarts of grapes, heat to boiling, and cook slowly for fifteen minutes or longer, skimming as needed. Turn off the juice and carefully filter it through a jelly bag, putting the seeds and skins into a separate bag to drain, as the juice from them will be less clear. Heat again to boiling, add one cupful of hot sugar to each quart of juice, and seal in sterilized cans or bottles. The juice from the skins and seeds should be canned separately.

Another Method.—Wash the grapes, and express the juice without scalding the fruit. Strain the juice three or four times through muslin or cheese cloth, allowing it to stand and settle for some time between each filtering. To every three pints of juice add one of water and two cupfuls of sugar. Heat to boiling, and keep at that temperature for fifteen minutes, skim carefully, and bottle while at boiling heat. Set away in a cool, dark place.

Fruit Syrup.—Prepare the juice expressed from strawberries, raspberries, currants, or grapes, as directed above for fruit juices. After it has come to a boil, add one pound of sugar to every quart of juice. Seal in pint cans. It may be diluted with water to form a pleasing beverage, and is especially useful in flavoring puddings and sauces.

Currant Syrup.—Boil together a pint of pure currant juice and one half pound of best white sugar for ten minutes, and can or bottle while at boiling temperature. One or two spoonfuls of the syrup in a glass of water makes a most refreshing drink. Two parts currants and one of red raspberries may be used in place of all currants, if preferred.

Orange Syrup.—Select ripe and thin-skinned fruit. To every pint of the juice add one pound of sugar, the juice of one lemon, and a little of the grated rind. Boil for fifteen minutes, removing all scum as it rises. If the syrup is not clear, strain through a piece of cheese cloth, and reheat. Can and seal while boiling hot.

Lemon Syrup.—Grate the yellow portion of the rind of six lemons, and mix with three pounds of best granulated white sugar. Add one quart of water and boil until it thickens. Strain, add the juice of the six lemons, carefully leaving out the pulp and seeds; boil ten minutes, and bottle. Diluted with two thirds cold water, it forms a delicious and quickly prepared lemonade.

Lemon Syrup No. 2.—To every pint of lemon juice add one pound of sugar; boil, skim, and seal in cans like fruit.

Blackberry Syrup.—Crush fresh, well-ripened blackberries, and add to them one fourth as much boiling water as berries; let them stand for twenty-four hours, stirring frequently. Strain, add a cup of sugar to each quart of juice, boil slowly for fifteen minutes, and can.

Fruit Ices.—Express the juice from a pint of stoned red cherries, add the juice of two lemons, one cup of sugar and a quart of cold water. Stir well for five minutes, an freeze in an ice cream freezer. Equal parts currant and red raspberry juice may be used instead of cherry, if preferred.


This method of preserving fruit, except in large establishments where it is dried by steam, is but little used, since canning is quicker and superior in every way. Success in drying fruits is dependent upon the quickness with which, they can be dried, without subjecting them to so violent a heat as to burn them or injure their flavor.

Pulpy fruits, such as berries, cherries, plums, etc., should be spread on some convenient flat surface without contact with each other, and dried in the sun under glass, or in a moderate oven. They should be turned daily. They will dry more quickly if first scalded in a hot oven. Cherries should be first stoned and cooked until well heated through and tender, then spread on plates, and the juice (boiled down to a syrup) poured over them. When dried, they will be moist. Pack in jars. Large fruit, such as apples, pears, and peaches, should be pared, divided, and the seeds or stones removed. If one has but a small quantity, the best plan is to dry by mean of artificial heat; setting it first in a hot oven until heated through, which process starts the juice and forms a film or crust over the cut surfaces, thus holding the remaining: quantity of juice inside until it becomes absorbed in the tissues. The drying process may be finished in a warming oven or some place about the range where the fruit will get only moderate heat. If a larger quantity of fruit is to be dried, after being heated in the oven, it may be placed in the hot sun out of doors, under fine wire screens, to keep off the flies; or may be suspended for the ceiling in some way, or placed upon a frame made to stand directly over the stove. As the drying proceeds, the fruit should be turned occasionally, and when dry enough, it should be thoroughly heated before it is packed away, to prevent it from getting wormy.


The nuts, or shell fruits, as they are sometimes termed, form a class of food differing greatly from the succulent fruits. They are more properly seeds, containing, in general, no starch, but are rich in fat and nitrogenous elements in the form of vegetable albumen and casein. In composition, the nuts rank high in nutritive value, but owing to the oily matter which they contain, are difficult of digestion, unless reduced to a very minutely divided state before or during mastication. The fat of nuts is similar in character to cream, and needs to be reduced to the consistency of cream to be easily digested. Those nuts, such as almonds, filberts, and pecans, which do not contain an excess of fat, are the most wholesome. Nuts should be eaten, in moderation, at the regular mealtime, and not partaken of as a tidbit between meals. It is likewise well to eat them in connection with some hard food, to insure their thorough mastication. Almonds and cream crisps thus used make a pleasing combination.

Most of the edible nuts have long been known and used as food. The Almond was highly esteemed by the ancient nations of the East, its native habitat, and is frequently referred to in sacred history. It is grown extensively in the warm, temperate regions of the Old World. There are two varieties, known as the bitter and the sweet almond. The kernel of the almond yields a fixed oil; that produced from the bitter almond is much esteemed for flavoring purposes, but it is by no means a safe article to use, at it possesses marked poisonous qualities. Fresh, sweet almonds are a nutritive, and, when properly eaten, wholesome food. The outer brown skin of the kernel is somewhat bitter, rough, and irritating to the stomach but it can be easily removed by blanching.

Blanched almonds, if baked for a short time, become quite brittle, and may be easily pulverized, and are then more easily digested. Bread made from almonds thus baked and pulverized, is considered an excellent food for persons suffering with diabetes.

Brazil Nuts are the seeds of a gigantic tree which grows wild in the valleys of the Amazon, and throughout tropical America. The case containing these seeds is a hard, woody shell, globular in form, and about the size of a man's head. It is divided into four cells, in each of which are closely packed the seeds which constitute the so-called nuts, of commerce. These seeds are exceedingly rich in oil, one pound of them producing about nine ounces of oil.

The Cocoanut is perhaps the most important of all the shell fruits, if we may judge by the variety of uses to which the nut and the tree which bears it can be put. It has been said that nature seldom produces a tree so variously useful to man as the cocoanut palm. In tropical countries, where it grows abundantly, its leaves are employed for thatching, its fibers for manufacturing many useful articles, while its ashes produce potash in abundance. The fruit is eaten raw, and in many ways is prepared for food; it also yields an oil which forms an important article of commerce. The milk of the fruit is a cooling beverage, and the woody shell of the nut answers very well for a cup from which to drink it. The saccharine juice of the tree also affords an excellent drink; and from the fresh young stems is prepared a farinaceous substance similar to sago.

The cocoanuts grow in clusters drooping from the tuft of long, fringed leaves which crown the branchless trunk of the stately palm. The cocoanut as found in commerce is the nut divested of its outer sheath, and is much smaller in size than when seen upon the tree. Picked fresh from the tree, the cocoanut consists first of a green outer covering; next of a fibrous coat, which, if the nut is mature, is hairy-like in appearance; and then of the woody shell, inside of which is the meat and milk. For household purposes the nuts are gathered while green, and before the inner shell has become solidified; the flesh is then soft like custard, and can be easily eaten with a teaspoon, while a large quantity of delicious, milk-like fluid is obtainable from each nut.

As found in our Northern markets, the cocoanut is difficult of digestion, as is likewise the prepared or desiccated cocoanut. The cocoanut contains about seventy per cent of oil.

The Chestnut is an exception to most nuts in its composition. It contains starch, and about fifteen per cent of sugar. No oil can be extracted from the chestnut. In Italy, and other parts of Southern Europe, the chestnut forms an important article of food. It is sometimes dried and ground into flour, from which bread is prepared. The chestnut is a nutritious food, but owing to the starch it contains, is more digestible when cooked. The same is true of the Acorn, which is similar in character to the chestnut. In the early ages, acorns were largely used for food, and are still used as a substitute for bread in some countries.

The Hazelnut, with the Filbert and Cobnut, varieties of the same nut obtained by cultivation, are among the most desirable nuts for general consumption.

The Walnut, probably a native of Persia, where in ancient times it was so highly valued as to be considered suited only for the table of the king, is now found very commonly with other species of the same family, the Butternut and Hickory nut, in most temperate climates.

The Pecan, a nut allied to the hickory nut, and grown extensively in the Mississippi Valley and Texas, is one of the most easily digested nuts.

The Peanut or Groundnut is the seed of an annual, cultivated extensively in most tropical and sub-tropical countries. After the plant has blossomed, the stalk which produced the flower has the peculiarity of bending down and forcing itself under ground so that the seeds mature some depth beneath the surface. When ripened, the pods containing the seeds are dug up and dried. In tropical countries the fresh nuts are largely consumed, and are thought greatly to resemble almonds in flavor. In this country they are more commonly roasted. They are less easily digested than many other nuts because of the large amount of oily matter which they contain.


To Blanch Almonds.—Shell fresh, sweet almonds, and pour boiling water over them; let them stand for two or three minutes, skim out, and drop into cold water. Press between the thumb and finger, and the kernels will readily slip out of the brown covering. Dry between clean towels. Blanched almonds served with raisins make an excellent dessert.

Boiled Chestnuts.—The large variety, knows as the Italian chestnut, is best for this purpose. Remove the shells, drop into boiling water, and boil for ten minutes, take out, drop into cold water, and rub off the brown skin. Have some clean water boiling, turn the blanched nuts into it, and cook until they can be pierced with a fork. Drain thoroughly, put into a hot dish, dry in the oven for a few minutes, and serve. A cream sauce or tomato sauce may be served with them if liked.

Mashed Chestnuts.—Prepare and boil the chestnuts as in the preceding recipe. When tender, mash through a colander with a potato masher. Season with cream and salt if desired. Serve hot.

Baked Chestnuts.—PutItalian chestnuts in the shell on a perforated tin in a rather hot oven, and bake for ten minutes, until tender. Remove the shells, and serve hot. If preferred, they can be roasted on a clean shovel or in a corn popper over a bed of coals.

To Keep Nuts Fresh.—Chestnuts and other thin-shelled nuts may be kept from becoming too dry by mixing with an equal bulk of dry sand and storing in a box or barrel in some cool place.


Who lives to eat, will die by eating.—Sel.

Fruit bears the closest relation to light. The sun pours a continuous flood of light into the fruits, and they furnish the best portion of food a human being requires for the sustenance of mind and body.—Alcott.

The famous Dr. John Hunter, one of the most eminent physicians of his time, and himself a sufferer from gout, found in apples a remedy for this very obstinate and distressing malady. He insisted that all of his patients should discard wine and roast beef, and make a free use of apples.

Do not too much for your stomach, or it will abandon you.—Sel.

The purest food is fruit, next the cereals, then the vegetables. All pure poets have abstained almost entirely from animal food. Especially should a minister take less meat when he has to write a sermon. The less meat the better sermon.—A. Bronson Alcott.

There is much false economy: those who are too poor to have seasonable fruits and vegetables, will yet have pie and pickles all the year. They cannot afford oranges, yet can afford tea and coffee daily.—Health Calendar.

What plant we in the apple tree?
Fruits that shall dwell in sunny June,
And redden in the August moon,
And drop, when gentle airs come by,
That fan the blue September sky,
While children come, with cries of glee,
And seek there when the fragrant grass
Betrays their bed to those who pass
At the foot of the apple tree—Bryant.



T he legumes, to which belong peas, beans, and lentils, are usually classed among vegetables; but in composition they differ greatly from all other vegetable foods, being characterized by a very large percentage of the nitrogenous elements, by virtue of which they possess the highest nutritive value. Indeed, when mature, they contain a larger proportion of nitrogenous matter than any other food, either animal or vegetable. In their immature state, they more nearly resemble the vegetables. On account of the excess of nitrogenous elements in their composition, the mature legumes are well adapted to serve as a substitute for animal foods, and for use in association with articles in which starch or other non-nitrogenous elements are predominant; as, for example, beans or lentils with rice, which combinations constitute the staple food of large populations in India.

The nitrogenous matter of legumes is termed legumin, or vegetable casein, and its resemblance to the animal casein of milk is very marked. The Chinese make use of this fact, and manufacture cheese from peas and beans. The legumes were largely used as food by the ancient nations of the East. They were the "pulse" upon which the Hebrew children grew so fair and strong. According to Josephus, legumes also formed the chief diet of the builders of the pyramids. They are particularly valuable as strength producers, and frequently form a considerable portion of the diet of persons in training as athletes, at the present day. Being foods possessed of such high nutritive value, the legumes are deserving of a more extended use than is generally accorded them in this country. In their mature state they are, with the exception of beans, seldom found upon the ordinary bill of fare, and beans are too generally served in a form quite difficult of digestion, being combined with large quantities of fat, or otherwise improperly prepared. Peas and lentils are in some respects superior to beans, being less liable to disagree with persons of weak digestion, and for this reason better suited to form a staple article of diet.

All the legumes are covered with a tough skin, which is in itself indigestible, and which if not broken by the cooking process or by thorough mastication afterward, renders the entire seed liable to pass through the digestive tract undigested, since the digestive fluids cannot act upon the hard skin. Even when the skins are broken, if served with the pulp, much of the nutritive material of the legume is wasted, because it is impossible for the digestive processes to free it from the cellulose material of which the skins are composed. If, then, it be desirable to obtain from the legumes the largest amount of nutriment and in the most digestible form, they must be prepared in some manner so as to reject the skins. Persons unable to use the legumes when cooked in the ordinary way, usually experience no difficulty whatever in digesting them when divested of their skins. The hindrance which even the partially broken skins are to the complete digestion of the legume, is well illustrated by the personal experiments of Prof. Strümpell, a German scientist, who found that of beans boiled with the skins on he was able to digest only 60 per cent of the nitrogenous material they contained. When, however, he reduced the same quantity of beans to a fine powder previous to cooking, he was enabled to digest 91.8 per cent of it.

The fact that the mature legumes are more digestible when prepared in some manner in which the skins are rejected, was doubtless understood in early times, for we find in a recipe of the fourteenth century, directions given "to dry legumes in an oven and remove the skins away before using them."

The green legumes which are more like a succulent vegetable are easily digested with the skins on, if the hulls are broken before being swallowed. There are also some kinds of beans which, in their mature state, from having thinner skins, are more readily digested, as the Haricot variety.

Suggestions for Cooking.—The legumes are best cooked by stewing or boiling, and when mature, require prolonged cooking to render them tender and digestible. Slow cooking, when practicable, is preferable. Dry beans and peas are more readily softened by cooking if first soaked for a time in cold water. The soaking also has a tendency to loosen the skins, so that when boiled or stewed, a considerable portion of them slip off whole, and being lighter, rise to the top during the cooking, and can be removed with a spoon; it likewise aids in removing the strong flavor characteristic of these foods, which is considered objectionable by some persons. The length of time required for soaking will depend upon the age of the seed, those from the last harvest needing only a few hours, while such as have been kept for two or more years require to be soaked twelve or twenty-four hours. For cooking, soft water is best. The mineral elements in hard water have a tendency to harden the casein, of which the legumes a largely composed, thus rendering it often very difficult to soften them.

The dry, unsoaked legumes are generally best put to cook in cold water, and after the boiling point is reached, allowed to simmer gently until done. Boiling water may be used for legumes which have been previously soaked. The amount of water required will vary somewhat with the heat employed and the age and condition of the legume, as will also the time required for cooking, but as a general rule two quarts of soft water for one pint of seeds will be quite sufficient. Salt should not be added until the seeds are nearly done, as it hinders the cooking process.


Description.—The common garden pea is probably a native of countries bordering on the Black Sea. A variety known as the gray pea (pois chiche) has been used since a very remote period. The common people of Greece and Rome, in ancient times made it an ordinary article of diet. It is said that peas were considered such a delicacy by the Romans that those who coveted public favor distributed them gratuitously to the people in order to buy votes.

Peas were introduced into England from Holland in the time of Elizabeth, and were then considered a great delicacy. History tells us that when the queen was released from her confinement in the tower, May 19, 1554, she went to Staining to perform her devotions in the church of Allhallows, after which she dined at a neighboring inn upon a meal of which the principal dish was boiled peas. A dinner of the same kind, commemorative of the event, was for a long time given annually at the same tavern.

Peas, when young, are tender and sweet, containing a considerable quantity of sugar. The nitrogenous matter entering into their composition, although less in quantity when unripe, is much more easily digested than when the seeds are mature.

When quite ripe, like other leguminous seeds, they require long cooking. When very old, no amount of boiling will soften them. When green, peas are usually cooked and served as a vegetable; in their dried state, they are put to almost every variety of use in the different countries where they are cultivated.

In the southeast of Scotland, a favorite food is made of ground peas prepared in thick cakes and called peas-bainocks.

In India and southern Europe, a variety of the pea is eaten parched or lightly roasted, or made into cakes, puddings, and sweetmeats. In Germany, in combination with other ingredients, peas are compounded into sausages, which, during the Franco-Prussian war, served as rations for the soldiers.

Dried peas for culinary use are obtainable in two forms; the split peas, which have had the tough envelope of the seed removed, and the green or Scotch peas.

The time required for cooking will vary from five to eight hours, depending upon the age of the seed and the length of time it has been soaked previous to cooking.


Stewed Split Peas.—Carefully examine and wash the peas, rejecting any imperfect or worm-eaten ones. Put into cold water and let them come to a boil; then place the stewpan back on the range and simmer gently until tender, but not mushy. Season with salt and a little cream if desired.

Peas Puree.—Soak a quart of Scotch peas in cold water over night. In the morning, drain and put them to cook in boiling water. Cook slowly until perfectly tender, allowing them to simmer very gently toward the last until they become as dry as possible. Put through a colander to render them homogeneous and remove the skins. Many of the skins will be loosened and rise to the top during the cooking, and it is well to remove these with a spoon so as to make the process of rubbing through the colander less laborious. Season with salt if desired, and a cup of thin cream. Serve hot.

Mashed Peas.—Soak and cook a quart of peas as for Peas Puree When well done, if the Scotch peas, rub through a colander to remove the skins. If the split peas are used, mash perfectly smooth with a potato masher. Season with a teaspoonful of salt and a half cup of sweet cream, if desired. Beat well together, turn into an earthen or granite-ware pudding dish, smooth the top, and bake in a moderate oven until dry and mealy throughout, and nicely browned on top. Serve hot like mashed potato, or with a tomato sauce prepared as follows: Heat a pint of strained, stewed tomato, season lightly with salt, and when boiling, thicken with a tablespoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold water.

Peas Cakes.—Cut cold mashed peas in slices half an inch in thickness, brush lightly with cream, place on perforated tins, and brown in the oven. If the peas crumble too much to slice, form them into small cakes with a spoon or knife, and brown as directed. Serve hot with or without a tomato sauce. A celery sauce prepared as directed in the chapter on Sauces, is also excellent.

Dried Green Peas.—Gather peas while young and tender and carefully dry them. When needed for use, rinse well, and put to cook in cold water. Let them simmer until tender. Season with cream the same as fresh green peas.


