Cooking School: Lesson 2, Week 6 & 7

We are starting the second chapter of this book: Cookery. The dates listed are the dates for the lessons. Any section not covered with a date will be included on the date given after that section. This way, I can condense the sections and get through this quickly but efficiently, skipping nothing. This entire lesson will take 7 weeks versus the 11 weeks as originally taught. When we are finished, I am hoping we all have a good understanding (including myself) of cooking, itself!

As a reminder, the sections (and dates) are:

  1. Cookery w/recipe Baking Bread (Saturday, April 27th, 2013)
  2. Fire
  3. How to Build a Fire w/recipe Potato Soup (Saturday, May 4th, 2013, Sunday, May 12th)
  4. Ways of Cooking
  5. Various Ways of Preparing Food for Cooking w/recipe Broiled Fish (Sunday, May 12th, 2013)
  6. How to Bone a Bird w/recipe Mashed Potatoes (Saturday, May 18th, 2013, Wednesday, June 5th)
  7. How to Measure
  8. How to Combine Ingredients w/recipe Boiled Eggs (Saturday, May 25th, 2013, Wednesday, June 5th)
  9. Ways of Preserving w/recipe Hash
  10. Table of Measures and Weights w/recipe Scalloped Eggs (Saturday, June 1st, 2013, Monday, June 17)
  11. Time Tables for Cooking w/recipe Blanc-Mange (Saturday, June 8th, 2013, Monday, June 17)

Chapter 2, Section 9: Ways of Preserving

“Foods which spoil readily are frozen for transportation, and must be kept packed in ice until used.”

There are several ways the book discusses preserving foods.

  • By Freezing: Extreme temperatures until frozen.
  • By Refrigeration: A simple cold storage.
  • By Canning: Preserving in air-tight glass jars or tin cans hermetically sealed. To can fruit, one must add sugar.
  • By Sugar: Fruit juices and condensed milk are preserved with sugar added.
  • By Exclusion of Air: Remove the air. Simple.
  • By Drying: Evaporation of all moisture. The book states this is typically done with a bit of salt, as well – except for fruits and vegetables.
  • By Evaporation: You can make beef extract this way, states the book. Typically, most of the moisture is removed with some remaining.
  • By Salting: You can “dry salt” or “corning and salting in brine.” Example would be salt cod-fish, beef, pork, tripe and such.
  • By Pickling: Using vinegar and salt (sometimes sugar and spices). Scald the item with these ingredients. Typically used for cucumbers, onions and various other kinds of fruit.
  • By Oil: Sardines, anchovies and such are stored in oil.
  • By Antiseptics: “The least wholesome way is by the use of antiseptics.” Borax and salicilic acid – used sparingly.

The book doesn’t give much more information than that. I’ve tried my hand at canning and, while I have much to learn, I have enjoyed it. I’ll give it another whirl this summer and see how it goes. I would also love to find a way to store by salting. That’s how most meats were preserved in years gone by. It would be interesting to see if I could recreate that safely!

Chapter 2, Section 10: Table of Measures and Weights

This chapter simply gives a list of measurements and weights. There is no other information available. Download a copy of the book if you’d like to save a list for yourself. Perhaps, if I find time, I’ll type it up and put it as a PDF download off this site. We’ll see if I can – without forgetting!

Chapter 2, Section 11: Time Tables for Cooking

The same thing here – it’s a list. I’ll see if I can’t get it all typed up. Something to have handy – even if times have changed a little since then. We have faster ovens and stoves, now.

naia signature

*All quotes (noted or not) are from The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book c1904, my own personal copy, unless otherwise noted.

** All opinions stated here are my own, not medically backed, unless otherwise stated.

Recipe: Hash (Corned Beef Hash)

“Remove skin and gristle from cooked corned beef, then chop the meat. When meat is very fat, discard most of the fat. To chopped meat add an equal quantity of cold boiled chopped potatoes. Season with salt and pepper, put into a hot buttered frying-pan, moisten with milk or cream, stir until well mixed, spread evenly, then place on a part of the range where it may slowly brown underneath. Turn, and fold on a hot platter. Garnish with a sprig of parsley in the middle.”

Recipe: Corned Beef Hash with Beets

“When preparing Corned Beef Hash, add one-half as much finely chopped cooked beets as potatoes. Cold roast beef or one-half roast beef and one-half corned beef may be used.”

Recipe: Scalloped Eggs

  • 8 Hard boiled Eggs
  • 1 pint White Sauce I
  • 3/4 cup chopped cold meat
  • 3/4 cup buttered cracker crumbs

“Chop eggs finely. Sprinkle bottom of a buttered baking dish with crumbs, cover with one-half the eggs, eggs with sauce, and sauce with meat; repeat. Cover with remaining crumbs. Place in oven on centre grate, and bake until crumbs are brown. Ham is the best meat to use for this dish. Chicken, veal, or fish may be used.”

Recipe: White Sauce I

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • few grains pepper

“Put butter in saucepan, stir until melted and bubbling; add flour mixed with seasonings, and stir until thoroughly blended. Pour on gradually the milk, adding about one-third at a time, stirring until well mixed, then beating until smooth and glossy. If a wire whisk is used, all the milk may be added at once; and although more quickly made if milk is scalded, it is not necessary.”

Recipe: Blanc-Mange (Irish Moss Blanc-Mange)

  • 1/3 cup Irish Moss
  • 4 cups Milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

“Soak moss fifteen minutes in cold water to cover, drain, pick over, and add to milk; cook in double boiler thirty minutes; the milk will seem but little thicker than when put on to cook, but if cooked longer, blanc-mange will be too stiff. Add salt, strain, flavor, re-strain, and fill individual moulds previously dipped in cold water; chill, turn on glass dish, surround with thin slices of banana, and place a slice on each mould. Serve with sugar and cream.”

Does anyone know what Irish Moss is?

Recipe: Chocolate Blanc-Mange

“Irish Moss Blanc-Mange flavored with chocolate. Melt one and one-half squares Baker’s chocolate, add one-fourth cup sugar and one-third cup boiling water, stir until perfectly smooth, adding to milk just before taking from fire. Serve with sugar and cream.”

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