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Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/1445

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1287
MILK, BUTTER, CHEESE AND EGGS

in if the milk is to be used for soups or savouries, as the flavour is then disguised.

Condensed Milk in tins has a large and increasing sale. Fresh milk is evaporated in open pans until it loses the greater part of the water. A certain quantity of cane sugar is then added, and the milk is sealed down in tins, when it will keep for any length of time. The objection is the peculiar flavour that milk acquires in boiling, but this is not of consequence for many cooking purposes. The excessive sweetness is also objectionable, but unsweetened condensed milk may now be had. When the full milk is preserved it forms a valuable addition to our stock of foods, especially for infants and children, for whom a plentiful supply of good milk cannot be obtained. But, on the whole, condensed milk is less nutritive than the fresh article, from the fact that it is chiefly made of skimmed or separated milk, and in consequence is less rich in fats. A well-known writer says: "For a baby not fed by the mother, condensed milk, rightly mixed, is most nourishing. When condensed milk does not appear to agree with the child, then inquiry will almost certainly show that the fault lies in the mixing, and not in the condensed milk. The constitution of one child differs from that of another, and this fact must keep the careful nurse on her guard to anticipate and provide for any peculiarities of diet that may be necessary in consequence. Remembering this, it may be broadly asserted that a healthy child would do well on condensed milk alone for the first three months."

Milk carried to a distance, so as to be much agitated, and cooled before it is put into pans to settle for cream, never throws up so much, nor such rich cream, as if the same milk had been put into pans directly after it was milked.

Milk, considered as an aliment, is of such importance in domestic economy as to render all the improvements in its production extremely valuable. To enlarge upon the antiquity of its use is unnecessary; it has always been a favourite food in Britain. "Lacte et carne vivunt," says Caesar in his Commentaries; which, translated into English, is, "The inhabitants subsist upon flesh and milk." The breed of the cow has undergone great improvement in modern times as regards both the quantity and the quality of the milk which she affords. Although milk in its natural state is a fluid, yet, considered as an aliment, it is both solid and fluid; for no sooner does it enter the stomach than it is coagulated by the gastric juice, and separated into curds and whey, both of which are extremely nutritious. The milk of the human subject is much thinner than cow's milk; asses' milk comes the nearest to human milk of any other; goat's milk is somewhat thicker and richer than cow's milk; ewe's milk has the appearance of cow's milk, and affords a larger quantity of cream; mare's milk contains more sugar than that of the ewe; camel's milk is used only in Africa; buffalo's milk is employed in India and Egypt. The following comparison of the chief