Description.—Some variety of the bean family has been cultivated and used for culinary purposes from time immemorial. It is frequently mentioned in Scripture; King David considered it worthy of a place in his dietary, and the prophet Ezekiel was instructed to mix it with the various grains and seeds of which he made his bread.

Among some ancient nations the bean was regarded as a type of death, and the priests of Jupiter were forbidden to eat it, touch it, or even pronounce its name. The believer in the doctrine of transmigration of souls carefully avoided this article of food, in the fear of submitting beloved friends to the ordeal of mastication.

At the present day there is scarcely a country in hot or temperate climates where the bean is not cultivated and universally appreciated, both as a green vegetable and when mature and dried.

The time required to digest boiled beans is two and one half hours, and upwards.

In their immature state, beans are prepared and cooked like other green vegetables. Dry beans may be either boiled, stewed, or baked, but whatever the method employed, it must be very slow and prolonged. Beans to be baked should first be parboiled until tender. We mention this as a precautionary measure lest some amateur cook, misled by the term "bake," should repeat the experiment of the little English maid whom we employed as cook while living in London, a few years ago. In ordering our dinner, we had quite overlooked the fact that baked beans are almost wholly an American dish, and failed to give any suggestions as to the best manner of preparing it. Left to her own resources, the poor girl did the best she knew how, but her face was full of perplexity as she placed the beans upon the table at dinner, with, "Well, ma'am, here are the beans, but I don't see how you are going to eat them." Nor did we, for she had actually baked the dry beans, and they lay there in the dish, as brown as roasted coffee berries, and as hard as bullets.

Beans to be boiled or stewed do not need parboiling, although many cooks prefer to parboil them, to lessen the strong flavor which to some persons is quite objectionable.

From one to eight hours are required to cook beans, varying with the age and variety of the seed, whether it has been soaked, and the rapidity of the cooking process.


Baked Beans.—Pick over a quart of best white beans and soak in cold water over night. Put them to cook in fresh water, and simmer gently till they are tender, but not broken. Let them be quite juicy when taken from the kettle. Season with salt and a teaspoonful of molasses. Put them in a deep crock in a slow oven. Let them bake two or three hours, or until they assume a reddish brown tinge, adding boiling water occasionally to prevent their becoming dry. Turn, into a shallow dish, and brown nicely before sending to the table.

Boiled Beans.—Pick over some fresh, dry beans carefully, and wash thoroughly. Put into boiling water and cook gently and slowly until tender, but not broken. They should be moderately juicy when done. Serve with lemon juice, or season with salt and a little cream as preferred.

The colored varieties, which are usually quite strong in flavor, are made less so by parboiling for fifteen or twenty minutes and then pouring the water off, adding more of boiling temperature, and cooking slowly until tender.

Beans Boiled in a Bag.—Soak a pint of white beans over night. When ready to cook, put them into a clean bag, tie up tightly, as the beans have already swelled, and if given space to move about with the boiling of the water will become broken and mushy. Boil three or four hours. Serve hot.

Scalloped Beans.—Soak a pint of white beans over night in cold water. When ready to cook, put into an earthen baking dish, cover well with new milk, and bake in a slow oven for eight or nine hours; refilling the dish with milk as it boils away, and taking care that the beans do not at any time get dry enough to brown over the top till they are tender. When nearly done, add salt to taste, and a half cup of cream. They may be allowed to bake till the milk is quite absorbed, and the beans dry, or may be served when rich with juice, according to taste. The beans may be parboiled in water for a half hour before beginning to bake, and the length of time thereby lessened. They should be well drained before adding the milk, however.

Stewed Beans.—Soak a quart of white beans in water over night. In the morning drain, turn hot water over them an inch deep or more, cover, and place on the range where they will only just simmer, adding boiling water if needed. When nearly tender, add salt to taste, a tablespoonful of sugar if desired, and half a cup of good sweet cream. Cook slowly an hour or more longer, but let them be full of juice when taken up, never cooked down dry and mealy.

Mashed Beans.—Soak over night in cold water, a quart of nice white beans. When ready to cook, drain, put into boiling water, and boil till perfectly tender, and the water nearly evaporated. Take up, rub through a colander to remove the skins, season with salt and a half cup of cream, put in a shallow pudding dish, smooth the top with a spoon, and brown in the oven.

Stewed Lima Beans.—Put the beans into boiling water, and cook till tender, but not till they fall to pieces. Fresh beans should cook an hour or more, and dry ones require from two to three hours unless previously soaked. They are much better to simmer slowly than to boil hard. They should be cooked nearly dry. Season with salt, and a cup of thin cream, to each pint of beans. Simmer for a few minutes after the cream is turned in. Should it happen that the beans become tender before the water is sufficiently evaporated, do not drain off the water, but add a little thicker cream, and thicken the whole with a little flour. A little flour stirred in with the cream, even when the water is nearly evaporated may be preferred by some.

Succotash.—Boil one part Lima beans and two parts sweet corn separately until both are nearly tender. Put them together, and simmer gently till done. Season with salt and sweet cream. Fresh corn and beans may be combined in the same proportions, but as the beans will be likely to require the most time for cooking, they should be put to boil first, and the corn added when the beans are about half done, unless it is exceptionally hard, in which case it must be added sooner.

Pulp Succotash.—Score the kernels of some fresh green corn with a sharp knife blade, then with the back of a knife scrape out all the pulp, leaving the hulls on the cob. Boil the pulp in milk ten or fifteen minutes, or until well done. Cook some fresh shelled beans until tender, and rub them through a colander. Put together an equal quantity of the beans thus prepared and the cooked corn pulp, season with salt and sweet cream, boil together for a few minutes, and serve. Kornlet and dried Lima beans may be made into succotash in a similar manner.


Description.—Several varieties of the lentil are cultivated for food, but all are nearly alike in composition and nutritive value. They have long been esteemed as an article of diet. That they were in ordinary use among the Hebrews is shown by the frequent mention of them in Scripture. It is thought that the red pottage of Esau was made from the red variety of this legume.

The ancient Egyptians believed that a diet of lentils would tend to make their children good tempered, cheerful, and wise, and for this reason constituted it their principal food. A gravy made of lentils is largely used with their rice by the natives of India, at the present day.

The meal which lentils yield is of great richness, and generally contains more casein than either beans or peas. The skin, however, is tough and indigestible, and being much smaller than peas, when served without rejecting the skins, they appear to be almost wholly of tough, fibrous material; hence they are of little value except for soups, purees, toasts, and other such dishes as require the rejection of the skin. Lentils have a stronger flavor than any of the other legumes, and their taste is not so generally liked until one has become accustomed to it.

Lentils are prepared and cooked in the same manner as dried peas, though they require somewhat less time for cooking.

The large dark variety is better soaked for a time previous to cooking, or parboiled for a half hour and then put into new water, to make them less strong in flavor and less dark in color.


Lentil Puree.—Cook the lentils and rub through a colander as for peas puree. Season, and serve in the same manner.

Lentils Mashed with Beans.—Lentils may be cooked and prepared in the same manner as directed for mashed peas, but they are less strong in flavor if about one third to one half cooked white beans are used with them.

Lentil Gravy with Rice.—Rub a cupful of cooked lentils through a colander to remove the skins, add one cup of rich milk, part cream if it can be afforded, and salt if desired. Heat to boiling, and thicken with a teaspoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk. Serve hot on nicely steamed or boiled rice, or with well cooked macaroni.


The men who kept alive the flame of learning and piety in the Middle Ages were mainly vegetarians.—Sir William Axon.

According to Xenophon, Cyrus, king of Persia, was brought up on a diet of water, bread, and cresses, till his fifteenth year, when honey and raisins were added; and the family names of Fabii and Lentuli were derived from their customary diet.

Thomson, in his poem, "The Seasons," written one hundred and sixty years ago, pays the following tribute to a diet composed of seeds and vegetable products:—

"With such a liberal hand has Nature flung
These seeds abroad, blown them about in winds— ...
But who their virtues can declare? who pierce,
With vision pure, into those secret stores
Of health and life and joy—the food of man,
While yet he lived in innocence and told
A length of golden years, unfleshed in blood?
A stranger to the savage arts of life—
Death, rapine, carnage, surfeit, and disease—
The lord, and not the tyrant of the world."

Most assuredly I do believe that body and mind are much influenced by the kind of food habitually depended upon. I can never stray among the village people of our windy capes without now and then coming upon a human being who looks as if he had been split, salted, and dried, like the salt fish which has built up his arid organism. If the body is modified by the food which nourishes it, the mind and character very certainly will be modified by it also. We know enough of their close connection with each other to be sure of what without any statistical observation to prove it.—Oliver Wendell Holmes.

The thoughts and feelings which the food we partake of provokes, are not remarked in common life, but they, nevertheless, have their significance. A man who daily sees cows and calves slaughtered, or who kills them himself, hogs "stuck," hens "plucked," etc., cannot possibly retain any true feeling for the sufferings of his own species....Doubtless, the majority of flesh-eaters do not reflect upon the manner in which this food comes to them, but this thoughtlessness, far from being a virtue, is the parent of many vices....How very different are the thoughts and sentiments produced by the non-flesh diet!—Gustav Von Struve.

That the popular idea that beef is necessary for strength is not a correct one, is well illustrated by Xenophon's description of the outfit of a Spartan soldier, whose dietary consisted of the very plainest and simplest vegetable fare. The complete accoutrements of the Spartan soldier, in what we would call heavy marching order, weighed seventy-five pounds, exclusive of the camp, mining, and bridge-building tools and the rations of bread and dried fruit which were issued in weekly installments, and increased the burden of the infantry soldier to ninety, ninety-five, or even to a full hundred pounds. This load was often carried at the rate of four miles an hour for twelve hours per diem, day after day, and only when in the burning deserts of southern Syria did the commander of the Grecian auxiliaries think prudent to shorten the usual length of the day's march.

DIET OF TRAINERS.—The following are a few of the restrictions and rules laid down by experienced trainers:—

Little salt. No course vegetables. No pork or veal. Two meals a day; breakfast at eight and dinner at two. No fat meat is allowed, no butter or cheese, pies or pastry.


V egetables used for culinary purposes comprise roots and tubers, as potatoes, turnips, etc.; shoots and stems, as asparagus and sea-kale; leaves and inflorescence, as spinach and cabbage; immature seeds, grains, and seed receptacles, as green peas, corn, and string-beans; and a few of the fruity products, as the tomato and the squash. Of these the tubers rank the highest in nutritive value.

Vegetables are by no means the most nutritious diet, as water enters largely into their composition; but food to supply perfectly the needs of the vital economy, must contain water and indigestible as well as nutritive elements. Thus they are dietetically of great value, since they furnish a large quantity of organic fluids. Vegetables are rich in mineral elements, and are also of service in giving bulk to food. An exclusive diet of vegetables, however, would give too great bulk, and at the same time fail to supply the proper amount of food elements. To furnish the requisite amount of nitrogenous material for one day, if potatoes alone were depended upon as food, a person would need to consume about nine pounds; of turnips, sixteen pounds; of parsnips, eighteen pounds; of cabbage, twenty-two pounds. Hence it is wise to use them in combination with other articles of diet—grains, whole-wheat bread, etc.—that supplement the qualities lacking in the vegetables.

To Select Vegetables.—All roots and tubers should be plump, free from decay, bruises, and disease, and with fresh, unshriveled skins. They are good from the time of maturing until they begin to germinate. Sprouted vegetables are unfit for food. Potato sprouts contain a poison allied to belladonna. All vegetables beginning to decay are unfit for food.

Green vegetables to be wholesome should be freshly gathered, crisp, and juicy; those which have lain long in the market are very questionable food. In Paris, a law forbids a market-man to offer for sale any green vegetable kept more than one day. The use of stale vegetables is known to have been the cause of serious illness.

Keeping Vegetables—If necessary to keep green vegetables for any length of time, do not put them in water, as that will dissolve and destroy some of their juices; but lay them in a cool, dark place,—on a stone floor is best,—and do not remove their outer leaves until needed. They should be cooked the day they are gathered, if possible. The best way to freshen those with the stems when withered is to cut off a bit of the stem or stem-end, and set only the cut part in water. The vegetables will then absorb enough water to replace what has been lost by evaporation.

Peas and beans should not be shelled until wanted. If, however, they are not used as soon as shelled, cover them with pods and put in a cool place.

Winter vegetables can be best kept wholesome by storing in a cool, dry place of even temperature, and where neither warmth, moisture, nor light is present to induce decay or germination. They should be well sorted, the bruised or decayed, rejected, and the rest put into clean bins or boxes; and should be dry and clean when stored. Vegetables soon absorb bad flavors if left near anything odorous or decomposing, and are thus rendered unwholesome. They should be looked over often, and decayed ones removed. Vegetables, to be kept fit for food, should on no account be stored in a cellar with barrels of fermenting pickle brine, soft soap, heaps of decomposing rubbish, and other similar things frequently found in the dark, damp vegetable cellars of modern houses.

Preparation and Cooking.—Most vegetables need thorough washing before cooking. Roots and tubers should be well cleaned before paring. A vegetable brush or a small whisk broom is especially serviceable for this purpose. If necessary to wash shelled beans and peas, it can best be accomplished by putting them in a colander and dipping in and out of large pans of water until clean. Spinach, lettuce, and other leaves may be cleaned the same way.

Vegetables admit of much variety in preparation for the table, and are commonly held to require the least culinary skill of any article of diet. This is a mistake. Though the usual processes employed to make vegetables palatable are simple, yet many cooks, from carelessness or lack of knowledge of their nature and composition, convert some of the most nutritious vegetables into dishes almost worthless as food or almost impossible of digestion. It requires no little care and skill to cook vegetables so that they will neither be underdone nor overdone, and so that they will retain their natural flavors.

A general rule, applicable to all vegetables to be boiled or stewed, is to cook them in as little water as may be without burning. The salts and nutrient juices are largely lost in the water; and if this needs to be drained off, much of the nutriment is apt to be wasted. Many cooks throw away the true richness, while they serve the "husks" only. Condiments and seasonings may cover insipid taste, but they cannot restore lost elements. Vegetables contain so much water in their composition that it is not necessary to add large quantities for cooking, as in the case of the grains and legumes, which have lost nearly all their moisture in the ripening process. Some vegetables are much better cooked without the addition of water.

Vegetables to be cooked by boiling should be put into boiling water; and since water loses its goodness by boiling, vegetables should be put in as soon as the boiling begins. The process of cooking should be continuous, and in general gentle heat is best. Remember that when water is boiling, the temperature is not increased by violent bubbling. Keep the cooking utensil closely covered. If water is added, let it also be boiling hot.

Vegetables not of uniform size should be so assorted that those of the same size may be cooked together, or large ones may be divided. Green vegetables retain their color best if cook rapidly. Soda is sometimes added to the water in which the vegetables are cooked, for the purpose of preserving their colors, but this practice is very harmful.

Vegetables should be cooked until they are perfectly tender but not overdone. Many cooks spoil their vegetables by cooking them too long, while quite as many more serve them in an underdone state to preserve their form. Either plan makes them less palatable, and likely to be indigestible.

Steaming or baking is preferable for most vegetables, because their finer flavors are more easily retained, and their food value suffers less diminution. Particularly is this true of tubers.

The time required for cooking depends much upon the age and freshness of the vegetables, as well as the method of cooking employed. Wilted vegetables require a longer time for cooking than fresh ones.

Time Required for Cooking.—The following is the approximate length of time required for cooking some of the more commonly used vegetables:—

Potatoes, baked, 30 to 45 minutes.

Potatoes, steamed, 20 to 40 minutes.

Potatoes, boiled (in jackets), 20 to 25 minutes after the water is fairly boiling.

Potatoes, pared, about 20 minutes if of medium size; if very large, they will require from 25 to 45 minutes.

Green corn, young, from 15 to 20 minutes.

Peas, 25 to 30 minutes.

Asparagus, 15 to 20 minutes, young; 30 to 50 if old.

Tomatoes, 1 to 2 hours.

String beans and shelled beans, 45 to 60 minutes or longer.

Beets, boiled, 1 hour if young; old, 3 to 5 hours.

Beets, baked, 3 to 6 hours. Carrots, 1 to 2 hours.

Parsnips, 45 minutes, young; old, 1 to 2 hours.

Turnips, young, 45 minutes; old, 1-1/2 to 2 hours.

Winter squash, 1 hour. Cabbage, young, 1 hour; old, 2 to 3 hours.

Vegetable oysters, 1 to 2 hours.

Celery, 20 to 30 minutes.

Spinach, 20 to 60 minutes or more.

Cauliflower, 20 to 40 minutes.

Summer squash, 20 to 60 minutes.

If vegetables after being cooked cannot be served at once, dish them up as soon as done, and place the dishes in a bain marie or in pans of hot water, where they will keep of even temperature, but not boil. Vegetables are never so good after standing, but they spoil less kept in this way than any other. The water in the pans should be of equal depth with the food in the dishes. Stewed vegetables and others prepared with a sauce, may, when cold, be reheated in a similar manner.

Bain Marie.

Bain Marie.

If salt is to be used to season, one third of a teaspoonful for each pint of cooked vegetables is an ample quantity.


Description.—The potato, a plant of the order Solanaceae, is supposed to be indigenous to South America. Probably it was introduced into Europe by the Spaniards early in the sixteenth century, but cultivated only as a curiosity. To Sir Walter Raleigh, however, is usually given the credit of its introduction as a food, he having imported it from Virginia to Ireland in 1586, where its valuable nutritive qualities were first appreciated. The potato has so long constituted the staple article of diet in Ireland, that it has come to be commonly, though incorrectly, known as the Irish potato.

The edible portion of the plant is the tuber, a thick, fleshy mass or enlarged portion of an underground stem, having upon its surface a number of little buds, or "eyes," each capable of independent growth. The tuber is made up of little cells filled with starch granules, surrounded and permeated with a watery fluid containing a small percentage of the albuminous or nitrogenous elements. In cooking, heat coagulates the albumen within and between the cells, while the starch granules absorb the watery portion, swell, and distend the cells. The cohesion between these is also destroyed, and they easily separate. When these changes are complete, the potato becomes a loose, farinaceous mass, or "mealy." When, however, the liquid portion is not wholly absorbed, and the cells are but imperfectly separated, the potato appears waxen, watery, or soggy. In a mealy state the potato is easily digested; but when waxy or water-soaked, it is exceedingly trying to the digestive powers.

It is obvious, then, that the great desideratum in cooking the potato, is to promote the expansion and separation of its cells; in other words, to render it mealy. Young potatoes are always waxy, and consequently less wholesome than ripe ones. Potatoes which have been frozen and allowed to thaw quickly are much sweeter and more watery, because in thawing the starch changes into sugar. Frozen potatoes should be thawed in cold water and cooked at once, or kept frozen until ready for use.

Preparation and Cooking.—Always pare potatoes very thin. Much of the most nutritious part of the tuber lies next its outer covering; so care should be taken to waste as little as possible. Potatoes cooked with the skins on are undoubtedly better than those pared. The chief mineral element contained in the potato is potash, an important constituent of the blood. Potash salts are freely soluble in water, and when the skin is removed, there is nothing to prevent these salts from escaping into the water in which the potato is boiled. If the potato is cooked in its "jacket," the skin, which does not in general burst open until the potato is nearly done, serves to keep this valuable element largely inside the potato while cooking. For the same reason it is better not to pare potatoes and put them in water to soak over night, as many cooks are in the habit of doing, to have them in readiness for cooking for breakfast.

