Thursday, July 31, 2014

Marrow Bones, Part 2.

Yesterday we looked at the preparation of marrow bones for the table. Today I want to show you how the marrow was removed and used as an ingredient in other dishes.

First, some general advice from the famous Eliza Acton, in Modern Cookery, for Private Families (1860 ed.)

Take the marrow from the bones while it is as fresh as possible; cut it small, put it into a very clean jar, and melt it with a gentle heat, either in a pan of water placed over the fire, or at the mouth of a cool oven; strain it through a muslin, let it settle for a minute or two, and pour it, clear of sediment, into small jars. Tie skins, or double folds of thick paper, over them as soon as the marrow is cold, and store it in a cool place. It will remain good for months.

At a season when butter of pure flavour is often procured with difficulty, beef-marrow, carefully clarified, is a valuable substitute for it; and, as it is abundantly contained in the joints which are in constant request for soup-making, it is of slight comparative cast in a well-managed kitchen. It is often thrown into the stockpot by careless or indolent cooks, instead of being rendered available for the many purposes to which it is admirably adapted. Take it from the bones as fresh as possible, put it into a white jar, and melt it with a very gentle degree of heat at the mouth of the oven, or by the side of the stove, taking all precaution to prevent its being smoked or discoloured; strain it off, through a very fine sieve or muslin, into a clean pan or pans, and set it aside for use. It will be entirely flavourless if prepared with due care and attention; but, if dissolved with too great a degree of heat, it will acquire the taste almost of dripping. A small quantity of fine salt maybe sprinkled into the pan with it when it is used for frying.

And her recipe for marrow as a frying medium for bread croutons:-

(Author's Receipt.)
Cut very evenly, from a firm stale loaf, slices nearly an inch and a half thick, and with a plain or fluted paste-cutter of between two and three inches wide press out the number of patties required, loosening them gently from the tin, to prevent their breaking; then, with a plain cutter, scarcely more than half the size, mark out the space which is afterwards to be hollowed from it. Melt some clarified beef-marrow in a small saucepan or frying-pan, and, when it begins to boil, put in the patties, and fry them gently until they are equally coloured of a pale golden brown. In lifting them from the pan, let the marrow (or butter) drain well from them; take out the rounds which have been marked on the tops, and scoop out part of the inside crumb, but leave them thick enough to contain securely the gravy of the preparation put into them. Fill them with any good patty-meat, and serve them very hot on a napkin.
Obs.—These croustades are equally good if dipped into clarified butter or marrow, and baked in a tolerably quick oven. It is well, in either case, to place them on a warm sheet of double white blotting-paper while they are being filled, as it will absorb the superfluous fat. A rich mince, with a thick, well-adhering sauce, either of mutton and mushrooms, or oysters, or with fine herbs and an eschalot or two; or of venison, or hare, or partridges, may be appropriately used for them.

Marrow was also used in sweet puddings too, where we would use butter nowadays, as the following recipes show:-

A vermicelli pudding, with marrow.
FIRST make your vermicelli; take the yolks of two eggs, and mix it up with just as much flour as will make it to a stiff paste, roll it out as thin as a wafer, let it lie to dry till you can roll it up close without breaking, then with a sharp knife cut it very thin, beginning at the little end. Have ready some water boiling, into which throw the vermicelli; let it boil a minute or two at most; then throw it into a sieve, have ready a pound of marrow, lay a layer of marrow and a layer of vermicelli, and so on till all is laid in the dish. When it is a little cool, beat it up very well together, take ten eggs, beat them and mix them with the other, grate the crumb of a penny loaf, and mix with it a gill of sack, brandy, or a little rose-water, a teaspoonsful of salt, a small nutmeg grated, a little grated lemon-peel, two large blades of mace well dried and beat fine, half a pound of currants clean washed and picked, half a pound of raisins stoned, mix all well together, and sweeten to your palate; lay a good thin crust at the bottom and sides of the dish, pour in the ingredients, and bake it an hour and a half in an oven not too hot. You may either put marrow or beef-suet shred fine, or a pound of butter, which you please. When it comes out of the oven, strew some fine sugar over it, and send it to table. You may leave out the fruit, if you please, and you may for change add half an ounce of citron, and hair an ounce of candied orange-peel shred fine.
The Art of Cookery, Made Plain and Easy ... by a Lady (Hannah Glasse) 177

Marrow Pudding a second way [of three ways.]
Half boil four ounces of rice, shred half a pound of marrow very fine, stone a quarter of a pound of raisins, chop them very small, with two ounces of currants well cleansed, beat four eggs a quarter of an hour, mix it all together, with a pint of good cream, a spoonful of brandy, sugar and nutmeg to your, taste: you may either bake it, or put it in hog's skins.

The Experienced English Housekeeper (1808 edn.) by Elizabeth Raffald.

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