Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Mysterious Stew for Halloween.

As promised, here are some more ideas to help you plan for Halloween. I give you a menu for all three meals for the day, from an article in the Fort Wayne Sentinel of 29 October, 1906.

(Chicago Record-Herald)
When stars shoot and owls hoot,
And bats fly in and out,
When fire burns blue, and candles too,
The witches are about.
Baked Apples.
Oatmeal with Cream.
A Mysterious Stew.      Corn Meal Puffs.
Doughnuts. Coffee.
Chestnut Soup (Martha’s) Bread Sticks,
Autumn Canape.
Wafers.            Tea.
Brussles Sprouts Consomme.
Roast Duck Stuffed with Mashed Potatoes.
Hominy Crescents.      Cider Jelly.
Harvest Salad, served in Cabbage Bowl.
Pumpkin Pie.   Nuts.

A Mysterious Stew.
A most appetizing manner of serving left-overs.
Materials: One cup of cold diced meat, two cups cold cooked tomatoes, two cups cold cooked potatoes and one onion. Put one tablespoonful of butter into a skillet, into this finely slice one onion, add a little water: let the water cook away and brown the onion slightly, add the meat and toss lightly (to prevent sticking) until it is well heated: add the tomatoes and then the potatoes, but do not mix. Season with one-quarter salt-spoonful (level) of cayenne pepper and one-half teaspoonful salt. Now cover and draw skillet to back of stove or range. If gas stove is used, slip asbestos mat under skillet, turn fire as low as possible and cook slowly for twenty minutes without disturbing. At the end of this time the tomato juice will have permeated the whole mixture and have thickened into a delicious jelly-like gravy; and the meat, thick part of tomatoes and the potatoes will have formed a beautiful browned crust on the skillet bottom; with a sharp knife loosen this and lift without breaking onto a warmed platter, letting the gravy drain over it. Now garnish with parsley and serve at once.

The great mystery to me about this Mysterious Stew is how the layers of tomato and potato placed on top of the meat (without mixing or turning) end up forming the ‘beautiful browned crust on the skillet bottom.’


how to climb said...

Thanks for the Interesting stuff. Great Blog.

Les said...

I thought mysterious stew was the name of the 'stew' they served while I was a university student.

The recipe does sound good. I don't think a cup of beef would completely cover the bottom of a 12 inch skillet so maybe the potato settles to the bottom. Anyway, I will try this although I'll probably use canned tomatoes.

Shay said...

Brussels Sprouts Consomme. I weep for my country.

The Old Foodie said...

Hi Shay: I love brussels sprouts; never put them in a consomme though - not yet, anyway.