Potatoes to be pared should be first washed and dried. It is a good plan to wash quite a quantity at one time, to be used as needed. After paring, drop at once into cold water and rinse them thoroughly. It is a careless habit to allow pared potatoes to fall among the skins, as in this way they become stained, and appear black and discolored after cooking. Scrubbing with a vegetable brush is by far the best means for cleaning potatoes to be cooked with the skins on.

When boiled in their skins, the waste, according to Letheby, is about three per cent, while without them it is not less than fourteen per cent, or more than two ounces in every pound. Potatoes boiled without skins should be cooked very gently.

Steaming, roasting, and baking are much better methods for cooking potatoes than boiling, for reasons already given. Very old potatoes are best stewed or mashed. When withered or wilted, they are freshened by standing in cold water for an hour or so before cooking. If diseased or badly sprouted, potatoes are wholly unfit for food.


Boiled Potatoes (in Jackets).—Choose potatoes of uniform size, free from specks. Wash and scrub them well with a coarse cloth or brush; dig out all eyes and rinse in cold water; cook in just enough water to prevent burning, till easily pierced with a fork, not till they have burst the skin and fallen in pieces. Drain thoroughly, take out the potatoes, and place them in the oven for five minutes, or place the kettle back on the range; remove the skins, and cover with a cloth to absorb all moisture, and let them steam three or four minutes. By either method they will be dry and mealy. In removing the skins, draw them off without cutting the potatoes.

Boiled Potatoes (without Skins).—Pare very thin, and wash clean. If not of an equal size, cut the larger potatoes in two. Cook in only sufficient water to prevent burning until a fork will easily pierce their center; drain thoroughly, place the kettle back on the range, cover with a cloth to absorb the moisture, and let them dry four or five minutes. Shake the kettle several times while they are drying, to make them floury.

Steamed Potatoes.—Potatoes may be steamed either with or without the skin. Only mature potatoes can be steamed. Prepare as for boiling; place in a steamer, over boiling water, and steam until tender. If water is needed to replenish, let it always be boiling hot, and not allow the potatoes to stop steaming, or they will be watery. When done, uncover, remove the potatoes to the oven, and let them dry a few minutes. If peeled before steaming, shake the steamer occasionally, to make them floury.

Roasted Potatoes.—Potatoes are much more rich and mealy roasted than cooked in any other way. Wash them very carefully, dry with a cloth, and wrap in tissue paper; bury in ashes not too hot, then cover with coals and roast until tender. The coals will need renewing occasionally, unless the roasting is done very close to the main fire.

Baked Potatoes.—Choose large, smooth potatoes as near the same size as possible; wash and scrub with a brush until perfectly clean; dry with a cloth, and bake in a moderately hot oven until a fork will easily pierce them, or until they yield to pressure between the fingers. They are better turned about occasionally. In a slow oven the skins become hardened and thickened, and much of the most nutritious portion is wasted. When done, press each one till it bursts slightly, as that will allow the steam to escape, and prevent the potatoes from becoming soggy. They should be served at once, in a folded napkin placed in a hot dish. Cold baked potatoes may be warmed over by rebaking, if of good quality and not overdone the first time.

Stuffed Potato.—Prepare and bake large potatoes of equal size, as directed in the preceding recipe. When done, cut them evenly three fourths of an inch from the end, and scrape out the inside, taking care not to break the skins. Season the potato with salt and a little thick sweet cream, being careful not to have it too moist, and beat thoroughly with a fork until light; refill the skins with the seasoned potato, fit the broken portions together, and reheat in the oven. When hot throughout, wrap the potatoes in squares of white tissue paper fringed at both ends. Twist the ends of the paper lightly together above the fringe, and stand the potatoes in a vegetable dish with the cut end uppermost. When served, the potatoes are held in the hand, one end of the paper untwisted, the top of the potato removed, and the contents eaten with a fork or spoon.

Stuffed Potatoes No. 2.—Prepare large, smooth potatoes, bake until tender, and cut them in halves; scrape out the inside carefully, so as not to break the skins; mash smoothly, mix thoroughly with one third freshly prepared cottage cheese; season with nice sweet cream, and salt if desired. Fill the shells with the mixture, place cut side uppermost, in a pudding dish, and brown in the oven.

Mashed Potatoes.—Peel and slice potatoes enough to make two quarts; put into boiling water and cook until perfectly tender, but not much broken; drain, add salt to taste; turn into a hot earthen dish, and set in the oven for a few moments to dry. Break up the potatoes with a silver fork; add nearly a cup of cream, and beat hard at least five minutes till light and creamy; serve at once, or they will become heavy. If preferred, the potatoes may be rubbed through a hot sieve into a hot plate, or mashed with a potato beetle, but they are less light and flaky when mashed with a beetle. If cream for seasoning is not obtainable, a well-beaten egg makes a very good substitute. Use in the proportion of one egg to about five potatoes. For mashed potatoes, if all utensils and ingredients are first heated, the result will be much better.

New Potatoes.—When potatoes are young and freshly gathered, the skins are easiest removed by taking each one in a coarse cloth and rubbing it; a little coarse salt used in the cloth will be found serviceable for this purpose. If almost ripe, scrape with a blunt knife, wash very clean, and rinse in cold water. Boiling is the best method of cooking; new potatoes are not good steamed. Use only sufficient water to cover, and boil till tender. Drain thoroughly, cover closely with a clean cloth, and dry before serving.

Cracked Potatoes.—Prepare and boil new potatoes as in the preceding recipe, and when ready to serve, crack each by pressing lightly upon it with the back of a spoon, lay them in a hot dish, salt to taste, and pour over them a cup of hot thin cream or rich milk.

Creamed Potatoes.—Take rather small, new potatoes and wash well; rub off all the skins; cut in halves, or if quite large, quarter them. Put a pint of divided potatoes into a broad-bottomed, shallow saucepan; pour over them a cup of thin sweet cream, add salt if desired; heat just to the boiling point, then allow them to simmer gently till perfectly tender, tossing them occasionally in the stewpan to prevent their burning on the bottom. Serve hot.

Scalloped Potatoes.—Pare the potatoes and slice thin; put them in layers in an earthen pudding dish, dredge each layer lightly with flour, and salt, and pour over all enough good, rich milk to cover well. Cover, and bake rather slowly till tender, removing the cover just long enough before the potatoes are done, to brown nicely. If preferred, a little less milk may be used, and a cup of thin cream added when the potatoes are nearly done.

Stewed Potato.—Pare the potatoes and slice rather thin. Put into boiling water, and cook until nearly tender, but not broken. Have some rich milk boiling in the inner dish of a double boiler, add to it a little salt, then stir in for each pint of milk a heaping teaspoonful of corn starch or rice flour, rubbed smooth in a little cold milk. Stir until it thickens. Drain the potatoes, turn them into the hot sauce, put the dish in the outer boiler, and cook for a half hour or longer. Cold boiled potatoes may be sliced and used in the same way. Cold baked potatoes sliced and stewed thus for an hour or more, make a particularly appetizing dish.

Potatoes Stewed with Celery.—Pare and slice the potatoes, and put them into a stewpan with two or three tablespoonfuls of minced celery. Use only the white part of the celery and mince it finely. Cover the whole with milk sufficient to cook and prevent burning, and stew until tender. Season with cream and salt.

Potato Snowballs.—Cut largo potatoes into quarters; if small, leave them undivided; boil in just enough water to cover. When tender, drain and dry in the usual way. Take up two or three pieces at a time in a strong, clean cloth, and press them compactly together in the shape of balls. Serve in a folded napkin on a hot dish.

Potato Cakes.—Make nicely seasoned, cold mashed potato into small round cakes about one half an inch thick. Put them on a baking tin, brush them over with sweet cream, and bake in a hot oven till golden brown.

Potato Cakes with Egg.—Bake nice potatoes till perfectly tender; peel, mash thoroughly, and to each pint allow the yolks of two eggs which have been boiled until mealy, then rubbed perfectly smooth through a fine wire sieve, and one half cup of rich milk. Add salt to taste, mix all well together, form the potato into small cakes, place them on oiled tins, and brown ten or fifteen minutes in the oven.

Potato Puff.—Mix a pint of mashed potato (cold is just as good if free from lumps) with a half cup of cream and the well-beaten yolk of an egg; salt to taste and beat till smooth; lastly, stir in the white of the egg beaten to a stiff froth. Pile up in a rocky form on a bright tin dish, and bake in a quick oven until heated throughout and lightly browned. Serve at once.

Browned Potatoes.—Slice cold potatoes evenly, place them on an oiled tin, and brown in a very quick oven; or slice lengthwise and lay on a wire broiler or bread-toaster, and brown over hot coals. Sprinkle with a little salt if desired, and serve hot with sweet cream as dressing.

Ornamental Potatoes.—No vegetable can be made palatable in so many ways as the potato, and few can be arranged in such pretty shapes. Mashed potatoes made moist with cream, can easily be made into cones, pyramids, or mounds. Cold mashed potatoes may be cut into many fancy shapes with a cookie-cutter, wet with a little cold water, and browned in the oven.

Mounds of potatoes are very pretty smoothed and strewn with well-cooked vermicelli broken into small bits, and then lightly browned in the oven.

Scoring the top of a dish of mashed potato deeply in triangles, stars, and crosses, with the back of a carving knife, and then browning lightly, gives a very pretty effect.

Broiled Potato.—Mashed potatoes, if packed firmly while warm into a sheet-iron bread tin which has been dipped in cold water, may be cut into slices when cold, brushed with cream, and browned on a broiler over hot coals.

Warmed-over Potatoes.—Cut cold boiled potatoes into very thin slices; heat a little cream to boiling in a saucepan; add the potato, season lightly with salt if desired, and cook until the cream is absorbed, stirring occasionally so as to prevent scorching or breaking the slices.

Vegetable Hash.—With one quart finely sliced potato, chop one carrot, one red beet, one white turnip, all boiled, also one or two stalks of celery. Put all together in a stewpan, cover closely, and set in the oven; when hot, pour over them a cup of boiling cream, stir well together, and serve hot.


Description.—The sweet potato is a native of the Malayan Archipelago, where it formerly grew wild; thence it was taken to Spain, and from Spain to England and other parts of the globe. It was largely used in Europe as a delicacy on the tables of the rich before the introduction of the common potato, which has now taken its place and likewise its name. The sweet potato is the article referred as potato by Shakespeare and other English writers, previous to the middle of the seventeenth century.

Preparation and Cooking.—What has been said in reference to the common potato, is generally applicable to the sweet potato; it may be prepared and cooked in nearly all the ways of the Irish potato.

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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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 rich milk. Mix and bake in a pudding dish until lightly browned.

Boiled Cabbage.—Carefully clean a nice head of cabbage, divide into halves, and with a sharp knife slice very thin, cutting from the center of the head outward. Put into boiling water, cover closely, and cook rapidly until tender; then turn into a colander and drain, pressing gently with the back of a plate. Return to the kettle, add salt to taste, and sufficient sweet cream to moisten well, heat through if at all cooled, dish, and serve at once. If preferred, the cream may be omitted, and the cabbage served with tomato sauce or lemon juice as a dressing.

Cabbage and Tomatoes.—Boil finely chopped cabbage in as little water as possible. When tender, add half the quantity of hot stewed tomatoes, boil together for a few minutes, being careful to avoid burning, season with salt if desired, and serve. If preferred, a little sweet cream may be added just before serving.

Cabbage Celery.—A firm, crisp head of cabbage cut in slices half an inch or an inch thick, and then again into pieces four or five inches long and two or three inches wide, makes a quite appetizing substitute for celery.

Cabbage Hash.—Chop fine, equal parts of cold boiled potatoes and boiled cabbage, and season with salt. To each quart of the mixture add one half or three fourths of a cup of thin cream; mix well and boil till well heated.

Chopped Cabbage or Cabbage Salad.—Take one pint of finely chopped cabbage; pour over it a dressing made of three tablespoonfuls of lemon juice, two tablespoonfuls of sugar, and a half cup of whipped cream, thoroughly beaten together in the order named; or serve with sugar and diluted lemon juice.

Mashed Cabbage.—Cut a fine head of cabbage into quarters, and cook until tender. A half hour before it is done, drop in three good-sized potatoes. When done, take all up in a colander together, press out the water, and mash very fine. Season with cream, and salt if desired.

Stewed Cabbage. Chop nice cabbage quite fine, and put it into boiling water, letting it boil twenty minutes. Turn into a colander and drain thoroughly; return to the kettle, cover with milk, and let it boil till perfectly tender; season with salt and cream to taste. The beaten yolk of an egg, stirred in with the cream, is considered an improvement by some.


Description.—These vegetables are botanically allied to the cabbage, and are similar in composition. They are entirely the product of cultivation, and constitute the inflorescence of the plant, which horticultural art has made to grow into a compact head of white color in the cauliflower, and of varying shades of buff, green, and purple in the broccoli. There is very little difference between the two aside from the color, and they are treated alike for culinary purposes. They were known to the Greeks and Romans, and highly appreciated by connoisseurs. They are not as nutritious as the cabbage, but have a more delicate and agreeable flavor.

Preparation and Cooking.—The leaves should be green and fresh, and the heads of cauliflower creamy white; when there are dark spots, it is wilted. The color of broccoli will depend upon the variety, but the head should be firm, with no discolorations. To prepare, pick off the outside leaves, cut the stalk squarely across, about two inches below the flower, and if very thick, split and wash thoroughly in several waters; or better still, hold it under the faucet, flower downward, and allow a constant stream of water to fall over it for several minutes; then place top downward in a pan of lukewarm salted water, to drive out any insects which may be hidden in it; examine carefully for worms just the color of the stalk; tie in a net (mosquito netting, say) to prevent breaking, or place the cauliflower on a plate in a steamer, and boil, or steam, as is most convenient. The time required for cooking will vary from twenty to forty minutes.


(The recipes given are applicable to both broccoli and cauliflower.)

Boiled Cauliflower.—Prepare, divide into neat branches, and tie securely in a net. Put into boiling milk and water, equal quantities, and cook until the main stalks are tender. Boil rapidly the first five minutes, afterward more moderately, to prevent the flower from becoming done before the stalks. Serve on a hot dish with cream sauce or diluted lemon juice.

Browned Cauliflower.—Beat together two eggs, a little salt, four tablespoonfuls of sweet cream, and a small quantity of grated bread crumbs well moistened with a little milk, till of the consistency of batter. Steam the cauliflower until tender, separate it into small bunches, dip each top in the mixture, and place in nice order in a pudding dish; put in the oven and brown.

Cauliflower with Egg Sauce.—Steam the cauliflower until tender, separate into small portions, dish, and serve with an egg sauce prepared as directed for parsnips on page 244.

Cauliflower with Tomato Sauce.—Boil or steam the cauliflower until tender. In another dish prepare a sauce with a pint of strained stewed smooth in a little water, and salted to taste. When the cauliflower is tender, dish, and pour over it the hot tomato sauce. If preferred, a tablespoonful of thick sweet cream may be added to the sauce before using.

Stewed Cauliflower.—Boil in as little water as possible, or steam until tender; separate into small portions, add milk, cream and salt to taste; stew together for a few minutes, and serve.

Scolloped Cauliflower.—Prepare the cauliflower, and steam or boil until tender. If boiled, use equal quantities of milk and water. Separate into bunches of equal size, place in a pudding dish, cover with a white or cream sauce, sprinkle with grated bread crumbs, and brown in the oven.


Description.—This plant is supposed to be a native of western Arabia. There are several varieties which are prepared and served as "greens." Spinach is largely composed of water. It is considered a wholesome vegetable, with slightly laxative properties.

Preparation and Cooking.—Use only tender plants or the tender leaves of the older stalks, and be sure to have enough, as spinach shrinks greatly. A peck is not too much for a family of four or five. Pick it over very carefully, trim off the roots and decayed leaves, and all tough, stringy stalks, and the coarse fibers of the leaves, as those will not cook tender until the leaves are overdone. Wash in several waters, lifting grit. Shake each bunch well. Spinach is best cooked in its own juices; this may be best accomplished by cooking it in a double boiler, or if placed in a pot and slowly heated, it will however, be stirred frequently at first, to prevent burning; cover closely and cook until tender. The time required will vary from twenty minutes to half an hour or more. If water is used in the cooking, have a half kettleful boiling when the spinach is put in, and continue to boil rapidly until the leaves are perfectly tender; then drain in a colander, press with the back of a plate to extract all water, chop very fine, and either serve with lemon juice as a dressing, or add a half cup of sweet cream with or without a teaspoonful of sugar. Boil up once, stirring constantly, and serve very hot. A garnish of sliced boiled eggs is often employed with this vegetable.


Description.—The common celery is a native of Great Britain. In its wild state it has a strong, disagreeable taste and smell, and is known as smallage. By cultivation it becomes more mild and sweet. It is usually eaten uncooked as a salad herb, or introduced into soups as a flavouring. In its raw state, it is difficult of digestion.

Celery from the market may be kept fresh for some time by wrapping the bunches in brown paper, sprinkling them with water, then wrapping in a damp cloth and putting in some cool, dark place.


Celery Salad.—Break the stems apart, cut off all green portions, and after washing well put in cold water for an hour or so before serving.

Stewed Celery.—Cut the tender inner parts of celery heads into pieces about a finger long. The outer and more fibrous stalks may be saved to season soups. Put in a stewpan, and add sufficient water to cover; then cover the pan closely, and set it where it will just simmer for an hour, or until the celery is perfectly tender. When cooked, add a pint of rich milk, part cream if you have it, salt to taste, and when boiling, stir in a tablespoon of flour rubbed smooth in a little milk. Boil up once and serve.

Stewed Celery No. 2.—Cut the white part of fine heads of celery into small pieces, blanch in boiling water, turn into a colander, and drain. Heat a cup and a half of milk to boiling in a stewpan; add the celery, and stew gently until tender. Remove the celery with a skimmer, and stir into the milk the beaten yolks of two eggs and one half cup of cream. Cook until thickened; pour over the celery, and serve.

Celery with Tomato Sauce.—Prepare the celery as in the preceding recipe, and cook until tender in a small quantity of boiling water. Drain in a colander, and for three cups of stewed celery prepare a sauce with a pint of strained stewed tomato, heated to boiling and thickened with a tablespoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold water. If desired, add a half cup of thin cream. Turn over the celery, and serve hot.

Celery and Potato Hash.—To three cups of cold boiled or baked potato, chopped rather fine, add one cup of cooked celery, minced. Put season. Heat to boiling, tossing and stirring so that the whole will be heated throughout, and serve hot.


Description.—The asparagus is a native of Europe, and in its wild state is a sea-coast plant. The young shoots form the edible portion. The plant was known to the ancient Greeks and Romans, who not only used it as a table delicacy but considered it very useful in the treatment of internal diseases. Roman cooks provided themselves with a supply of the vegetable for winter use by cutting fine heads and drying them. When wanted, they were put into hot water and gently cooked.

The asparagus is remarkable as containing a crystalline alkaloid called asparagin, which is thought to possess diuretic properties.

