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THE NEW ENGLAND COOK BOOK,
YOUNG HOUSEKEEPER'S GUIDE:
COLLECTION OF THE MOST VALUABLE RECEIPTS;
EMBRACING ALL THE VARIOUS BRANCHES OF COOKERY,
WRITTEN IN A MINUTE AND METHODICAL MANNER.
CONTAINING A COLLECTION OF MISCELLANEOUS RECEIPTS,
RELATIVE TO HOUSEWIFERY.
HEZEKIAH HOWE & CO., AND HERRICK & NOYES.
Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1836, by HEZEKIAH HOWE & Co.,
in the Clerk's office, of the District Court of Connecticut.
MISCELLANEOUS RECEIPTS AND OBSERVATIONS USEFUL TO YOUNG HOUSEKEEPERS.
The writer deems that no apology need be offered for adding another to the long list of works on the truly interesting, if not noble science of gastronomy, provided she has accomplished the desirable object of producing a work that will commend itself to all persons of true taste; that is to say, those whose taste has not been vitiated by a mode of living contrary to her own. She has made that her aim, and although not an Ude or Kitchener, she does profess to have sufficient knowledge of the occult science, if properly imparted, to enlighten those not versed in culinary lore.
The utter inefficiency of most works of the kind, are well known to every experienced housekeeper, serving but to lead the uninitiated astray, who following implicitly the directions given have to lament in the language of that homely but not inapt proverb, that their cake is all dough. Among the few exceptions she would mention the Frugal Housewife by Mrs. Child, which is a very useful book, and fully answers its author's design; but that is limited as its name imports to the plainest cooking, and is not intended for those who can afford to consult their taste in preference to their purse. The writer of this short but she trusts comprehensive work, has endeavored to combine both economy, and that which would be agreeable to the palate, but she has never suffered the former to supersede the latter.
Although the mode of cooking is such as is generally practiced by good notable Yankee housekeepers, yet the New England Cook Book is not so local but that it will answer like a modern almanac, without any material alteration for almost any meridian. It is intended for all classes of society and embracing both the plainest and richest cooking, joined to such minuteness of directions as to leave as little as possible to the judgment of the practitioner, proving to the unskilled quite a desideratum, while in the hands of the head of the culinary department, it will prevent that incessant running to and fro for directions, with which housekeepers' patience are too often tried. The experienced cook may smile at the simplicity and minuteness of some of the receipts, yet if she has witnessed as much good food spoiled by improper cooking as the writer of these receipts, she will not think she has been unnecessarily plain. In regard to the seasoning of food, it has been found impossible to give any exact rules, as so much depends on the quality of the food and seasoning.
The cook should be careful not to have the natural flavor of the food overpowered by the seasoning, and where a variety of spices are used, no one should predominate over the other.
Measuring has been adopted as far as practicable, in preference to weighing, on account of its being more convenient. As many people have not a set of measures, it has been thought best to use such utensils as every one has, viz. tumblers, tea cups, wine glasses, &c. but as they may be thought rather too indefinite by some, the exact quantity will here be stated; most tumblers are a good half pint measure, wine glasses usually hold half a gill, and table spoons the fifth of a gill; by tea cups are meant the old fashioned ones, which hold very little over a gill.
In conclusion the writer would give her sincere thanks, to those of her friends who have kindly furnished her with many of their choice and rare receipts, and to the public she would not add any thing more in its favor, being strongly impressed with the truth of the adage, that the proof of the pudding is in the eating.