Cassell's Vegetarian Cookery/dishes
In many parts of the country mushrooms grow so plentifully that their cost may be considered almost nothing. On the other hand, if they have to be bought fresh, at certain seasons of the year they are very expensive, while tinned mushrooms, which can always be depended upon, cannot be regarded in any other light than that of a luxury.
When mushrooms can be gathered in the fields like black-berries they are a great boon to vegetarians. Of course, great care must be taken that only genuine mushrooms are picked, as there have been some terrible instances of poisoning from fungi being gathered by mistake, as many Cockney tourists know to their cost. As a rule, in England all mushrooms bought in markets can be depended upon. In France, where mushrooms are very plentiful, an inspector is appointed in every market, and no mushrooms are allowed to be sold unless they have first received his sanction. This is a wise precaution in the right direction.
One important word of warning before leaving the subject. Mushrooms should be eaten freshly gathered, and, if allowed to get stale, those which were perfectly wholesome when fresh picked become absolutely poisonous. The symptoms are somewhat similar to narcotic poisoning. This particularly applies to the larger and coarser kind that give out black juice.
Mushrooms, Plain, Grilled.—The larger kinds of mushrooms are best for the purpose. The flat mushrooms should be washed, dried, and peeled. They are then cooked slowly over a clear fire, and a small wire gridiron, like those sold at a penny or twopence each, is better adapted for the purpose than the ordinary gridiron used for grilling steak. The gridiron should be kept high above the fire. The mushrooms should be dipped in oil, or oiled butter, and care should be taken that they do not stick to the bars. They should be served very hot, with pepper and salt and a squeeze of lemon-juice.
Mushrooms, Fried.—When mushrooms are very small they are more easily fried than grilled. They should be washed, dried and peeled, placed in a frying-pan, with a little butter, pepper and salt, and cooked till tender. They are very nice served on toast, and the butter in which they are cooked can be poured on the toast first, and the mushrooms arranged on the top afterwards. A squeeze of lemon-juice is an improvement.
Mushrooms au gratin.—This is a very delicious dish, and is often served as an entrée at first-class dinners. They are made from what are known as cup mushrooms. It is best to pick mushrooms, as far as possible, the same size, the cup being about two inches in diameter. Peel the mushrooms very carefully, without breaking them, cut out the stalks close down with a spoon, scoop out the inside of the cup, so as to make it hollow. Now peel the stalks and chop them up with all the scooped part of the mushroom, with, supposing we are making ten cups, a piece of onion as big as the top of the thumb down to the first joint. To this add a brimming teaspoonful of chopped parsley, or even a little more, a saltspoonful of dried thyme, or half this quantity of fresh thyme. Fry all this in a frying-pan, in a little butter. The aroma is delicious. Then add sufficient dried bread-crumbs that have been rubbed through a wire sieve to make the whole into a moist paste, fill each of the cups with this mixture so that the top is as convex as the cup of the mushroom, having first seasoned the mixture with a little pepper, salt, and lemon-juice. Shake some fine bread-raspings over the top so as to make them of a nice golden-brown colour, pour a little drop of oil into a baking-tin, place the mushrooms in it, and bake them gently in an oven till the cup part of the mushroom becomes soft and tender, but take care they do not cook till they break. Now take them out carefully with an egg-slice, and place them on a dish—a silver dish is best for the purpose-and place some nice, crisp, fried parsley round the edge.
Mushrooms à la Bordelaise.—This, as the name implies, is a French recipe. It consists of ordinary grilled mushrooms, served in a sauce composed of oil or oiled butter, chopped up with parsley and garlic, thickened with the yolks of eggs.
Mushrooms à la Provençale.—This is an Italian recipe. You must first wash, peel, and dry the mushrooms, and then soak them for some time in what is called a marinade, which is another word for pickle, of oil mixed with chopped garlic, pepper, and salt. They are then stewed in oil with plenty of chopped parsley over rather a brisk fire. Squeeze, a little lemon-juice over them and serve them in a dish surrounded with a little fried or toasted bread.
Mushroom Forcemeat.—The mushrooms after being cleaned should be chopped up and fried in a little butter; lemon-juice should be added before they are chopped in order to preserve their colour. One or two hard-boiled yolks of eggs can be added to the mixture, and the whole rubbed through a wire sieve while hot. When the mixture is hot it should be moist, but, of course, when it gets cold, owing to the butter it will be hard. This mushroom forcemeat can be used for a variety of purposes.