Preparation and Cooking.—Select fresh and tender asparagus. Those versed in its cultivation, assert that it should be cut at least three times a week, and barely to the ground. If it is necessary to keep the bunches for some time before cooking, stand them, tops uppermost, in water about one half inch deep, in the cellar or other cool place. Clean each stalk separately by swashing back and forth in a pan of cold water till perfectly free from sand, then break off all the tough portions, cut in equal lengths, tie in bunches of half a dozen or more with soft tape, drop into boiling water barely sufficient to cover, and simmer gently until perfectly tender.

If the asparagus is to be stewed, break: (not cut) into small pieces; when it will not snap off quickly, the stalk is too tough for use.

Asparagus must be taken from the water just as soon as tender, while yet firm in appearance. If boiled soft, it loses its flavor and is uninviting. It is a good plan when it is to be divided before cooking, if the stalks are not perfectly tender, to boil the hardest portions first. Asparagus cooked in bunches is well done, if, when held by the thick end in a horizontal position between the fingers, it only bends lightly and does not fall heavily down.

The time required for boiling asparagus depends upon its freshness and age. Fresh, tender asparagus cooks in a very few minutes, so quickly, indeed, that the Roman emperor Augustus, intimating that any affair must be concluded without delay, was accustomed to say, "Let that be done quicker than you can cook asparagus." Fifteen or twenty minutes will suffice if young and fresh; if old, from thirty to fifty minutes will be required.


Asparagus and Peas.—Asparagus and green peas make a nice dish served together, and if of proportionate age, require the same length of time to cook. Wash the asparagus, shell and look over the peas, put together into boiling water, cook, and serve as directed for stewed asparagus.

Asparagus Points.—Cut of enough heads in two-inch lengths to make three pints. Put into boiling water just sufficient to cover. When tender, drain off the water, add a half cup of cream, and salt if desired. Serve at once.

Asparagus on Toast.—Cook the asparagus in bunches, and when tender, drain and place on slices of nicely browned toast moistened in the asparagus liquor. Pour over all a cream sauce prepared as directed below.

Asparagus with Cream Sauce.—Thoroughly wash, tie in small bunches, and put into boiling water; boil till perfectly tender. Drain thoroughly, untie the bunches, place the stalks all the same way upon a hot plate, with a dressing prepared as follows: Let a pint of sweet cream (about six hours old is best) come to the boiling point, and stir into it salt to taste and a level tablespoonful of flour rubbed smooth with a little cold cream.

Asparagus with Egg Sauce.—Prepare and cook asparagus as directed above. When tender, drain thoroughly, and serve on a hot dish or on slices of nicely browned toast, with an egg sauce prepared in the following manner: Heat a half cup of rich milk to boiling, add salt, and turn into it very slowly the well-beaten yolk of an egg, stirring constantly at the same time. Let the whole just thicken, and remove from the fire at once.

Stewed Asparagus.—Wash, break into inch pieces, simmer till tender in water just to cover, add sufficient rich milk, part cream if convenient, to make a gravy, thicken slightly with flour, a teaspoonful to a pint of milk; add salt if desired, boil up together once, and serve.


Description.—This plant, a native of Britain, and much esteemed as a vegetable in England and on the Continent, is also in its wild state a sea-coast plant. When properly cooked, it is nutritious and easy of digestion. In appearance and flavor it greatly resembles asparagus, and the suggestions for cooking and recipes given for that vegetable are applicable to sea-kale.


Description.—These two vegetables, although wholly different, the one being the leaf of a plant, the other the root, are both so commonly served as relishes that we will speak of them together. Both have long been known and used. Wild lettuce is said to be the bitter herb which the Hebrews ate with the Paschal lamb. The ancient Greek and Roman epicures valued lettuce highly, and bestowed great care upon its cultivation, in some instances watering the plants with sweet wine instead of water, in order to communicate to them a delicate perfume and flavor. The common garden lettuce of the present day is a hardy plant, which supplies an agreeable, digestible, and, when served with a wholesome dressing, unobjectionable salad.

The common radish is supposed to be indigenous to China. Ancient writers on foods mention the radish as used by the early Greeks and Romans, who fancied that at the end of three years its seed would produce cabbages. They had also the singular custom of making the radish the ignominious projectile with which in times of tumult the mob pursued persons whose political opinions had made them obnoxious. When quiet was restored, the disgraced vegetable was boiled and eaten with oil and vinegar. Common garden radishes are of different shapes and of various colors on the outside, there being black, violet, red, and white radishes. The inside portion of all, however, is white. They are sometimes cooked, but more commonly served raw. A dish of crisp, coral radishes adds beauty to the appearance of the table, but they are not possessed of a high nutritive value, being very similar to the turnip in composition, and unless very young, tender, and when eaten thoroughly masticated, are quite difficult of digestion.


Lettuce.—Wash well, put into cold water, and set on ice or on the cellar bottom for an hour or more before using. Dry the leaves with a soft towel and use whole or tear into convenient pieces with a silver fork; never cut with a knife. Serve with a dressing prepared of equal quantities of lemon juice and sugar, diluted with a little ice water; or, with a dressing of cream and sugar, in the proportion of three or four tablespoonfuls of thin cream to a teaspoonful of sugar. The dressing may be prepared, and after the sugar is dissolved, a very little lemon juice (just enough to thicken the cream slightly, but not sufficient to curdle it) may be added if desired.

Radishes.—Wash thoroughly young and tender radishes, and arrange in a glass dish with the taper ends meeting. Scatter bits of cracked ice among them. An inch of the stem, if left on, serve as a convenience in handling.


Description.—The vegetable marrow (sometimes called cymling) is thought to be a variety of the common gourd, from which also the pumpkin and winter squash appear to have been derived. It is easily digested, but on account of the abundance of water in its composition, its nutritive value is very low.

Preparation and Cooking.—When very young, most varieties need no preparation for cooking, aside from washing thoroughly. After cooking, the skin can be easily rubbed off and the seeds removed. If more mature, pare thinly, and if large, divide into halves or quarters and scoop out the seeds. Summer squashes are better steamed than boiled. If boiled, they should be cooked in so little water that it will be quite evaporated when they are tender. From twenty to sixty minutes will be required for cooking.


Mashed Squash.—Wash, peel, remove seeds, and steam until tender. Place the squash in a clean cloth, mash thoroughly, squeeze until the squash is quite dry, or rub through a fine colander and afterward simmer until neatly dry; season with cream, and a little salt if desired, and heat again before serving. A teaspoonful of sugar may be added with the cream, if desired.

Squash with Egg Sauce.—Prepare, steam till tender, cut into pieces, and serve with an egg sauce made the same as directed for asparagus, page 256.

Stewed Squash.—Prepare, cut into pieces, and stew until tender in a small quantity of boiling water; drain, pressing out all the water; serve on toast with cream or white sauce. Or, divide in quarters, remove the seeds, cook in a double boiler, in its own juices, which when done may be thickened with a little flour. Season with salt if desired, and serve hot.


The winter squash and pumpkin are allied in nature to the summer squash.

Preparation and Cooking.—Select squashes of a firm texture, wash, break in pieces with a hatchet if hard-shell, or if the shell is soft, divide with a knife; remove all seeds, and boil, stew, steam, or bake, as preferred.

To boil or steam, from thirty minutes to one hour's time will be needed; to bake, one to two hours.


Baked Squash..—The hard-shell varieties are best for baking. Wash, divide, and lay, shells downward, on the top grate of the oven, or place in a shallow baking dish with a little boiling water. Boil until tender, serve in the shell, or scrape out the soft part, mash and serve with two largo tablespoonful of cream to a pint of squash. If preferred, the skins may be removed before baking, and the squash served the same as sweet potato, for which it makes a good substitute.

Steamed Squash.—Prepare the squash, and steam until tender. Mash and season as for baked squash.


Description.—When our forefathers came to this country, they found the pumpkin growing in the Indian cornfields, and at once made use of it. Although as food it did not supply what its handsome exterior promised, yet in the absence of other fruits and relishes, of which the exigencies of a new country deprived them, they soon found the pumpkin quite palatable; and the taste, cultivated through necessity, has been handed down through generations, until the pumpkin stewed and baked in pies, has become an established favorite.


Baked Pumpkin.—Wash the pumpkin well on the outside, divide into quarters if small, into sixths or eighths if large; remove the seeds but not the rind. Bake as directed for squash. Serve in the rind, dishing it out by spoonfuls.

Stewed Pumpkin—Select a good, ripe pumpkin, and cut in halves; remove the seeds, slice halfway around, pare, cut into inch pieces, put over the fire in a kettle containing a small quantity of boiling water, and stew gently, stirring frequently until it breaks to pieces. Cool, rub through a colander, and place where it will just simmer, but not burn, until the water is all evaporated and the pumpkin dry. Pumpkin for pies is much richer baked like squash, and rubbed through a colander after the skin has been removed.

Dried Pumpkin.—Pumpkin may be dried and kept for future use. The best way is first to cut and stew the pumpkin, then spread on plates, and dry quickly in the oven. Dried in this manner, it is easily softened, when needed, by soaking in a small quantity of water, and is considered nearly as good as that freshly stewed.


Description.—The tomato, or "love apple," as it was called in the early part of the century, is a native of South America and Mexico. It was formerly regarded as poisonous, and though often planted and prized as a curiosity in the flower garden, it has only within the last half century come to be considered as a wholesome article of diet. Botanically, it is allied to the potato. It is an acid fruit, largely composed of water, and hence of low nutritive value; but it is justly esteemed as a relish, and is very serviceable to the cook in the preparation of soups and various mixed dishes.

Preparation and Cooking.—Tomatoes to be served in an uncooked state should be perfectly ripe and fresh. The medium-sized, smooth ones are the best. To peel, pour scalding water over them; let them remain for half a minute, plunge into cold water, allow them to cool, when the skins can be easily rubbed off. Tomatoes should always be cooked in porcelain or granite ware; iron makes them look dark, and being slightly acid in character, they are not wholesome cooked in tin vessels.

Tomatoes require cooking a long time; one hour is needed, and two are better.


Baked Tomatoes.—Fill a pudding dish two thirds full of stewed tomatoes; season with salt, and sprinkle grated crumbs of good whole-wheat or Graham bread over it until the top looks dry. Brown in the oven, and serve with a cream dressing.

Baked Tomatoes No. 2. Wash and wipe a quantity of smooth, even-sized tomatoes; remove the stems with a sharp-pointed knife. Arrange on an earthen pudding or pie dish, and bake whole in a moderate oven. Serve with cream.

Scalloped Tomatoes.—Take a pint of stewed tomatoes, which have been rubbed through a colander, thicken with one and one fourth cups of lightly picked crumbs of Graham or whole-wheat bread, or a sufficient quantity to make it quite thick, add salt if desired, and a half cup of sweet cream, mix well, and bake for twenty minutes. Or, fill a pudding dish with alternate layers of peeled and sliced tomatoes and bread crumbs, letting the topmost layer be of tomatoes. Cover, and bake in a moderate oven for an hour or longer, according to depth. Uncover, and brown for ten or fifteen minutes.

Stewed Corn and Tomatoes.—Boil dried or fresh corn until perfectly tender, add to each cup of corn two cups of stewed, strained tomatoes, either canned or freshly cooked. Salt to taste, boil together for five or ten minutes, and serve plain or with a little cream added.

Tomato Gravy.—Heat to boiling one pint of strained stewed tomatoes, either canned or fresh, and thicken with a tablespoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little water; add salt and when thickened, if desired, a half cup of hot cream. Boil together for a minute or two and serve at once.

Tomato Salad.—Select perfectly ripe tomatoes, and peel at least an hour before using. Slice, and place on ice or in a cool place. Serve plain or with lemon juice or sugar as preferred.

Tomato Salad No. 2.—Use one half small yellow tomatoes and one half red. Slice evenly and lay in the dish in alternate layers. Powder lightly with sugar, and turn over them a cupful of orange juice to a pint of tomato, or if preferred, the juice of lemons may be used instead. Set on ice and cool before serving.

Broiled Tomatoes.—Choose perfectly ripened but firm tomatoes of equal size. Place them on a wire broiler, and broil over glowing coals, from three to eight minutes, according to size, then turn and cook on the other side. Broil the stem end first. Serve hot with salt to season, and a little cream.

Tomato Pudding.—Fill an earthen pudding dish with alternate layers of stale bread and fresh tomatoes, peeled, sliced, and sprinkled lightly with sugar. Cover the dish and bake.

Stewed Tomatoes.—Peel and slice the tomatoes. Put them into a double boiler, without the addition of water, and stew for an hour or longer. When done, serve plain with a little sugar added, or season with salt and a tablespoonful of rather thick sweet cream to each pint of tomatoes. If the tomatoes are thin and very juicy, they may be thickened with a little flour rubbed smooth in a little cold water. They are much better, however, to stew a longer time until the water they contain is sufficiently evaporated to make them of the desired consistency. The stew may also be thickened, if desired, by the addition of bread crumbs, rice, or macaroni.

Tomato with Okra.—Wash the okra, cut off the stem and nibs, and slice thin. For a quart of sliced okra, peel and slice three large tomatoes. Stew the tomatoes for half an hour, then add the okra, and simmer together for half an hour longer. Season with salt and a little cream.


Description.—The egg plant, a vegetable indigenous to the East Indies, is somewhat allied in character to the tomato. In shape, it resembles an egg, from which fact it doubtless derives its name. It ranks low in nutritive value. When fresh, the plant is firm and has a smooth skin.


Scalloped Egg Plant.—Pare a fresh egg plant. If large, divide in quarters, if small, in halves, and put to cook in boiling water. Cook until it can be easily pierced with a straw, and drain in a colander. Turn into a hot dish, and beat with a silver fork until finely broken. Measure the egg plant, and add to it an equal quantity of graded bread crumbs, a little salt, and a tablespoonful of thick sweet cream. Lastly, add one well beaten egg. Put in an earthen pudding dish, and brown in the oven until the egg is set, and the whole is heated throughout but not dry.

Baked Egg Plant.—Wash and cook whole in boiling water until tender. Divide in halves, remove the inside with a spoon, taking care not to break the skin. Beat the egg plant smooth with a fork. Season with salt and cream, and if desired, a stalk of celery or a small slice of onion very finely minced, for flavor. Put back in the skin, sprinkle the top with bread crumbs, and brown the outside uppermost in the oven.


Description.—The cucumber is a native of Southern Asia, although it is quite commonly cultivated in most civilized countries. It formed a part of the dietary of the Israelites when in Egypt, where it grew very plentifully. The ancient Greeks held the cucumber in high esteem, and attributed to it wonderful properties.

The cucumber is not a nutritious vegetable, and when served in its raw state, as it so generally is, dressed with salt, vinegar, pepper, and similar condiments, it is an exceedingly indigestible article. If it is to be eaten at all, it should first be cooked. It may be pared, divided in quarters, the seeds removed, and cooked in a small quantity of water until perfectly tender, and served on toast with an egg sauce or a cream sauce; or it may be prepared the same as directed for Escalloped Egg Plant.


Description.—The vegetable oyster plant, sometimes called purple goat's-beard, or salsify, is indigenous to some portions of Great Britain. The long, slender root becomes fleshy and tender under cultivation, with a flavor, when cooked, somewhat resembling that of the mollusk for which it is named. On this account, it is much esteemed for soups. A variety of the plant grows near the line of perpetual snow, and forms the principal article of fresh vegetable food in the dietary of Kurdistan.

Preparation and Cooking.—Select fresh and unshriveled roots, wash and scrape well, dropping into cold water as soon as cleaned, to prevent discoloration. If the roots are covered with cold water for a half hour or more before scraping, they can be cleaned much easier. Use a porcelain-lined kettle, for cooking, as an iron one will discolor it and injure its flavor. From twenty minutes to one hour, according to age, is required to cook it tender.


Scalloped Vegetable Oysters.—Boil two quarts of sliced vegetable oysters in about two quarts of water until very tender. Skim them out, and fill a pudding dish with alternate layers of crumbs and oysters, having a layer of crumbs for the top. To the water in which they were boiled, add a pint and a half of thin cream, salt to taste, boil up, and thicken with a heaping tablespoonful or two of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold cream. Pour this over the oysters and crumbs, and bake a half hour. If this is not enough to cover well, add more cream or milk. Stewed tomatoes are a nice accompaniment for escalloped vegetable oysters.

Stewed Vegetable Oysters.—Wash, scrape, and cut into slices not more than one half inch in thickness. Put into a small quantity of boiling water and cook until tender. If a large quantity of water is used, the savory juices escape, and leave the roots very insipid. When tender, pour in a cup of rich milk and simmer for five or ten minutes; add a little flour rubbed smooth in milk, and salt if desired; boil up once, and serve as a vegetable or on slices of nicely browned toast. If preferred, a well-beaten egg may be used in the place of flour.


Description.—Corn, peas, and beans in their immature state are so nearly allied to vegetables, that we give in this connection recipes for cooking green corn, green beans, and green peas. A general rule applicable to all is that they should, when possible, be cooked and eaten the day they are gathered, as otherwise they lose much of their sweetness and flavor. For corn, select young, tender, well-filled ears, from which the milk will spurt when the grain is broken with the finger nail. Beans and peas are fresh only when the pods are green, plump, snap crisply when broken, and have unshriveled stems. If the pods bend and appear wilted, they are stale. Corn, peas, and beans are wholesome and nutritious foods when thoroughly cooked and sufficiently masticated, but they are almost indigestible unless the hull, or skin, of each pea, bean, or grain of corn, be broken before being swallowed.


Baked Corn.—Select nice fresh ears of tender corn of as nearly equal size as possible. Open the husks and remove all the silk from the corn; replace and tie the husks around the ears with a thread. Put the corn in a hot oven, and bake thirty minutes or until tender. Remove the husks before serving.

Baked Corn No. 2.—Scrape enough corn from the cob (as directed below for Corn Pulp) to make one and a half quarts. Put into a baking dish, season with salt if desired, add enough milk, part cream if convenient, barely to cover the corn, and bake in a hot oven twenty-five or thirty minutes.

Boiled Green Corn.—Remove the husks and every thread of the silk fiber. Place in a kettle, the larger ears at the bottom, with sufficient boiling water nearly to cover. Cover with the clean inner husks, and cook from twenty to thirty minutes, according to the age of the corn; too much cooking hardens it and detracts from its flavor. Try a kernel, and when the milk has thickened, and a raw taste is no longer apparent, it is sufficiently cooked. Green corn is said to be sweeter, boiled with the inner husks on. For cooking in this way, strip off all outer husks, and remove the silk, tying the inner husk around the ear with a bit of thread, and boil. Remove from the kettle, place in a heated dish, cover with a napkin and serve at once on the cob. Some recommend scoring or splitting the corn by drawing a sharp knife through each row lengthwise. This is a wise precaution against insufficient mastication.

Stewed Corn Pulp.—Take six ears of green corn or enough to make a pint of raw pulp; with a sharp knife cut a thin shaving from each row of kernels or score each kernel, and with the back of the knife scrape out the pulp, taking care to leave the hulls on the cob. Heat a cup and a half of rich milk—part cream if it can be afforded—to boiling, add the corn, cook twenty or thirty minutes; season with salt and a teaspoonful of sugar if desired.

