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Page:The White House Cook Book.djvu/463

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PRESERVES, JELLIES, ETC.

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FRUIT for preserving should be sound and free from all defects, using white sugar, and also that which is dry, which produces the nicest syrup ; dark sugar can be used by being clarified, which is done by dissolving two pounds of sugar in a pint of water ; add to it the white of an egg and beat it well, put it into a pre- serving kettle on the fire and stir with a wooden spoon. As soon as it begins to swell and boil up, throw in a little cold water ; let it boil up again, take it off and remove the scum ; boil it again, throw in more cold water and remove the scum ; repeat until it is clear and pours like oil from the spoon.

In the old way of preserving, we used pound for pound, when they were kept in stone jars or crocks ; now, as most preserves are put up in sealed jars or cans, less sugar seems sufficient; three-quarters of a pound of sugar is generally all that is required for a pound of fruit.

Fruit should be boiled in a porcelain-lined or granite-ware dish, if possible ; but other utensils, copper or metal, if made bright and clean, answer as well.

Any of the fruits that have been preserved in syrup may be con- verted into dry preserves, .by first draining them from the syrup, and then drying them in a stove or very moderate oven, adding to them a quantity of powdered loaf sugar, which will gradually penetrate the fruit, while the fluid parts of the syrup gently evaporate. They should be dried in the stove or oven on a sieve, and turned every six or eight hours, fresh powdered sugar being sifted over them every time they are turned. Afterwards they are to be kept in a dry situation, in drawers or boxes. Currants and cherries preserved whole in this man- ner, in bunches, are extremely elegant and have a fine flavor. In this way it is, also, that orange and lemon chips are preserved.

Mold can be prevented from forming on fruit jellies by pouring a little melted paraffine over the top. When cool, it will harden to a

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