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Louisiana Anthology

The Picayune Creole Cook Book

TO DO for Groups

PUBLISHED BY

THE TIMES-PICAYUNE PUBLISHING CO.

PUBLISHERS OF THE SOUTHS GREATEST NEWSPAPER

NEW ORLEANS, LA. 1916

THE PICAYUNE CREOLE COOK BOOK



INTRODUCTION

Not often is there romance and a golden glamour about a cook book.

A mere cook book! Something that you take into the kitchen with you and lay on the kitchen table, while you turn the leaves and hunt down an elusive recipe that escapes your memory, often you have used it. And when you find it at last and lay the rolling-pin across the open page, what an assembling there is of "the", and what a stirring and mixing! And how certain you are of the result. It is the old, old recipe which your mother used, and her mother, and her grandmother, and the grandmother caught it from the old-time "Mammy," who could work all kinds of magic in that black-raftered kitchen of the long ago.

There are no rafters in your kitchen nowadays, and you are immensely proud of your tiled walls and your rows of aluminum and granite-ware; but it is the same old recipe you are working out, in just the same old way!

It was such cookery as this that won the hearts of beruffled gentlemen and crinolined ladies in the early nineteenth century, and made them declare that never were there such cooks as in New Orleans. Those wonder workers of the old kitchens, what magic they wrought, and how proud they were of it! And it was never allowed to become a lost art — no, indeed. Rosy girls learned it of the old colored women, and stately ladies taught the art and the wondrous secrets to their own rosy girls, and so the magic has come down through the generations, until —

Why, until it has been given to the printed page, and so it is preserved here in this most wonderful of all cook books.

Other cook books have lived and had their day, and possessed merit, perhaps, but what one of them was it that was ever the embodiment of a time filled with romance?

All through these pages one will catch the glimpses of long-gone festivals, and of the graces and courtesies that made them charming; of the wit and the wisdom that flashed back and forth across the mahogany; of the bright eyes, now asleep for this many a year; of the gallant hearts that have long since ceased to beat.

Here they are, in this old Creole Cook Book, which is going through its fifth edition, in response to an outcry that arose when the fourth edition was exhausted. Thousands of homes demand it, because it is the epitome of good cheer that belonged to old New Orleans. Mothers must needs give it to their daughters when they cross the home threshold to journey away into homes of their own. Strangers in New Orleans, having once become familiar with the delightful and distinctive cookery of this city, would fain learn how the thing is done, and so begin to ask for the recipes. Here they are — the time-tested, the incomparable! Nowhere is there anything like it. Study it, madame, and follow the path laid down, and you cannot fail to arrive.

How it came about? From France came the chefs of that day to make their fortunes in the new world — and established themselves here with the young colony. From Spain came the best cooks of that sunny clime — and settled down beside the French artists. After awhile they borrowed ideas from one another. After a still longer while the people of the new world, who learned from them, adapted what they learned to their needs and to the materials they had at hand.

The result was beyond speech.

Chefs?

Perhaps there are still living many of the older generation who haunted the old French restaurants, they of the sanded floor and the incomparable cuisine. The names of the great chefs which, became identified with New Orleans in those long-gone years may be still unforgotten. What of that delightful "Mme. Eugene," who presided at Moreau's, when it was near the French Market? All of the gourmets of that time used to eat there, and many a visit was paid to New Orleans simply that one might sit at the table where Mme. Eugene's famous dishes could be set before them. Alex Hause, Arthur Gary — as one remembers, they were at the old Boudreaux House at Milneburg, when that resort was in its glory, and the elite used to make it their meal-time rendezvous. As for "Miguel," there must be many who remember Miguel, also at Milneburg, one of the most noted of the great chefs of his time. There was John Straner, too — his place was on the site now occupied by the Cosmopolitan Hotel, in Bourbon street. Charles Rhodes will be remembered by every man who ever dined at Moreau's, when it was in. Canal street — when that restaurant was one of the most noted, not only in New Orleans, but in the world. Victor Bero — who of the old-timers will ever forget him or his magic cookery? Micas, at old Spanish Fort — alas, that he should be only a memory I Andre Camors, who established one of the great restaurants of the city, in St. Charles street, succeeded by his nephew, Leon Lamothe — this became one of the best-known houses in the United States.

As for the name of Begue — who will ever forget the quaint dining room near the French Market, and the little kitchen looking into it, with Madame Begue, she of the skilled touch, compounding such fare as never mortal dreamed of before. And there are the Alciatores, grandfather and father and sons — still do they work their ancient magic in places known as "Antoine's" and "The Louisiane" — with all the art of the brave old days brought down and modernized to fit the brave new times.

In this name alone one may find the charm of the French cookery which belongs especially to New Orleans. There was one of the name, born in Marseilles, set at his life work at 12 years old, and becoming so proficient that at 17 he was assistant chef in a great hotel at Marseilles. There is another of the name who for the past ten years has spent months out of every year in Paris, learning new things — as the efficient teacher spends the summer in the great Eastern universities; and who has brought back a diploma from Paris — an honor of which to be proud.

He is a great chef!

He belongs to New Orleans!

It is the lore of such men as this which has made the Creole Cook Book possible.

Men who have begun to learn how to cook at 10 or 12 years of age have grown up, and have passed their knowledge on to their sons. The art of the noted restaurants has spread outward into the homes; and so the city has acquired its wondrous reputation as a creator of splendid culinary triumphs.

But there has been another adaptation. After the tidal wave of war had swept over the land and left it wrecked, the housewives of the Creole city had to learn such rigid economy as they had never known.

Behold!

The recipes must be made to fit slender purses!

And it was done!

Therefore it is that the Creole Cook Book may be taken into the humblest kitchen and made to produce delightful dishes "out of nothing."

That is the magic of the Creole Cook Book, which The Times-Picayune is sending out upon its fifth journey to meet its old friends, and to make new ones along the road.

CONTENTS

Paok

CHAPTER I Creole Coffee — 1

CHAPTER II Soups — 2

CHAPTER III Meat Soups — 4

CHAPTER IV Fish Soups — 8

CHAPTER V Lenten Soups — 11

CHAPTER VI The Bouilli — 15

CHAPTER VII Creole Gumbo — 18

CHAPTER VIII Fish — 20

CHAPTER IX Shell Fish — 33

CHAPTER X Shell Fish (Continued) — 39

CHAPTER XI Salt and Canned Fish — 44

CHAPTER XII Meats — Beef — 46

CHAPTER XIII Veal — Sweetbreads — 53

CHAPTER XIV Mutton — 63

CHAPTER XV Pork — 68

CHAPTER XVI Poultry — 73

CHAPTER XVII Pigeons — 82

CHAPTER XVIII Game — 83

CHAPTER XIX Birds — 90

CHAPTER XX Stuffings and Dressings for Poultry, Game and Fish, Etc. — 98

CHAPTER XXI Sauces for Fish, Meats, Game, Poultry, Etc. — 100

CHAPTER XXII Salads — 109

CHAPTER XXIII Eggs—113

CHAPTER XXIV Louisiana Rice — 116

CHAPTER XXV Cereals — 121

CHAPTER XXVI Macaroni — 124

CHAPTER XXVII Cheese — 126

CHAPTER XXVIII Canapes — 128

CHAPTER XXIX Vegetables — 131

CHAPTER XXX Hors d'Oeuvres (Relishes) — 160

CHAPTER XXXI Sweet Entremets — 163

CHAPTER XXXII Desserts — 169

CHAPTER XXXIII Pastries and Pies — 172

CHAPTER XXXIV Puddings — 179

CHAPTER XXXV Custards, Creams and Other Desserts — 184

CHAPTER XXXVI Pudding Sauces — 192

CHAPTER XXXVII Cakes — 195

CHAPTER XXXVIII Layer Cakes — 206

CHAPTER XXXIX Dessert Cake — 208

CHAPTER XL Icings for Cakes — 216

CHAPTER XLI Ice Creams, Biscuits, Sherbets — 217

CHAPTER XLII Fruits, Syrups, Cordials, Etc. — 226

CHAPTER XLIII Domestic Wines, Cordials and Drinks — 229

CHAPTER XLIV Jellies, Marmalades, Preserves — 241

CHAPTER XLV Creole Candies — 246

CHAPTER XLVI Canning and Pickling — 255

CHAPTER XLVII Creole Bread — 259

CHAPTER XLVIII Suggestions to Housekeepers — 272

CHAPTER XLIX Varieties of Seasonable Foods — 277

The picapune Creole Cook Book.