Mushroom Pie.—Wash, dry, and peel some mushrooms, and cut them into slices with an equal quantity of cut-up potatoes. Bake these in a pie, having first moistened the potatoes and mushrooms in a little butter. Add pepper and salt and a small pinch of thyme. Cover them with a little water and put some paste over the dish in the ordinary way. It is a great improvement, after the pie is baked, to pour in some essence of mushrooms made from stewing the stalks and peelings in a little water. A single onion should be put in with them.
Mushroom Pie, Cold.—Prepare the mushrooms, potatoes, and essence of mushroom as directed above, adding a little chopped parsley. Bake all these in the dish before you cover with paste, add also an extra seasoning of pepper. When the mushrooms and potatoes are perfectly tender, strain off all the juice or gravy, and thicken it with corn-flour; put this back in the pie-dish and mix all well together, and pile it up in the middle of the dish so that the centre is raised above the edge. Let this get quite cold, then cover it with puff-paste, and as soon as the pastry is done take it out of the oven and let the pie get cold. This can now be cut in slices.
Mushroom Pudding.—Make a mixture of mushrooms, potatoes, &c., exactly similar to that for making a pie. Place this in a basin with only sufficient water to moisten the ingredients, cover the basin with bread-crumbs soaked in milk, and steam the basin in the ordinary way.
Tomatoes, Grilled.— What is necessary is a clear fire and a gridiron in which the bars are not too far apart. The disputed point is, should the tomatoes be grilled whole or cut in half? This may be considered a matter of taste, but personally we prefer them grilled whole. Moisten the tomato in a little oil or oiled butter, and grill them carefully, as they are apt to break. Grilled tomatoes are very nice with plain boiled macaroni, or can be served up on boiled rice.
Tomatoes, Baked.—Place the tomatoes in a tin with a little butter, and occasionally baste them with the butter. When they are tender, they can be served either plain or with boiled macaroni or rice. The butter and juice in the tin should be poured over them.
Tomatoes, Fried.—Place the tomatoes in a frying-pan with a little butter, and fry them until they are tender. Pour the contents of the frying-pan over them, serve plain, or with macaroni or rice.
Tomatoes, Stewed.—Take half a dozen good-sized tomatoes, and chop up very finely one onion about the same size as the tomatoes. Moisten the bottom of a stew-pan with a little butter, and sprinkle the chopped onion over the tomatoes. Add a dessertspoonful of water; place the lid on the stewpan, which ought to fit tightly. It is best to put a weight on the lid of the stew-pan, such as a flat-iron. Place the stew-pan on the fire, and let them steam till they are tender. They are cooked this way in Spain and Portugal, and very often chopped garlic is used instead of onion.
Tomatoes au gratin.—Take a dozen ripe tomatoes, cut off the stalks, and squeeze out time juice and pips. Next take a few mushrooms and make a mixture exactly similar to that which was used to fill the inside of Mushrooms au gratin. Fill each tomato with some of this mixture, so that it assumes its original shape and tight skin. The top or hole where the stalk was cut out will probably be about the size of a shilling or halfpenny. Shake some bright-coloured bread raspings over this spot without letting them fall on the red tomato. In order to do this, cut a round hole the right size in a stiff piece of paper. Place the tomatoes in a stew-pan or a baking-dish in the oven, moistened with a little oil. The oil should be about the eighth of an inch deep. Stew or bake the tomatoes till they are tender, and then take them out carefully with an egg-slice, and serve them surrounded with fried parsley. If placed in a silver dish this has a very pretty appearance.
Tomato Pie.—Slice up an equal number of ripe tomatoes and potatoes. Place them in a pie-dish with enough oiled butter to moisten them. Add a brimming teaspoonful of chopped parsley, a pinch of thyme, pepper, and salts and, if possible, a few peeled mushrooms, which will be found to be a very great improvement. Cover the pie with paste, and bake in the oven.
Tomato Pie (another way).—Proceed as in making an ordinary potato pie. Add a small bottle of tomato conserve, cover with paste, and bake in the ordinary way.
