Monday, June 23, 2014

Supplies for Travelling Persons.

I leave tomorrow for three weeks in the UK to attend the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, where I will catch up with a few of you - and very excited I am about it too. I travel light, when I travel, and I am aiming this trip to beat my own record for minimal suitcase weight. Once upon a time it was impossible to travel light, of course. Travelers had to be much more self-sufficient when journeys were slower and less predictable, particularly if a certain level of comfort was desired. An advertisement in The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser of Saturday 6 May, 1826 gives some idea of the provisions available for voyages and journeys into the interior of the continent, as well as a glimpse of the sorts of foods popular at the time.

J.Tawell. No. 18, Pitt-street, has just received, from the House of Cooper and Co. London, FRESH SALMON in 4 lb. cases, Pickled Tripe in kegs, Mock Turtle Soup, Ox-tail Soup, Vegetable ditto, Soup and Bouille. Also, Preserved Fruits from Hoffman, Hale, and Fennings; consisting of

Gooseberries, cherries, damsons, red currants, white currants, and cranberries.
Ivory and lamp black
Fuller’s earth
Raspberry jam, gooseberry ditto.
Yellow ochre
Red and black currant jelly
English starch
Orange marmalade
Thumb and fig blue
China preserved ginger, citron, dried oranges, and citron in small tubs
Shoe brushes in sets
Hair brooms
Table and pudding raisins
Scrubbing, dusting, painting, and white wash brushes
Jordan and soft shell almonds
Whisks for bed furniture
Figs, prunes
Camel hair pencils
Currants in 14 lb. cannisters
Hair, nail, tooth, and shaving brushes in great variety
Ditto retail per pound
Perfumery, consisting of Lavender water, of excellent quality.
Candied peels
Honey water, and a variety of essences
Spanish and hazle nuts
Macassar and Russia oil
Vermacelli, macaroni
Pomatums, cold cream
Isinglass, currie powder
Fancy soaps in variety
Mustard, warranted
White and brown Windsor soap
Vinegar for pickling in bottle and draught
Tooth powder
Capers, salad oil
Smelling salts in cut bottles
Fish sauces, various
Shaving boxes, with glass, soap, and brush
Pickles, in variety
Aromatic vinegar
Lemon acid to answer the purpose of lemons
Aromatic pastilles
Black, white, and long pepper
Salt of lemons
Fine white West India ginger
Marking ink
Mace, cinnamon
Cloves, nutmegs
Allspice, ground spices
A quantity of improved fire boxes, well adapted for travelling, offices, bed-rooms, &c. &c and not attended with danger in the use.
Carraway seeds
Sponges, &c .&c
Saltpetre, Prunella treacle
Peppermint, and a great variety of other lozenges
Tapioca, sago
Carraway and various other comfits
Arrow root, grits
Various lozenges for coughs and colds
Oatmeal, pearl barley
Spice nuts and a variety of English confectionary
Table rice, ground ditto
Ornaments for cakes
Split peas, celery seed
Mottoes, &c. &c.
Gum arabic and dragon

Pearl ashes, soft soap

Logwood, alum

Indigo, and the various articles for dyeing

Turpentine, bees’ wax
Black lead
 Two Cases of Normandy Pippins

 Many of these items are intriguing and worthy of more comment, but today I want to look at Salt of Lemons and Lemon Acid.

To make Essential Salt of Lemons.
The expressed juice of wood-sorrel, depurated, properly evaporated, and set in a cool place, affords a crystalline acid salt, in considerable quantity, which may be used whenever vegetable acids are wanted. It is sold under the name of Essential Salt of Lemons, and is employed to take ink stains and iron moulds out of linen.
The new family receipt-book: containing eight hundred truly valuable receipts
in various branches of domestic economy, by J Murray (1810))

Essential Salt of Lemons (Binoxalate of potash.)
The substance whose properties we are now going to describe, is known in commerce as the salt of sorrel; a name which is far more significant than that it more commonly but very improperly bears, namely, essential salt of lemons. ...... With sugar and water the salt of sorrel forms a pleasant beverage, and, in consequence of its having been substituted for lemons for purposes of this kind, it obtained the very absurd name of essential salt of lemons. However agreeable our acidulated drink, may be which has been thus prepared, we by no means recommend it to those who have any regard for their health. Almost all the alkaline salts of oxalic acid are more or less poisonous. That to which we are now directing attention, is so in an eminent degree; and in any cases where it has been ignorantly employed for making a refreshing beverage, or for imparting an acid flavour to punch, if it has not proved fatal, that result has depended more upon its quantity than its quality.
The Saturday magazine (1837)

Lemon Acid is citric acid, and it is useful in making refreshing beverages, as the following recipes from A new supplement to the pharmacopæias of London, Edinburgh, Dublin and Paris, (1826) by James Rennie (surgeon.)
Pound ¼ ounce of citric acid with a few drops of essence of lemon-peel, and mix it with a pint of clarified syrup or capillaire.

Lemonade Powders may be made by pounding citric acid and essence of lemon-peel, as in the last [recipe], with one ounce or more of lump sugar. This will make half a dozen papers, and each will make with water a glass of lemonade.

1 comment:

Simeon Beresford said...

White and brown windsor SOAP, A typo I am sure.