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Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/192

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Method.—Cut the meat into small pieces, put them into a stewpan with the water and a teaspoonful of salt, and cook gently for 2 hours. Wash the barley, cut the vegetables into dice, add them to the broth and cook for another hour, making 3 hours in all. Strain and return the broth to the stewpan. Cut the meat into small pieces, carefully remove any fragments of bone from the vegetables and barley, and add them to the broth. When quite hot, season to taste, and serve.

Time.—About 4 hours. Average Cost, about 2s. Seasonable in Winter. Sufficient for 6 or 8 persons.

The Sheep (Fr. brebis) has from the earliest times been one of the most useful of animals to man, its wool, skin and flesh supplying him respectively with material for clothing, leather and food; its milk in some countries is used for making butter and cheese. There are numerous varieties of the domestic sheep, a ruminant quadruped of the genus Otis: wild sheep are found chiefly in mountainous districts. The principal breeds of English sheep are the Southdown, Leicester, Cotswold, Cheviot and the Welsh. Of the numerous foreign breeds, the fat-tailed sheep of Asia and Egypt, the Astrakan, the Cretan, the Iceland and the Merino, are the most noticeable, the last named originally belonging to Spain, but now extensively bred in other countries of Europe and in Australia and New Zealand, furnishing the valuable merino wool. The flesh of the sheep, or mutton, is tender and easy of digestion, and possesses highly nutritive properties. Large quantities of foreign mutton are now imported into England principally from Australia and New Zealand by means of cold storage in transit. The New Zealand mutton is of excellent quality, and has an extensive sale. The small Welsh mutton is much esteemed. The quality of the flesh of the sheep is largely dependent on the pastorage and food stuffs on which it is fed.

26.—SHEEP'S HEAD BROTH. (Fr.Potage de Tête de Mouton.)

Ingredients.—3 quarts of water, 1 sheep's head, 2 carrots, 2 onions, 1 turnip, 2 strips of celery, a bouquet-garni (parsley, thyme, bay-leaf), salt, 1 tablespoonful of rice.

Method.—Remove the brains and tongue, and soak the head in salt and water for 12 hours, changing the water repeatedly. Put it into a large saucepan with a good handful of salt, cover with water, bring to the boil, strain, and wash well. Return it to the saucepan, add the water, and bring to the boil, skim thoroughly, add a teaspoonful of salt, then simmer for 3 hours. Meanwhile cut the vegetables into dice, and now add them and the rice to the broth. Continue the cooking for another hour, then take up the head, cut the meat into dice and return it to the broth and simmer for a few minutes. Take out the herbs, add seasoning to taste, and serve.

The brains can be used for brain cakes, and the tongue cooked and served separately. Only a small portion of the head need be served in the broth; the rest could be served separately, garnished with the tongue, and covered with brain sauce.

Time.—About 4 hours. Average Cost,—1s. to 1s. 2d. Seasonable at any time, particularly in Winter. Sufficient for 5 or 6 persons.