Comprising Information for the Mistress, Housekeeper, Cook, Kitchen-maid, Butler, Footman, Coachman, Valet, Upper and under house-maids, Lady’s-maid, Maid-of-all-work, Laundry-maid, Nurse and nurse-maid, Monthly, wet, and sick nurses, etc. etc. also, sanitary, medical, & legal memoranda; with a history of the origin, properties, and uses of all things connected with home life and comfort.
Mode.—Make the milk-and-water hot; scrape the chocolate into it, and stir the mixture constantly and quickly until the chocolate is dissolved; bring it to the boiling-point, stir it well, and serve directly with white sugar. Chocolate prepared with in a mill, as shown in the engraving, is made by putting in the scraped chocolate, pouring over it the boiling milk-and-water, and milling it over the fire until hot and frothy.
Sufficient.—Allow 1/2 oz. of cake chocolate to each person.
CHOCOLATE AND COCOA.—Both these preparations are made from the seeds or beans of the cacao-tree, which grows in the West Indies and South America. The Spanish, and the proper name, is cacao, not cocoa, as it is generally spelt. From this mistake, the tree from which the beverage is procured has been often confounded with the palm that produces the edible cocoa-nuts, which are the produce of the cocoa-tree (Cocos nucifera), whereas the tree from which chocolate is procured is very different (the Theobroma cacao). The cocoa-tree was cultivated by the aboriginal inhabitants of South America, particularly in Mexico, where, according to Humboldt, it was reared by Montezuma. It was transplanted thence into other dependencies of the Spanish monarchy in 1520; and it was so highly esteemed by Linnaeus receive from him the name now conferred upon it, of Theobroma, a term derived from the Greek, and signifying “food for gods.” Chocolate has always been a favourite beverage among the Spaniards and Creoles, and was considered here as a great luxury when first introduced, after the discovery of America; but the high duties laid upon it, confined it long almost entirely to the wealthier classes. Before it was subjected to duty, Mr. Bryan Edwards stated that cocoa plantations were numerous in Jamaica, but that the duty caused their almost entire ruin. The removal of this duty has increased their cultivation. (For engraving of cocoa-bean, see No. 1816.)
Mode.—Let the coffee be freshly ground, and, if possible, freshly roasted; put it into a percolater, or filter, with the chicory, and pour slowly over it the above proportion of boiling water. When it has all filtered through, warm the coffee sufficiently to bring it to the simmering-point, but do not allow it to boil; then filter it a second time, put it into a clean and dry bottle, cork it well, and it will remain good for several days. Two tablespoonfuls of this essence are quite sufficient for a breakfast-cupful of hot milk. This essence will be found particularly useful to those persons who have to rise extremely early; and having only the milk to make boiling, is very easily and quickly prepared. When the essence is bottled, pour another 3 tea-cupfuls of boiling water slowly on the grounds, which, when filtered through, will be a very weak coffee. The next time there is essence to be prepared, make this weak coffee boiling, and pour it on the ground coffee instead of plain water: by this means a better coffee will be obtained. Never throw away the grounds without having made use of them in this manner; and always cork the bottle well that contains this preparation, until the day that it is wanted for making the fresh essence.
Time.—To be filtered once, then brought to the boiling-point, and filtered again.
Average cost, with coffee at 1s. 8d. per lb., 6d.
Sufficient’-Allow 2 tablespoonfuls for a breakfast-cupful of hot milk.
(A French Recipe.)
1809. It being an acknowledged fact that French coffee is decidedly superior to that made in England, and as the roasting of the berry is of great importance to the flavour of the preparation, it will be useful and interesting to know how they manage these things in France. In Paris, there are two houses justly celebrated for the flavour of their coffee,—La Maison Corcellet and La Maison Royer de Chartres; and to obtain this flavour, before roasting they add to every 3 lbs. of coffee a piece of butter the size of a nut, and a dessert-spoonful of powdered sugar: it is then roasted in the usual manner. The addition of the butter and sugar develops the flavour and aroma of the berry; but it must be borne in mind, that the quality of the butter must be of the very best description.