(Fifth Edition)

CHAPTER I.

CREOLE COFFEE.

Cafe a la Creole.

Travelers the world over unite in praise of Creole Coffee, or "Cafe a la Creole," as they are fond of putting it. The Creole cuisinieres succeeded far beyond even the famous chefs of France in discovering the secret of good coffee-making, and they have never yielded the palm of victory. There is no place in the world in which the use of coffee is more general than in the old Creole city of New Orleans, where, from the famous French Market, with its world-renowned coffee stands, to the olden homes on the Bayou St. John, from Lake Pontchartrain to the verge of Southport, the cup of "Cafe Noir," or "Cafe au Lait," at morning, at noon and at night, has become a necessary and delightful part of the life of the people, and the wonder and the joy of visitors.

The morning cup of Cafe Noir is an integral part of the life of a Creole household. The Creoles hold as a physiological fact that this custom contributes to longevity, and point, day after day, to examples of old men and women of fourscore, and over, who attest to the powerful aid they have received through life from a good, fragrant cup of coffee in the early morning. The ancient residents hold, too, that, after a hearty meal, a cup of "Cafe Noir," or black coffee, will relieve the sense of oppression so apt to be experienced, and enables the stomach to perform its functions with greater facility. Cafe Noir is known, too, as one of the best preventives of infectious diseases, and the ancient Creole physicians never used any other deodorizer than passing a chafing dish with burning grains of coffee through the room. As an antidote for poison the uses of coffee are too well known to be dilated upon.

Coffee is also the greatest brain food and stimulant known. Men of science, poets and scholars and journalists have testified to its beneficial effects. Coffee supported the old age of Voltaire, and enabled Pontenelle to reach his one hundredth birthday. Charles Gayarre, the illustrious Louisiana historian, at the advanced age of 80, paid tribute to the Creole cup of "Cafe Noir."

How important, then, is the art of making good coffee, entering, as it does, so largely into the daily life of the American people. There is no reason why the secret should be confined to any section or city; but, with a little care and attention, every household in the land may enjoy its morning or after-dinner cup of coffee with as much real pleasure as the Creoles of New Orleans, and the thousands of visitors who yearly migrate to this old Franco-Spanish city.

The Best Ingredients and the Proper Making.

The best ingredients are those delightful coffees grown on well-watered mountain slopes, such as the famous Java and Mocha coffees. It must be of the best quality, the Mocha and Java mixed producing a concoction of a most delightful aroma and stimulating effect. One of the first essentials is to "Parch the Coffee Grains Just Before Making the Coffee," because coffee that has been long parched and left standing loses its flavor and strength. The coffee grains should "Be Roasted to a Rich Brown," and never allowed to scorch or burn, otherwise the flavor of the coffee is at once affected or destroyed. Bear this in mind, that the GOOD CREOLE COOK NEVER BOILS COFFEE, but insists on dripping it, in a covered strainer, slowly — DRIP, DRIP, DRIP — till all the flavor is extracted.

To reach this desired end, immediately after the coffee has been roasted and allowed to cool in a covered dish, so that none of the flavor will escape, the coffee is ground — neither too fine, for that will make the coffee dreggy; nor too coarse, for that prevents the escape of the full strength of the coffee juice — but a careful medium proportion, which will not allow the hot water pouring to run rapidly through, but which will admit of the water percolating slowly through the grounds, extracting every bit of the strength and aroma, and falling speedily with "a drip! drip!" into the coffee pot.

To make good coffee, the water must be "freshly boiled," and must never be poured upon the grounds until it has reached the good boiling point, otherwise the flavor is destroyed and subsequent pourings of boiling water can never quite succeed in extracting the superb strength and aroma which distinguish the good cup of coffee.

It is of the greatest importance that "The Coffee Pot Be Kept Perfectly Clean," and the good cook will bear in mind that absolute cleanliness is as necessary for the "interior" of the coffee pot as for the shining "exterior." This tact is one too commonly overlooked, and yet the coffee pot requires more than ordinary care, for the reason that the chemical action of the coffee upon the tin or agate tends to create a substance which collects and clings to every crevice and seam, and, naturally, in the course of time, will affect the flavor of the coffee most peculiarly and unpleasantly. Very often the fact that the coffee tastes bitter or muddy arises from this fact. The "inside" of the coffee pot should, therefore, be washed as carefully "every day" as the outside.

Having observed these conditions, proceed to make the coffee according to the following unfailing

Creole Rule.

Have the water heated to a good boil. Set the coffee pot in front of the stove; never on top, as the coffee will boil, and then the taste is destroyed.

Allow one cup, or the ordinary mill, of coffee to make four good cups of the liquid, ground and put in the strainer, being careful to keep both the strainer and the spout of the coffee pot covered to prevent the flavor from escaping. Pour, first, about two tablespoonfuls of the boiling water on the coffee ground's, or, according to the. quantity of coffee used, just sufficient to settle the grounds. Wait about five minutes; then pour a little more water, and allow it to drip slowly through, but never pour water the second time until the grounds have ceased to puff or bubble, as this is an indication that the grounds have settled. Keep pouring slowly, at intervals, a little boiling water at a time, until the delightful aroma of the coffee begins to escape from the closed spout of the coffee pot. If the coffee dyes the cup it is a little too strong, but do not go far beyond this, or the coffee will be too weak. When you have produced a rich, fragrant concoction, whose delightful aroma, filling the room, is a constant, tempting invitation to taste it, serve in fine china cups, using in preference loaf sugar for sweetening. You have then a real cup of the famous Creole Cafe Noir, so extensively used at morning dawn, at breakfast, and as the "after-dinner cup."

If the coffee appears muddy, or not clear, some of the old Creoles drop a piece of charcoal an inch thick into the water, which settles it and at once makes it clear. Demonstrations prove that strength remains in the coffee grounds. A matter of economy in making coffee is to save the grounds from the meal or day before and boil these in a half gallon of water. Settle the grounds by dropping two or three drops of cold water in, and pour the water over the fresh grounds. This is a suggestion that rich and poor might heed with profit.

CAFE AU LAIT.

Proceed in the same manner as in the making of "Cafe Noir," allowing the usual quantity of boiling water to the amount of coffee used. When made, pour the cofee into delicate china cups, allowing a half cup of coffee to each cup. Serve, at the same time, a small pitcher of very sweet and fresh cream, allowing a half cup of cream to a half cup of coffee. The milk should always be boiled, and the cream very hot. If the cream is not fresh and sweet, it will curdle the coffee, by reason of the heat. Cafe au Lait is a great breakfast drink in New Orleans, while Cafe Noir Is more generally the early morning and the afternoon drink.

Having thus bid its readers "Good morning," and drank "with them a cup of Cafe Noir, The Times-Picayune will proceed to discuss Creole Cookery in all its forms, from soup "a la Creole," to "pa candes amandes" and "pralines."

CHAPTER II.

SOUPS.

General Directions for Making Soup — The Pot-au-Feu, the Bouillon and the Consomme.

Uncooked meat is the base of all soups, except such as the Creoles call "Maigre," or fast-day soups. These delightful Cream Soups, or Purees, will be specially treated later. They enter largely into the domestic life of New Orleans, as also more particularly the Pot-au-Feu, the Bouillon and the Consomme. These three are the "mother-soups," for upon their careful preparation depend taste, flavor and the entire problem of good soup-making.

The ancient Creole preserved with few modifications many of the customs of their French ancestors. Among these was the daily plate of soup.

