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

A reference manual of household management in Victorian times.

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vantage. Moisten the hay, sprinkle the corn meal with a small por­tion of salt and stir until mixed thoroughly.
Milking in Silence.—It has been ascertained that cows will not give down their milk so well while talking is going on.
Leaves of the grape vine are excellent for cows, sheep and hogs when other food is scarce.
A test for Pure Milk.—Let a drop fall on the thumb nail; if the milk is pure it will not spread, but if not it will with the slight­est motion of the hand. This I was told by a dairyman.
The New Milk Test.—Prof. Doresinus.—Place a small portion in a vessel on the top of a stove which contains a portion of strong fruit vinegar or citric acid, or acetic acid and common alkali, or it is best to bring the milk gradually to the boiling point, then pour into it the acid and alkali. When these ingredients are thoroughly mixed the milk will separate into coagulations of olein and cascine. If the milk is pure no water to speak of will be found in the can, but if it has been watered, there will be a large deposit of water. This milk should not be used, but thrown away. All adulterated milk is unsatisfactory in its results. This is an infallible test of pure milk, and entirely reliable as well as convenient and simple for the house­keeper.
To prevent Milk from turning Sour.—In warm weather allow 2 tablespoonfuls of borax to every 4 gallons milk before straining. It will improve the quality and quantity of the butter.
Milk, to keep Sweet the Hottest Weather.—Put a spoonful of horseradish in a pan of milk. This will keep milk sweet any­where for several days.
Mustard Taste in Milk, to Remove.—A California dairyman says if a very small piece of saltpetre be dropped into a pail of milk that it will neutralize the taste of mustard so completely that it will not be tasted in the butter.
Milk being a great absorbant, takes in all flavors and smells.
Causes of Odor in Milk Room.—Improper substances in the vicinity of milk and butter will taint them. A piece of veal on the cellar floor, a small portion of stagnant water, a kerosene lamp used in the milk room, a piece of soap left on a pan cover, coal in an ordinary county store, decaying vegetables, putrid animal matter in a cow pasture, cows drinking filthy water, partially decomposed milk, cream or cheese adhering to the dairy vessel on the floor or shelves.
To Preserve Milk for a Journey.—Put the fresh, sweet milk into bottles, put them in an oven with cold water, gradually raise it to the boiling point, take them out and cork immediately; return the bottles to the water, raise it once more to the boiling point, let the bottles remain a few minutes; take the oven from the fire and let the bottles cool in it.