Mode.—To make coffee good, it should never be boiled, but the boiling water merely poured on it, the same as for tea. The coffee should always be purchased in the berry,—if possible, freshly roasted; and it should never be ground long before it is wanted for use. There are very many new kinds of coffee-pots, but the method of making the coffee is nearly always the same; namely, pouring the boiling water on the powder, and allowing it to filter through. Our illustration shows one of Loysel’s Hydrostatic Urns, which are admirably adapted for making good and clear coffee, which should be made in the following, manner:—Warm the urn with boiling water, remove the lid and movable filter, and place the ground coffee at the bottom of the urn. Put the movable filter over this, and screw the lid, inverted, tightly on the end of the centre pipe. Pour into the inverted lid the above proportion of boiling water, and when all the water so poured has disappeared from the funnel, and made its way down the centre pipe and up again through the ground coffee by hydrostatic pressure, unscrew screw the lid and cover the urn. Pour back direct into the urn, not through the funnel, one, two, or three cups, according to the size of the percolater, in order to make the infusion of uniform strength; the contents will then be ready for use, and should run from the tap strong, hot, and clear. The coffee made in these urns generally turns out very good, and there is but one objection to them,—the coffee runs rather slowly from the tap. This is of no consequence where there is a small party, but tedious where there are many persons to provide for. A remedy for this objection may be suggested; namely, to make the coffee very strong, so that not more than 1/3 of a cup would be required, as the rest would be filled up with milk. Making coffee in filters or percolaters does away with the necessity of using isinglass, white of egg, and various other preparations to clear it. Coffee should always be served very hot, and, if possible, in the same vessel in which it is made, as pouring it from one pot to another cools, and consequently spoils it. Many persons may think that the proportion of water we have given for each oz. of coffee is rather small; it is so, and the coffee produced from it will be very strong; 1/3 of a cup will be found quite sufficient, which should be filled with nice hot milk, or milk and cream mixed. This is the ‘cafe au lait’ for which our neighbours over the Channel are so justly celebrated. Should the ordinary method of making coffee be preferred, use double the quantity of water, and, in pouring it into the cups, put in more coffee and less milk.
[Illustration: LOYSEL’S HYDROSTATIC URN.]
Sufficient.—For very good coffee, allow 1/2 oz., or 1 tablespoonful, to each person.
Mode.—Have a small iron ring made to fit the top of the coffee-pot inside, and to this ring sew a small muslin bag (the muslin for the purpose must not be too thin). Fit the bag into the pot, pour some boiling water in it, and, when the pot is well warmed, put the ground coffee into the bag; pour over as much boiling water as is required, close the lid, and, when all the water has filtered through, remove the bag, and send the coffee to table. Making it in this manner prevents the necessity of pouring the coffee from one vessel to another, which cools and spoils it. The water should be poured on the coffee gradually, so that the infusion may be stronger; and the bag must be well made, that none of the grounds may escape through the seams, and so make the coffee thick and muddy.
Sufficient.—Allow 1 tablespoonful, or 1/2 oz., to each person.
THE COFFEE PLANT grows to the height of about twelve or fifteen feet, with leaves not unlike those of the common laurel, although more pointed, and not so dry and thick. The blossoms are white, much like those of jasmine, and issue from the angles of the leaf-stalks. When the flowers fade, they are succeeded by the coffee-bean, or seed, which is inclosed in a berry of a red colour, when ripe resembling a cherry. The coffee-beans are prepared by exposing them to the sun for a few days, that the pulp may ferment and throw off a strong acidulous moisture. They are then gradually dried for about three weeks, and put into a mill to separate the husk from the seed.
1812. This is merely very strong coffee added to a large proportion of good hot milk; about 6 tablespoonfuls of strong coffee being quite sufficient for a breakfast-cupful of milk. Of the essence No. 1808, which answers admirably for ‘cafe an lait’, so much would not be required. This preparation is infinitely superior to the weak watery coffee so often served at English tables. A little cream mixed with the milk, if the latter cannot be depended on for richness, improves the taste of the coffee, as also the richness of the beverage.
Sufficient.—6 tablespoonfuls of strong coffee, or 2 tablespoonfuls of the essence, to a breakfast-cupful of milk.
TEA AND COFFEE.—It is true, says Liebig, that thousands have lived without a knowledge of tea and coffee; and daily experience teaches us that, under certain circumstances, they may be dispensed with without disadvantage to the merely animal functions; but it is an error, certainly, to conclude from this that they may be altogether dispensed with in reference to their effects; and it is a question whether, if we had no tea and no coffee, the popular instinct would not seek for and discover the means of replacing them. Science, which accuses us of so much in these respects, will have, in the first place, to ascertain whether it depends on sensual and sinful inclinations merely, that every people of the globe have appropriated some such means of acting on the nervous life, from the shore of the Pacific, where the Indian retires from life for days in order to enjoy the bliss of intoxication with koko, to the Arctic regions, where Kamtschatdales and Koriakes prepare an intoxicating beverage from a poisonous mushroom. We think it, on the contrary, highly probable, not to say certain, that the instinct of man, feeling certain blanks, certain wants of the intensified life of our times, which cannot be satisfied or filled up by mere quantity, has discovered, in these products of vegetable life the true means of giving to his food the desired and necessary quality.
