Science in the Kitchen. eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 631 pages of information about Science in the Kitchen..
foods.  In consistency, a properly made sauce should mask the back of the spoon; that is to say, when dipped into the mixture and lifted out, the metal of the spoon should not be visible through it as it runs off.  The proportion of material necessary to secure this requisite is one tablespoonful of flour, slightly rounded, for each half pint of water or stock.  If the sauce be made of milk or fruit juice, a little less flour will be needed.  If cornstarch be used, a scant instead of a full tablespoonful will be required.  The flour, or cornstarch should be first braided or rubbed perfectly smooth in a very small amount of the liquid reserved for the purpose (salt or sugar, if any is to be used, being added to the flour before braiding with the liquid), and then carefully added to the remaining liquid, which should be actively boiling.  It should then be continuously stirred until it has thickened, when it should be allowed to cook slowly for five or ten minutes until the starch or flour is well done.  If through any negligence to observe carefully these simple details, there should be lumps in the sauce, they must be removed before serving by turning the whole through a fine colander or wire strainer.

The double boiler is the best utensil for the preparation of sauces and gravies, since it facilitates even cooking and renders them less liable to become scorched.  The inner cup should be placed on the top of the range until the sauce has become thickened, as in the cooking of grains, and afterwards placed in the outer boiler to continue the cooking as long as needed.

Cream gravies for vegetables may be delicately flavored with celery, by steeping a few bits of celery in the milk for a few minutes, and removing with a fork before adding the thickening.  Sauces for puddings may be similarly flavored, by steeping cocoanut or bits of orange or lemon rind in the milk.

GRAVIES AND SAUCES FOR VEGETABLES.

RECIPES.

BROWN SAUCE.—­Heat a pint of thin cream, and when boiling, add half a teaspoonful of salt and a tablespoonful of flour browned in the oven as directed on page 274, and rubbed to a smooth paste with a little cold milk.  Allow it to boil rapidly, stirring constantly until thickened; then cook more slowly, in a double boiler, for five or ten minutes.  If desired, the milk may be flavored with onion before adding the flour.  This makes a good dressing for potatoes.

CREAM OR WHITE SAUCE.—­Heat a pint of rich milk, part cream if it can be afforded, to boiling, and stir into it one tablespoonful of flour previously rubbed smooth in a little milk.  Season with salt, and cook in a double boiler five or ten minutes, stirring frequently that no lumps be formed.  If lumps are found in the sauce, turn it quickly through a fine, hot colander into the dish in which it is to be served.

CELERY SAUCE.—­Cut half a dozen stalks of celery into finger-lengths, and simmer in milk for ten or fifteen minutes.  Skim out the celery, add a little cream to the milk, salt to taste, and thicken with flour as for white sauce.  This is very nice for potatoes and for toast.

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Science in the Kitchen. from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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