When preparing to cook a ham, scrape, wash and trim it carefully. Place ham in a large cook pot or boiler, partly cover with cold water, let come to a boil, then move back on range where the water will merely simmer, just bubble gently around the edge of the boiler.
A medium sized ham should be tender in five or six hours. When a fork stuck into the ham comes out readily, the ham is cooked. Take from the boiler and skin carefully, removing all the discolored portions of the smoked end, stick 2 dozen whole cloves into the thick fat, and sprinkle a couple tablespoonfuls of brown sugar and fine bread crumbs over top.
Place in a very hot oven a short time, until the fat turns a golden brown. Watch carefully to see that it does not scorch.
When cold, slice thin and serve.
When about to fry a slice of uncooked ham, do young housewives know how very much it improves the flavor of the ham if it is allowed to stand for ten or fifteen minutes in a platter containing a large teaspoonful of sugar and a little cold water? Turn several times, then wipe quite dry with a clean cloth and fry in a pan containing a little hot drippings and a very little butter (one-half teaspoonful) just enough to prevent its sticking to the pan.
Do not fry as quickly as beefsteak.
After a slice of ham has been cut from a whole ham, if lard be spread over the end of ham from which the slice has been cut, it will prevent the cut place from becoming mouldy.
Place pork roast in a covered roasting pan containing a small cup of hot water, season with pepper and salt and sweet marjoram and sprinkle a little powdered sage over it, and stand in a very hot oven.
After the meat has been roasting for a half hour, have less heat in your oven, allow about 25 minutes to every pound of pork, or longer if necessary, but be sure it is well done.
When served, underdone pork is very unwholesome and unappetizing. When meat is sufficiently roasted, pour off all the fat in the pan except a small quantity, to which add 1/2 cup of boiling water, pepper and salt and serve.
Serve baked apples or apple sauce with pork.
Dip pork chops in egg, then into bread crumbs to which has been added salt, pepper, and a very little sage and sweet marjoram.
Some prefer chops simply dredged with flour. Fry about 25 minutes or until cooked through and nicely browned, but not scorched. ‘Tis said, “The frying of chops in a perfect manner is the test of a good cook.”
Nine pounds of fresh pork (lean and fat intermixed as it comes).
Cut meat in small pieces, run through a meat cutter.
Sprinkle over thefinely chopped meat 3 tablespoonfuls salt, 2 tablespoonfuls of black pepper, 4 tablespoonfuls of powdered sage if bought at a chemist’s.
Cloves, mace and nutmeg may also be added if one likes highly-spiced food. This is a matter of taste. A good plan is to season the small pieces of meat before chopping, as this distributes
the seasoning through the sausage. Fill well cleaned casings, with the finely chopped meat. Or form sausage into small pats, fry brown on both sides and serve with home-made buckwheat cakes.
KEEPING / PRESERVING SAUSAGE
To keep sausage one year, take sausage which has been put in casings (skins in long links) and cook until heated through in a fry pan half filled with hot water.
Take sausage from the water, cut in 4-inch length pieces (stick sausage with prongs of a fork, to prevent skins bursting) and fry brown on both sides, as if preparing it for the table.
Place, while hot in quart jars, fill jars as compactly as possible, then pour the hot fat remaining in pan over top.
Seal air-tight and it will keep well one year if jars are perfectly air-tight.
Two pig’s feet, weighing together about 1-1/2 pounds. After thoroughly cleansing with a vegetable brush, place in a stewpan and cover with cold water. Allow water to come to a boil then move stew-pan to place on range where contents will cook slowly for a number of hours, or until the meat is loosened from the bones, then strain liquid, which should measure a scant three cups. (If a lesser quantity of liquid, add hot water until you have the required amount.)
Add also 3 tablespoonfuls of sharp cider vinegar, about 3/4 teaspoonful of salt and a dust of black pepper.
Pour this mixture over the meat, which should have been separated from bones, allowing a few smaller bones to remain with the meat, which should have been placed in a bowl with several thin slices of lemon, if liked. Stand bowl in a cool place over night or until the “Souse” is of a jelly-like consistency. When cold, remove any surplus grease from the top of “Souse.” Turn it from the bowl on to a platter.
Serve cold. Garnish with thin slices of lemon and sprigs of parsley.
This will furnish about 2-1/4 pounds of souse.
UTILIZING COLD MEAT LEFT-OVERS
Small pieces of cold roast beef, veal or steak may all be utilized by being put through the food chopper. To 1 cup of finely-chopped cold meat add 1/4 cup of stale bread, which has soaked for a few minutes in cold water. The water having been squeezed from the bread, it was added to the meat, as was also a small quantity of finely-minced onion or parsley, and either the yolk or while of 1 egg and a seasoning of salt and pepper.
Add left-over gravy, to cause the mixture to be soft enough to form into small rolls or cakes, and fry in a pan containing a couple tablespoonfuls of sweet drippings. Mashed potatoes may be
substituted for the bread with equally good results.
The meat mixture may be formed into small cone shapes, dipped in egg, then rolled in fine bread crumbs and fried in deep fat.
Very appetizing sandwiches may he made from cold pieces of fried ham, run through food chopper. Spread this on thinly-sliced, buttered bread, with a dish of prepared mustard, spread over the prepared ham.
Small bits of boiled ham, which cannot be sliced, may also be used in this manner.
The fat was cut from left-over pieces of roast beef (place a couple of tablespoonfuls of fat in a pan on the range until the fat has fried out), then add a little finely-minced onion and the beef cut in pieces the size of a small marble, brown in the fat a few minutes, then add a small quantity of vinegar and water, and thicken to the consistency of cream (with a little flour moistened with cold water, before being added).