Potato Pie.—Peel and slice up some potatoes as thin as possible. At the same time slice up some onions. If Spanish onions are used allow equal quantities of potatoes and onions, but if ordinary onions are used allow only half this quantity. Place a layer of sliced onion and sliced potato alternately. Add some pepper, salt, and sufficient butter to moisten the potato and butter before any water is added. Pour in some water and add a teaspoonful of chopped parsley, cover the pie with paste, and bake in the ordinary way.
Potato Pie (another way).—Butter a shallow pie-dish rather thickly. Line the edges with a good crust, and then fill the pie with mashed potatoes seasoned with pepper, salt, and grated nutmeg. Lay over them some small lumps of butter, hard-boiled eggs, blanched almonds, sliced dates, sliced lemon and candied peel. Cover the dish with pastry and bake the pie in a well-heated oven for half an hour or more, according to the size of the pie.
Pumpkin Pie.—Peel a ripe pumpkin and chip off the rind or skin, halve it, and take out the seed and fluffy part in the centre, which throw away. Cut the pumpkin into small, thin slices, fill a pie-dish therewith, add to it half a teaspoonful of allspice and a tablespoonful of sugar, with a small quantity of water. Cover with a nice light paste and bake in the ordinary way. Pumpkin pie is greatly unproved by being eaten with Devonshire cream and sugar. An equal quantity of apples with the pumpkin will make a still more delicious pie.
Pumpkin Pudding.—Take a large pumpkin, pare it, and remove the seeds. Cut half of it into thin slices, and boil these gently in water until they are quite soft, then rub them through a fine sieve with the back of a wooden spoon. Measure the pulp, and with each pint put four ounces of butter and a large nutmeg, grated. Stir the mixture briskly for a minute or two, then add the third of a pint of hot milk and four well-beaten eggs. Pour the pudding into a buttered dish, and bake in a moderate oven for about an hour. Sugar may be added to taste.
Potato Cheesecake.—(See CHEESECAKES.)
Cheese with Fried Bread.—Take some stale bread, and cut it into strips about three inches long and one wide and one inch thick. Fry the bread in some butter or oil till it is a nice bright golden colour. Spread a layer of made mustard over the strips of fried bread, and then cover them with grated Parmesan cheese, pile them up on a dish, and place them in the oven. As soon as the cheese begins to melt serve them very hot.
Cheese, Savoury.—Take equal quantities of grated Parmesan cheese, butter, and flour; add a little salt and cayenne pepper, make these into a paste with some water, roll out the paste thin till it is about a quarter of an inch thick; cut it into strips and bake them in the oven till they are a nice brown, and serve hot.
Cheese Soufflé.—(See OMELETS.)
Cheese Pudding.—Mix half a pound of grated Parmesan cheese with four eggs, well beaten up; mix in also two ounces of butter, which should be first beaten to a cream, add half a pint of milk and pour the mixture into a well-buttered pie-dish, sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese over the top, and bake in the oven for about half an hour. The pudding will be lighter if two of the whites of eggs are beaten to a stiff froth. The edge of the pie-dish can be lined with puff-paste.
Cheese Ramequins.—Put half a pound of grated Parmesan cheese in a stew-pan with a quarter of a pound of butter and a quarter of a pint of water; add a little pepper and salt, and as much flour as will make the whole into a thick paste. Mix up with the paste as many well-beaten-up eggs as will make the paste not too liquid to be moulded into a shape. The eggs should be beaten till they froth. Now, with a tablespoon, mould this mixture into shapes like a meringue or egg; place these on a buttered tin and bake them till they are a nice brown colour.
Cheese, Stewed.—When the remains of cheese have got very dry it is a good plan to use it up in the shape of stewed cheese. Break up the cheese and put it in a small stew-pan with about a quarter its weight of butter; add a little milk, and let the cheese stew gently till it is dissolved. At the finish, and when you have removed it from the fire, add a well-beaten-up egg. This can be served on toast, or it can be poured on to a dish and pieces of toasted bread stuck in it.
Cheese Straws.—Mix equal quantities of grated Parmesan cheese, grated bread-crumbs that have been rubbed through a wire sieve, butter, and flour; add a little cayenne and grated nutmeg. Make it into a thick paste, roll it out very thin, cut it into strips, and bake for a few minutes in a fierce oven.
