Wednesday, October 26, 2016


Some may be wondering why I take up so much time with food and recipes. There are several reasons, refrigeration was non existent for most of the 19th century, Food preparation was also different, and yet we find some of the recipes are very similar to ones we use today. Preparing for the winter wasn't having so much money in hand to go to the grocery store once a week. As a fiction writer, I'm always looking for unique tidbits that help the reader be sent back to that time period. With that in mind, here is a post about Apples.

This is taken from "A cyclopaedia of several thousand practical reciepts:" ©1846

APPLE. The apple is a wholesome and pleasant fruit when perfectly ripe, and may be eaten either raw, roasted, or boiled. The more aromatic and flavored varieties are well adapted for dessert fruit, and are especially useful to persons of a full or confined habit of body.

APPLE-FOOL. Put the peeled and cored fruit into a jar, with moist sugar to render it palatable, and a very little cider or perry ; place the jar in a saucepan of water over the fire, and continue tho heat until the apples become quite soft, then pulp them through a colander, and add a sufficient quantity of milk, a little cream, und sugar to complete the sweetening. Mix well.

APPLES A LA CREMONA. Prep. Cut the best cooking apples into small squares, until you have about 1 1/2 lb., strew over them 1 lb. of good moist sugar and several long strips of lemonpeel, then cover them up close in a bowl. Next day put the apples, piece by piece, into a small stewpan, with 3 or 4 tablespoonfuls of cider or perry, and simmer gently until they become clear : then take them out, and when cold build a wall round a small dish with the square pieces, place the strips of lemon-peel on the top, and pour the sirup into the middle.

APPLES, DRIED. Syn. Baked Apples. Prep. Place any quantity of apples in a cool oven, 6 or 7 times in succession, flattening them each time by gentle pressure, gradually applied, as soon as they are soft enough to bear it; then take them out, and as soon as cold put them on clean dishes or glass plates. The sour or tart variety of apples is the best for baking.

APPLES And PEARS, PRESERVATION OF. One of the best ways to preserve valuable fruit of this description, is to wrap each in a piece of clean dry paper, and to fill small wide-mouthed jars or honey-pots therewith, and to pack them in the following manner, in a dry and very cold place, (as a cellar,) but where the frost cannot reach them. The pots, of the shape of fig. 1, are placed in rows one in the other, as in fig. 2, and the space (a) between the two pots filled up with plaster of Paris made into a paste with water; the joint is thus rendered air-tight, and the fruit will i keep good for a long time. The mouth of the top jar should be covered with a slate.

Remarks. The fruit should not be too ripe for the purpose of being preserved; and the later sort is the best. The jars may be taken one at a time from the store-room, us wanted, and the fruit exposed for a week or ten days in a warm dry room before being eaten, which will much improve the flavor. Another plan, which is a modification of the above, is to place alternate layers of bran or clean dry sand and apples, either naked or wrapped in paper, in jars, until they are full, then to shake them well to settle the bran between the fruit, and to add more if required; they are then packed away as before described.

II. Fruit is kept in the large way for the London market by placing in a cool situation, first a layer of straw or paper, then a layer of apples, next a layer of straw, and so on alternately, to the bright of 20 to 25 inches, which cannot be well exceeded, as the weight of the superincumbent fruit would be apt to crush or injure the lower layers. This plan is frequently modified by placing alternate layers of fruit and paper in baskets or hampers, and covering them well over before placing them in the fruit-room. The baskets may then be piled one over the other without injury to the fruit.

Remarks. Apples or other fruit intended for preserving in the above way should never be laid in heaps or allowed to touch each other, as they thereby acquire a bad flavor. They should be gathered in dry weather and immediately carried In the fruit-room, when they should be laid, if not singly, at least thinly, on the floor or shelves, on paper, and packed away as soon as possible. The use of brown paper is inadmissible, as it conveys its peculiar flavor to the fruit. Thick white brown paper is the cheapest and the best.

III. (American Method) The apples or pears, after being peeled, are cut into eighths, the cores extracted, and then dried in the sun or in a kiln or oven until they are quite hard. Remarks. In this way fruit is kept in the United States for two or three years.
For use, wash the fruit in water, then pour boiling water on it; let it stand for a few minutes, and use it as fresh fruit. The water it has soaked in is an excellent substitute for fresh juice.

APPLE SUGAR. Prep. Express the juice, and add chalk until the whole of the acid is saturated ; pour off the clear liquor; then clarify by boiling in a clean pan with some white of egg; skim off" the dirt; and lastly evaporate by a gentle heat to a proper consistence. Remarks. 1 cwt of apples yield about 84 lbs. of juice and 12 lbs. of crude sugar.

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