ROAST CHICKEN OR TURKEY
Singe the fowl, after it has been picked; then with a small vegetable brush quickly scrub it well, with luke-warm water. Do not let it lie in the water.
When perfectly clean rinse in cold water, wipe dry, cut out the oil sack, remove craw from neck, draw the fowl, being careful not to break the gall in the process, as that would cause the meat, as well as giblets, to have a bitter taste. Take out the lungs, the spongy red pieces lying in crevices near the bones of the back, and pour cold water through the fowl until you have thoroughly rinsed and chilled it, and no blood remains inside.
Fowls should be rinsed thoroughly inside and outside with cold water (many good cooks to the contrary). Wipe the inside of the fowl perfectly dry with a clean cloth, and it is ready for the “filling.” Separate the liver and heart from entrails and cut open the piece containing the gizzard; wash the outer part, and put the giblets on to cook with a little hot water; if wanted to use with the filling.
If the fowl is wanted to cook or steam the day following, do not cut in pieces and let stand in water over night, as I have known some quite good cooks to do, as that draws the flavor from the meat and makes it tasteless. If the giblets are not to be cooked and added to dressing, place them inside the fowl, tie feet together, and hang up in a cool place until wanted.
When serving a turkey dinner with its accompaniments one finds so many things to be attended to in the morning, especially if the fowl is cooked on a Sunday. It will be found a great help to the cook to have the turkey or chicken stuffed with bread filling the day before it is to be roasted, ready to pop in the oven in the morning.
Chop the cold, cooked liver, heart and gizzard into tiny dice; add this to a bowl containing one quart of crumbled stale bread, seasoned with 1 teaspoonful of salt, 1/4 teaspoonful pepper, 1/2 of a small, finely-minced onion, 1/4 teaspoonful sweet marjoram and a teaspoonful of chopped parsley. Stir into the crumbs 3 tablespoonfuls of melted butter, moisten all with one egg beaten with 2 tablespoonfuls of milk.
Sir all together lightly with a fork. Fill the body of the chicken, put a couple of spoonfuls of this dressing into the space from which the craw was taken, tie the neck with a cord, sew up the fowl with a darning needle and cord, after filling it. (Always keep a pair of scissors hanging from a nail conveniently near the sink in your kitchen, as it saves many steps.)
The secret of good filling is not to have it too moist, and to put the filling into the fowl very lightly; on no account press it down when placing it in the fowl, as that will cause the best of filling to be heavy and sodden. Rather put less in, and fill a small cheese cloth bag with what remains, and a short time before the fowl has finished roasting, lay the bag containing the dressing on top of fowl until heated through, then turn out on one side of platter and serve with the fowl. Instead of the chopped giblets, add 2 dozen oysters to the dressing, or a few chestnuts boiled tender, mashed and seasoned with butter, pepper and salt and added to the crumbled bread. This makes a pleasant change.
Do not use quite as many crumbs if chestnuts or oysters are added. Place fowl in covered roasting pan, put a couple of pieces of thinly-sliced bacon on the breast of fowl, put two cups of hot water in the pan and set in a very hot oven for the first half hour, then reduce the heat and baste frequently. An ordinary eight-pound turkey takes from two to three hours to roast; a chicken takes about twenty minutes to the pound.
When the fowl has been sufficiently roasted, remove from pan to a hot platter. Pour off some of the fat in the pan and add a small quantity of milk to the broth remaining. Thicken with flour, for gravy, season with salt and pepper and sprinkle one teaspoonful chopped parsley over gravy after being poured into the gravy boat ready to serve.
The yolk of one egg added makes a richer gravy to serve with chicken.
FRIED CHICKEN WITH CREAM GRAVY
Cut one small spring chicken in pieces, dip each piece in a batter composed of 1 beaten egg, 1 cup of milk, a pinch of salt, 1/2 teaspoonful of baking powder, sifted with flour enough to form a
batter. Dip the pieces of chicken in this batter, one at a time, and fry slowly in a pan containing a couple tablespoonfuls of hot butter and lard, until a golden brown. Place the fried chicken on a platter.
Make a gravy by adding to the fat remaining in the pan–1 cup of milk, 1 tablespoonful of corn starch. Allow this to brown and thicken.
Then pour the gravy over the chicken and serve garnished with parsley or watercress.
STEWED OR STEAMED CHICKEN
Cut a nicely cleaned chicken into nine pieces. (Do not separate the meat from the breast-bone until it has been cooked.) Put in a cook pot and partly cover with boiling water. Add one small onion and a sprig of parsley, and let simmer about 1-1/2 hours, or until tender.
If an old fowl it will take about one hour longer. Add salt and pepper.
Strain the broth, if very fat, remove a part from broth. After separating the white meat from the breast-bone, put all the meat on a platter. Add 1/4 cup of sweet milk to the strained broth, thicken with a couple tablespoonfuls of flour, mixed smooth with a little cold water.
Let come to a boil, and add one teaspoonful of chopped parsley. Pour the chicken gravy over the platter containing the meat, or serve it in a separate bowl. Or you may quickly brown the pieces of stewed chicken which have been sprinkled with flour in a pan containing a little sweet drippings or butter.
Should the chicken not be a very fat one, add yolk of one egg to the gravy.
Or, instead of stewing the chicken, place in the upper compartment of a steamer, and steam until tender and serve. The day following that on which stewed or steamed chicken was served, small undesirable left-over pieces of the chicken were added (after being picked from the bones) to the gravy remaining from the day before, heated thoroughly and poured hot over a platter containing small baking powder biscuits broken in half or slices of toasted bread, which is economical, extending the meat flavor.