Cheese, Toasted.—This is best done in a Dutch oven, so that when one side is toasted you can turn the oven and toast the back; as soon as the cheese begins to melt it is done. As it gets cold very quickly, and when cold gets hard, it is best served on hot-water plates.
Cheese, Devilled.—Chop up some hot pickles, add some cayenne pepper and mustard. Melt some cheese in a stew-pan with a little butter, mix in the pickles, and serve on toast.
Welsh Rarebit.—Toast a large slice of bread; in the meantime melt some cheese in the saucepan with a little butter. When the cheese is melted it will be found that a good deal of oiled butter floats on the top. Pour this over the dry toast first, and then pour the melted cheese afterwards. Some persons add a teaspoonful of Worcester sauce to the cheese, and others a tablespoonful of good old Burton ale over the top.
Ayoli.—This is a dish almost peculiar to the South of France. Soak some crusts of bread in water, squeeze them dry, and add two cloves of garlic chopped fine, six blanched almonds, also chopped very fine, and a yolk of an egg; mix up the whole into a smooth paste with a little oil.
Pumpkin à la Parmesane.—Cut a large pumpkin into square pieces and boil them for about a quarter of an hour in salt and water, and take them out, drain them, and put them in a stew-pan with a little butter, salt, and grated nutmeg; fry them, sprinkle them with a little Parmesan cheese, and bake them for a short time in the oven till the cheese begins to melt, and then serve. This is an Italian recipe.
Zucchetti farcis.—Take some very small gourds or pumpkins, boil them for about a quarter of an hour in salt and water, and then fill them with a forcemeat made as follows: Take some crumb of bread and soak it in milk, squeeze it and add the yolks of two hard-boiled eggs and two raw yolks; chop up very finely half a dozen blanched almonds with a couple of cloves; add two ounces of grated Parmesan cheese, and a little salt and grated nutmeg. Stew these gourds in butter and serve them with white sauce.
Stuffed Onions (Italian fashion).—Parboil some large onions, stamp out the core after they have been allowed to get quite cold in a little water; fill the inside with forcemeat similar to the above; fry then), squeeze the juice of a lemon over them, with a little pepper.
Polenta.—Polenta is made from ground Indian corn, and is seen in Italian shop-windows in the form of a yellow powder; it is made into a paste with boiling water, sprinkled with Parmesan cheese, and baked in the oven.
Piroski Sernikis.—This dish is met with in Poland, and is made by mixing up two pounds of cream-cheese, three-quarters of a pound of fine bread-crumbs that have been rubbed through a wire sieve, six eggs well beaten up; add a little cream or milk, four ounces of washed grocer’s currants, one ounce of sugar, half a grated nutmeg; and when the whole is thoroughly mixed add as much flour as is necessary to make the whole into a paste that can be rolled into balls. These balls should not be much bigger than a walnut. Flour them, and then flatten them into little cakes and fry them a nice brown in some butter.
Of course, a smaller quantity can be made by using these ingredients in proportion.
Nalesnikis (Polish Pancakes).—Take eight eggs and beat them up very thoroughly with about a pint and a half of milk, or still better, cream, two ounces of butter that has been oiled, half a grated nutmeg, and about a dozen lumps of sugar that have been rubbed on the outside of a lemon; mix in sufficient flour—about three-quarters of a pound will be required—to make the whole into a very smooth batter. Melt a little butter in a frying-pan, pour it all over the pan, and when it frizzles, pour in some of the batter, and sprinkle over a few currants; when the pancake is fried, shake some powdered sugar over it, roll it up like an ordinary pancake, and serve hot. FRITTERS.
Batter for Savoury Fritters.—Put six ounces of flour into a basin, with a pinch of salt, the yolk of one egg, and a quarter of a pint of warm water. Work this round and round with a wooden spoon till it is perfectly smooth and looks like thick cream. About half an hour before the batter is wanted for use whip the white of one egg to a stiff froth and mix it lightly in.