Corn Cakes.—To a pint of corn pulp add two well-beaten eggs and two tablespoonfuls of flour; season with salt if desired, and brown on a griddle. Canned corn finely chopped can be used, but two tablespoonfuls of milk should be added, as the corn is less moist.

Corn Pudding.—One quart of corn pulp prepared as for stewing, one quart of milk, three eggs, and a little salt. Mix the corn with a pint of the milk, and heat it to boiling. Break the eggs into the remainder of the milk, and add it to the corn, turn all into an oiled pudding dish, and bake slowly until the custard is well set.

Roasted Green Corn.—Remove the husks and silk, and place the corn before an open grate or in a wire broiler over hot coals until the kernels burst open, or bury in hot ashes without removing the husks. Score the grains, and serve from the cob.

Stewed Green Corn.—Cut the corn from the cob and with the back of the knife scrape off all the pulp, being careful to leave the hull on the cob. Put into a stewpan with half as much water as corn, cover closely and stew gently until thoroughly cooked, stirring frequently to prevent the corn from sticking to the pan; add cream or milk to make the requisite amount of juice, and season with salt if desired. A teaspoonful of white sugar may be added if desired.

Cold boiled corn cut from the cob and stewed a few minutes in a little milk, makes a very palatable dish.

Summer Succotash.—This maybe made by cooking equal quantities of shelled beans and corn cut from the cob, separately until tender, and then mixing them; or the beans may be cooked until nearly soft, an equal quantity of shaved corn added, and the whole cooked fifteen or twenty minutes or longer. Season with cream, and salt if desired.

Dried Corn.—The sweet varieties of corn taken when young and tender and properly dried, furnish an excellent material for nearly all purposes to which green corn is put. Take green corn, just right for eating, have it free from silk; cut the fleshy portion from the cob with a sharp knife, then with the back of the knife gently press the remaining pulp from the cob. Spread thinly on plates and put into an oven hot enough to scald, not scorch it. Watch closely for a half hour or more, turning and stirring frequently with a fork. When thus thoroughly scalded, the corn may be left without further attention if placed in a moderate oven, save an occasional stirring to prevent its sticking to the plate, until the drying is complete, which ought to be in about forty-eight hours; however, if one can spend the time to watch closely and stir very frequently, the drying may be completed in a single afternoon in a rather hot oven. Be careful that it does not scorch.

When needed for use, soak over night and cook in accordance with recipes for Stewed Corn, Succotash, etc., pages 265, 234, only remembering to allow a longer time.


Stewed Peas.—If from the garden, pick and shell the peas with clean hands; if from the market, wash the pods before shelling, so that the peas will not require washing, as they are much better without. When shelled, put into a colander and sift out the fine particles and undeveloped blossoms. If not of equal growth, sort the peas and put the older ones to cook ten minutes before the others. Use a porcelain kettle, with one half pint of boiling water for each quart of peas, if young and tender; older ones, which require longer stewing, need more. Cover closely, and simmer gently till tender. The time required for young peas is from twenty-five to thirty minutes; older ones require forty to fifty minutes. Serve without draining, season with salt and enough sweet cream to make them as juicy as desired. If preferred, the juice may be thickened with a little flour.

The peas may be purposely stewed in a larger quantity of water, and served in their own juices thickened with a little flour and seasoned with salt.


Lima Beans.—Lima beans are not good until they are full grown and have turned white. Shell, wash, cover with boiling water, and cook about one hour or until tender. Let the water nearly evaporate, and add milk or cream thickened with a little flour. Season with salt to taste, boil up once, and serve.

Shelled Beans.—Shell, wash, drop into boiling water sufficient to cover, and cook until tender. Let the water boil nearly away, and serve without draining. Season with thin cream, and salt if desired.

String Beans.—Wash well in cold water. Remove the strong fiber, or strings, as they are called, by paring both edges with a sharp knife; few cooks do this thoroughly. Break off stems and points, carefully rejecting any imperfect or diseased pods. Lay a handful evenly on a board and cut them all at once into inch lengths. Put in a porcelain kettle, cover with boiling water, and cook from one to three hours, according to age and variety, testing frequently, as they should be removed from the kettle just as soon as done. When very young and tender, only water sufficient to keep them from burning will be needed. When done, add a half cup of thin cream, and salt to taste. If the quantity of juice is considerable, thicken with a little flour.


The onion belongs to a class of foods containing an acrid oil of a strongly irritating character, on which account it cannot be considered a wholesome food when eaten raw, as it so generally is. The essential oil is, however, quite volatile, so that when cooked, after being first parboiled in two or three waters, its irritating properties are largely removed. The varieties grown in warm climates are much milder and sweeter than those grown in colder countries. The onion is valuable for flavoring purposes. It may also be boiled and served whole with a cream sauce, or cut in quarters and prepared as directed for Scalloped Turnips, page 242.


Most housekeepers experience more difficulty in canning and keeping vegetables than fruit. This is frequently owing to lack of care to secure perfect cans, covers, and rubbers, and to cook the vegetables thoroughly. Whatever is to be canned must be cooked sufficiently to be eaten, and must be boiling at the time it is put into the cans. Care as to the cleanliness of the cans and their sterilization is also important, and after the canning process is completed, all vegetables put up in glass should be kept in a cool, dark place. The general directions given for canning fruits should be followed in canning vegetables.


Canned Corn.—Select corn just ripe enough for table use, and prepare as directed for stewed corn. It will require from twelve to fifteen ears to fill sufficiently each quart can. To insure success, the cans should be so full that when the corn is shrunken by the cooking, the can will still be well filled. Pack the corn in the cans, working it down closely by means of the small end of a potato masher, so the milk will cover the corn and completely fill the can; heap a little more corn loosely on the top, and screw the covers on sufficiently tight to prevent water from getting into the can. Place the cans in a boiler, on the bottom of which has been placed some straw or a rack; also take care not to let the cans come in contact with each other, by wrapping each in a cloth or by placing a chip between them. A double layer of cans may be placed in the boiler, one on top of the other, if desirable, provided there is some intervening substance. Fill the boiler with cold water so as completely to cover the cans; place over the fire, bring gradually to a boil, and keep boiling steadily for four hours. Remove the boiler from the fire, and allow the cans to cool gradually, tightening the covers frequently as they cool.

If the corn in the can shrinks, do not open to refill. If cooked thoroughly, and due care is taken in other particulars, there need be no failure. Wrap closely in brown paper, and put away in a dark, cool, dry place.

Canned Corn and Tomatoes.—Use about one third corn and two thirds tomatoes, or in equal portions if preferred. Cook the tomatoes in a double boiler for an hour and a half or longer; and in another double boiler, when the tomatoes are nearly done, cook the corn in its own juices until thoroughly done. Turn them together, heat to boiling, and can at once.

Canned Peas.—Select peas which are fresh, young, and tender. Shell, pack into perfect cans, shaking and filling as full as possible, add sufficient cold water to fill them to overflowing, screw on the covers, and cook and seal the same as directed for canning corn.

Canned Tomatoes.—Tomatoes for canning should be freshly gathered, ripe, but not at all softened.

As they are best cooked in their own juices, peel, slice, put into a double boiler or a porcelain fruit-kettle set inside a dish filled with boiling water, and cook from one to two hours. Cooked in the ordinary way, great care will be required to keep the fruit from burning. When thoroughly cooked—simple scalding will not do—put into cans, and be sure that all air bubbles are expelled before sealing. Wrap in dark brown paper, and put in a cool, dry, dark place.

Canned Tomatoes No. 2.—Cut the fruit into thick slices, let it stand and drain until a large portion of the juice has drained off; then pack solid in new or perfect cans. Allow them to stand a little time, then again drain off the juice; fill up a second time with sliced tomatoes, and screw on the top of the cans without the rubbers. Pack into a wash boiler as directed for canning corn, and boil for two hours, then put on the rubbers and seal. When cold, tighten the covers and put away.

String Beans.—Select young and tender beans, string them, and cut into pieces about one half inch in length. Pack the cans as full as possible, and fill with water until every crevice between the beans is full. Screw on the covers and can in the same manner as corn.

Shelled beans may be canned in the same way.

Canned Pumpkin and Squash.—These fruits when canned are quite as desirable for pies as the fresh material. The same general rules should be followed as in canning other vegetables and fruits.


The word "vegetarian" is not derived from "vegetable," but from the Latin, homo vegetus, meaning among the Romans a strong, robust, thoroughly healthy man.

AN INTELLECTUAL FEAST.—Professor Louis Agassiz in his early manhood visited Germany to consult Oken, the transcendentalist in zoölogical classification. "After I had delivered to him my letter of introduction," he once said to a friend, "Oken asked me to dine with him, and you may suppose with what joy I accepted the invitation. The dinner consisted only of potatoes, boiled and roasted; but it was the best dinner I ever ate; for there was Oken. Never before were such potatoes grown on this planet; for the mind of the man seemed to enter into what we ate sociably together, and I devoured his intellect while munching his potatoes."

Dr. Abernethy's recipe for using cucumbers: "Peel the cucumber, slice it, pepper it, put vinegar to it, then throw it out the window."

A green son of the Emerald Isle was eating sweet corn from the cob for the first time. He handed the cob to the waiter, and asked, "Will you plaze put some more beans on my shtick?"

A French physician styles spinach, le balai de l'estomac (broom of the stomach).

An ox is satisfied with the pasture of an acre or two; one wood suffices for several elephants. Man alone supports himself by the pillage of the whole earth and sea. What? Has Nature indeed given us so insatiable a stomach, while she has given us so insignificant bodies? No; it is not the hunger of our stomachs, but insatiable covetousness which costs so much.—Seneca.

The oftener we go to the vegetable world for our food, the oftener we go to the first and therefore the cheapest source of supply. The tendencies of all advanced scholars in thrift should be to find out plans for feeding all the community, as far as possible, direct from the lap of earth; to impress science into our service so that she may prepare the choicest viands minus the necessity of making a lower animal the living laboratory for the sake of what is just a little higher than cannibal propensities.

—Dr. B.W. Richardson.


I was made to be eaten, not to be drank,
To be husked in a barn, not soaked in a tank;
I come as a blessing when put in a mill,
As a blight and a curse when run through a still.
Make me up into loaves, and your children are fed;
But made into drink, I will starve them instead.
In bread I'm a servant the eater shall rule,
In drink I'm a master, the drinker a fool.
Then remember my warning; my strength I'll employ,
If eaten, to strengthen, if drunk, to destroy.—Sel.



S oup is an easily made, economical, and when properly prepared from healthful and nutritious material, very wholesome article of diet, deserving of much more general use than is commonly accorded it.

In general, when soup is mentioned, some preparation of meat and bones is supposed to be meant; but we shall treat in this chapter of a quite different class of soups, viz., those prepared from the grains, legumes, and vegetables, without the previous preparation of a "stock." Soups of this character are in every way equal, and in many points superior to those made from meat and bones. If we compare the two, we shall find that soups made from the grains and legumes rank much higher in nutritive value than do meat soups. For the preparation of the latter, one pound of meat and bones, in about equal proportion, is required for each quart of soup. In the bone, there is little or no nourishment, it being valuable simply for the gelatine it contains, which gives consistency to the soup; so in reality there is only one half pound of material containing nutriment, for the quart of soup. Suppose, in comparison we take a pea soup. One half pound of peas will be amply enough for a quart. As we take an equal amount of material as basis for each soup, we can easily determine their relative value by comparing the amount of nutritive material contained in peas with that of beef, the most commonly used material for meat soups. As will be seen by reference to the table of food analyses on page 486, peas contain 87.3 parts nutritive material, while lean beef contains only 28 parts in one hundred. Thus the pea soup contains more than three times as much nourishment as does the beef soup.

Soups prepared from grains and legumes are no more expensive than meat soups, and many kinds cost much less, while they have the added advantage of requiring less time and no more labor to prepare.

The greater bulk of all meat soups is water, holding in solution the essence of meat, the nutritive value of which is of very doubtful character.

When properly prepared, the solid matter which enters into the composition of vegetable soups, is so broken up in the process of cooking, that it is more easily digested than in any other form.

Taken hot at the beginning of a meal, soup stimulates the flow of the digestive juices, and on account of the bulk, brings a sense of satiety before an excessive quantity of food has been taken.

In preparing soups from grains, legumes, and vegetables, the material should be first cooked in the ordinary manner, using as small an amount of water as practicable, so as the more thoroughly to disintegrate or break it up. If the material be legumes or grains, the cooking should be slow and prolonged. The purpose to be attained in the cooking of all foods is the partial digestion of the food elements; and in general, with these foods, the more slowly (if continuous) the cooking is done, the more completely will this be brought about.

When the material is cooked, the next step is to make it homogeneous throughout, and to remove any skins or cellulose material it may contain. To do this, it should be put through a colander. The kind of colander depends upon the material. Peas and beans require a fine colander, since the skins, of which we are seeking to rid them, would easily go through a coarse one. To aid in this sifting process, if the material be at all dry, a small quantity of liquid may be added from time to time. When the colander process is complete, a sufficient amount of milk or other liquid may be added to make the whole of the consistency of rather thick cream.

Chinese Soup Strainer.
Chinese Soup Strainer.

If the material is now cold, it must be reheated, and the salt, if any is to be used, added. The quantity of salt will depend somewhat upon the taste of the consumer; but in general, one half teaspoonful to the pint of soup will be an ample supply. If any particular flavor, as of onion or celery, is desired, it may be imparted to the soup by adding to it a slice of onion or a few stalks of celery, allowing them to remain during the reheating. By the time the soup is well heated, it will be delicately flavored, and the pieces of onion or celery may be removed with a fork or a skimmer. It is better, in general, to cook the soup all that is needed before flavoring, since if allowed to boil, all delicate flavors are apt to be lost by evaporation. When reheated, add to the soup a quantity of cream as seasoning, in the proportion of one cup of thin cream for every quart or three pints of soup.

To avoid the possibility of any lumps or fragments in the soup, pour it again through a colander or a Chinese soup strainer into the soup tureen, and serve. It is well to take the precaution first to heat the strainer and tureen, that the soup be not cooled during the process.

If it is desired to have the soup especially light and nice, beat or whip the cream before adding, or beat the hot soup with an egg beater for a few minutes after adding the cream. The well-beaten yolk of an egg for every quart or three pints of soup, will answer as a very fair substitute for cream in potato, rice, and similar soups. It should not be added to the body of the soup, but a cupful of the hot soup may be turned slowly onto the egg, stirring all the time, in order to mix it well without curdling, and then the cupful stirred into the whole. Soups made from legumes are excellent without cream.

The consistency of the soup when done should be about that of single cream, and equal throughout, containing no lumps or fragments of material. If it is too thick, it may be easily diluted with hot milk or water; if too thin, it will require the addition of more material, or may be thickened with a little flour or cornstarch rubbed to a cream with a small quantity of milk, used in the proportion of one tablespoonful for a quart of soup,—heaping, if flour; scant, if cornstarch,—and remembering always to boil the soup five or ten minutes after the flour is added, that there may be no raw taste.

The addition of the flour or cornstarch gives a smoothness to their consistency which is especially desirable for some soups. A few spoonfuls of cooked oatmeal or cracked wheat, added and rubbed through the colander with the other material, is valuable for the same purpose. Browned flour prepared by spreading a cupful thinly on shallow tins, and placing in a moderately hot oven, stirring frequently until lightly and evenly browned, is excellent to use both for thickening and flavoring certain soups.

If whole grains, macaroni, vermicelli, or shredded vegetables are to be used in the soup, cook them separately, and add to the soup just before serving.

The nutritive value of soup depends of course upon its ingredients, and these should be so chosen and combined as to produce the best possible food from the material employed. Milk is a valuable factor in the preparation of soups. With such vegetables as potatoes, parsnips, and others of the class composed largely of starch, and containing but a small proportion of the nitrogenous food elements, its use is especially important as an addition to their food value, as also to their palatableness. Very good soups may, however, be made from legumes, if carefully cooked with water only.

Soups offer a most economical way of making use of the "left-over" fragments which might otherwise be consigned to the refuse bucket. A pint of cold mashed potatoes, a cupful of stewed beans, a spoonful or two of boiled rice, stewed tomatoes, or other bits of vegetables and grains, are quite as good for soup purposes as fresh material, provided they have been preserved fresh and sweet. To insure this it is always best to put them away in clean dishes; if retained in the dish from which they were served, the thin smears and small crumbs on the sides which spoil much sooner than the larger portion, will help to spoil the rest. One may find some difficulty in rubbing them through the colander unless they are first moistened. Measure the cold food, and then determine how much liquid will be needed, and add a part of this before attempting to put through the colander.

It is difficult to give specific directions for making soups of fragments, as the remnants to be utilized will vary so much in character as to make such inapplicable, but the recipes given for combination soups will perhaps serve as an aid in this direction. Where a sufficient amount of one kind of food is left over to form the basis of a soup or to serve as a seasoning, it can be used in every way the same as fresh material. When, however, there is but a little of various odds and ends, the general rule to be observed is to combine only such materials as harmonize in taste.

Soups prepared from the grains, legumes, and vegetables, are so largely composed of food material that it is important that they be retained in the mouth long enough for proper insalivation; and in order to insure this, it is well to serve with the soup croutons, prepared by cutting stale bread into small squares or cubes, and browning thoroughly in a moderate oven. Put a spoonful or two of the croutons in each plate, and turn the hot soup over them. This plan also serves another purpose,—that of providing a means whereby the left-over bits of stale bread may be utilized to advantage.


Asparagus Soup.—Wash two bunches of fresh asparagus carefully, and cut into small pieces. Put to cook in a quart of boiling water, and simmer gently till perfectly tender, when there should remain about a pint of the liquor. Turn into a colander, and rub all through except the hard portion. To a pint of asparagus mixture add salt and one cup of thin cream and a pint of milk; boil up for a few minutes, and serve.

Baked Bean Soup.—Soak a half pint of white beans over night. In the morning turn off the water, and place them in an earthen dish with two or two and one half quarts of boiling water; cover and let them simmer in a moderate oven four or five hours. Also soak over night a tablespoonful of pearl tapioca in sufficient water to cover. When the beans are soft, rub through a colander, after which add the soaked tapioca, and salt if desired; also as much powdered thyme as can be taken on the point of a penknife and sufficient water to make the soup of proper consistency if the water has mostly evaporated. Return to the oven, and cook one half hour longer. A little cream may be added just before serving.

Bean and Corn Soup.—Cold boiled or stewed corn and cold baked beans form the basis of this soup. Take one pint of each, rub through a colander, add a slice of onion, three cups of boiling water or milk, and boil for ten minutes. Turn through the colander a second time to remove the onion and any lumps or skins which may remain. Season with salt and a half cup of cream. If preferred, the onion may be omitted.

Bean and Hominy Soup.—Soak separately in cold water over night a cupful each of dry beans and hominy. In the morning, boil them together till both are perfectly tender and broken to pieces. Rub through a colander, and add sufficient milk to make three pints. Season with salt, and stir in a cup of whipped cream just before serving. Cold beans and hominy may be utilized for this soup.