In France, soup enters far more largely into the life of the people than in this old French city of New Orleans. The morning cup of bouillon is served in the most exclusive homes. A cup of claret and a plate of good soup is the essential morning portion of the peasantry. The Creoles relegated the morning cup of bouillon, but retained the daily serving of soup at dinner, in time introducing as a frequent substitute that exclusive Creole concoction Gumbo. No dinner is considered complete without either. The custom has been sustained and adopted by American residents of New Orleans, The Creole housewife lays the greatest stress upon two great essentials in the making of good soup; in the first place, the soup must never stop boiling one instant until done; secondly, once tha soup is started, water must never be added. Neither, on the other band, must the soup be allowed to boil rapidly, or it will be muddy and lose much of its flavor and strength by evaporation. The "soup bone," or "bouilli," as we call U down here in New Orleans, must be put on in cold water, without salt, and must heat slowly. The pot must be kept well covered, and no salt must be added until the meat is thoroughly cooked, as the addition of salt tends to harden the fibers of the meat and prevents the free flow of the Juices. At no stage of the proceeding must the soup be allowed to boil fast. If the bone has been fractured every inch of its length, the soup will be all the stronger and more nutritious. The beef should be selected for Its quality, as freshly killed as possible, and preferably of the cut known by butchers as "The Horseshoe." To be most nutritious the soup should boil a long time. The Creoles never serve soup

that has been cooking less than five or seven hours, according to the quantity to be served. In a well-regulated household the soup is put on at brealcfast time, in the rear of the stove, and allowed to cook slowly for four or five hours, until the time comes for puttins on the dinner proper. In the meantime, the fire has been replenished slowly from time to time, so that when the moment for adding the vegetables or other ingredients arrives, the strength of the meat has been nearly or quite extracted.

The two suggestions, "Never allow the soup to cease boiling when once it has begun, and never to add water after the ingredients are once put together and begin to boil," have been called the "Golden Rule" of soup-making. The housekeeper should take them to heart, for -upon their strict observance depends that boon to poor, suffering humanity — a good plate of soup. If these rules are learned and reliably followed, the first step has been taken towards setting a good dinner.

Rice flour, arrowroot or corn-starch mixed with a little water are often used to thicken soups; but every good Creole cook knows that the soup that is properly made needs no thickening. Salt should be used sparingly, as also spices, which should always be used whole.

To be palatable, soup must be served very hot.

It is generally estimated that in preparing soups a pound of meat should be allowed for every quart of water. In the following recipes the ingredients must be increased proportionately, according to the number of persons to be served. The intelligent housekeeper can readily determine the exact measurements needed In her family, increasing proportion; when guests are expected at the family table.

The Every-Day Pot-au-Feu, or Simple Bouillon.

The Pot-au-Peu, or Bouillon, is mad? by boiling a good soup bone which h.an been carefully selected for its nutritive qualities in water a certain length of time, by means of which the nutriment is extracted. Bouillon of the best quality can only be made from good meat, which should be chosen from the fleshy, juicy part of the thigh. Meat from the breast or lower ribs makes good Pot-au-Feu, but of a lighter quality, and is preferred by some Creole cuisinieres.

The vegetables used are found in the "soup bunch," which comprises pieces of cabbage, a turnip or two, carrots, parsley, celery and onion. Many Creole cooks add garlic and cloves, thyme, bay leaf and allspice. But this is a matter of taste. The every-day Bouillon is made by boiling the soup bone for four or five hours, skimming carefully as the scum rises, and adding, as it starts boiling well, the vegetables contained in the "soup bunch." If vermicelli, macaroni or other soup is desired, such as can be made from the simple Bouillon, or Pot-au-Feu, these ingredients are added in the proportions mentioned in the special recipe for these soups, and the soup is boiled an hour or so longer.

The Herb Bouqnet.

Every good Creole cook keeps on hand an "herb bouquet," made of a spray of parsley, a sprig of thyme, celery and bay leaf. These are tied together, and constitute the "bouquet." It will flavor a gallon of soup, if cooked for an hour.


Pot-au-Feu a la Creole.


This Pot-au-Feu, properly made, is truly delicious, savory and delicately odorous. The best cut for this is from the round lower end of the beef. Many of the Creoles add the beef spleen or brisket to the soup. This is rich and juicy, and gives nutritive value to the dish. If delicacy is preferred to richness in the soup, the marrow bone is omitted. Put the meat into cold water, heating by slow degrees in order that It may gradually penetrate the meat, softening it and dissolving the non-nutritive portion, which rises to the top of the liquid as a scum. As the scum becomes thicker remove it. After having skimmed well, set the soup back where it can be kept on a gentle but steady boil; when the soup is well skimmed, add the vegetables, which have been cut to proper fineness, and a little salt to suit the taste, and let the soup continue to boil from five to six hours, remembering strictly the two essential rules given. By following this recipe you will have an excellent soup.

The Creoles often serve the Pot-au-Feu with small squares of dry or toasted bread, put into the tureen, and the hot soup is poured over them at the moment of serving.

Should the flavor of the garlic, allspice, cloves or bay leaf be disagreeable, they may be omitted. But they are essential ingredients of the Creole Pot-au-Feu.

A particularly delicate flavor is often obtained by adding to the beef some pieces of raw fowl, or the remains of a cooked fowl, more especially the carcass. But never add remains of mutton, pork or veal, as these meats impart an acrid odor, detracting from the perfection of the Pot-au-Feu.


Bouillon.


To make a good Bouillon is an art in itself. It is the soup that most frequently, after the Pot-au-Feu, enters into the economy of the Creole household. It is not only used in the daily menu, but on occasions of family reunions and soirees, is served cold or warm in soups. It is always prepared in a concentrated form for the use of invalids. In illness, where the quantity administered is required to be as nutritious as possible, the round steak should always be chosen for the Bouillon, and it is decidedly better not to clear the soup, as the process of clearing not only destroys a great deal of the delicate flavor, but also of the nutriment contained in the Bouillon.

Select good fresh beef, and where intended for an invalid allow two pounds of beef to every quart of water. The Bouillon should always boil from six to seven hours. For dinners, luncheons, etc., the following proportions may be used:


To Clarify Bouillon.


To clarify Bouillon, remove the fat and pour the broth into a clear kettle. Add Set it on the fire, and from the moment the crushed shells of two eggs. Stir this into the cold soup until well mixed. it begins to boil let it cook steadily ten minutes longer. Set it back on the stove or hearth for four or five minutes to settle. Then strain it through a towel. Allow the Bouillon to drip, remembering never to squeeze the bag. A very clear soup is never a very nutritious one.


Consomme.


Select six pounds of lean beef, rump of beef and some bones, and cut the meat into small pieces, the bones also being mashed. Put this on in about six quarts of cold water, and. when it comes to a boil, skim well. Add a teaspoonful of salt to help the scum rise more thoroughly and skim as it rises. Take two large-sized onions, two carrots, a piece of cabbage and two pieces of celery; chop fine and add to the soup, and let it boil six hours, or until the broth is reduced about one-half the quantity. By this time the meat should be cooked into rags. Pass all through a colander and then strain through a coarse flannel cloth. Season highly with Cayenne pepper and salt to the taste. If the meat is good, the soup will be perfectly clear. If it is cloudy or muddy before straining, crush the shells or two eggs and put them into the soup and let it come to a good boil. Set it back about ten minutes and then strain. Add vermicelli, or macaroni, or pates, according to taste. This soup will require no artificial coloring.


Colorings for Soup.


Having given the recipes for the "mother soups," which are the bases of all soups, a word must be said about colorings for soup. While colorings have been extensively used in New Orleans, the good old Creoles long ago found out that coloring matter, whether in liquid form or in balls or tablets, detracted from the good flavor of the soup, and that a properly made soup needed no coloring. The good Bouillon has a color peculiar to itself — a reddish yellow, which comes from the juice of the meat. The absence of natural color in the soup indicates that too small an amount of meat has been used in proportion to the water, a poor quality of meat, or there has been a too rapid process of boiling. Still, if colorings are desired, the following recipe, which is free from the deleterious compounds sold in stores, has long been used by the Creoles for coloring gravies, and may be used with good effect in soups. It is called by the Creoles


Caramel.


Take about a half pint of brown sugar, put it in a pan, on a slow fire, and lei it burn or parch, slowly stirring all the time. When it turns a dark brown, add two pints of water and stir well, and then bottle. Put it away and use a few drops at a time to color and thicken gravies and soup broths. Or, take a large raw onion, skin and all, and thrust into the burning coals. "When it begins to brown well, take out of the coals, dust off all the ashes and throw into the soup or gravy. This will give all the coloring that is needed.

More simple or satisfactory recipes cannot be found. Nevertheless, the Creoles maintain and demonstrate that the best coloring for soups is that produced by good material and long boiling.


CHAPTER III. MEAT SOUPS.


