The American Pictorial Home Book
or Housekeeper's Encyclopedia - online book

A reference manual of household management in Victorian times.

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A Simple Way to Bake Ham.—Wash your ham over night with homemade soap, rubbing it with a cloth, then scrape it well and rinse it well in several waters with a clean rag, wipe it dry and put it into clean water and let it remain untill next morning, then wipe it per­fectly dry. Make a dough of flour and water, roll out 1-2 an inch thick, then wrap your ham closely in it, so the juice cannot escape and bake until done, then take off the crust and serve either cold or hot for lunch or tea. Cut in thin slices. The skin may be taken off or not, as one fancies.
A Dry Devil.—Take the liver, gizzard and drumsticks of a turkey, and score them ; lay on made mustard very thickly, and add a quan­tity of cayenne pepper and broil them.
Remember that practice makes perfect, and that "little by little " we accomplish great things.
Hew to Prepare Fowls For Cooking.—Turkey, for instance: Pick your turkey well, pick out all the pin-feathers, singe it over a clear blaze, pull out all the shreds of fat, bloody bits, lungs, &c, leav­ing the inside perfectly clean. Be careful and not break the gall in taking out the liver—it almost spoils your stuffing, as no amount of washing can remove it from the inside of the turkey. Boil the heart, gizzard and liver until tender, chop very fine and add to the stuf­fing, which should be made of stale bread, if you have it, if not, crackers pounded fine. Season with salt, pepper, sage and butter to your taste. Mix with boiling water, being very careful not to put too much, as the beauty of the stuffing is to be dry. When light add 1 or 2 beaten eggs. Now the turkey being made ready one day before, is stuffed, rub it all over thoroughly with salt under the wings and thighs, that it may be well seasoned when cooked, as many are ex­ceedingly fond of the brown, crisp skin which is much nicer to be salted before cooking. Bind the wings down with wrapping cord, tie the legs together and tie them to the body of the bird. It is a good plan to cut all the trussing strings 1-2 hour befo're taking the turkey from the oven, that the heat may reach under the wings and thighs ; lay the turkey upon a cricket in the dripping pan, never upon the pan, as the oily water soaks in and injures the flavor. If no cricket comes with your dripping pan you can have one made of hard wood strips 1-2 inch square, two 1 foot long and four 8 inches long for cross pieces nailed together an inch from end to end, to be used in cook­ing or roasting all kinds of meats ; must be thoroughly and care­fully washed every time and dried, or you can have a tin cricket made.
Put no water into the dripping pan until the turkey has cooked