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Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/1422

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HOUSEHOLD MANAGEMENT

off along its whole length. There are some who prefer the underside of the shoulder for its juicy flesh, although the grain of the meat is not so fine as that on the other side, and this is served in the manner shown in Fig. 3.

Pork.

2949.—SUCKING-PIG.

A sucking-pig seems, at first sight, an elaborate dish, or rather animal, to carve; but, by carefully mastering the details of the business, every difficulty will vanish; and if a partial failure be at first made, yet all embarrassment will quickly disappear on a second trial. A sucking-pig is usually sent to table split in half and the head separated from the body. The first point to be attended to is to separate the shoulder from the carcase, which is done in the same way that the shoulder of a forequarter of lamb is separated. The next step is to take off the leg; and this is done in the same way. The ribs then stand fairly open to the knife, and two or three helpings will dispose of these. The other half of the pig is served, of course, in the same manner. Different parts of the pig are variously esteemed; some preferring the flesh of the neck; others the ribs, and others, again, the shoulders. The truth is, the whole of a sucking-pig is delicious, delicate eating; but, in carving it, the host should consult the various tastes and fancies of his guests, keeping the larger joints generally for the gentlemen of the party.

2950.—HAM. (Carving Illustration No. 6, Fig. 3.)

In cutting a ham, the carver must be guided according as he desires to practise economy, or have, at once, fine slices out of the prime part. Under the first supposition, he will commence at the knuckle end, and cut off thin slices towards the thick part of the ham, slanting the knife from the thick part to the knuckle. To reach the choicer portion, the knife, which must be very sharp and thin, should be carried quite down to the bone, at the centre of the ham, which is then carved in the manner shown in the illustration. A ham, either hot or cold, is sent to table with a paper ruffle round the knuckle.

2951.—LEG OF PORK.

This joint, which is such a favourite one with many people, is easy to carve. The knife should be carried sharply down to the bone, clean through the crackling, in exactly the same manner as that described for leg of mutton. Sage and onion and apple sauce are usually sent to table with this dish—sometimes the leg of pork is stuffed—and the guests should be asked if they will have either or both. A frequent plan, and we think a good one, is now pursued of sending sage and onion to table separately from the joint, as it is not everybody to whom the flavour of this stuffing is agreeable.