1813. This is usually handed round after dinner, and should be drunk well sweetened, with the addition of a little brandy or liqueurs, which may be added or not at pleasure. The coffee should be made very strong, and served in very small cups, but never mixed with milk or cream. Cafe noir may be made of the essence of coffee No. 1808, by pouring a tablespoonful into each cup, and filling it up with boiling water. This is a very simple and expeditious manner of preparing coffee for a large party, but the essence for it must be made very good, and kept well corked until required for use.
1814. There is very little art in making good tea; if the water is boiling, and there is no sparing of the fragrant leaf, the beverage will almost invariably be good. The old-fashioned plan of allowing a teaspoonful to each person, and one over, is still practised. Warm the teapot with boiling water; let it remain for two or three minutes for the vessel to become thoroughly hot, then pour it away. Put in the tea, pour in from 1/2 to 3/4 pint of boiling water, close the lid, and let it stand for the tea to draw from 5 to 10 minutes; then fill up the pot with water. The tea will be quite spoiled unless made with water that is actually ‘boiling’, as the leaves will not open, and the flavour not be extracted from them; the beverage will consequently be colourless and tasteless,—in fact, nothing but tepid water. Where there is a very large party to make tea for, it is a good plan to have two teapots instead of putting a large quantity of tea into one pot; the tea, besides, will go farther. When the infusion has been once completed, the addition of fresh tea adds very little to the strength; so, when more is required, have the pot emptied of the old leaves, scalded, and fresh tea made in the usual manner. Economists say that a few grains of carbonate of soda, added before the boiling water is poured on the tea, assist to draw out the goodness: if the water is very hard, perhaps it is a good plan, as the soda softens it; but care must be taken to use this ingredient sparingly, as it is liable to give the tea a soapy taste if added in too large a quantity. For mixed tea, the usual proportion is four spoonfuls of black to one of green; more of the latter when the flavour is very much liked; but strong green tea is highly pernicious, and should never be partaken of too freely.
Time.—2 minutes to warm the teapot, 5 to 10 minutes to draw the strength from the tea.
Sufficient.—Allow 1 teaspoonful to each person, and one over.
TEA.—The tea-tree or shrub belongs to the class and order of Monadelphia polyandria in the Linnaean system, and to the natural order of Aurantiaceae in the system of Jussieu. Lately it has been made into a new order, the Theasia, which includes the Camellia and some other plants. It commonly grows to the height of from three to six feet; but it is said, that, in its wild or native state, it reaches twenty feet or more. In China it is cultivated in numerous small plantations. In its general appearance, and the form of its leaf, it resembles the myrtle. The blossoms are white and fragrant, not unlike those of the wild rose, but smaller; and they are succeeded by soft green capsules, containing each from one to three white seeds. These capsules are crushed for oil, which is in general use in China.
Mode.—Beat up the whole of the egg in a basin, put it into a cup (or a portion of it, if the cup be small), and pour over it the tea or coffee very hot. These should be added very gradually, and stirred all the time, to prevent the egg from curdling. In point of nourishment, both these beverages are much improved by this addition.
Sufficient.—Allow 1 egg to every large breakfast-cupful of tea or coffee.
Mode.—Put the cocoa into a breakfast-cup, pour over it sufficient cold milk to make it into a smooth paste; then add equal quantities of boiling milk and boiling water, and stir all well together. Care must be taken not to allow the milk to get burnt, as it will entirely spoil the flavour of the preparation. The above directions are usually given for making the prepared cocoa. The rock cocoa, or that bought in a solid piece, should be scraped, and made in the same manner, taking care to rub down all the lumps before the boiling liquid is added.
Sufficient—2 teaspoonfuls of prepared cocoa for 1 breakfast-cup, or 1/4 oz. of the rock cocoa for the same quantity.
1817. INGREDIENTS – To every gallon of water allow 3 lbs. of lump sugar, the rind of 2 lemons, the juice of 1, the rind and juice of 1 Seville orange, 1 gallon of cowslip pips. To every 4–1/2 gallons of wine allow 1 bottle of brandy.
Mode.—Boil the sugar and water together for 1/2 hour, carefully removing all the scum as it rises. Pour this boiling liquor on the orange and lemon-rinds, and the juice, which should be strained; when milk-warm, add the cowslip pips or flowers, picked from the stalks and seeds; and to 9 gallons of wine 3 tablespoonfuls of good fresh brewers’ yeast. Let it ferment 3 or 4 days; then put all together in a cask with the brandy, and let it remain for 2 months, when bottle it off for use.
