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and why should you pay good money for that which nature gives you free? In winter try to buy meat ahead, so that you can make it tender by keeping it, and you will notice, too, that the larger the piece you buy the smaller is the per cent of bone you get with it. The amount of bone in the whole animal, as in the case of an ox, is not more than ten or eleven per cent, but the buyer of a small piece of meat often gets twice that proportion. As we have said again and again in these pages, the low-priced or tougher parts have as much nutriment for you as the rib roast which is beyond your purse. Choose often the fat middle rib and cook it long and slowly; buy the neck and scrag of mutton and make a stew with vegetables; buy half a calf's head and see what a fine soup you can make of it. Have beef's liver now and then and tripe, rather than put your money into sausage of doubtful quality. By all means buy fish when it is cheap, catfish for instance, which are excellent fried. Keep suet always on hand and use instead of butter, as has been directed.
No one need tell you how valuable salt pork and bacon are for you, the only danger is that you will use too much of them.
In buying eggs you must be governed by the price ; in winter use as few as possible, and even in the spring when they are cheapest, remember that they are not as cheap as the lowest-priced cuts of meat from fat animals.
But when they cost only fifteen cents a dozen you can well disregard any small comparison of nutritive values, in consideration of their high worth in furnishing variety; you can afford to use them now and then in the place of meat and in making the various egg dishes.
Of the value of cheese as a regular dish to take the place of meat, you can read in another part of this essay. Buy it once a week at least, the skim variety if you cannot afford the others, and grate or cook it according to the recipes given.
Try to find a reliable milkman and buy skimmed milk at half the price for full, and use it for all cooking purposes, keeping full milk, and if possible a little of the cream, for coffee. Now let us take the vegetable part of your diet.
You must keep on hand every kind of flour and
grain that is not too expensive; be thankful that wheat flour is so good and so cheap, it will be your best friend. If you are not already skillful in using it in bread and other doughs, you
will waste your materials and make mistakes at first, but there is nothing for you but to become mistress of this department of cookery. Use bread freely in all the bread dishes, learn how to make every one.
You will use buckwheat for cakes, rice for puddings, barley in soups, oatmeal and cornmeal for mushes, and you must learn to use them all in as many ways as possible. The grains are cheaper foods for us than vegetables, although dried peas, beans, and lentils follow hard upon them. Even the potato, which may be called our favorite vegetable, is more expensive than wheat flour, if we are talking only of food values.
Except in the height of their season, have nothing to do with green vegetables, at least not under the impression that they are cheap ; if you buy them, know that you are paying for flavors and variety rather than for food. But even in the early spring, buy plenty of such vegetables as onions, carrots, parsley, and other green herbs for your soups and stews. When you go for a walk in the country, be sure to bring home mint and sorrel in your pocket; the former will make you a nice meat sauce, the latter a delightful flavor in soup. It will be perfectly easy for you to grow in a window box that delicious herb, parsley, and have it always fresh.
For a low purse there is no help so great as a knowledge of Alavorings. When we remember that we can live on bread, beans, peas, and a little cheap meat and fat the year round, if we can only make it “go down,' we shall realize the importance of such additions as rouse the appetite ; there is room here for all your skill and all your invention. Always make a cheap but nutritio us dish inviting in appearance; especially does this influence the appetites of children, who are delighted with a very plain cake if only a few raisins or some sugar appear on the top.
The bills of fare on pages 299 to 305, where 78 cents covers the cost of food per day for a family of six, and where the amount of food is carefully weighed and estimated, is meant only to sug. gest to you how in a few cases your food problem can be solved. You can, no doubt, spend the money in ways that will better suit the tastes of your family, but I beg you to examine anew your favorite dishes to see if they are as nutritious as they should be for their price. Remember that the proteid column is the one that you must look to most carefully because it is furnished at the
most expense, and it is very important that it should not fall below the figures I have given. If, for instance, you should economize in meat in order to buy cake and pastry, this column would suffer at the expense of the other two, and your family would be under-nourished.
BILLS OF FARE. - CLASS I.
For family of six, average price 78 cents per day, or 13 cents per person.
Dinner - Bread soup (p. 279), beef-neck stew, noodles (p. 258), swelled rice pudding (p. 270).
Supper — Browned flour soup with fried bread (p. 279), toast and cheese (p. 239, No. 1).
Breakfast — Milk Toast, coffee.
Dinner - Stuffed beef's heart (p. 229), potatoes stewed with milk, dried apple pie (p. 270), bread and cheese, corn coffee (p. 289). Supper — Noodle soup, from Saturday, (p. 259), broiled herring, bread, tea.
Breakfast - Oatmeal mush with milk and sugar, bread, coffee.
Breakfast - Oatmeal mush and milk, buttered toast, coffee.
1 pound oatmeal........
17 I-2 7 I-2
Breakfast — Soda biscuit, baked potatoes with drawn butter sauce, cocoa.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER. Breakfast — Oatmeal and milk, bread and butter, cocoa.
Dinner - Broiled beef's liver, boiled potatoes and carrots with fried onions (p. 276), bread and cheese.
Supper - Lentil soup with fried bread (p. 277), smoked herring, bread, barley porridge (p. 280).
I 1-2 pounds beef's liver
9.94 1.44 15.60 4.32 2.48 7.92 2.86
7 1.2 5