Bean and Potato Soup.—Soak a half pint of dry white beans over night; in the morning drain and put to cook in boiling water. When tender, rub through a colander. Prepare sliced potato sufficient to make one quart, cook in as small a quantity of water as possible, rub through a colander, and add to the beans. Add milk or water sufficient to make two quarts, and as much prepared thyme as can be taken on the point of a penknife, with salt to season. Boil for a few minutes, add a teacup of thin cream, and serve.

Bean and Tomato Soup.—Take one pint of boiled or a little less of mashed beans, one pint of stewed tomatoes, and rub together through a colander. Add salt, a cup of thin cream, one half a cup of nicely steamed rice, and sufficient boiling water to make a soup of the proper consistency. Reheat and serve.

Black Bean Soup.—Soak a pint of black beans over night in cold water. When ready to cook, put into two and one half quarts of fresh water, which should be boiling, and simmer until completely dissolved, adding more boiling water from time to time if needed. There should be about two quarts of all when done. Rub through a colander, add salt, a half cup of cream, and reheat. When hot, turn through a soup strainer, add two or more teaspoonfuls of lemon juice, and serve.

Black Bean Soup No. 2.—Soak a pint of black beans in water over night. Cook in boiling water until tender, then rub through a colander. Add sufficient boiling water to make about two quarts in all. Add salt, and one half a small onion cut in slices to flavor. Turn into a double boiler and reheat. When sufficiently flavored, remove the onion with a skimmer, thicken the soup with two teaspoonfuls of browned flour, turn through the soup strainer and serve. If desired, a half cup of cream may be added, and the onion flavor omitted.

Bran Stock.—For every quart of stock desired, boil a cup of good wheat bran in three pints of water for two or three hours or until reduced one third. This stock may be made the base of a variety of palatable and nutritious soups by flavoring with different vegetables and seasoning with salt and cream. An excellent soup may be prepared by flavoring the stock with celery, or by the addition of a quantity of strained stewed tomato sufficient to disguise the taste of the stock. It is also valuable in giving consistence to soups, in the preparation of some of which it may be advantageously used in place of other liquid.

Brown Soup.—Simmer together two pints of sliced potatoes and one third as much of the thin brown shavings (not thicker than a silver dime) from the top of a loaf of whole-wheat bread, in one quart of water. The crust must not be burned or blackened, and must not include any of the soft portion of the loaf. When the potatoes are tender, mash all through a colander. Flavor with a cup of strained, stewed tomatoes, a little salt, and return to the fire; when hot, add a half cup of cream, and boiling water to make the soup of proper consistency, and serve at once. If care has been taken to prepare the crust as directed, this soup will have a brown color and a fine, pungent flavor exceedingly pleasant to the taste.

Canned Green Pea Soup.—Rub a can of green peas through a colander to remove the skins. Add a pint of milk and heat to boiling. If too thin, thicken with a little flour rubbed smooth in a very little cold milk. Season with salt and a half cup of cream. A small teaspoonful of white sugar may be added if desired.

Green peas, instead of canned, may be used when procurable. When they have become a little too hard to serve alone, they can be used for soup, if thoroughly cooked.

Canned Corn Soup.—Open a can of green corn, turn it into a granite-ware dish, and thoroughly mash with a potato-masher until each kernel is broken, then rub through a colander to remove the skins. Add sufficient rich milk to make the soup of the desired consistency, about one half pint for each pint can of corn will be needed. Season with salt, reheat, and serve. If preferred, a larger quantity of milk and some cream may be used, and the soup, when reheated, thickened with a little corn starch or flour. It may be turned through the colander a second time or not, as preferred.

Carrot Soup.—For a quart of soup, slice one large carrot and boil in a small quantity of water for two hours or longer, then rub it through a colander, add a quart of rich milk, and salt to season. Reheat, and when boiling, thicken with two teaspoonfuls of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk.

Celery Soup.—Chop quite fine enough fresh, crisp celery to make a pint, and cook it until tender in a very little boiling water. When done, heat three cupfuls of rich milk, part cream if it can be afforded, to boiling, add the celery, salt to season, and thicken the whole with a tablespoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk; or add to the milk before heating a cupful of mashed potato, turn through a colander to remove lumps, reheat, add salt and the celery, and serve.

Celery Soup No. 2.—Cook in a double boiler a cupful of cracked wheat in three pints of water for three or four hours. Rub the wheat through a colander, add a cup of rich milk, and if needed, a little boiling water, and a small head of celery cut in finger lengths. Boil all together for fifteen or twenty minutes, until well flavored, remove the celery with a fork, add salt, and serve with or without the hard-boiled yolk of an egg in each soup plate.

Chestnut Soup.—Shell and blanch a pint of Italian chestnuts, as directed on page 215, and cook in boiling milk until tender. Rub the nuts through a colander, add salt and sufficient milk and cream to make a soup of the proper consistency, reheat and serve.

Combination Soup.—This soup is prepared from material already cooked, and requires two cups of cracked wheat, one and one half cups of Lima beans, one half cup of black beans, and one cup of stewed tomato. Rub the material together through a colander, adding, if needed, a little hot water to facilitate the sifting. Add boiling water to thin to the proper consistency, season with salt and if it can be afforded a little sweet cream,—the soup is, however, very palatable without the cream.

Combination Soup No. 2.—Take three and one half cups of mashed (Scotch) peas, one cup each of cooked rice, oatmeal, and hominy, and two cups of stewed tomato. Rub the material through a colander, add boiling water to thin to the proper consistency, season with salt, reheat, and add, just before serving, two cups of cooked macaroni. If preferred, a cup of cream may be used in place of the tomato, or both may be omitted.

Another.—One half cup of cold mashed potato, one cup each of cooked pearl wheat, barley and dried peas. Rub all through a colander, add boiling milk to thin to the proper consistency, season with salt and a half cup of cream.

Another.—Take three cups of cooked oatmeal, two of mashed white beans, and one of stewed tomato. Rub the ingredients through a colander, add boiling milk to thin to the proper consistency, season with salt and a little cream.

Cream Pea Soup.—Soak three fourths of a pint of dried Scotch peas over night in a quart of water. In the morning put to cook in boiling water, cover closely and let them simmer gently four or five hours, or until the peas are very tender and well disintegrated; then rub through a colander to remove the skins. If the peas are very dry, add a little water or milk occasionally, to moisten them and facilitate the sifting. Just before the peas are done, prepare potatoes enough to make a pint and a half, after being cut in thin slices. Cook the potatoes until tender in a small amount of water, and rub them through a colander. Add the potatoes thus prepared to the sifted peas, and milk enough to make three and one half pints in all. Return to the fire, and add a small head of celery cut finger lengths, and let the whole simmer together ten or fifteen minutes, until flavored. Remove the celery with a fork, add salt and a cup of thin cream. This should make about two quarts of soup. If preferred, the peas may be cooked without soaking. It will, however, require a little longer time.

Cream Barley Soup.—Wash a cup of pearl barley, drain and simmer slowly in two quarts of water for four or five hours, adding boiling water from time to time as needed. When the barley is tender, strain off the liquor, of which there should be about three pints; add to it a portion of the cooked barley grains, salt, and a cup of whipped cream, and serve. If preferred, the beaten yolk of an egg may be used instead of cream.

Green Corn Soup.—Take six well-filled ears of tender green corn. Run a sharp knife down the rows and split each grain; then with the back of a knife, scraping from the large to the small end of the ear, press out the pulp, leaving the hulls on the cob. Break the cobs if long, put them in cold water sufficient to cover, and boil half an hour. Strain off the water, of which there should be at least one pint. Put the corn water on again, and when boiling add the corn pulp, and cook fifteen minutes, or until the raw taste is destroyed. Rub through a rather coarse colander, add salt and a pint of hot unskimmed milk; if too thin, thicken with a little cornstarch or flour, boil up, and serve. If preferred, a teaspoonful of sugar may be added to the soup. A small quantity of cooked macaroni, cut in rings, makes a very pretty and palatable addition to the soup. The soup is also excellent flavored with celery.

Green Pea Soup.—Gently simmer two quarts of shelled peas in sufficient water to cook, leaving almost no juice when tender. Rub through a colander, moistening if necessary with a little cold milk. Add to the sifted peas an equal quantity of rich milk and a small onion cut in halves. Boil all together five or ten minutes until the soup is delicately flavored, then remove the onion with a skimmer; add salt if desired, and serve. If preferred, a half cup of thin cream may be added just before serving. Celery may be used in place of the onion, or both may be omitted.

Green Bean Soup.—Prepare a quart of fresh string beans by pulling off ends and strings and breaking into small pieces. Boil in a small quantity of water. If the beans are fresh and young, three pints will be sufficient; if wilted or quite old, more will be needed, as they will require longer cooking. There should be about a teacupful and a half of liquid left when the beans are perfectly tender and boiled in pieces. Rub through a colander, return to the kettle, and for each cup of the bean pulp add salt, a cup and a half of unskimmed milk; boil together for a few minutes, thicken with a little flour, and serve. The quart of beans should be sufficient for three pints of soup.

Kornlet Soup.—Kornlet or canned green corn pulp, may be made into a most appetizing soup in a few minutes by adding to a pint of kornlet an equal quantity of rich milk, heating to boiling, and thickening it with a teaspoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk.

Kornlet and Tomato Soup—Put together equal quantities of kornlet and strained stewed tomato, season with salt and heat to boiling; add for each quart one fourth to one half cup of hot thin cream, thicken with a tablespoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little water, and serve. Cooked corn rubbed through a colander may also be used for this soup.

Lentil Soup.—Simmer a pint of lentils in water until tender. If desired to have the soup less dark in color and less strong in flavor, the lentils may be first parboiled for a half hour, and then drained and put into fresh boiling water. Much valuable nutriment is thus lost, however. When perfectly tender, mash through a colander to remove all skins; add salt and a cup of thin cream, and it too thick, sufficient boiling milk or water to thin to the proper consistency, heat again to boiling, and serve. If preferred, an additional quantity of liquid may be added and the soup slightly thickened with browned flour.

Lentil and Parsnip Soup.—Cook together one pint of lentils and one half a small parsnip, sliced, until tender in a small quantity of boiling water. When done, rub through a colander, and add boiling water to make a soup of the proper consistency. Season with salt and if desired a little cream.

Lima Bean Soup.—Simmer a pint of Lima beans gently in just sufficient water to cook and not burn, until they have fallen to pieces. Add more boiling water as needed. When done, rub the beans through a colander. Add rich milk or water to make of the proper consistency, and salt to season; reheat and serve. White beans may be used in place of Lima beans, but they require more prolonged cooking. A heaping tablespoonful of pearl tapioca or sago previously soaked in cold water, may be added to the soup when it is reheated, if liked, and the whole cooked until the sago is transparent.

Macaroni Soup.—Heat a quart of milk, to which has been added a tablespoonful of finely grated bread crust (the brown part only, from the top of the loaf) and a slice of onion to flavor, in a double boiler. When the milk is well flavored, remove the onion, turn through a colander, add salt, and thicken with two teaspoonfuls of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk. Lastly add one cupful of cooked macaroni, and serve.

Oatmeal Soup.—Put two heaping tablespoonfuls of oatmeal into a quart of boiling water, and cook in a double boiler for two hours or longer. Strain as for gruel, add salt if desired, and two or three stalks of celery broken into finger lengths, and cook again until the whole is well flavored with the celery, which may then be removed with a fork; add a half cup of cream, and the soup is ready to serve. Cold oatmeal mush may be thinned with milk, reheated, strained, flavored, and made into soup the same as fresh material. A slice or two of onion may be used with the celery for flavoring the soup if desired, or a cup of strained stewed tomato may be added.

Parsnip Soup.—Take a quart of well scraped, thinly sliced parsnips, one cup of bread crust shavings (prepared as for Brown Soup), one head of celery, one small onion, and one pint of sliced potatoes. The parsnips used should be young and tender, so that they will cook in about the same length of time as the other vegetables. Use only sufficient water to cook them. When done, rub through a colander and add salt and sufficient rich milk, part cream if desired, to make of the proper consistency. Reheat and serve.

Parsnip Soup No. 2.—Wash, pare, and slice equal quantities of parsnips and potatoes. Cook, closely covered, in a small quantity of water until soft. If the parsnips are not young and tender, they must be put to cook first, and the potatoes added when they are half done. Mash through a colander. Add salt, and milk to make of the proper consistency, season with cream, reheat and serve.

Pea and Tomato Soup.—Soak one pint of Scotch peas over night. When ready to cook, put into a quart of boiling water and simmer slowly until quite dry and well disintegrated. Rub through a colander to remove the skins. Add a pint of hot water, one cup of mashed potato, two cups of strained stewed tomato, and one cup of twelve-hour cream. Turn into a double-boiler and cook together for a half hour or longer; turn a second time through a colander or soup strainer and serve. The proportions given are quite sufficient for two quarts of soup. There may need to be some variation in the quantity of tomato to be used, depending upon its thickness. If very thin, a larger quantity and less water will be needed. The soup should be a rich reddish brown in color when done. The peas may be cooked without being first soaked, if preferred.

Plain Rice Soup.—Wash and pick over four tablespoonfuls of rice, put it in an earthen dish with a quart of water, and place in a moderate oven. When the water is all absorbed, add a quart of rich milk, and salt if desired; turn into a granite kettle and boil ten minutes, or till the rice is done. Add a half cup of sweet cream and serve. A slice of onion or stalk of celery can be boiled with the soup after putting in the kettle, and removed before serving, if desired to flavor.

Potato and Rice Soup.—Cook a quart of sliced potatoes in as little water as possible. When done, rub through a colander. Add salt, a quart of rich milk, and reheat. If desired, season with a slice of onion, a stalk of celery, or a little parsley. Just before serving, add a half cup of cream and a cup and a half of well-cooked rice with unbroken grains. Stir gently and serve at once.

Potato Soup.—For each quart of soup required, cook a pint of sliced potatoes in sufficient water to cover them. When tender, rub through a colander. Return to the fire, and add enough rich, sweet milk, part cream if it can be afforded to make a quart in all, and a little salt. Let the soup come to a boil, and add a teaspoonful of flour or corn starch, rubbed to a paste with a little water; boil a few minutes and serve. A cup and a half of cold mashed potato or a pint of sliced baked potato can be used instead of fresh material; in which case add the milk and heat before rubbing through the colander. A slice of onion or a stalk of celery may be simmered in the soup for a few minutes to flavor, and then removed with a skimmer or a spoon. A good mixed potato soup is made by using one third sweet and two thirds Irish potatoes, in the same manner as above.

Potato and Vermicelli Soup.—Breakup a cupful of vermicelli and drop into boiling water. Let it cook for ten or fifteen minutes, and then turn into a colander to drain. Have ready a potato soup prepared the same as in the proceeding; stir the vermicelli lightly into it just before serving.

Sago and Potato Soup.—Prepare the soup as directed for Potato Soup, from fresh or cold mashed potato, using a little larger quantity of milk or cream, as the sago adds thickness to the soap. When seasoned and ready to reheat, turn a second time through the colander, and add for each quart of soup, one heaping tablespoonful of sago which has been soaked for twenty minutes in just enough water to cover. Boil together five or ten minutes, or until the sago is transparent, and serve.

Scotch Broth.—Soak over night two tablespoonfuls of pearl barley and one of coarse oatmeal, in water sufficient to cover them. In the morning, put the grains, together with the water in which they were soaked, into two quarts of water and simmer for several hours, adding boiling water as needed. About an hour before the soup is required, add a turnip cut into small dice, a grated carrot, and one half cup of fine pieces of the brown portion of the crust of a loaf of whole-wheat bread. Rub all through a colander, and add salt, a cup of milk, and a half cup of thin cream. This should make about three pints of soup.

Split Pea Soup.—For each quart of soup desired, simmer a cupful of split peas very slowly in three pints of boiling water for six hours, or until thoroughly dissolved. When done, rub through a colander, add salt and season with one half cup of thin cream. Reheat, and when boiling, stir into it two teaspoonfuls of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold water. Boil up until thickened, and serve. If preferred, the cream may be omitted and the soup flavored with a little celery or onion.

Sweet Potato Soup.—To a pint of cold mashed sweet potato add a pint and a half of strained stewed tomato, rub together through a colander, add salt to season, and half a cup of cream. Reheat and serve.

Swiss Potato Soup.—Pare and cut up into small pieces, enough white turnips to fill a pint cup, and cook in a small quantity of water. When tender, add three pints of sliced potatoes, and let them boil together until of the consistency of mush. Add hot water if it has boiled away so that there is not sufficient to cook the potatoes. When done, drain, rub through a colander, add a pint and a half of milk and a cup of thin cream, salt if desired, and if too thick, a little more milk or a sufficient quantity of hot water to make it of the proper consistency. This should be sufficient for two and a half quarts of soup.

Swiss Lentil Soup.—Cook a pint of brown lentils in a small quantity of boiling water. Add to the lentils when about half done, one medium sized onion cut in halves or quarters. When the lentils are tender, remove the onion with a fork, and rub the lentils through a colander. Add sufficient boiling water to make three pints in all. Season with salt, reheat to boiling, and thicken the whole with four table spoonfuls of browned flour, rubbed to a cream in a little cold water.

Tomato and Macaroni Soup.—Break a half dozen sticks of macaroni into small pieces, and drop into boiling water. Cook for an hour, or until perfectly tender. Rub two quarts of stewed or canned tomatoes through a colander, to remove all seeds and fragments. When the macaroni is done, drain thoroughly, cut each piece into tiny rings, and add it to the strained tomatoes. Season with salt, and boil for a few minutes. If desired, just before serving add a cup of thin cream, boil up once, and serve immediately. If the tomato is quite thin, the soup should be slightly thickened with a little flour before adding the macaroni.

Tomato Cream Soup.—Heat two quarts of strained, stewed tomatoes to boiling; add four tablespoonfuls of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold water. Let the tomatoes boil until thickened, stirring constantly that no lumps form; add salt to season. Have ready two cups of hot rich milk or thin cream. Add the cream or milk hot, and let all boil together for a minute or two, then serve.

Tomato and Okra Soup.—Take one quart of okra thinly sliced, and two quarts of sliced tomatoes. Simmer gently from one to two hours. Rub through a colander, heat again to boiling, season with salt and cream if desired, and serve.

Canned okra and tomatoes need only to be rubbed through a colander, scalded and seasoned, to make a most excellent soup. If preferred, one or two potatoes may be sliced and cooked, rubbed through a colander, and added.

Tomato Soup with Vermicelli—Cook a cupful of broken vermicelli in a pint of boiling water for ten minutes. Turn into a colander to drain. Have boiling two quarts of strained, stewed tomatoes, to which add the vermicelli. If preferred, the tomato may be thickened slightly with a little cornstarch rubbed smooth in cold water before adding the vermicelli. Salt to taste, and just before serving turn in a cup of hot, thin cream. Let all boil up for a moment, then serve at once.

Vegetable Oyster Soup.—Scrape all the outer covering and small rootlets from vegetable oysters, and lay them in a pan of cold water to prevent discoloration. The scraping can be done much easier if the roots are allowed first to stand in cold water for an hour or so. Slice rather thin, enough to make one quart, and put to cook in a quart of water. Let them boil slowly until very tender. Add a pint of milk, a cup of thin cream, salt, and when boiling, a tablespoonful or two of flour, rubbed to a cream with a little milk. Let the soup boil a few minutes until thickened, and serve.