Mushroom Fritters.—Make some mushroom forcemeat; let it get quite cold on a dish about a quarter of an inch thick. Cut out some small rounds, about the size of a penny-piece. They fry better if slightly oval. Have ready some thick batter (See BATTER). Have also ready in a saucepan some boiling oil, which should be heated to about 350°. Place a frying-basket in the saucepan, flour the rounds of mushroom forcemeat so as to make them perfectly dry on the outside. Dip these pieces into the batter and throw them into the boiling oil. The great heat of the oil will set the batter before the mushroom forcemeat has time to melt. Directly the batter is a nice light-brown colour, lift them out of the boiling oil with the frying-basket, and throw them on to a cloth to drain. Break off the outside pieces of batter, and serve the fritters on a neatly folded napkin on a dish surrounded by fried parsley.
The beauty of these fritters is that when they are eaten the inside is moist, owing, of course, to the heat having melted the forcemeat.
Tomato Fritters.—Make some mushroom forcemeat and spread it out as thin as possible. Take some ripe tomatoes, cut them in slices, dip the slice in vinegar, drain it and pepper it, and then wrap this thin slice of tomato in a layer of mushroom forcemeat. Bring the edges together, flour it, dip it into batter (see BATTER), and throw it into boiling oil as in making mushroom fritters (see MUSHROOM FRITTERS).
Imitation Game Fritters.—Make some mushroom forcemeat as directed under the heading “Mushroom Forcemeat,” with the addition of, when you fry the mushrooms, chop up and fry with them two heads of garlic, and add a saltspoonful of aromatic flavouring herbs. (These, are sold in bottles by all grocers under the name of “Herbaceous Mixture.”) Then proceed exactly as if you were making mushroom fritters (see MUSHROOM FRITTERS).
Hominy Fritters.—These are made from remains of cold boiled hominy, cut in thin slices, which must be dipped in batter and fried in boiling oil.
Cheese Fritters.—Pound some dry cheese, or take about three ounces of Parmesan cheese, and mix it with a few bread-crumbs, a piece of butter, a pinch of cayenne pepper, and the yolk of an egg, till the whole becomes a thick paste. Roll the mixture into very small balls, flatten them, flour them, dip them into batter, and throw them into boiling oil in the ordinary way. Put them in the oven for five minutes before serving them.
Sage and Onion Fritters.—Make some ordinary sage and onion stuffing, allowing one fresh sage leaf or two dried to each parboiled onion; add pepper and salt and dried breadcrumbs. Now moisten the whole with clarified butter, till the mixture becomes a moist pulp. When it begins to get cold and sets, roll it into small balls, the size of a very small walnut, flatten these and let them get quite cold, then flour them, dip them into batter, and throw them into boiling oil; remove them with the frying-basket, and serve with fried parsley.
Spinach Fritters.—Make a little thick purée of spinach, add a pinch of savoury herbs containing marjoram; mix in a little clarified butter and one or two lumps of sugar rubbed on the outside of a lemon, as well as a little grated nutmeg. Roll the mixture into very small ball; or else they will break, flatten them, flour them, dip them into batter, and throw them into boiling oil, and serve immediately.
Fritters, Sweet.—In making sweet fritters, the same kind of batter will do as we used for making savoury fritters, though many cooks add a little powdered sugar. The same principles hold good. The oil must be heated to a temperature of 350∞, and a frying-basket must be used. Instead of flouring the substances employed to make them dry, before being dipped into the batter, which is an essential point in making fritters, we must use finely powdered sugar, and it will be found a saving of both time and trouble to buy pounded sugar for the purpose. It is sold by grocers under the name of castor sugar. We cannot make this at home in a pestle and mortar to the same degree of fineness any more than we could grind our own flour. We cannot compete with machinery.
Apple Fritters.—Peel some apples, cut them in slices across the core, and stamp out the core. It is customary, where wine, &c., is not objected to, to soak these rings of apples for several hours in a mixture of brandy, grated lemon or orange peel and sugar, or better still, to rub some lumps of sugar on the outside of a lemon or orange and dissolve this in the brandy. Of course, brandy is not necessary, but the custom is worth mentioning. The rings of apple can be soaked for some time in syrup flavoured this way. They must then be made dry by being dipped in powdered sugar, then dipped into batter and thrown, one at a time, into a saucepan containing smoking hot oil in which a wire frying-basket has been placed. Directly the fritters are a nice brown, take them out, break off the rough pieces, shake some finely powdered sugar over them, pile them up on a dish, and serve.
Apricot Fritters.—These can be made from fresh apricots or tinned ones, not too ripe; if they break they are not fitted. When made from fresh apricots they should be peeled, cut in halves, the round end removed, dipped in powdered sugar, then dipped in batter, thrown into boiling oil, and finished like apple fritters. Some persons soak the apricots in brandy.