Time.—To be boiled 1/2 hour; to ferment 3 or 4 days; to remain in the cask 2 months.
Average cost, exclusive of the cowslips, which may be picked in the fields, 2s. 9d. per gallon.
Seasonable.—Make this in April or May.
1818. INGREDIENTS – To every 3 gallons of water allow 1 peck of elderberries; to every gallon of juice allow 3 lbs. of sugar, 1/2 oz. of ground ginger, 6 cloves, 1 lb. of good Turkey raisins; 1/2 pint of brandy to every gallon of wine. To every 9 gallons of wine 3 or 4 tablespoonfuls of fresh brewer’s yeast.
Mode.—Pour the water, quite boiling, on the elderberries, which should be picked from the stalks, and let these stand covered for 24 hours; then strain the whole through a sieve or bag, breaking the fruit to express all the juice from it. Measure the liquor, and to every gallon allow the above proportion of sugar. Boil the juice and sugar with the ginger, cloves, and raisins for 1 hour, skimming the liquor the whole time; let it stand until milk-warm, then put it into a clean dry cask, with 3 or 4 tablespoonfuls of good fresh yeast to every 9 gallons of wine. Let it ferment for about a fortnight; then add the brandy, bung up the cask, and let it stand some months before it is bottled, when it will be found excellent. A bunch of hops suspended to a string from the bung, some persons say, will preserve the wine good for several years. Elder wine is usually mulled, and served with sippets of toasted bread and a little grated nutmeg.
Time.—To stand covered 24 hours; to be boiled 1 hour.
Average cost, when made at home, 3s. 6d. per gallon.
Seasonable.—Make this in September.
ELDER-BERRY WINE.—The elder-berry is well adapted for the production of wine; its juice contains a considerable portion of the principle necessary for a vigorous fermentation, and its beautiful colour communicates a rich tint to the wine made from it. It is, however, deficient in sweetness, and therefore demands an addition of sugar. It is one of the very best of the genuine old English wines; and a cup of it mulled, just previous to retiring to bed on a winter night, is a thing to be “run for,” as Cobbett would say: it is not, however, agreeable to every taste.
Mode.—Boil together for 1 hour in a copper (let it previously be well scoured and beautifully clean) the water, sugar, lemon-rinds, and bruised ginger; remove every particle of scum as it rises, and when the liquor is sufficiently boiled, put it into a large tub or pan, as it must not remain in the copper. When nearly cold, add the yeast, which must be thick and very fresh, and, the next day, put all in a dry cask with the strained lemon-juice and chopped raisins. Stir the wine every day for a fortnight; then add the brandy, stop the cask down by degrees, and in a few weeks it will be fit to bottle.
Average cost, 2s. per gallon. Sufficient to make 9 gallons of wine.
Seasonable.—The best time for making this wine is either in March or September.
Note.—Wine made early in March will be fit to bottle in June.
(An Excellent Recipe.)
Mode.—Mash the gooseberries (which should be quite ripe) in a tub with a mallet; put to them the water nearly milk-warm; let this stand 24 hours; then strain it through a sieve, and put the sugar to it; mix it well, and tun it. These proportions are for a 9-gallon cask; and if it be not quite full, more water must be added. Let the mixture be stirred from the bottom of the cask two or three times daily for three or four days, to assist the melting of the sugar; then paste a piece of linen cloth over the bunghole, and set the cask in a warm place, but not in the sun; any corner of a warm kitchen is the best situation for it. The following spring it should be drawn off into stone bottles, and the vinegar will be fit for use twelve months after it is made. This will be found a most excellent preparation, greatly superior to much that is sold under the name of the best white wine vinegar. Many years’ experience has proved that pickle made with this vinegar will keep, when bought vinegar will not preserve the ingredients. The cost per gallon is merely nominal, especially to those who reside in the country and grow their own gooseberries; the coarse sugar is then the only ingredient to be purchased.
Time.—To remain in the cask 9 months.
Average cost, when the gooseberries have to be purchased, 1s. per gallon; when they are grown at home, 6d. per gallon.
Seasonable.—This should be made the end of June or the beginning of July, when gooseberries are ripe and plentiful.