Julienne Soup.


Potage a la Julienne.


The shin of the beef is the best to make a good Julienne soup. Set the beef and water in a close vessel where they will heat gradually. After boiling five or six hours add the vegetables. Cut the vegetables into long, thin shreds. Take a tablespoonful of lard, heat and add the vegetables, letting them fry or smother until a golden brown. Then add to the boiling broth. If fresh peas are used they must be boiled apart. If canned peas, simply add to the broth, after throwing in the vegetables. Let them cook in the broth one hour longer and. serve hot with the vegetables.

Vermicelli Soup.


Prepare a good Bouillon, or Pot-au -Feu, or Consomme, according to the taste of the household, the simple Pot-au-Feu being most generally used. A half hour before serving add the vermicelli to the broth, and serve hot.

Macaroni Soup.


Potage au Macaroni.


Prepare a good Pot-au-Feu, or Bouillon, according to directions given, and allowing a quarter of a pound of macaroni to two quarts of broth. Break the macaroni into two-inch length pieces and add to the boiling broth about a half hour before serving. Some housekeepers cook the macaroni separately in salted boiling water about ten or fifteen minutes, draining thoroughly, and dropping into the boiling broth about fifteen minutes before serving. The soup is often served with Parmesan cheese, grated.


Tapioca Soup.
Potage au Tapioca.

To three quarts of broth add, about forty minutes before serving, four ounces of tapioca. The tapioca should be pre-, viously soaked a few hours. Stir frequently in the broth while boiling, and serve hot.

Sago Soup.


Potage au Sago.


The sago should always be soaked overnight. Allow two ounces to every three pints of broth or Consomme. Boil for one hour before serving, stirring occasionally.

Rice Soup,


Potage au Riz.


Prepare the clear Pot-au-Feu or Consomme. When nearly done add one-half cupful of rice, which has been thoroughly washed and dried. Cook for about twenty-five, minutes longer, or until done, and serve.

Barley soup is prepared after the same style, using a clear Bouillon or Consomme.

Okra Soup.


Potage au Fevi.


Cut the beef into small pieces, and season well with butter, pepper and salt. Fry it in the soup kettle with the onion and butter until very brown. Then add the cold water and let it simmer for an hour and a half. Add the okra and let it simmer gently for three or four hours longer.

Ox-Tail Soup.


Soupe de Queue de Boeuf.


Cut the tail in pieces from the joint, and cut again into pieces one inch and a half in length. Chop the onions very fine. Put the onion and a tablespoonful of lard into a frying pan and add the ox tail. Cook slowly until it begins to brown, then add the carrot, cut in pieces about the size of a green pea, and about a square inch of ham, chopped very fine. Let this brown, and when it begins to brown nicely, add the thyme, bay leaf, three cloves, one clove of garlic, all chopped very fine. Let this continue to brown, being careful not to burn, and then add one tablespoonful of flour, dredged in lightly and stirred, and when all is nicely browned, add about five quarts of Consomme, if you have it; if not, five quarts of boiling water and three tablespoonfuls of barley. Let it cook together about four hours, simmering gently, seasoning with salt, pepper and cayenne to taste, and when ready to serve, add two tablespoonfuls of sherry wine. Wine may be omitted. Noodle Soup. Potage au Nouilles. 3 Quarts of Good Bouillon or Consomme. The Yolks of 3 Eggs. The Whites of 2 Eggs. 1 Cup of Flour. 1-2 Tablespoonful of Salt.

Prepare a good Bouillon or Consomme. To a quart of the soup, add noodles made as follows: Beat the yolks of three eggs, and the whites of two together until very light; add one cup of flour, one-half teaspoon of salt, and mix with cold water; making a stiff paste; roll very thin; then roll each strip to form a tube; cut in strips, grease and simmer a few at a time in boiling salt water for about twenty minutes. Simmer the noodles in the soup about fifteen minutes.

Mushroom Soup.


Potage au Champignones.


Break the macaroni into pieces of about three inches; wash and put into a stew-pan, with two quarts of boiling water;, add three teaspoonfuls of salt. Let the macaroni boil half an hour, and meanwhile make a sauce. Put .the butter and flour in a small stewpan "and beat to a cream. Then add the chopped onion, carrot and pepper, and remaining salt and broth, and heat slowly. When the sauce begins to boil, set it back, where it will only simmer, for about twenty minutes. At the end of that time add the cream and then strain the sauce. Pour the water from the macaroni, and in its place put the sauce and mushrooms; cook for five minutes, and serve hot.

The Creole housekeeper never uses any but a silver spoon in cooking fresh, mushrooms. If the spoon is darkened, the mushrooms are not good. This is an infallible test in using fresh mushrooms. The canned French mushrooms are not only the best, but the safest.

Potage Croute-au-Pot.


Croute-au-Pot is one of the most popular and excellent Creole soups. Prepare a good consomme. In the meantime, parboil the vegetables in salted boiling water. When tender, drain off the water, and add to them about two and one-half quarts of the boiling consomme. Let them simmer until they are very tender. Prepare the toasts and put them into a saucepan with enough consomme to cover them. Simmer gently until the toasts have absorbed all the consomme and show signs of drying up. Then add a little hot consomme, detach them from the saucepan, lay them in the tureen and pour the soup with the vegetables very gently over them. Serve immediately.

Savory Soup.


Potage a la Bonne Menagere.


Put the meat in four quarts of cold water and let it simmer for three hours. One hour before serving, add one-half cup of rice, which has been soaked in water until soft, and three tablespoonfuls of oatmeal, one tablespoonful of salt and one-fourth teaspoonful of pepper. Add parsley, sprig of thyme and one onion, chopped fine. Boil an hour longer and serve, very hot. This makes a delicious soup.

Corn Soup.


Soup au Mai Tendre.


Corn soup is one of the most popular Creole summer soups, and will be found not only delicious, but highly nutritive.

Put the meat and water into a soup pot, and as soon as the scum begins to rise skim carefully. Then add the tomatoes and corncobs. Cook for four hours or so longer; then take out the corncobs, and add the corn, cut fine, salt and pepper to suit the taste, adding a pod of Cayenne pepper, without the seeds; cook one hour longer and then serve with slices of toast bread.

Tomato Consomme. Consomme de Tomates.


A Chicken may be substituted for the Shin of Veal.

Put the meat and chicken (the latter cut up) into a large soup kettle and let it come slowly to a boil. Then draw it forward, and as it begins to boil more rapidly skim as the scum rises. After another hour add the pepper, salt and vegetables. The soup should boil incessantly, but gently, for about eight hours, requiring in all about nine hours of good cooking. It should, therefore, be put on very early in the morning, and, if required for luncheon, should be made the day before. when the soup has boiled gently for the prescribed time take it off, strain into a large bowl and set it away in the ice box until the next day, if not for immediate use. Then remove the fat from the surface, and pour off all the clear part into a saucepan and boil again for one or two hours. Then remove it from the fire. This will make a stiff jelly, which will keep in winter for several days in the ice box. It also serves to make a beautiful Sauce Espagnole, or Spanish Sauce. The best way to keep it is in earthern pitchers holding from one to two quarts, allowing a certain quantity for each day.

Mock-Turtle Soap.


Soupe a la Tortue.


Select a fine calf's head, not too large. If large, reserve half and the tongue and brains to make another dish. Get the butcher to crack the head well and remove the brains. Wash the head thoroughly in cold water, and then be careful to pour boiling water through nose and throat passages until they are perfectly clean, and scrape out the ears thoroughly, washing very clean. Rinse all well in cold water, and be very sure that the head is very sweet and clean before attempting to cook it. Put the head in a kettle with five quarts of cold water, and set it over a moderate fire. when it begins to boil well skim thoroughly, till every particle of scum has been taken off. Then set it back and let it simmer until the meat is quite tender. This will require about two hours and a half. Then remove the head; take the meat from the bones; skin the tongue, and set away to cool. Return the bones to the kettle, with the vegetables, which have been washed and cut fine; as, also, the spices and the liver. Simmer gently again for two hours, and when cool, strain. Set aside to cool, and when the soup is cold, remove all the fat. Put the butter in a saucepan and melt, adding the flour until nicely browned, but be careful not to burn it. Then add by degrees the boiling soup, stirring constantly. Boil, keeping up a gentle stir, for about five minutes. Then add the meat of the head and the liver, having first cut them into dice.