Banana Fritters.—Banana fritters can be made from the bananas as sold in this country, and it is a mistake to think that when they are black outside they are bad. When in this state they are sometimes sold as cheap as six a penny. Peel the bananas, cut them into slices half an inch thick, dip them into finely powdered sugar and then into batter, and finish as directed in apple fritters.
Some persons soak the slices of banana in maraschino.
Custard Fritters.—Take half a pint of cream in which some cinnamon and lemon have been boiled, add to this five yolks of eggs, a little flour, and about three ounces of sugar. Put this into a pie-dish, well buttered, and steam it till the custard becomes quite set; then let it get cold, and cut it into slices about half an inch thick and an inch and a half long, sprinkle each piece with a little powdered cinnamon, and make it quite dry with some powdered sugar. Then dip each piece into batter, throw them one by one into boiling oil, and finish as directed for apple fritters.
Almond Fritters, Chocolate Fritters, Coffee Fritters, Vanilla Fritters, &c.—These fritters are made exactly in the same way as custard fritters, only substituting powdered chocolate, pounded almonds, essence of coffee, or essence of vanilla, for the powdered cinnamon.
Frangipane Fritters.—Make a Frangipane cream by mixing eggs with a little cold potato, butter, sugar, and powdered ratafias, the proportion being a quarter of a pound of butter, four eggs, six ounces of sugar, one cold floury potato, and a quarter of a pound of ratafias. Bake or steam this until it is set, and proceed as in custard fritters. Many persons add the flavouring of a little rum.
Peach Fritters.—These are made exactly similar to apricot fritters, bearing in mind that if they are made from tinned peaches only the firm pieces, and not pulpy ones, must be used for the purpose. Proceed exactly as directed for apricot fritters.
If any liqueur is used, noyeau is best adapted for the purpose.
Potato Fritters.—Mix up some floury potato with a quarter of a pound of butter, a well-beaten-up egg, and three ounces of sugar, some of which has been rubbed on the outside of a lemon. The addition of a little cream is a great improvement. Roll the mixture into small balls and flour them; they are then fried just as they are, without being dipped into batter.
Pine-apple Fritters.—These can be made from fresh pine-apples or tinned. They should be cut into slices like apple fritters if the pine-apple is small, but if the pine-apple is large they can be cut into strips three inches long and one wide and half an inch thick. These must be dipped in powdered sugar, then into batter, and finished as directed for apple fritters.
If any liqueur is used, maraschino is best adapted to the purpose.
Orange Fritters.—Only first-class oranges are adapted for this purpose. Thick-skinned and woolly oranges are no use. Peel a thin-skinned ripe orange, divide each orange into about six pieces, soak these in a syrup flavoured with sugar rubbed on the outside of an orange, and if liqueur is used make the syrup with brandy. After they have soaked some time, remove any pips, dip each piece into hatter, and proceed as directed for apple fritters.
Cream Fritters.—Rub some lumps of sugar on the outside of an orange, pound them, and mix with a little cream; take some small pieces of stale white cake, such as Madeira cake or what the French call brioche. Soak these pieces of stale cake, which must be cut small and thin, or they will break, in the orange-flavoured cream, dry each piece in some finely-powdered sugar, dip it into batter, and proceed as directed for making apple fritters.
German Fritters.—Take some small stale pieces of cake, and soak them in a little milk or cream flavoured with essence of vanilla and sweetened with a little sugar. Take them out, and let them get a little dry on the outside, then dip them in a well-beaten-up egg, cover them with bread-crumbs, and fry a nice golden-brown colour.
Rice and Ginger Fritters.—Boil a small quantity of rice in milk and add some preserved ginger chopped small, some sugar, and one or more eggs, sufficient to set the mixture when baked in a pie-dish. Bake till set, then cut into slices about two inches long, an inch wide, and half an inch thick; dry these pieces with powdered sugar, dip into batter, and finish as directed for making apple fritters.
Rice Fritters.—A variety of fritters could be made from a small baked rice pudding, flavoured with various kinds of essences, spices, orange marmalade, peach marmalade, fresh lime marmalade, apricot jam, &c., proceeding exactly as directed above.