Mode.—This wine should be prepared from unripe gooseberries, in order to avoid the flavour which the fruit would give to the wine when in a mature state. Its briskness depends more upon the time of bottling than upon the unripe state of the fruit, for effervescing wine can be made from fruit that is ripe as well as that which is unripe. The fruit should be selected when it has nearly attained its full growth, and consequently before it shows any tendency to ripen. Any bruised or decayed berries, and those that are very small, should be rejected. The blossom and stalk ends should be removed, and the fruit well bruised in a tub or pan, in such quantities as to insure each berry being broken without crushing the seeds. Pour the water (which should be warm) on the fruit, squeeze and stir it with the hand until all the pulp is removed from the skin and seeds, and cover the whole closely for 24 hours; after which, strain it through a coarse bag, and press it with as much force as can be conveniently applied, to extract the whole of the juice and liquor the fruit may contain. To every 40 or 50 lbs. of fruit one gallon more of hot water may be passed through the marc, or husks, in order to obtain any soluble matter that may remain, and be again pressed. The juice should be put into a tub or pan of sufficient size to contain all of it, and the sugar added to it. Let it be well stirred until the sugar is dissolved, and place the pan in a warm situation; keep it closely covered, and let it ferment for a day or two. It must then be drawn off into clean casks, placed a little on one side for the scum that arises to be thrown out, and the casks kept filled with the remaining “must,” that should be reserved for that purpose. When the active fermentation has ceased, the casks should be plugged upright, again filled, if necessary, the bungs be put in loosely, and, after a few days, when the fermentation is a little more languid (which may be known, by the hissing noise ceasing), the bungs should be driven in tight, and a spile-hole made, to give vent if necessary. About November or December, on a clear fine day, the wine should he racked from its lees into clean casks, which may be rinsed with brandy. After a month, it should be examined to see if it is sufficiently clear for bottling; if not, it must be fined with isinglass, which may be dissolved in some of the wine: 1 oz. will be sufficient for 9 gallons. In March or April, or when the gooseberry bushes begin to blossom, the wine must be bottled, in order to insure its being effervescing.
Seasonable.—Make this the end of May or beginning of June, before the berries ripen.
Mode.—Boil the sugar and water together for 1/4 hour, and put it into a basin, where let it remain till cold. Beat the citric acid to a powder, mix the essence of lemon with it, then add these two ingredients to the syrup; mix well, and bottle for use. Two tablespoonfuls of the syrup are sufficient for a tumbler of cold water, and will be found a very refreshing summer drink.
Sufficient—2 tablespoonfuls of syrup to a tumbler-ful of cold water.
Mode.—Peel and slice the lemons, but use only the rind of 25 of them, and put them into the cold water. Let it stand 8 or 9 days, squeezing the lemons well every day; then strain the water off and put it into a cask with the sugar. Let it work some time, and when it has ceased working, put in the isinglass. Stop the cask down; in about six months put in the brandy and bottle the wine off.
Seasonable.—The best time to make this is in January or February, when lemons are best and cheapest.
Mode.—Boil the sugar and water together for 10 minutes; skim it well, and put the liquor into a convenient-sized pan or tub. Allow it to cool; then mix it with the sweet-wort and tun. Let it stand for 3 days, then put it into a barrel; here it will work or ferment for another three days or more; then bung up the cask, and keep it undisturbed for 2 or 3 months. After this, add the raisins (whole), the candy, and brandy, and, in 6 months’ time, bottle the wine off. Those who do not brew, may procure the sweet-wort and tun from any brewer. Sweet-wort is the liquor that leaves the mash of malt before it is boiled with the hops; tun is the new beer after the whole of the brewing operation has been completed.
Time.—To be boiled 10 minutes; to stand 3 days after mixing; to ferment 3 days; to remain in the cask 2 mouths before the raisins are added; bottle 6 months after.
Seasonable.—Make this in March or October.
Mode.—Blanch and pound the almonds, and mix with them the sugar, which should also be pounded. Boil the milk; let it stand till quite cold; then mix all the ingredients together, and let them remain for 10 days, shaking them every day. Filter the mixture through blotting-paper, bottle off for use in small bottles, and seal the corks down. This will be found useful for flavouring many sweet dishes.
Average cost, 2s. 9d.
Sufficient to make about 24 pints of Noyeau.
Seasonable.—May be made at any time.
Mode.—To bring out the full flavour of the orange-peel, rub a few lumps of the sugar on 2 or 3 unpared oranges, and put these lumps to the rest. Mix the brandy with the orange-juice, strained, the rinds of 6 of the oranges pared very thin, and the sugar. Let all stand in a closely-covered jar for about 3 days, stirring it 3 or 4 times a day. When clear, it should be bottled and closely corked for a year; it will then be ready for use, but will keep any length of time. This is a most excellent stomachic when taken pure in small quantities; or, as the strength of the brandy is very little deteriorated by the other ingredients, it may be diluted with water.
Time.—To be stirred every day for 3 days.
Average cost, 7s.
Sufficient to make 2 quarts. Seasonable.—Make this in March.