Bring to a boil at once. Take the saucepan from the fire, and add the oat-sup, salt, pepper and wine. Slice the hard-boiled eggs and the lemon and place them in the tureen, and pour the soup over them and serve.

If force-meat balls are desired for the soup, prepare them as follows:

Chop a half of a pound of beef or veal and chopped chicken about an inch in thickness; add a little of the liver and tongue of the calf, a half dozen small onions, one tablespoonful of sweet marjoram, one grated nutmeg, a teaspoonful each of powdered black pepper and mace, and a half teaspoonful of cloves (powdered), three eggs, three grated crackers (sifted), half a gill of good sherry wine, a tablespoonful of butter and two tea-spoonfuls of salt; chop up and mix thoroughly together. Then roll in balls and fry slowly in lard or butter. Serve with the soup.

Mutton Broth.


Soupe de Mouton.


Wash the neck of the mutton, or wipe it with a damp towel, and put it into the kettle with the cold water. Let it come to a slow boil and skim carefully. Cover well and let it simmer for about four hours. Then remove from the stove and pour into an earthern vessel to cool. When cold, remove all the fat from the surface, or, better still, remove all the fat before boiling. Return to the kettle and add the rice, the sliced turnip and the bay leaf, and season to taste, or prepare as in Oxtail Soup.


Chicken Broth. Bouillon de Volaille.


To make a good chicken broth for invalids, take one good large chicken; clean carefully and cut up, being careful to mash all the bones with an ax. Place in a saucepan of cold water, and let it simmer gently for four or five hours, until it is 'boiled down to about two cups of broth. It will have a rich, strong color, and seasoned with a little salt and pepper, omitting all vegetables, can be taken by the most delicate stomachs. Chicken Consomme. Consomme de Volaille.

Put the chicken Into the salt and water and let it simmer gently until the scum begins to rise; then skim. Add the other ingredients. Boil gently for two hours, and serve with slices of toast,. The chicken left over will serve to make croquettes, or chicken salad.

Gilt-Edged Consomme. Consomme Dore.


Have the fowl thoroughly cleaned, and put the chicken, beef and ham into a kettle of cold water of the quantity mentioned in the above, and boil slowly for five hours, being careful to keep the pot well covered. Chop the onion and vegetables and fry them in a little butter, and add all the seasonings to the soup. Boil two hours longer, and set away overnight in an ice box. The next day remove all the fat; from the top take out the jelly, leaving the thickest part of the sediment, which is good to put into a thick soup. Mix in the shells and the whites of eggs and boil quickly for about ten minutes. Then set it on the hearth to settle. Pour the soup through a thin bag without squeezing; if it does not come out perfectly clear, pass it through again. It should then be a beautiful golden-brown color. Only the brightest and cleanest of kettles should be used, and the sieve should be scalded each time to keep the particles from washing back into the soup. This is a delightful soup for luncheons and Dinner parties. It may be garnished according to taste, serving with "Croutons," or Quenelles.

Consomme With Poached Eggs


Consomme aux Oeufs Poches.


Break the eggs and drop them ono by one into boiling salted water, being careful not to allow the water to boil when once the eggs are in it; but have the frying pan, which is always best for poaching eggs, to one side of the stove, and cook slowly until the eggs are firm. When firm, carefully remove with a spoon or perforated skimmer, the latter being best, and lay in cold water for a moment, until the edges are trimmed evenly. The boiling water tends to make the edges ragged, and eggs served in this slovenly manner are not tempting. Transfer to the tureen and pour the boiling soup very gently into the tureen and serve. One egg and about a half-pint of broth should be allowed to each person.

Queen Soup. Potage a la Heine.


Take a fine large chicken, clean it and put it whole into a pot containing about five quarts of water. Add chopped onion, thyme, bay leaf, one carrot, a small bunch of celery, and one cup of rice. Let the chicken simmer well ror about four hours, and, when well cooked, take out the chicken from the broth. Cut off the white meat and cut it into pieces about the size of dice. Then strain the broth, mashing the rice well. Make a puree by taking another saucepan, putting in one tablespoonful of butter and one of flour, letting it melt together without browning. Moisten this well with the soup and a glass of milk, and season with salt and pepper and one-quarter of a grated nutmeg, and add to the broth. Then add the chicken, which has been cut up. Put in the tureen little dice of croutons of bread fried in butter. Pour the soup over and serve hot. The remainder of the chicken can be used to make Chicken Croquettes, Chicken Salad, etc.

Giblet Soup.

Potage a I'Essenee de Gesier.

The Giblets, Heart, Liver, etc., of Two Turkeys or Four Chickens. Chop the onion tine and put it into the stewpan with the butter; let it hrown, and then add the chopped vegetables, whole giblets, etc.; fry until n'cely brownea, but do not let it burn Then slit the giblets with a knife, that tne juices may run out in boiling, and put all into the soup kettle, with pepper, salt, sage, parsley and the three quarts of consomme or boiling water. Add toones or lean meat, cooked or raw, that are left, preferably the meat of the chicken, and let all simmer for five hours. Then strain. Mash one liver fine and add it to. the broth; season with Cayenne pepper per lemon juice to taste, and two table-spoonfuls of Madeira or Port wine. Bail three minutes, and have in the tureen one hard-boiled yolk of an egg for each person. Pour the soup over it and serve

Rabbit Soup.

Potage de Lapin.

This is a famous Creole soup. The rabbits should be well skinned and singed. Wash thoroughly in warm water; this is very important. Then cut the given. Chop the onion, moderate let it simmer gently until the meat has grown very tender. This will take about two hours or less. Add the salt pepper and rice, and simmer for an hour longer. Pou into the tureen over Croutons and serve. The Creoles add two tablespoonfuls of Sherry or Port wine, thus increasing the delicacy of the flavor.

Squirrel Soup.

Potage d'Ecureil.

When squirrels are used the gray Louisiana squirrel is best. Venison may be substituted for squirrels. Prepare as for Rabbit Soup.

Pepper Pot.

Pot de Poivres.

The knuckle of the veal is best for this. Wash and put into the soup kettle, covering with water, and bring it to a slow boil. Carefully skim off the scum. Let it simmer gently tor three hours. The tripe should be prepared the day before. Wash it thoroughly in cold water and boil for about seven hours. Put away In the ice box till needed. Chop the parsley and herbs fine and one-half of the red pepper pod, and add to the boiling knuckle of veal, and also the potatoes, which have been cut into dice. Cut up the tripe into pieces of about one inch square. Take out the knuckle of veal and cut up meat Into small pieces, and add all, with the tripe, to the soup. At tne boiling point, season with salt and pepper.


CHAPTER IV. FISH SOUPS.


Soupes de Poissons,

Under this heading come some of the most delightful Creole soups, such as Green Turtle Soup, Oyster Soup, Crawfish Bisque, etc. These not only serve as fast-day soups, but are considered elegant introductions to the most recherche feast.


Fish Soup.


Bouillon de Poisson.


Chop the onions and fry them in the salad oil. Cut the tomatoes fine, add onions, and put in all the other ingredients, except the fish, adding the flour to make a good roux. When brc'wn add the water, apd, after it has boiled about a half hour, add the slices of fish. When they are firm remove the herb bouquet, add Cayenne pepper, and salt and pepper to taste, and serve the fish soup, in a tureen, pouring it over crusts of dried toast.


Green Turtle Soup.


Soupe a la Tortue.


Thyme, Bay Leaf. Salt, Pepper and Cayenne to Taste. The Creoles pride themselves upon their famous "Soup a la Tortue," and justly the old saying that only a good Creole cook knows how to make a good Turtle Soup being tesititled to by epicurean visitors from every country.

The following is one of the simplest and best ways of making Turtle Soup — a recipe that may always be relied upon and one that has been used from generation to gene-.'ition in the most aristocratio Creole homes;

In making Turtle Soup, Green Turtle is always the best tor this purpose. Sr cct two pounds of Green Turtle meat, u the turtle is not bought whole. This a.aount will make a soup for six persons

Increase proportionately. If the turtle Is bought whole, first out off the head. To dc this properly, the turtle should be hung with the head downwards, and a very sharp knife should be used to cut off the head ag close as possible. To remote the shells, first separate the upper from the lower shell, always being exceedingly careful to avoid touching the gall bladder, which is very large. If it is penetrated, the contents running over the' turtle meat would render it utterly unfit for use.

