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393
FOR COOKING FISH

juice and wine. Place the butter in small pieces over the whole of the fish, put it in the oven, and baste frequently; brown it nicely, and serve with its own gravy.

Time.—From 1 to 1¼ hours. Average Cost, 1s. 6d. to 3s. 6d. per lb. Seasonable from April to September.

The Sturgeon (Fr. esturgeon) was highly esteemed by the Romans, and in the time of the Emperor Severus it was regarded as one of the most important delicacies of the table. Its virtues are celebrated by the poet Martial. The sturgeon is an inhabitant of the Baltic, the Mediterranean, the Caspian, and the Black Seas, and of the Danube, the Volga, the Don, and other large rivers. It abounds in the rivers of North America, and is occasionally taken in the Thames, in the Esk, and in the Eden. When caught in the Thames, within the jurisdiction of the Lord Mayor, it may be claimed by him; formerly it belonged by hereditary right to the King. The avenge length of the common sturgeon is about 6 feet, but other species, as the great or white sturgeon frequently attain to large dimensions. The Sterlet, a smaller species about 3 feet in length, found in the Caspian Sea and some Russian rivers, is the most delicate in flavour, and its roe is the most highly esteemed for making caviare. In general form the sturgeon is somewhat slender; the body is covered with bony plates in longitudinal rows; the mouth, destitute of teeth, is situated on the upper surface of the head at the extremity of a proboscis. Its tail is heterocercal, or unequally lobed. The sturgeon, besides its excellent flesh, is valuable for its roe, from which caviare is prepared, and also for its air-bladder, which furnishes the finest isinglass; both these products constituting important articles of commerce.

664.—STURGEON, BAKED OR ROASTED.

Ingredients.—The tail-end of a sturgeon, veal forcemeat (No. 412), butter or fat for basting.

'Method.—Wash and skin the fish, split it down the inner side, carefully remove the backbone, and fill the cavity with the forcemeat. Replace the fish in its original form, and tie a buttered paper over the cut side. Have ready some hot butter or fat in a baking-dish or tin, put in the fish, baste well, and bake from 1 to 1¼ hours in a moderate oven, basting frequently. Serve with good brown gravy or a suitable fish sauce.

Time.—Altogether, 1½ to 1¾ hours. Average Cost, 1s. 6d. to 3s. 6d. per lb. Seasonable from April to September.

Note.—Stugeon may be plainly-boiled, and served with Dutch sauce. The fish is very firm, and requires long boiling.

665.—STURGEON CUTLETS. (Fr.Côtelettes d'Esturgeon.)

Ingredients.—1½ lb. of sturgeon, ½ a teaspoonful of finely-chopped parsley, ¼ teaspoonful of finely-grated lemon-rind, egg and breadcrumbs, salt and pepper, fat for frying, piquant or tomato sauce (No. 281).

Ingredients.—Cut the fish into thin slices, flatten them with a cutlet-bat or heavy knife, and trim them into shape. Add the parsley and lemon-rind to the breadcrumbs, and season with salt and pepper. Brush over with beaten egg, coat carefully with the seasoned breadcrumbs, and fry in hot fat until lightly browned on both sided. Drain free from fat, and serve with piquant or tomato sauce poured round.

Time.—To fry, about 10 minutes. Average Cost, from 1s 6d. per lb. Sufficient for 6 or 8 persons. Seasonable, April to September.