Vegetable Soup.—Simmer together slowly for three or four hours, in five quarts of water, a quart of split peas, a slice of carrot, a slice of white turnip, one cup of canned tomatoes, and two stalks of celery cut into small bits. When done, rub through a colander, add milk to make of proper consistency, reheat, season with salt and cream, and serve.

Vegetable Soup No. 2.—Prepare and slice a pint of vegetable oysters and a pint and a half of potatoes. Put the oysters to cook first, in sufficient water to cook both. When nearly done, add the potatoes and cook all till tender. Rub through a colander, or if preferred, remove the pieces of oysters, and rub the potato only through the colander, together with the water in which the oysters were cooked, as that will contain all the flavor. Return to the fire, and add salt, a pint of strained, stewed tomatoes, and when boiling, the sliced oysters if desired, a cup of thin cream and a cup of milk, both previously heated; serve at once.

Vegetable Soup No. 3.—Soak a cupful of white beans over night in cold water. When ready to cook, put into fresh boiling water and simmer until tender. When nearly done, add three large potatoes sliced, two or three slices of white turnip, and one large parsnip cut in slices. When done, rub through a colander, add milk or water to make of proper consistency, season with salt and cream, reheat and serve. This quantity of material is sufficient for two quarts of soup.

Vegetable Soup No. 4.—Prepare a quart of bran stock as previously directed. Heat to boiling, and add to it one teaspoonful of grated carrot, a slice of onion, and a half cup of tomato. Cook together in a double boiler for half an hour. Remove the slice of onion, and add salt and a half cup of turnip previously cooked and cut in small dice.

Velvet Soup.—Pour three pints of hot potato soup, seasoned to taste, slowly over the well-beaten yolks of two eggs, stirring briskly to mix the egg perfectly with the soup. It must not be reheated after adding the egg. Plain rice or barley soup may be used in place of potato soup, if preferred.

Vermicelli Soup.—Lightly fill a cup with broken vermicelli. Turn it into a pint of boiling water, and cook for ten or fifteen minutes. Drain off all the hot water and put into cold water for a few minutes. Turn into a colander and drain again; add three pints of milk, salt to taste, and heat to boiling. Have the yolks of three eggs well beaten, and when the soup is boiling, turn it gradually onto the eggs, stirring briskly that they may not curdle. Return to the kettle, reheat nearly to boiling, and serve at once.

Vermicelli Soup No. 2.—Cook a cupful of sliced vegetable oysters, a stalk or two of celery, two slices of onion, a parsnip, and half a carrot in water just sufficient to cover well. Meanwhile put a cupful of vermicelli in a quart of milk and cook in a double boiler until tender. When the vegetables are done, strain off the broth and add it to the vermicelli when cooked. Season with salt and a cup of cream. Beat two eggs light and turn the boiling soup on the eggs, stirring briskly that they may not curdle. Reheat if not thickened, and serve.

White Celery Soup.—Cut two heads of celery into finger lengths, and simmer in a quart of milk for half an hour. Remove the pieces of celery with a skimmer. Thicken the soup with a tablespoonful of cornstarch braided with a little milk, add salt if desired, and a teacup of whipped cream.


Soup rejoices the stomach, and disposes it to receive and digest other food.—Brillat Savarin.

To work the head, temperance must be carried into the diet.—Beecher.

To fare well implies the partaking of such food as does not disagree with body or mind. Hence only those fare well who live temperately.—Socrates.

The aliments to which the cook's art gives a liquid or semi-liquid form, are in general more digestible.—Dictionaire de Medicine.

In the most heroic days of the Grecian army, their food was the plain and simple produce of the soil. When the public games of ancient Greece were first instituted, the athleta, in accordance with the common dietetic habits of the people, were trained entirely on vegetable food.

The eating of much flesh fills us with a multitude of evil diseases and multitudes of evil desires.—Perphyrises, 233 A.D.

No flocks that range the valley free
To slaughter I condemn;
Taught by the Power that pities me,
I learn to pity them.
But from the mountain's grassy side
A guiltless feast I bring;
A scrip with herbs and fruits supplied
And water from the spring.

Breakfast Dishes


A good breakfast is the best capital upon which people who have real work to do in the world can begin the day. If the food is well selected and well cooked, it furnishes both cheer and strength for their daily tasks. Poor food, or good food poorly prepared, taxes the digestive powers more than is due, and consequently robs brain and nerves of vigor. Good food is not rich food, in the common acceptation of the term; it is such food as furnishes the requisite nutriment with the least fatigue to the digestive powers. It is of the best material, prepared in the best manner, and with pleasant variety, though it may be very simple.

"What to get for breakfast" is one of the most puzzling problems which the majority of housewives have to solve. The usually limited time for its preparation requires that it be something easily and quickly prepared; and health demands that the bill of fare be of such articles as require but minimum time for digestion, that the stomach may have chance for rest after the process of digestion is complete, before the dinner hour. The custom of using fried potatoes or mushes, salted fish or meats, and other foods almost impossible of digestion, for breakfast dishes, is most pernicious. These foods set completely at variance all laws of breakfast hygiene. They are very difficult of digestion, and the thirst-provoking quality of salted foods makes them an important auxiliary to the acquirement of a love of intoxicating drinks. We feel very sure that, as a prominent temperance writer says, "It very often happens that women who send out their loved ones with an agony of prayer that they may be kept from drink for the day, also send them with a breakfast that will make them almost frantic with thirst before they get to the first saloon."

The foods composing the breakfast menu should be simple in character, well and delicately cooked, and neatly served. Fruits and grains and articles made from them offer the requisites for the ideal breakfast. These afford ample provision for variety, are easily made ready, and easily digested, while at the same time furnishing excellent nutriment in ample quantity and of the very best quality. Meats, most vegetables, and compound dishes, more difficult of digestion, are better reserved for the dinner bill of fare. No vegetable except the potato is especially serviceable as a breakfast food, and it is much more readily digested when baked than when prepared in any other manner. Stewing requires less time for preparation, but about one hour longer for digestion.

As an introduction to the morning meal, fresh fruits are most desirable, particularly the juicy varieties, as oranges, grape fruit, melons, grapes, and peaches, some one of which are obtainable nearly the entire year. Other fruits; such as apples, bananas, pears, etc., though less suitable, may be used for the same purpose. They are, however, best accompanied with wafers or some hard food, to insure their thorough mastication.

For the second course, some of the various cereals, oatmeal, rye, corn, barley, rice, or one of the numerous preparations of wheat, well cooked and served with cream, together with one or more unfermented breads (recipes for which have been given in a previous chapter), cooked fruits, and some simple relishes, are quite sufficient for a healthful and palatable breakfast.

If, however, a more extensive bill of fare is desired, numerous delicious and appetizing toasts may be prepared according to the recipes given in this chapter, and which, because of their simple character and the facility with which they can be prepared, are particularly suitable as breakfast dishes. The foundation of all these toasts is zwieback, or twice-baked bread, prepared from good whole-wheat or Graham fermented bread cut in uniform slices not more than a half inch thick, each slice being divided in halves, placed on tins, or what is better, the perforated sheets recommended for baking rolls, and baked or toasted in a slow oven for a half hour or longer, until it is browned evenly throughout the entire slice. The zwieback may be prepared in considerable quantity and kept on hand in readiness for use. It will keep for any length of time if stored in a dry place.

Stale bread is the best for making zwieback, but it should be good, light bread; that which is sour, heavy, and not fit to eat untoasted, should never be used. Care must be taken also not to scorch the slices, as once scorched, it is spoiled. Properly made, it is equally crisp throughout, and possesses a delicious, nutty flavor.

Its preparation affords an excellent opportunity for using the left-over slices of bread, and it may be made when the oven has been heated for other purposes, as after the baking of bread, or even during the ordinary cooking, with little or no additional heat. If one possesses an Aladdin oven, it can be prepared to perfection.

Zwieback may also be purchased in bulk, all ready for use, at ten cents a pound, from the Sanitarium Food Co., Battle Creek, Mich., and it is serviceable in so many ways that it should form a staple article of food in every household.

For the preparation of toasts, the zwieback must be first softened with some hot liquid, preferably thin cream. Heat the cream (two thirds of a pint of cream will be sufficient for six half slices) nearly to boiling in some rather shallow dish. Put the slices, two or three at a time, in it, dipping the cream over them and turning so that both sides will become equally softened. Keep the cream hot, and let the slices remain until softened just enough so that the center can be pierced with a fork, but not until at all mushy or broken. With two forks or a fork and a spoon, remove each slice from the hot cream, draining as thoroughly as possible, and pack in a heated dish, and repeat the process until as much zwieback has been softened as desired. Cover the dish, and keep hot until ready to serve. Special care should be taken to drain the slices as thoroughly as possible, that none of them be wet and mushy. It is better to remove them from the cream when a little hard than to allow them to become too soft, as they will soften somewhat by standing after being packed in the dish. Prepare the sauce for the toast at the same time or before softening the slices, and pour into a pitcher for serving. Serve the slices in individual dishes, turning a small quantity of the hot sauce over each as served.


Apple Toast.—Fresh, nicely flavored apples stewed in a small quantity of water, rubbed through, a colander, sweetened, then cooked in a granite-ware dish in a slow oven until quite dry, make a nice dressing for toast. Baked sweet or sour apples rubbed through a colander to remove cores and skins, are also excellent. Soften slices of zwieback in hot cream, and serve with a spoonful or two on each slice. If desired, the apple may be flavored with a little pineapple or lemon, or mixed with grape, cranberry, or apricot, thus making a number of different toasts.

Apricot Toast.—Stew some nice dried apricots as directed on page 191. When done, rub through a fine colander to remove all skins and to render them homogeneous. Add sugar to sweeten, and serve as a dressing on slices of zwieback which have been previously softened in hot cream. One half or two thirds fresh or dried apples may be used with the apricots, if preferred.

Asparagus Toast.—Prepare asparagus as directed on page 255. When tender, drain off the liquor and season it with a little cream, and salt if desired. Moisten nicely browned zwieback in the liquor and lay in a hot dish; unbind the asparagus, heap it upon the toast, and serve.

Banana Toast.—Peel and press some nice bananas through a colander. This may be very easily done with a potato masher, or if preferred a vegetable press may be used for the purpose. Moisten slices of zwieback with hot cream and serve with a large spoonful of the banana pulp on each slice. Fresh peaches may be prepared and used on the toast in the same way.

Berry Toast.—Canned strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries may be made into an excellent dressing for toast.

Turn a can of well-kept berries into a colander over an earthen dish, to separate the juice from the berries. Place the juice in a porcelain kettle and heat to boiling. Thicken to the consistency of cream with flour rubbed smooth in a little water; a tablespoonful of flour to the pint of juice will be about the right proportion. Add the berries and boil up just sufficiently to cook the flour and heat the berries; serve hot. If cream for moistening the zwieback is not obtainable, a little juice may be reserved without thickening, and heated in another dish to moisten the toast; of if preferred, the fruit may be heated and poured over the dry zwieback without being thickened, or it may be rubbed through a colander as for Apricot Toast.

Berry Toast No. 2.—Take fresh red or black raspberries, blueberries, or strawberries, and mash well with a spoon. Add sugar to sweeten, and serve as a dressing on slices of zwieback previously moistened with hot cream.

Celery Toast.—Cut the crisp white portion of celery into inch pieces, simmer twenty minutes or half an hour, or until tender, in a very little water; add salt and a cup of rich milk. Heat to boiling, and thicken with a little flour rubbed smooth in a small quantity of milk—a teaspoonful of flour to the pint of liquid. Serve hot, poured over slices of zwieback previously moistened with cream or hot water.

Cream Toast—For this use good Graham or whole-wheat zwieback. Have a pint of thin sweet cream scalding hot, salt it a little if desired, and moisten the zwieback in it as previously directed packing it immediately into a hot dish; cover tightly so that the toast may steam, and serve. The slices should be thoroughly moistened, but not soft and mushy nor swimming in cream; indeed, it is better if a little of the crispness still remains.

Cream Toast with Poached Egg.—Prepare the cream toast as previously directed, and serve hot with a well-poached egg on each slice.

Cherry Toast.—Take a quart of ripe cherries; stem, wash and stew (if preferred the stones may be removed) until tender but not broken; add sugar to sweeten, and pour over slices of well-browned dry toast or zwieback. Serve cold.

Gravy Toast.—Heat a quart and a cupful of rich milk to boiling, add salt, and stir into it three scant tablespoonfuls of flour which has been rubbed to a smooth paste in a little cold milk. This quantity will be sufficient for about a dozen slices of toast. Moisten slices of zwieback with hot water and pack in a heated dish. When serving, pour a quantity of the cream cause over each slice.

Dry Toast with Hot Cream.—Nicely prepared zwieback served in hot saucers with hot cream poured over each slice at the table, makes a most delicious breakfast dish.

Grape Toast.—Stem well-ripened grapes, wash well, and scald without water in a double boiler until broken; rub through a colander to remove sends and skins, and when cool, sweeten to taste. If the toast is desired for breakfast, the grapes should be prepared the day previous. Soften the toast in hot cream, as previously directed, and pack in a tureen. Heat the prepared grapes and serve, pouring a small quantity over each slice of toast. Canned grapes may be used instead of fresh ones, if desired.

Lentil Toast.—Lentils stewed as directed for Lentil Gravy on page 226 served as a dressing on slices of zwieback moistened with hot cream or water, makes a very palatable toast. Browned flour may be used to thicken the dressing if preferred.

Prune Toast.—Cook prunes as directed on page 191, allowing them to simmer very slowly for a long time. When done, rub through a colander, and if quite thin, they should be stewed again for a time, until they are about the consistency of marmalade. Moisten slices of zwieback with hot cream, and serve with a spoonful or two of the prune dressing on each. One third dried apple may be used with the prune, if preferred.

Peach Toast.—Stew nice fresh peaches in a small quantity of water; when tender, rub through a colander, and if quite juicy, place on the back of the range where they will cook very slowly until nearly all the water has evaporated, and the peach is of the consistency of marmalade. Add sugar to sweeten, and serve the same as prunes, on slices of zwieback previously moistened with hot cream. Canned peaches may be drained from their juice and prepared in the same manner. Dried or evaporated peaches may also be used. Toast with dried-peach dressing will be more delicate in flavor if one third dried apples be used with the peaches.

Snowflake Toast.—Heat to boiling a quart of milk to which a half cup of cream, and a little salt have been added. Thicken with a tablespoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk. Have ready the whites of two eggs beaten to a stiff froth; and when the sauce is well cooked, turn a cupful of it on the beaten egg, stirring well meanwhile so that it will form a light, frothy mixture, to which add the remainder of the sauce. If the sauce is not sufficiently hot to coagulate the albumen, it may be heated again almost to the boiling point, but should not be allowed to boil. The sauce should be of a light, frothy consistency throughout. Serve as dressing on nicely moistened slices of zwieback.

Tomato Toast.—Moisten slices of zwieback in hot cream, and serve with a dressing prepared by heating a pint of strained stewed tomato to boiling, and thickening with a tablespoonful of corn starch or flour rubbed smooth in a little cold water. Season with salt and a half cupful of hot cream. The cream may be omitted, if preferred.

Vegetable Oyster Toast.—Cook a quart of cleaned, sliced vegetable oysters in a quart of water until very tender; add a pint and a half of rich milk, salt to taste, and thicken the whole with two tablespoonfuls of flour rubbed to a smooth paste with a little milk. Let it boil for a few minutes, and serve as a dressing on slices of well-browned toast previously moistened with hot water or cream.


Brewis.—Heat a pint of rich milk to boiling, remove from fire, and beat into it thoroughly and quickly a cup of very fine stale rye or Graham bread crumbs. Serve at once with cream.

Blackberry Mush.—Rub a pint of canned or fresh stewed and sweetened blackberries, having considerable juice, through a fine colander or sieve to remove the seeds. Add water to make a pint and a half cupful in all, heat to boiling, and sprinkle into it a cupful of sifted Graham flour, or sufficient to make a mush of desired thickness. Cook as directed for Graham Mush, page 90. Serve hot with cream.

Dry Granola.—This prepared food, made from wheat, corn, and oats, and obtainable from the Sanitarium Food Co., Battle Creek, Mich., forms an excellent breakfast dish eaten with cold or hot milk and cream. Wheatena, prepared wholly from wheat; Avenola, made from oats and wheat; and Gofio, made from parched grains, all obtainable from the same firm, are each delicious and suitable foods for the morning meal.

Frumenty.—Wash well a pint of best wheat, and soak for twenty-four hours in water just sufficient to cover. Put the soaked wheat in a covered earthen baking pot or jar, cover well with water, and let it cook in a very slow oven for twelve hours. This may be done the day before it is wanted, or if one has a coal range in which a fire may be kept all night, or an Aladdin oven, the grain may be started in the evening and cooked at night. When desired for use, put in a saucepan with three pints of milk, a cupful of well-washed Zante currants, and one cup of seeded raisins. Boil together for a few minutes, thicken with four tablespoonfuls of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk, and serve.

Macaroni with Raisins.—Break macaroni into inch lengths sufficient to fill a half-pint cup. Heat four cups of milk, and when actively boiling, put in the macaroni and cook until tender. Pour boiling water over a half cup of raisins, and let them stand until swelled. Ten or fifteen minutes before the macaroni is done, add the raisins. Serve hot with or without the addition of cream. Macaroni cooked in the various ways as directed in the chapter on Grains, is also suitable for breakfast dishes.

Macaroni with Kornlet.—Break macaroni into inch lengths and cook in boiling milk and water. Prepare the kornlet by adding to it an equal quantity of rich milk or thin cream, and thickening with a little flour, a tablespoonful to the pint. When done, drain the macaroni, and add the kornlet in the proportion of a pint of kornlet mixture to one and one half cups of macaroni. Mix well, turn into an earthen dish, and brown in a moderate oven. Left-over kornlet soup, if kept on ice, may be utilized for this breakfast dish, and the macaroni may be cooked the day before. Green corn pulp may be used in place of the kornlet.

Peach Mush.—Prepare the same as Blackberry Mush using very thin peach sauce made smooth by rubbing through a colander. Freshly stewed or canned peaches or nicely cooked dried peaches are suitable for this purpose. Apples and grapes may be likewise used for a breakfast mush.

Rice with Lemon.—Wash a cup of rice and turn it into three pints of boiling water, let it boil vigorously until tender, and turn into a colander to drain. While still in the colander and before the rice has become at all cold, dip quickly in and out of a pan of cold water several times to separate the grains, draining well afterward. All should be done so quickly that the rice will not become too cold for serving; if necessary to reheat, place for a few moments in a dish in a steamer over a kettle of boiling water. Serve with a dressing of lemon previously prepared by cutting two fresh lemons in thin, wafer-like slices, sprinkling each thickly with sugar, and allowing them to stand for an hour or more until a syrup is formed. When the rice is ready to serve, lay the slices of lemon on top of it, pouring the syrup over it, and serve with a slice or two of the lemon for each dish.


The lightest breakfast is the best.—Oswald.

A NEW NAME FOR BREAKFAST.—"Tum, mamma, leth's go down to tupper," said a little toddler to her mother, one morning, recently.

"Why, we don't have supper in the morning," replied the mother.

