Friday, December 23, 2016

Christmas & New Year's Dinners

In Miss Leslie's Lady's New Receipt-book ©1850 Eliza Leslie gives this list of Christmas & New Year's Dinners. Now in my family we have always had large holiday dinners but nothing compares to this list.

Boiled turkey with oyster sauce; two roast geese with apple sauce; roasted ham; chicken pie; stewed beets; cold-slaw; turnips; salsify; winter-squash--Plum pudding; mince pie; lemon custards; cranberry pie.

Roast turkey with cranberry sauce; boiled fowls with celery sauce; boiled ham; goose pie; turnips; winter-squash; salsify; cold-slaw; beets--Mince pudding boiled; lemon pudding baked; pumpkin pudding.

Mock turtle soup; roast turkey with cranberry sauce; boiled turkey with celery sauce; roasted ham; smoked tongue; chicken curry; oyster pie; beets; cold-slaw; winter-squash; salsify; fried-celery--Plum pudding; mince pie; calve's-feet jelly; blanc-mange.

I'm not sure about you but several of the items above through me, below are some recipes for some of those items:

FRENCH OYSTER PIE.—Having buttered the inside of a deep dish, line it with puff-paste rolled out rather thick, and prepare another sheet of paste for the lid. Put a clean towel into the dish (folded so as to support the lid) and then put on the lid; set it into the oven, and bake the paste well. When done, remove the lid, and take out the folded towel. While the paste is baking, prepare the oysters. Having picked off carefully any bits of shell that may be found about them, lay them in a seive and drain off the liquor into a pan. Put the oysters into a skillet or stew-pan, with barely enough of the liquor to keep them from burning. Season them with whole pepper; blades of mace; some grated nutmeg ; and some grated lemon-peel, (the yellow rind only,) and a little finely minced celery. Then add a large portion of fresh butter, divided into bits, and very slightly dredged with flour. Let the oysters simmer over the fire, but do not allow them to come to a boil, as that will shrivel them. Next beat the yolks only, of three, four, or five eggs, (in proportion to the size of the pie,) and stir the beaten egg into the stew a few minutes before you take it from the fire. Keep it warm till the paste is baked. Then carefully remove the lid of the pie; and replace it, after you have filled the dish with the oysters and gravy.
The lid of the pie may be ornamented with a wreath of leaves cut out of paste, and put on before baking. In the centre, place a paste-knot or flower.
Oyster pies are generally eaten warm; but they are very good cold.
Veggie Garden Tips gives us a good description of what salsify is as well as how to grow and store it.

From "The French Cook" ©1829 by Louis Eustache Ude I found this recipe for Oyster Sauce.

625. Oyster Sauce. (See No. 99, page 41.)
If you should be in a hurry, mark in a stewpan, a good lump of butter, a spoonful or two of flour, moisten with the liquor of the oysters, and put the sauce on the fire, but do not let it boil. When it is thick, throw in the oysters, with a spoonful of essence of anchovies, a little cavice, a spoonful of thick cream, and serve up.

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