Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/1029

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To avoid repetition in the recipes for these, the application of the principles of boiling, steaming, baking and frying such preparations will be here briefly described. Success in preparing dishes of this class depends more on suitable proportions, manipulation, and proper application of heat than on the materials themselves, which are usually of a simple character. Although the terms suet, milk, batter and bread may be used to describe briefly a large proportion of the puddings which form part of the daily fare of the masses, there is a large number of sweet dishes that cannot be included in this classification, but individual recipes to which general remarks do not apply will be described in detail.

Each recipe in the following chapter gives, as nearly as possible, the exact amount of the ingredients which comprise the dish. Such terms as "well buttered mould," "creaming," "stiffly-whipped or whisked" will be explained in the present chapter, for the convenience of the uninitiated.

Preparation of Moulds and Basins.—When the pudding to be cooked is substantial in character, the mould, basin or dish may be greased with a little fresh butter or fat; but moulds intended for light puddings, soufflés or omelets should be well coated with cool clarified butter, using a small brush for this purpose.

Chopping Suet.—Either beef or mutton suet may be used for puddings: paste made with the former is lighter, mutton suet is less rich, and its flavour is not always liked. To prepare suet for use, remove all skin, shred or cut it down in very thin flakes, and chop it finely. During the process sprinkle it liberally with some of the flour or breadcrumbs; or, when making mincemeat, which contains neither of these ingredients, use some of the sugar for the purpose. Chopping should be done with a large sharp knife held in the right hand, raising and lowering the handle quickly, while the fingers of the left hand hold the point of the blade, and keep it pressed firmly to the board.