Clean the turtle and the entrails by cutting oijen and washing thoroughly in cold water. Then put the meat and entrails ir.to a saucepan and parboil about ten rairules. Be careful to save this stock of water. Chop an onion very fine, and thi3 bam into very fine pieces. Cut the turtiO meat into one-inch pieces, mash the clov-'s aria the allspice very fine and chop tho thyme and bay leaf. Brown the ciiio;i? in a tablespoonful of butter or laril. and add immediately the turtle meat. Blown together slightly, and after minutes add the chopped ham. Let this continue browning and then add two cloves of garlic, chopped fine, and the thyme, bay leaf (minced fine), cloves anJ allspice (ground), all mixed together, and lay on the turtle. Stir this almost constantly to prevent burning, and add two tablespoonfuls of flour that has been well rubbed, stirring constantly all the time. Then dissolve the meat with the water in which the turtle was parboiled, adding gradually until a certain consistency is reached. About three quarts of water will be the required amount. Season this with salt, black pepper and Cayenne to taste, and boil slowly for tvllv an hour, stirring almost constantly. Afcr cooking one hour taste, and If not ata'oned sufficiently, season again and tatte Then chop one-quarter of a small lemon, and put it in the soup. Let it continue to ccok, and when well done — that ia when no blood exudes from the turi'.e afLcr sticking it with a fork — pour into the tureen. Add the whites and yolks o? two hard-boiled eggs, chopped fine and one good class of Sherry wine, aiiJ the soup is ready to serve. This is a dish fit for a king and is most highly recommended as a genuine Creole Turtle Soup.


Turtle Soup No. 2.


Soupe a la Tortue.


Criean the turtle and entrails by cutting open the latter and washing thoroughly in cold water. Then put the meat and entrails into a saucepan and parboil them for ten minutes. Carefully save this stock of water. Chop the onion very fine, and cut the ham into very fine pieces. Cut the turtle meat into one-inch pieces; mash the allspice very fine, and mince the parsley, thyme and bay leaf. Then brown the onions in the lard and butter mixed, and almost immediately add the turtle meat. Brown to-

gether for ten minutes and add the finely chopped ham. As this continues to brown add the cloves of garlic (minced fine), the thyme and bay leaf and the ground allspice. Mix all together, stirring almost constantly to prevent burning. Then add the well-rubbed tablespoonfuls of flour, stirring constantly. Scald and skin the tomatoes and chop them fine, and add to the turtle meat. When well browned, pour over three quarts of the water in which the turtle was parboiled, season with salt and pepper and Cayenne to taste, and let it boil slowly for fully an hour, stirring frequently. After one hour taste the soup, and, if not sufficiently seasoned, add seasoning of salt, pepper and Cayenne again, according to taste. Let it cook for an hour longer and then take off the stove if the turtle is thoroughly done. This may be ascertained by sticking it with a fork. If no blood exudes, the soup is ready to servs. Take oft the stove and strain through a colander into the tureen. Add the whites and yolks ' of two hard-boiled eggs, chopped fine, and one good glass of Sherry or White wine. Slice a lemon fine and add to the soup and serve hot.

How to Serve Turtle Soup.

Great care should be taken in serving the soup. It should be borne in mind that boiling the soup a second time, or warming it over, deprives it of much of its delicious flavor. To avoid this, fill two tureens with boiling water; let them stand a few minutes, then dry the inside thoroughly and place the tureens in a "bainmarie," or a hot-water bath. Fill the tureens with the soup and cover tightly. Bring them to the table as needed, throwing in, just before serving, some dainty slices of lemon. If the meat is served, use only the most delicate portions.

Mock Eggs for Turtle Soup.

Should the turtle possess no eggs, the following method of making mock eggs is often used: Break and beat thoroughly one fresh egg; then take the yolks of three hard-boiled eggs, and rub them into a fine paste with about a teaspoon-ful of butter. Mix this with the raw egg and roll into pelleits of the identical size and shape of the turtle eggs, let them lie in boiling water about two minutes, and then drop into the soup.


Terrapin Soup.


Soupe a la Tortue.

The diamond-back terrapin is the best and the females make the finest and daintiest food, the males being not only of inferior size, but of far less delicate flavor. Terrapins must always be bought alive. They are in season from November till March, ajid, like all other fish, i should not be eaten out of season.

To make the soup, clean the terrapin as you would a turtle. Then place in a kettle and boil till tender. Take out and cut into small pieces, saving the water. Proceed as for Turtle Soup. When it boils up take from the fire, add a grated nutmeg, a glass of Sherry or Madeira wine and serve. Serve with green pickle and delicate slices of fried toast.

Crawfish Bisque.


Potage a la Bisque d'Ecrevisse.

Take about eight dozen fine, large crawfish and wash thoroughly, being careful to cleanse of every particle of dust or sand. Set to boil in about a gallon of water. When boiled, take the fish out of the water; save the water. Pick O'Ut two dozen of the largest crawfish; pick out the inside of the tails and save the heads, cleansing them of every particle of meat. Set this meat to one side with the shells of the head. Pick the meat from the rest of the crawfish, saving all the shells. Take one large onion, a carrot, a bunch of celery, a sprig of thyme, one bay leaf, three sprigs of parsley, six clc-ves and two blades of mace, one clove of garlic; chop all very fine and put into the pot of water in which the crawfish were boiled. Add all the picked meat, except the reserved tails, and all the shells of the bodies and heads, except the reserved heads. Add one cup of rice and let it all boil till the mixture becomes thick and mushy. When it is well cooked, take it off the fire and mash the shells thc-roughly, and the meat also, and strain all through a sieve. Taka about a tablespoonful of butter and two quarts of oyster liquor and add this to the soup, seasoning to taste with Cayenne, salt and black pepper. Set to boil slowly. In the meantime, take the reserved crawfish meat and make a stuffing as fc-llows for the reserve heads, chop an onion very fine and let it brown In a tablespoonful of butter. Squeeze thoroughly a cup of bread wet with water. when well squeezed, mix with a little milk, sufficient to make a paste, season to taste and mix with the well-seasoned crawfish meat. Chop another onion and put in melted butter, and add the crawfish stuffing, letting all fry about ten minutes, adding, in the meantime, a finely-chopped sprig each of thyme and parsley and a bay leaf, and mixing thoroughly. Take off the fire and stuff the reserved head of crawfish. Put on every stuffed head a dot of but ter, and set in the oven and bake ten minutes. Place the stuffed heads in the tureen and pour the soup over. Serve hot with Croutc-ns of buttered toast, passing the latter in a separate dish.

Crawfish Soup.


Potage d'Bcrevisses.

Wash the crawfish thoroughly over and over again to take away every particle of dust. Then boil them in plain water. Save the water. Take out the crawfish and take off all the shells, putting the meat aside. Pound the shells fine; pound one doen almonds fine and mix thoroughly with the meat of the crawfish, and pound this in a mortar. In the meanwhile take one pound and a half of a filet of veal and a slice of ham and cut in small pieces. Cut up the onion, carrots and parsnips. Put one tablespoonful of lard in a kettle, and when it begins to heat add the herb bouquet (sweet basil, parsley, bay leaf), the onions, parsnip, shallots, clove of garlic, chopped fine; as these brown add the veal and ham. Add two tablespoonfuls of flour and butter rubbed, and the mushrooms, chopped finely. Let these simmer for about five minutes and then add the tomatoes, allspice and cloves. After ten minutes, when the mixture is well browned, add the pounded crawfish shells and the pounded meat and almonds. Pour over all the water from the boiled crawfish and set it back on the stove and let it simmer for about two hours. Skim off all the grease when near time for serving. Then strain through a sieve and serve with Croutons of toast, cut in slices, placed in the bottom of the tureen.

On fast days, instead of the veal and ham, substitute butter and lard, making a Roux (see recipe), and moistening a little with the stock of the crawfish. Then proceed as above.