"Den leth's do down to dinner," urged the little one.

"But we don't have dinner in the morning," corrected the mother.

"Well, den, leth's do down any way," pleaded the child.

"But try and think what meal we have in the morning," urged mamma.

"I know," said the toddler, brightening up.

"What meal do we have in the morning?"

"Oatmeal. Tum on; leth's do."—Sel.

Seneca, writing to a friend of his frugal fare which he declares does not cost a sixpence a day, says:—

"Do you ask if that can supply due nourishment? Yes; and pleasure too. Not indeed, that fleeting and superficial pleasure which needs to be perpetually recruited, but a solid and substantial one. Bread and polenta certainly is not a luxurious feeding, but it is no little advantage to be able to receive pleasure from a simple diet of which no change of fortune can deprive one."

Breakfast: Come to breakfast!
Little ones and all,—
How their merry footsteps
Patter at the call!
Break the bread; pour freely
Milk that cream-like flows;
A blessing on their appetites
And on their lips of rose.
Dinner may be pleasant
So may the social tea,
But yet, methinks the breakfast
Is best of all the three.
With its greeting smile of welcome,
Its holy voice of prayer,
It forgeth heavenly armor
To foil the hosts of care.—Mrs. Sigourney.

Health is not quoted in the markets because it is without price.—Sel.

It is a mistake to think that the more a man eats, the fatter and stronger he will become.—Sel.



C ustom has so long established the usage of finishing the dinner with a dessert of some kind, that a menu is considered quite incomplete without it; and we shall devote the next few pages to articles which may be deemed appropriate and healthful desserts, not because we consider the dessert itself of paramount importance, for indeed we do not think it essential to life or even to good living, but because we hope the hints and suggestions which our space permits, may aid the housewife in preparing more wholesome, inexpensive dishes in lieu of the indigestible articles almost universally used for this purpose.

We see no objection to the use of a dessert, if the articles offered are wholesome, and are presented before an abundance has already been taken. As usually served, the dessert is but a "snare and delusion" to the digestive organs. Compounded of substances "rich," not in food elements, but in fats, sweets, and spices, and served after enough has already been eaten, it offers a great temptation to overeat; while the elements of which it is largely composed, serve to hamper the digestive organs, to clog the liver, and to work mischief generally. At the same time it may be remarked that the preparation of even wholesome desserts requires an outlay of time and strength better by far expended in some other manner. Desserts are quite unnecessary to a good, healthful, nutritious dietary. The simplest of all desserts are the various nuts and delicious fruits with which nature has so abundantly supplied us, at no greater cost than their harmful substitutes, and which require no expenditure of time or strength in their preparation. If, however, other forms of dessert are desired, a large variety may be prepared in a simple manner, so as to be both pleasing and appetizing.


In the preparation of desserts, as in that of all other foods it is essential that all material used shall be thoroughly good of its kind. If bread is to be used, the crumbs should be dry and rather stale, but on no account use that which is sour or moldy. Some housekeepers imagine that if their bread happens to spoil and become sour, although it is hardly palatable enough for the table, it may be advantageously used to make puddings. It is indeed quite possible to combine sour bread with other ingredients so as to make a pudding agreeable to the palate; but disguising sour bread makes sweets and flavors by no means changes it into a wholesome food. It is better economy to throw sour bread away at once than to impose it upon the digestive organs at the risk of health and strength.

Bread which has begun to show appearance of mold should never be used; for mold is a poison, and very serious illness has resulted from the eating of puddings made from moldy bread.

Eggs, to be used for desserts, should always be fresh and good. Cooks often imagine that an egg too stale to be eaten in any other way will do very well for use in cakes and puddings, because it can be disguised so as not to be apparent to the taste; but stale eggs are unfit for food, either alone or in combination with other ingredients. Their use is often the occasion of serious disturbances of the digestive organs. Most desserts in which eggs are used will be much lighter if the yolks and whites are beaten separately. If in winter, and eggs are scarce, fewer may be used, and two tablespoonfuls of dry snow for each omitted egg stirred in the last thing before baking.

Milk, likewise, should always be sweet and fresh. If it is to be heated, use a double boiler, so that there will be no danger of scorching. If fresh milk is not available, the condensed milk found at the grocer's is an excellent substitute. Dissolve according to directions, and follow the recipe the same as with fresh milk, omitting one half or two thirds the given amount of sugar.

If dried sweet fruits, raisins, or currants are to be used, look them over carefully, put them in a colander, and placing it in a pan of warm water, allow the currants to remain until plump. This will loosen the dirt which, while they are shriveled, sticks in the creases, and they may then be washed by dipping the colander in and out of clean water until they are free from sediment; rinse in two waters, then spread upon a cloth, and let them get perfectly dry before using.

It is a good plan, after purchasing raisins and currants, to wash and dry a quantity, and store in glass cans ready for use. To facilitate the stoning of raisins, put them into a colander placed in a dish of warm water until plump; then drain, when the seeds can be easily removed.

For desserts which are to be molded, always wet the molds in cold water before pouring in the desserts.


To Prepare Almond Paste.—Blanch the nuts according to directions given on page 215. Allow them to dry thoroughly, and pound in a mortar to a smooth paste. They can be reduced much easier if dried for a day or two after blanching. During the pounding, sprinkle with a few drops of cold water, white of egg, rose water, or lemon juice, to prevent them from oiling.

Cocoanut Flavor.—Cocoanut, freshly grated or desiccated, unless in extremely fine particles, is a very indigestible substance, and when its flavor is desired for custards, puddings, etc., it is always better to steep a few tablespoonfuls in a pint of milk for twenty minutes or a half hour, and strain out the particles. The milk should not be allowed to boil, as it will be likely to curdle. One tablespoonful of freshly grated cocoanut or two of the desiccated will give a very pleasant and delicate flavor; and if a more intense flavor is desired, use a larger quantity.

Orange and Lemon Flavor.—Orange or lemon flavor may be obtained by steeping a few strips of the yellow part of the rind of lemon or orange in milk for twenty minutes. Skim out the rind before using for desserts. Care should be taken to use only the yellow part, as the white will impart a bitter flavor. The grated rind may also be used for flavoring, but in grating the peel, one must be careful to grate very lightly, and thus use only the outer yellow portion, which contains the essential oil of the fruit. Grate evenly, turning and working around the lemon, using as small a surface of the grater as possible, in order to prevent waste. Generally, twice across the grater and back will be sufficient for removing all the yellow skin from one portion of a lemon. A well-grated lemon should be of exactly the same shape as before, with no yellow skin remaining, and no deep scores into the white. Remove the yellow pulp from the grater with a fork.

To Color Sugar.—For ornamenting the meringues of puddings and other desserts, take a little of the fresh juice of cranberries, red raspberries, currants, black raspberries, grapes, or other colored juices of fruits, thicken it stiff with the sugar, spread on a plate to dry, or use at one. It may be colored yellow with orange peel strained through a cloth, or green with the juice of spinach. Sugar prepared in this manner is quite as pretty and much more wholesome than the colored sugars found in market, which are often prepared with poisonous chemicals.



Apple Dessert.—Pare some large tart apples, remove the cores, put into the cavities a little quince jelly, lemon flavored sugar, or grated pineapple and sugar, according to the flavor desired. Have as many squares of bread with the crust taken off as there are apples, and place a filled apple on each piece of bread, on earthen pie plates; moisten well with a little quince jelly dissolved in water, lemon juice, or pineapple juice, according to the filling used. Cover closely, and bake in a rather quick oven till the apples are tender. Serve with whipped cream and sugar.

Apple Meringue Dessert.—Pare and core enough tart, easy-cooking apples to make a quart when stewed. Cover closely and cook slowly till perfectly tender, when they should be quite dry. Mash through a colander, add a little sugar and a little grated pineapple or lemon peel. Beat light with a silver fork, turn into a pudding dish, and brown in a moderate oven ten or fifteen minutes. Then cover with a meringue made with two tablespoonfuls of sugar and the beaten whites of two eggs, and return to the oven for a moment to brown. Serve cold.

Apple Rose Cream.—Wash, core, slice, and cook without paring, a dozen fresh snow apples until very dry. When done, rub through a colander to remove the skins, add sugar to sweeten, and the whites of two eggs; beat vigorously with an egg beater until stiff, add a teaspoonful of rose water for flavoring, and serve at once, or keep on ice. It is especially important that the apples be very dry, otherwise the cream will not be light. If after rubbing through the colander, there is still much juice, they should be cooked again until it has evaporated; or they may be turned into a jelly bag and drained. Other varieties of apple may be used, and flavored with pineapple or vanilla. Made as directed of snow apples or others with white flesh and red skins, the cream should be of a delicate pink color, making a very dainty as well as delicious dessert.

Apple Snow.—Pare and quarter some nice tart apples. Those that when cooked will be whitest in color are best. Put them into a china dish, and steam until tender over a kettle of boiling water. When done, rub through a colander or beat with a fork until smooth, add sugar to sweeten and a little grated lemon rind, and beat again. For every cup and a half of the prepared apple allow the white of one egg, which beat to a stiff froth, adding the apple to it a little at a time, beating all together until, when taken up in a spoon, it stands quite stiff. Serve cold, with or without a simple custard prepared with a pint of hot milk, a tablespoonful of sugar, and the yolks of two eggs.

Baked Apples with Cream.—Pare some nice juicy sweet apples, and remove the cores without dividing. Bake until tender in a covered dish with a spoonful or two of water on the bottom. Serve with whipped cream. Or, bake the apples without paring and when done, remove the skins, and serve in the same manner. The cream may be flavored with a little lemon or rose if desired. Lemon apples and Citron apples, prepared as directed on pages 186 and 187, make a most delicious dessert served with whipped cream and sugar, or with mock cream flavored with cocoanut.

Baked Sweet Apple Dessert.—Wash and remove the cores from a dozen medium-sized sweet apples, and one third as many sour ones, and bake until well done. Mash through a colander to make smooth and remove the skins. Put into a granite-ware dish, smooth the top with a knife, return to the oven and bake very slowly until dry enough to keep its shape when cut. Add if desired a meringue made by heating the white of one egg with a tablespoonful of sugar. Cut into squares, and serve in individual dishes. The meringue may be flavored with lemon or dotted with bits of colored sugar.

Bananas in Syrup.—Heat in a porcelain kettle a pint of currant and red raspberry juice, equal parts, sweetened to taste. When boiling, drop into it a dozen peeled bananas, and simmer very gently for twenty minutes. Remove the bananas, boil the juice until thickened to the consistency of syrup, and pour over the fruit. Serve cold.

Baked Bananas—Bake fresh, firm, yelow bananas with the skins on fifteen minutes in a moderate oven. Serve hot.

Fresh Fruit Compote.—Flavor three tablespoonfuls of sugar by mixing with it a little of the grated yellow rind of an orange, or by rubbing it over the orange to extract the oil. If the latter method is used, the square lump sugar will be preferable. Pare, quarter, and slice three medium-sized tart apples. Peel, remove the seeds, and cut in quite fine pieces three oranges. Put the fruit in alternate layers in a glass dish. Sweeten a cupful of fresh or canned raspberry juice with the flavored sugar, and turn it over the fruit. Put the dish on ice to cool for a half hour before serving.

Grape Apples.—Sweeten a pint of fresh grape juice with a pint of sugar, and simmer gently until reduced one third. Pare and core without dividing, six or eight nice tart apples, and stew very slowly in the grape juice until tender, but not broken. Remove the apples and boil the juice (if any remain) until thickened to the consistency of syrup. Serve cold with a dressing of whipped cream. Canned grape pulp or juice may be utilized for this purpose. Sweet apples may be used instead of tart ones, and the sugar omitted.

Peach Cream.—Pare and stone some nice yellow peaches, and mash with a spoon or press through a colander with a potato masher. Allow equal quantities of the peach pulp and cream, add a little sugar to sweeten, and beat all together until the cream is light. Serve in saucers or glasses with currant buns. A banana cream may be prepared in the same manner.

Prune Dessert.—Prepare some prune marmalade as directed on page 191. Put in a square granite-ware dish, which place inside another dish containing hot water, and cook it in a slow oven until the marmalade is dry enough to retain its shape when cut with a knife. If desired add a meringue as for baked sweet apple dessert, dotting the top with pink sugar. Serve in squares in individual dishes.



Apple Sandwich.—Mix half a cup of sugar with the grated yellow rind of half a lemon. Stir half a cup of cream into a quart of soft bread crumbs; prepare three pints of sliced apples, sprinkled with the sugar; fill a pudding dish with alternate layers of moistened crumbs and sliced apples, finishing with a thick layer of crumbs. Unless the apples are very juicy, add half a cup of cold water, and unless quite tart, have mixed with the water the juice of half a lemon. Cover and bake about one hour. Remove the cover toward the last, that the top may brown lightly. Serve with cream. Berries or other acid fruits may be used in place of apples, and rice or cracked wheat mush substituted for bread crumbs.

Apple Sandwich No. 2.—Prepare and stew some apples as for sauce, allowing them to become quite dry; flavor with lemon, pineapples, quince, or any desired flavor. Moisten slices of zwieback in hot cream as for toast. Spread a slice with the apple mixture, cover with a second slice of the moistened zwieback, then cut in squares and serve, with or without a dressing of mock cream. If desired to have the sandwiches particularly dainty, cut the bread from which the zwieback is prepared in rounds, triangles, or stars before toasting.

Baked Apple Pudding.—Pour boiling water over bread crumbs; when soft, squeeze out all the water, and line the bottom and sides of an oiled earthen pudding dish with the crumbs. Fill the interior with sliced apples, and cover with a layer of bread crumbs. Bake in a covered dish set in a pan of hot water, until the apples are tender; then remove the cover and brown. Loosen the pudding with a knife, invert on a plate, and it will turn out whole. Serve with sugar and cream.

Barley Fruit Pudding.—Mix together a pint of cold, well steamed pearl barley, a cup of finely minced tart apples, three fourths of a cup of chopped and seeded raisins, a third of a cup of sugar, and a cup of boiling water and turn into a pudding dish; cover, and place the dish in the oven in a pan of hot water, and bake slowly an hour and a half, or until the water has become quite absorbed and the fruit tender. Serve warm with a water, adding sugar to taste, and thickening with a half teaspoonful of cornstarch. Any tart fruit jelly may be used, or the pudding may be served with cream and sugar flavored with a little grated lemon rind.

Barley Fig Pudding.—One pint of well-steamed pearl barley, two cups of finely chopped best figs, one half cup of sugar, one half cup of thin sweet cream, and one and one half cups of fresh milk. Mix all thoroughly, turn into an earthen pudding dish; place it in the oven in a pan half full of hot water, and bake slowly till the milk is nearly absorbed. The pudding should be stirred once or twice during the baking, so that the figs will be distributed evenly, instead of rising to the top.

Blackberry Cornstarch Pudding.—Take two quarts of well-ripened blackberries which have been carefully looked over, put them into a granite-ware boiler with half a cup of water, and stew for twenty minutes. Add sugar to sweeten, and three heaping tablespoonfuls of cornstarch rubbed to a cream with a little cold water. Cook until thickened, pour into molds, and cool. Serve cold with milk or cream. Other fresh or canned berries may be used in the same way.

Cocoanut and Cornstarch Blancmange.—Simmer two tablespoonfuls of desiccated cocoanut in a pint of milk for twenty minutes, and strain through a fine sieve. If necessary, add more cold milk to make a full pint. Add a tablespoonful of sugar, heat to boiling, and stir in gradually two tablespoonfuls of cornstarch rubbed smooth in a very little cold milk. Cook five minutes, turn into cups, and serve cold with fruit sauce or cream.

Cornstarch Blancmange.—Stir together two tablespoonfuls of cornstarch, half a cup of sugar, the juice and a little of the grated rind of one lemon; braid the whole with cold water enough to dissolve well. Then pour boiling water over the mixture, stirring meanwhile, until it becomes transparent. Allow it to bubble a few minutes longer, pour into molds, and serve cold with cream and sugar.

Cornstarch with Raisins.—Measure out one pint of rich milk. Rub two tablespoonfuls of cornstarch perfectly smooth with a little of the milk, and heat the remainder to boiling, adding to it a tablespoonful of sugar. Add the braided cornstarch, and let it cook until it thickens, stirring constantly. Then add a half cup of raisins which have been previously steamed. This may be served hot with sugar and cream, or turned into cups and molded, and served cold with lemon, orange, or other fruit sauce for dressing.

Cornstarch with Apples.—Prepare the cornstarch as in the preceding recipe, omitting the raisins. Place in a pudding dish some lemon apple sauce, without juice, about two inches deep. Pour the cornstarch over it, and serve hot or cold with cream.

Cornstarch Fruit Mold.—Heat a quart of strawberry, raspberry, or currant juice, sweetened to taste, to boiling. If the pure juice of berries is used, it may be diluted with one cup of water to each pint and a half of juice. Stir in four tablespoonfuls of cornstarch well braided with a little of the juice reserved for this purpose. Boil until the starch is well cooked, stirring constantly. Pour into molds previously wet with cold water, and cool. Serve with cream and sugar. A circle of fresh berries around the mold when served adds to its appearance.

Cornstarch Fruit Mold No. 2.—Wash, stone, and stew some nice French prunes, add sugar to sweeten, and if there is not an abundance of juice, a little boiling water. For every one fourth pound of prunes there should be enough juice to make a pint in all, for which add two tablespoonfuls of cornstarch, rubbed smooth in a little cold water, and boil three or four minutes. Pour into cups previously wet in cold water, and mold. Serve cold with whipped cream. Other dried or canned fruits, as apricots, peaches, cherries, etc., may be used in place of prunes, if preferred.

Cracked-Wheat Pudding.—A very simple pudding may be made with two cups of cold, well-cooked cracked wheat, two and a half cups of milk, and one half cup of sugar. Let the wheat soak in the milk till thoroughly mixed and free from lumps, then add the sugar and a little grated lemon peel, and bake about three fourths of an hour in a moderate oven. It should be of a creamy consistency when cold, but will appear quite thin when taken from the oven. By flavoring the milk with cocoanut, a different pudding may be produced. Rolled or pearl wheat may be used for this pudding. A cupful of raisins may be added if desired.

Cracked-Wheat Pudding No. 2.—Four and one half cups of milk, a very scant half cup of cracked wheat, one half cup of sugar; put together in a pudding dish, and bake slowly with the dish covered and set in a pan of hot water for three or four hours, or until the wheat is perfectly tender, as may be ascertained by dipping a few grains with a spoon out from the side of the dish.

Farina Blancmange.—Heat a quart of milk, reserving one half cup, to boiling. Then add two tablespoonfuls of sugar, and four heaping tablespoonfuls of farina, previously moistened with the reserved half cup of milk. Let all boil rapidly for a few minutes till the farina has well set, then place in a double boiler, or a dish set in a pan of boiling water, to cook an hour longer. Mold in cups previously wet with cold water. Serve with sugar and cream flavored with vanilla or a little grated lemon rind, mock cream, or cocoanut sauce.

Much variety may be given this simple dessert by serving it with a dressing of fruit juices; red raspberry, strawberry, grape, current, cranberry, cherry, and plum are all very good. If desired, the milk with which the blancmange is prepared may be first flavored with cocoan