Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Two Puzzles.

I couldn’t honestly say that I was unable to put down yesterday’s source (Warne’s Everyday Cookery 1872) but I did continue to browse its offerings for a short while after it gave up the lemon pickle recipe. I want to share two intriguing recipes from it with you, and ask you to comment.

Everyday Cookery is a staunchly Victorian English publication. I cannot explain the rationale for the inclusion of a recipe for reindeer tongues. Sure, some Victorian English cookery books contain recipes for things like kangaroo – but this was a concession to Her Majesty’s subjects at the furthest reaches of Her Empire. I cannot think of any reindeer-inhabited countries which were ever part of the British Empire. And in any case, I think it highly unlikely that reindeer tongues would have been any easier to procure in England in the nineteenth century than they are today.

To Boil Reindeer Tongues.
Time, two hours to simmer.
The proper way to prepare reindeer tongues for boiling, is to soak them in a pan of cold water for three hours, and then expose them to the air; this must be repeated three times. Then scrape them very clean, put them into a stewpan of cold water, and bring them gradually to a boil. Let them simmer slowly, skimming them carefully all the time. Serve them on a table-napkin.

The second treat is the following recipe for a ginger pudding. It is interesting to me on account of its method, which is indicated by the title. Have you come across anything like this before?

Dry Ginger Pudding.
Time, two hours.
Two ounces of brown sugar; two ounces of fresh sweet suet; four ounces of flour; two teaspoonfuls of grated ginger.
Mix all well together, and put it dry into a half pint basin, boil it two hours, and take great care that the water docs not get into the pudding when boiling.

Quotation for the Day.

A cook is creative, marrying ingredients in the way a poet marries words.
Roger Verge.


Mercy said...

There are reindeer in Canada!

The Old Foodie said...

Duh! ( hits self on head). I had a nagging feelimg I had missed something obvious ....

Fay said...

The ginger pudding is interesting. Not just for the lack of any apparent moisture (except the melted sugar & suet in the end I guess) but the fact that is is small in scale, I fully expected a bushel of ginger.

The Old Foodie said...

True, Fay. I guess the melting is enough, but it would still be pretty dry, I think. A couple of folk have emailed me to say their grandmother or someone else in the family made one like it, so it must have been a reasonably common method.