Rice or Crouton Soup is rendered delicious by introducing a small quantity of the broth of a crawfish. The broth is also used extensively by the Creoles in seasoning ragouts on fast days, and hot pies, such as pates de foles gras; also such .entremets as cauliflower, artichokes, etc. The chief essential in making the broth is to have it of the right consistency, and to skim carefully of all the grease before straining. Good judgment must be the guide of the cook in seeking the proper consistency.

Oyster Soup.


Soupe aux Huitres.

Salt and Pepper to Taste. In purchasing the oysters always ba careful to make the vendor add the oyster juice when intended fdr soup. In making good oyster soup the Creoles never use any water, but the liquor from the oysters. Drain the oysters througa a colander and set them over the ice box , to keep fresh and cold. Strain the liquor, and put it into a soup kettle, adding the chopped parsley and the pepper corns. Let it come to a boil. In the meantime boil the milk separately in a saucepan, as boiling the milk and ovster juice together is likely to curdle the milk. "STien the milk comes to a boil, add to the oyster juice and put in the tablespoonful of butter. Stir the soup constantly ai this point, throwing in the ovsters and continuing to stir until it comes to a boil again. Under no circumstances allow the oysters to boil, as that destroys their flavor and makes them tough and indigestible. But one must be also care ful to see that they are steamed through and through, and then they are delightful and palatable. The ruffling of tha edges indicates the right condition; at this point the soup must be served immediately. Serve with sliced lemon and oyster or water crackers. Made according to the above formula, oyster soup is a most delightful dish and can be eaten and relished by the most delicate stomachs.

Oyster Soup Without Milk.


Soupe aux Huitres a la Creole.

The Creoles have another delightful method of preparing oyster soup, a method evolved by the old negro cooks of ante-bellum days, and still in vogue in the ancient families. It is a soup made without milk, and is prepared as follows: Take

Put the tablespoonful of lard into the soup kettle. Have ready one onion, some parsley, chopped very fine. When the lard is hot, stir in two tablespoonfuls of sifted flour, and make a Brown Roux (see recipe), stirring constantly to prevent burning. When the Roux is of a light brown color add the chopped onions and parsley, continuing to stir, being exceedingly careful to avoid the semblance of burning. Strain the oyster juice of about four dozen oysters into the Roux, mixing thoroughly to avoid bits of shell; mix with about a quart of boiling water and pour. When it shows signs of coming to a bo'il, add the oysters and a teaspoonful of butter. At the boiling point remove from the stove and serve with oyster soda crackers or dry toast, the oyster crackers being always preferable.

Crab Soup.


Potage de Crabes.

Cleanse the crabs thoroughly and extract all the meat from the bO'dy and claws; scald and skin the tomatoes, and squeeze the pulp from the seeds and juice; chop very fine. Pour boiling water over the seed and juice and strain. Chop the onion and garlic and stew with the tablespoonful of butter and lard. As they begin to brown add the tomatoes, cover, and, after simmering a few minutes, add the well-seasoned meat of the crab. Sift over this some grated bread or crackers and season with Cayenne, sweet marjoram and thyme. Pour in tomato water and add about a quart or more of water, and let it boil moderately for about an hour. Add the juice of two lemons and serve.

CHAPTER V. LENTEN SOUPS


Potages Malgre.

The Creoles excel in the preparation of soups without meat, or fast-day soups, as they are called. The ingenuity of the cooks from generation to generation has been taxed in the preparation of these soups, which are in great vogue during the Lenten season. But many of them, such as "Cream of Asparagus Soup,'' "Cream of Celery Soup," have entered into the daily life of the city, and, like the famous Creole Gumbos, are held afi dainty and elegant introductions to the most distinguished feasts.

Fast-Day Broth.


Bouillon Maigre.

Peel and cut into fine, thin slices the carrots, turnips and parsnips; cut and chop fine the cabbage, celery and onions, put all in a saucepan and add one glass of water, and a quarter of a pound of butter, using the butter preferably to the lard; add the parsley, chopped very fine. Let all boil till the water has evaporated, and then add one pint of red or white beans or split peas, which have been soaked overnight; add three quarts of water and the pepper pod, and let all simmer well for three hours. Then if the beans are perfectly tender at this point, drain or press through a colander; return to the fire and add the seasonings Let all boil up once and then serve with Croutons. Stale bread may be utilized in preparing the Croutons.

A Summer Fast-Day Soup.


Potage Maigre d'Ete.

Chop the vegetables fine and stew all together, except the young peas. After one hour add the young peas. Press them through a sieve and return all into the water in which they have been boiled. Add to this the vegetables that have been stewed in the butter and simmer about an hour and a half. A sprig of mint is added just before the soup is taken off the fire.

A Winter Fast-Day Soup.


Potage Maigre d'Hiver.

Stew all the vegetables, except the lettuce, together, after having chopped fine, until they are perfectly soft. Then return to the fire with the chopped lettuce, butter and sugar. Boil quickly about twenty minutes, and serve with Croutons.

Vegetable Soup Without Meat.


Puree de Legumes.

Cut the vegetables into dice and boil until thoroughly tender in about three and a half quarts of water; this will require about two hours. Then press the whole through a sieve; add the remaining water and bring to a boil. Then add the butter, rubbed smooth with the flour in a little rich cream, or a little of the hot soup. A gill of cream or milk added just before serving increases the flavor. Boil and stir about two or three minutes more and serve.

Lentil Soup.


Potage Puree de Lentilles.

Wash the lentils, and, if dried, soak them over night. Drain off the water and put them in a saucepan with the cold water. Allow them to come gradually to a boil. Then set them back on the stove and let them simmer gently for about two hours. Melt the butter in the saucepan and fry in it the minced onion, celery, parsley, thyme and bay leaf, and let these brown; then add them to the lentils; boil about an hour longer, and, if particularly tender, press all through a colander. Return to the fire and add the seasonings. Let them boil up once and serve with Croutons.

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Red Bean Soup.
Puree a la Conde.

Salt and Pepper. Wash the beans and soak them overnight in lukewarm water. Drain and put them in a saucepan with the cold water. Allow them to come gradually to a boil; then set them back, and let them simmer gently for about two hours. Melt the butter in a saucepan and fry in it the onion, parsley, thyme and bay leaf until brown. Add these to the beans and boil about an hour and a half longer. If the beans are perfectly tender at this point, press the whole through a colander. Return to th fire, and add the seasonings. Let them boil up once and serve with the Croutons. Some think that the flavor is enhanced by beating up an egg in the tureen and pouring the boiling soup gradually over it, stirring constantly. This soup should always be served witii Croutons.




White Bean Soup.
Potage a la Puree d'Haricots.

Wash the beans and soak them overnight in lukewarm water. Pain and put thlm in a saucepan with the cold water Allow them to come gradually to a boil, then set them back and let theni simmer gently for about two hours. Melt the butter in a saucepan and fry in it the onion, parsley, thyme and bay leaf until brown. Add these to the beans and boil about an hour and a half longer. If the beans are perfectly tender at this point, press the whole through a colander. Return to the fire and add the seasonings. Let them boil up once and then serve with the Croutons. As in Red Bean boup, a beaten egg may be added when about to pour into the tureen. First beat up the egg and pour the boiling soup gradually over, stirring all the while.




Dried or Split Pea Soup.
Potage a la Puree de Pois Sees.

Soak the peas overnight, after washing them in cold water and rejecting all that float. In the morning drain off the water and cover the peas again with one quart of boiling water, setting them back on the stove and letting them cook slowly until tender. Cut up the onion and parsley and celery into fine pieces and add to the boiling peas. Wlien perfectly tender remove from the stove and press through a sieve or colander and add the salt and pepper. Then return the soup to the fire and let it boil up once; just before serving add the rich cream or milk, stirring well. The soup should be served with Croutons or Oyster Crackers. White Bean Soup may be made in exactly the same manner. When not intended for fast days, the addition of a ham bone adds greatly to the flavor.




Puree of Green Peas.
Puree de Pois Verts.

Cut the onions and parsley fine, and boil with the peas until all are quite tender, in boiling water, for about a half hour. Then drain. Rub all through a sieve or colander, and add them to the boiling broth or milk. Do not allow this to boil after adding the peas. Season and serve with dainty Croutons. To keep hot, stand the soup on a "bainmarie," or kettle of boiling water.




Sorrel Soup.
Potage a. la "Bonne Femme," ou Soupe a I'Oiselle.

