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The Cooking Manual of Practical Directions for Economical Every-Day Cookery   By: (1842-1897)

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" How well can we live, if we are moderately poor? "






This book is intended for the use of those housekeepers and cooks who wish to know how to make the most wholesome and palatable dishes at the least possible cost. In cookery this fact should be remembered above all others; A GOOD COOK NEVER WASTES. It is her pride to make the most of everything in the shape of food entrusted to her care; and her pleasure to serve it in the most appetizing form. In no other way can she prove her excellence; for poor cooks are always wasteful and extravagant.

Housekeepers can safely make this book a guide for those of their cooks who are willing to learn new and good methods of cooking familiar foods. Lest it should be said that undue preference is given to foreign ways of cooking, the author begs her readers to remember how much of the success of any dish depends upon its taste; if it is well flavored, and palatably seasoned, the eaters of it do not closely criticise its component parts. It is just there that benefit is derived from European culinary skill; the judicious use of a few inexpensive sweet herbs, and savory sauces, will raise a side dish, made from the cheapest cut of meat, in gustatory excellence far above a badly cooked porterhouse steak, or a large but poorly flavored roast. Because the art of utilizing every part of food is eminently French, the NEW YORK COOKING SCHOOL plan has been to adapt foreign thrift to home kitchen use. To provide enough at each meal; to cook and serve it so as to invite appetite; to make a handsome and agreeable dish out of the materials which the average cook would give away at the door, or throw among the garbage; all are accomplishments that our American wives and daughters will be glad to learn from their European sisters.

The day has passed for regarding cooking as a menial and vulgar labor; and those who give some thought to their daily food usually gain in vigor and cheerfulness. It is a truism that food is concentrated force. The manipulation of a motive power capable of invigorating both body and mind, is an occupation worthy to employ intelligence and skill. In countries where the people depend upon meagre supplies this art is brought to perfection. The pot au feu of France and Switzerland, the olla podrida of Spain, the borsch of Poland, the tschi of Russia, the macaroni of Italy, the crowdie of Scotland, all are practical examples of this fact. In no country in the world is there such an abundance of food as in America; all the needful ingredients for making these national dishes, or their equivalents, can be found in the markets of our cities, and most of them are the products of this country. This being true, there is no reason why American cookery should be so comparatively limited why the question of "what shall we have for dinner to day?" should be the despair of the inexperienced housekeeper. If in no other land is there such profusion of food, certainly in none is so much wasted from sheer ignorance, and spoiled by bad cooking. In Europe provinces would live upon what towns waste here. The very herbs of the field in the hands of a skilful cook can be transformed into palatable and nutritious viands. The plainest and cheapest materials can be prepared for the table in an appetizing and satisfactory form. Let our readers test this fact by cooking according to the receipt any dish named in the chapter upon "CHEAP DISHES WITHOUT MEAT," and the author will stake her culinary reputation that the food so prepared will be both palatable and nourishing.

Many persons regard the practice of serving several dishes at a meal as troublesome and expensive... Continue reading book >>

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