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

A reference manual of household management in Victorian times.

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VINEGARS.                                     487
Vegetable Vinegar.—Have ready a jar, keg or barrel and when
ever you have scraps of fruit, raw, dried or cooked, or vegetables, throw them into this vessel, put boards or weights over it when it ferments and strain off the liquor into bottles ; put in the sun. Syr­ups, preserves, sugar, etc., left from meals, can be used; paiings and cores of fruit also. The vinegar is pure and good.
N. B.—Vegetable vinegars are wholesome and nearest in nature to the qualities of the stomach juices, which perform the offices of digestion, and hence, ordinarily, they must promote and aid diges­tion.
Pickles, when made with vegetable vinegar, are wholesome.
Our Sister's Raspberry Vinegar.—Mix 1 quart of fresh rasp­berries with 1 quart of vinegar, put in the fruit for 3 mornings ; strain it before adding the fresh ones. The fourth day press the juice in, straining it, put 1-2 lb. of sugar to every pint of juice and stir it well till dissolved. Put it into pint bottles and cork tight. This is a fine beverage with cool ice water in summer, and very grateful to the sick.
Celery Vinegar.—Pound 1-2 pint of celery seeds and mix them in a quart of cider vinegar with a few mustard seeds and a teaspoon-ful of sugar. Shake it often and strain it off in 20 days for use. This is healthy and decidedly agreeable.
Tomato Vinegar.—Take as many tomatoes as you may design to use and quarter them, leaving the bottoms undivided; rub enough salt over them to taste, then put them in a wide-mouthed jar in a cool oven or stove, or by the side of a warm fire-place for 48 hours, then add 1 or 2 bruised cloves of garlic. Some cloves, mace and nutmeg, all beaten ; 1-2 pint of white mustard seeds pounded in a mortar and pour over all the amount of vinegar desired; let it be boiling. Tie a bladder over the mouth of the jar and let it remain 6 or 7 days by the fire. Should be shaken well every day. Strain the liquor without pressing it, let it stand until quite clear, then bot­tle it tightly, and use the sediment for the present. The juice is a sub-acid, and is a great improvement to dishes.
Watermelon Vinegar.—Take all the internal portion of the melon and scrape the rind to obtain all the juice; then carefully strain and pour into jugs with small glass bottles in their mouths; set the jugs in the sun, and in time you will have a fine-flavored, clear, strong white vinegar. The vinegar at a certain stage will be very bitter, but when perfected, loses this, and acquires a true vine­gar taste.
To Strengthen Vinegar.—Expose a vessel of vinegar to the cold of a very frosty night; next morning ice will be found in it, which, if thawed, will become pure water. The vinegar being freed from