Mode.—Break up the sugar into small pieces, and put it into a dry, sweet 9-gallon cask, placed in a cellar or other storehouse, where it is intended to be kept. Have ready close to the cask two large pans or wooden keelers, into one of which put the peel of the oranges pared quite thin, and into the other the pulp after the juice has been squeezed from it. Strain the juice through a piece of double muslin, and put it into the cask with the sugar. Then pour about 1–1/2 gallon of cold spring water on both the peels and pulp; let it stand for 24 hours, and then strain it into the cask; add more water to the peels and pulp when this is done, and repeat the same process every day for a week: it should take about a week to fill up the cask. Be careful to apportion the quantity as nearly as possible to the seven days, and to stir the contents of the cask each day. On the ‘‘third’ day after the cask is full,—that is, the ‘tenth’ day after the commencement of making,—the cask may be securely bunged down. This is a very simple and easy method, and the wine made according to it will be pronounced to be most excellent. There is no troublesome boiling, and all fermentation takes place in the cask. When the above directions are attended to, the wine cannot fail to be good. It should be bottled in 8 or 9 months, and will be fit for use in a twelve month after the time of making. Ginger wine may be made in precisely the same manner, only, with the 9-gallon cask for ginger wine, 2 lbs. of the best whole ginger, ‘bruised’, must be put with the sugar. It will be found convenient to tie the ginger loosely in a muslin bag.
Time.—Altogether, 10 days to make it.
Average cost, 2s. 6d. per gallon. Sufficient for 9 gallons.
Seasonable.—Make this in March, and bottle it the following January.
Mode.—Let the raspberries be freshly gathered; pick them from the stalks, and put 1–1/2 pint of them into a stone jar; pour 3 pints of the best vinegar over them, and let them remain for 24 hours; then strain the liquor over another 1–1/2 pint of fresh raspberries. Let them remain another 24 hours, and the following day repeat the process for the third time; then drain off the liquor without pressing, and pass it through a jelly-bag (previously wetted with plain vinegar), into a stone jar. Add to every pint of the liquor 1 lb. of pounded loaf sugar; stir them together, and, when the sugar is dissolved, cover the jar; set it upon the fire in a saucepan of boiling water, and let it boil for an hour, removing the scum as fast as it rises; add to each pint a glass of brandy, bottle it, and seal the corks. This is an excellent drink in cases of fevers and colds: it should be diluted with cold water, according to the taste or requirement of the patient.
Time.—To be boiled 1 hour. Average cost, 1s. per pint.
Sufficient to make 2 quarts.
Seasonable.—Make this in July or August, when raspberries are most plentiful.
Mode.—Gather the rhubarb about the middle of May; wipe it with a wet cloth, and, with a mallet, bruise it in a large wooden tub or other convenient means. When reduced to a pulp, weigh it, and to every 5 lbs. add 1 gallon of cold spring water; let these remain for 3 days, stirring 3 or 4 times a day; and, on the fourth day, press the pulp through a hair sieve; put the liquor into a tub, and to every gallon put 3 lbs. of loaf sugar; stir in the sugar until it is quite dissolved, and add the lemon-rind; let the liquor remain, and, in 4, 5, or 6 days, the fermentation will begin to subside, and a crust or head will be formed, which should be skimmed off, or the liquor drawn from it, when the crust begins to crack or separate. Put the wine into a cask, and if, after that, it ferments, rack it off into another cask, and in a fortnight stop it down. If the wine should have lost any of its original sweetness, add a little more loaf sugar, taking care that the cask is full. Bottle it off in February or March, and in the summer it should be fit to drink. It will improve greatly by keeping; and, should a very brilliant colour be desired, add a little currant-juice.
Seasonable.—Make this about the middle of May.
Mode.—Cut the peel of the lemons very thin, pour upon it the boiling water, and, when cool, add the strained juice of the lemons, the sugar, and the raisins, stoned and chopped very fine. Let it stand 4 or 5 days, stirring it every day; then strain it through a jelly-bag, and bottle it for present use.
Time.—4 or 5 days. Average cost, 1s. 9d.
Sufficient to make 2 gallons.
[Illustration: CLARET CUP.]
1831. INGREDIENTS – 1 bottle of claret, 1 bottle of soda-water, about 1/2 lb. of pounded ice, 4 tablespoonfuls of powdered sugar, 1/4 teaspoonful of grated nutmeg, 1 liqueur-glass of Maraschino, a sprig of green borage.
Mode.—Put all the ingredients into a silver cup, regulating the proportion of ice by the state of the weather: if very warm, a larger quantity would be necessary. Hand the cup round with a clean napkin passed through one of the handles, that the edge of the cup may be wiped after each guest has partaken of the contents thereof.
