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Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/180

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136
HOUSEHOLD MANAGEMENT

thrown up by boiling has been removed, the stock should be reduced to, and kept at, simmering point.

6. The vegetables must be whole or in large pieces, and be added after the stock has boiled and the scum has been removed. They should be used very sparingly so as not to overpower the flavour of the meat. To 4 quarts of water, 1 carrot, 1 onion, ½ a turnip and 1 short strip of celery should be allowed, also a teaspoonful of salt and 12 peppercorns; ground pepper should never be used, as it makes stock and clear soup cloudy.

7. The stock should simmer very gently for 5 or 6 hours, with the stock-pot covered to prevent waste by evaporation. When ready, it should be strained through a hair sieve into a large basin, and the meat and sediment at the bottom of the stewpan be put back into the stock pot.

8. When cold, the fat should be removed from the surface.

MANAGEMENT OF A HOUSEHOLD STOCK-POT.

For most cooking operations stock is in constant demand to form the basis of a soup, a sauce or gravy. Recipes for making excellent stocks (including white stock or blond de Veau, and a good brown stock) are given on the following pages. The stock-pot should supply stock for sauces, stews and gravies, and we will now indicate how a careful cook can always have stock on hand with little or no extra expense.

The first consideration is the stock-pot. A well-tinned stock-pot with a tap is to be recommended; the tap permits the stock to be drawn off without any admixture of grease, all the fat rising to the top of the stock-pot. For small households the earthenware stock-pot will be found useful, as a very small amount of heat is required to keep its contents at simmering point.

The materials that may be put into the stock-pot are bones and the trimmings of meat, cooked or uncooked; poultry, giblets, poultry bones, game bones, the rinds and bones of bacon, the remains of gravies, but not sauces thickened with flour—the latter make the stock cloudy. Scraps of raw vegetables, if fresh and suitable, may be added in cold weather; cooked vegetables must not be used for they are liable to turn sour, especially in warm weather.

Fat should never be put into the stock-pot, but marrow from bones is often introduced in small quantity. Flour and anything thickened with flour or potatoes must also be carefully excluded.

When using a metal stock-pot the stock should be emptied and strained every night into an earthenware vessel. In starting it the following morning the pieces of meat and bones from which all the goodness has been extracted should be discarded, and the rest returned to the stock-pot with the stock or fresh water.

Fresh meat used for stock need not be washed, but should be wiped with a damp cloth before being cut up.