Seasonable in summer.
CLARETS.—All those wines called in England clarets are the produce of the country round Bordeaux, or the Bordelais; but it is remarkable that there is no pure wine in France known by the name of claret, which is a corruption of clairet, a term that is applied there to any red or rose-coloured wine. Round Bordeaux are produced a number of wines of the first quality, which pass under the name simply of vins de Bordeaux, or have the designation of the particular district where they are made; as Lafitte, Latour, &c. The clarets brought to the English market are frequently prepared for it by the wine-growers by mixing together several Bordeaux wines, or by adding to them a portion of some other wines; but in France the pure wines are carefully preserved distinct. The genuine wines of Bordeaux are of great variety, that part being one of the most distinguished in France; and the principal vineyards are those of Medoc, Palus, Graves, and Blanche, the product of each having characters considerably different.
Mode.—Put all the ingredients into a silver cup; stir them together, and serve the same as claret-cup No. 1831. Should the above proportion of sugar not be found sufficient to suit some tastes, increase the quantity. When borage is not easily obtainable, substitute for it a few slices of cucumber-rind.
Seasonable.—Suitable for pic-nics, balls, weddings, and other festive occasions.
CHAMPAGNE.—This, the most celebrated of French wines, is the produce chiefly of the province of that name, and is generally understood in England to be a brisk, effervescing, or sparkling white wine, of a very fine flavour; but this is only one of the varieties of this class. There is both red and white champagne, and each of these may be either still or brisk. There are the sparkling wines (mousseux), and the still wines (non-mousseux). The brisk are in general the most highly esteemed, or, at least, are the most popular in this country, on account of their delicate flavour and the agreeable pungency which they derive from the carbonic acid they contain, and to which they owe their briskness.
1833. INGREDIENTS – 2–1/2 lbs. of loaf sugar, 1–1/2 oz. of bruised ginger, 1 oz. of cream of tartar, the rind and juice of 2 lemons, 3 gallons of boiling water, 2 large tablespoonfuls of thick and fresh brewer’s yeast.
Mode.—Peel the lemons, squeeze the juice, strain it, and put the peel and juice into a large earthen pan, with the bruised ginger, cream of tartar, and loaf sugar. Pour over these ingredients 3 gallons of boiling water; let it stand until just warm, when add the yeast, which should be thick and perfectly fresh. Stir the contents of the pan well, and let them remain near the fire all night, covering the pan over with a cloth. The next day skim off the yeast, and pour the liquor carefully into another vessel, leaving the sediment; then bottle immediately, and tie the corks down, and in 3 days the ginger beer will be fit for use. For some tastes, the above proportion of sugar may be found rather too large, when it may be diminished; but the beer will not keep so long good.
Average cost for this quantity, 2s.; or 1/2d. per bottle.
Sufficient to fill 4 dozen ginger-beer bottles.
Seasonable.—This should be made during the summer months.
Mode.—Rub some of the sugar, in lumps, on 2 of the lemons until they have imbibed all the oil from them, and put it with the remainder of the sugar into a jug; add the lemon-juice (but no pips), and pour over the whole a quart of boiling water. When the sugar is dissolved, strain the lemonade through a fine sieve or piece of muslin, and, when cool, it will be ready for use. The lemonade will be much improved by having the white of an egg beaten up in it; a little sherry mixed with it, also, makes this beverage much nicer.
Average cost, 6d. per quart.
LEMONADE—“There is a current opinion among women” says Brillat Savarin “which every year causes the death of many young women,—that acids, especially vinegar, are preventives of obesity. Beyond all doubt, acids have the effect of destroying obesity; but they also destroy health and freshness. Lemonade is, of all acids, the most harmless; but few stomachs can resist it long. I knew, in 1776, at Dijon, a young lady of great beauty, to whom I was attached by bonds of friendship, great, almost as those of love. One day, when she had for some time gradually grown pale and thin (previously she had a slight embonpoint), she told me in confidence, that as her young friends had ridiculed her for being fat, she had, to counteract the tendency, been in the habit every day of drinking a large glass of vinaigre. She died at eighteen years of age, from the effects of these potions.”
Mode.—As this beverage is more usually drunk at children’s parties than at any other, the wine need not be very old or expensive for the purpose, a new fruity wine answering very well for it. Put the wine into a jug, rub some lumps of sugar (equal to 1/4 lb.) on the lemon-rind until all the yellow part of the skin is absorbed, then squeeze the juice, and strain it. Add the sugar and lemon-juice to the port wine, with the grated nutmeg; pour over it the boiling water, cover the jug, and, when the beverage has cooled a little, it will be fit for use. Negus may also be made of sherry, or any other sweet white wine, but is more usually made of port than of any other beverage.
Sufficient—Allow 1 pint of wine, with the other ingredients in proportion, for a party of 9 or 10 children.
1836. INGREDIENTS – To every 1–1/2 pint of good ale allow 1 bottle of ginger beer. Mode.—For this beverage the ginger beer must be in an effervescing state, and the beer not in the least turned or sour. Mix them together, and drink immediately. The draught is refreshing and wholesome, as the ginger corrects the action of the beer. It does not deteriorate by standing a little, but, of course, is better when taken fresh.
Mode.—Squeeze the juice from the lemon; strain, and add it to the water, with sufficient pounded sugar to sweeten the whole nicely. When well mixed, put in the soda, stir well, and drink while the mixture is in an effervescing state.
Mode.—In making preparations like the above, it is very difficult to give the exact proportions of ingredients like sugar and spice, as what quantity might suit one person would be to another quite distasteful. Boil the spice in the water until the flavour is extracted, then add the wine and sugar, and bring the whole to the boiling-point, when serve with strips of crisp dry toast, or with biscuits. The spices usually used for mulled wine are cloves, grated nutmeg, and cinnamon or mace. Any kind of wine may be mulled, but port and claret are those usually selected for the purpose; and the latter requires a very large proportion of sugar. The vessel that the wine is boiled in must be delicately clean, and should be kept exclusively for the purpose. Small tin warmers may be purchased for a trifle, which are more suitable than saucepans, as, if the latter are not scrupulously clean, they will spoil the wine, by imparting to it a very disagreeable flavour. These warmers should be used for no other purposes.
[Illustration: PUNCH-BOWL AND LADLE.]
Mode.—Rub the sugar over the lemon until it has absorbed all the yellow part of the skin, then put the sugar into a punchbowl; add the lemon-juice (free from pips), and mix these two ingredients well together. Pour over them the boiling water, stir well together, add the rum, brandy, and nutmeg; mix thoroughly, and the punch will be ready to serve. It is very important in making good punch that all the ingredients are thoroughly incorporated; and, to insure success, the processes of mixing must be diligently attended to.
Sufficient.—Allow a quart for 4 persons; but this information must be taken cum grano salis; for the capacities of persons for this kind of beverage are generally supposed to vary considerably.
PUNCH is a beverage made of various spirituous liquors or wine, hot water, the acid juice of fruits, and sugar. It is considered to be very intoxicating; but this is probably because the spirit, being partly sheathed by the mucilaginous juice and the sugar, its strength does not appear to the taste so great as it really is. Punch, which was almost universally drunk among the middle classes about fifty or sixty years ago, has almost disappeared from our domestic tables, being superseded by wine. There are many different varieties of punch. It is sometimes kept cold in bottles, and makes a most agreeable summer drink. In Scotland, instead of the Madeira or sherry generally used in its manufacture, whiskey is substituted, and then its insidious properties are more than usually felt. Where fresh lemons cannot be had for punch or similar beverages, crystallized citric acid and a few drops of the essence of lemon will be very nearly the same thing. In the composition of “Regent’s punch,” champagne, brandy, and veritable Martinique are required; “Norfolk punch” requires Seville oranges; “Milk punch” may be extemporized by adding a little hot milk to lemonade, and then straining it through a jelly-bag. Then there are “Wine punch,” “Tea punch,” and “French punch,” made with lemons, spirits, and wine, in fantastic proportions. But of all the compounds of these materials, perhaps, for a summer drink, the North–American “mint julep” is the most inviting. Captain Marryat gives the following recipe for its preparation:—“Put into a tumbler about a dozen sprigs of the tender shoots of mint; upon them put a spoonful of white sugar, and equal proportions of peach and common brandy, so as to fill up one third, or, perhaps, a little less; then take rasped or pounded ice, and fill up the tumbler. Epicures rub the lips of the tumbler with a piece of fresh pineapple; and the tumbler itself is very often encrusted outside with stalactites of ice. As the ice melts, you drink.” The Virginians, say Captain Marryat, claim the merit of having invented this superb compound; but, from a passage in the “Comus” of Milton, he claims it for his own country.
Mode.—Strip the currants from the stalks; put them into a large jug; add the lemon-rind, ginger, and whiskey; cover the jug closely, and let it remain covered for 24 hours. Strain through a hair sieve, add the lump sugar, and let it stand 12 hours longer; then bottle, and cork well.
Time.—To stand 24 hours before being strained; 12 hours after the sugar is added.
Seasonable.—Make this in July.