Wash the leaves and stem them, the entire length of the leaf. Then chop them fine until you have a quantity equal to a pint or two teacupfuls. Chop the other vegetables and put these an5 the sorrel into a saucepan with the but-

ter; cover and let them stew gently for ten minutes, and then add the floui, which has been well mixed with a little water. Pour gradually, stirring always, into the three quarts of boiling water. Beat the yolks of the eggs and mix with a little cream or milk in a tureen. Rub the rest of the cream or milk smooth with the mashed potato and put into the soup; add the seasonings. Prepare toast in the form of dice, rubbing them firtit with the raw onion, and pour some of the boiling soup over the eggs in the tureen and mix very carefully. Put in the pieces of toast, and then add the remainder of the soup. Cover and stand five minutes in a warm oven, and serve hot.




Potato Soup.
Potage Parmentier.

After washing and peeling the pota toes, put them into a saucepan with the onions and add about two quarts of cold water. Bring to a boil. After allowing to coo'k about forty minutes, if the vegetables are then very tender, mash and pass all through a sieve, and, returning to the fire, add the seasoning and butter. Bring to a boil, and add the cream and a beaten egg, serving immediately with Croutons.




Carrot Soup.
Potage Crecy.

Wash the vegetables thoroughly, cutting them fine and boiling until tender in three pints of water. When very soft, mash them and press through a sieve. The carrots must be mashed very fine. Then return to the fire, and, adding about two quarts O'f boiling water, cover and simmer gently for a while, adding one teaspoonful of corn starch that has been blended well with a little milk. Add the boiling milk and cook for about two minutes more, and serve with Croutons.




Lettuce Soup.
Potage de Laitues.

Prepare a good broth and cook till it is reduced to three pints; this will serve six persons. Chop the lettuce fine and stew it with a tablespoonful of batter, adding the pinch of sugar and one spoon of French vinegar. Keep stirring constantly, so that it will not burn. Then add the flour (which has been rolled smoothly in butter), the pepper and salt, throw in a dash of Cayenne pepper. Break in the egg and stir tfltoroughly. Then pour on the broth. Place the dice of bread in the tureen, and add the gill of cream to the soup before pouring over the bread.




Okra Soup.
Potage de Fevi.

Wash and stem the okra and then slice it very fine. Chop the tomatoes fine, being careful to preserve the juice. CJhop the onions fine and fry them in the butter. Then add the chopped thyme, bay leaf, parsley and tomatoes and the pepper pod, and, after letting it stew about five minutes, add the okra, stirring constantly, almost, as it burns quickly. When well browned, add the Juice of the tomatoes. Then add the hot water, and set on the back of the stove and let it slm-nier well for about an hour and a half. S'eason to taste and serve hot, with Croutons.

Okra must be cooked in a porcelain-lined pot, as iron or other metal tends to blacken it.




Winter Okra Soup.
Potage Fevi d'Hiver.

Fry the onions in the butter, until reddish brown. Then add the flour ani stir until browned, gently; do not burn. Put the boiling water in gradually, stirring perfectly smooth, and adding the salt and pepper; mix well and boil one minute. Then pour it into the kettle and set back. Before serving, add the mik warmed, and rubbed with mashed potatoes until they are a smooth paste. Simmer a few moments. Have the pieces of toast ready in the tureen and pour n the hot soup. A puree of onions is made by pressing the ingredients through a sieve and returning to the fire for a few moments. Serve hot.




Cream of Onion Soup.
Puree d'Ognons.

Peel the onions and boil in salted water until very tender; then drain and dry well with a cloth; put them on the fire in a saucepan, with one ounce of butter; add the other ingredients, except the remaining ha4f ounce of butter. When the soup comes to a boil, press through the sieve, and return to the fire; add the remainder of the butter and serve.




Cream of Tomato Soap.
Potage aux Tomates.

Stew the tomatoes for about two hours,and then extract the juice. Add the other ingredients, and boil fcr about an hour and a half; then strain. The rice, being creamy, should now make the soup as thick as cream. Serve with Croutons or Quenelles.




Cream of Celery Soup.
Potage a la Creme de Celeri.

Wash the celery and onion and cut into fine pieces. Then place them in a porcelain-lined saucepan and let boil for about a half hour. Take off and mash, and press through a colander. Set the milk to bo-il in a farina boiler, and as !t heats well, add to it the water and celery that have been pressed. Rub smoothly together the flour and butter, and then stir into the boiling soup, stirring constantly till it thickens to a cream of the right consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve hot. It is very de-licic'us served with slices of delicately toasted and buttered Croutons. Serve on a separate dish and garnish with sprigs of parsley and slices of hard-boiled eggs.




Cream of Corn Soup.
Potage a la Creme de Mais.

Slit the corn in two and grate from the cobs. Put the cobs into the boiling water and let them boil slo-wly about an hour, till the water is reduced to three quarts. Then take the cobs out and drain over the kettle. Add the corn and let it boil till very soft. This will require about thirty minutes. Take the soup off and press all through a sieve. Season highly and set back to simmer gently, adding, in the meanwhile, the flour and butter, thoroughly rubbed together. Stir constantly till the soup thickens, and then add the boiling milk. Cook a moment only, take off the fire, stir in the beaten yolks and serve hot, with buttered toast cut in dice shape.




Cream of Asparaegus Soup.
Creme d'Asperges.

Wash the Asparagus, tie it in a bunch and put in a saucepan of boiling water. Let it boil gently for about three-quarters of an hour, or uniil perfectly tender. Take it from the water, cut off the tii>s or points and put them aside unta wanted. Put the milk on to boil m a farina boiler. Press the Asparagus stalks through a colander, and add them to the milk. Rub the butter and corn starch or flour together until perfectly smooth, and add to the boiling milk, stirring constantly till it thickens. Now add the Asparagus tips, salt and pepper, and serve, without Croutons, as the Asparagus tips form a beautiful garnish.




Cream of Spinach Soup.
Potage a. la Creme d'Epinards.

Wash and boil one-half peck, or four pints of Spinach; this quantity will measure about one pint when cooked, chopped and pounded into a fine paste. Then put it into a stew pan with four ounces of fresh butter, the grated nutmeg and a teaspoonful of salt. Let it cook for ten minutes, stirring constantly. Add to this two quarts of oyster juice (on other than fast days consomme may be used, or good bouillon). Let all boil up, and then press through a strainer. Set it over the fire again and just at the boiling noint mix with it a tablespoonful of butter, and a teaspoonful of granulated sugar. Serve hot with Croutons.




Cream of Barley Soup.
Puree d*Orge.

Scald the barley and then put Into a kettle with three quarts of boiling water and let it boil about three hours. Take it off and mash thoroughly, and strain through a sieve. Add the hot milk to the stock of the barley, season with salt and pepper, and let it come to a boil. Take off and add the yolks of two eggs.




Cream of Rice Soup.
Creme de Riz.

Wash the Rice thoroughly, rubbing dry. Put it into a saucepan with one quart of cold water; when swelled add one quart of boiling water, and when it begins to get very tender add the remaining quart of boiling water. Then add the pepper and salt. Take from the fire, mash the rice well and rub all through a sieve. Beat up the yolks of the eggs well with a few tablespoonfuls of cream. when quite smooth stir in carefully a few spoons of the boiling rice water, and then pour the eggs and cream or milk into the saucepan with the rice, which you will have returned to the stove. Mix briskly and then draw aside and stir for two or three minutes, being very careful not to allow the mixture to boil when once the egs will have been added. Serve hot with Croutons or Crackers. On other than fast davs this is most delicious made with Chiclcen Consommp.




Bice Soup, Without Meat,
Kiz au Maigre.

Wash the rice thoroughly, rubbing dry. Put it in a saucepan with, one pint of cold water; when swelled, add one pint of boiling water, and when it begins to get very tender add the remaining pint of boiling water. Add the pepper and salt. Beat up the yolks of the eggs with a few tablespoonfuls of cream. When quite smooth, stir in carefully a few spoonfuls of the boiling rice water, and then pour the eggs and cream into the saucepan, stirring very briskly. Draw aside and stir for two or three minutes, but do not allow the soup to boil when once the eggs are added.




Cocoanut Soup.
Potage de Cocoa.

Scald the calves' feet, and scrape thoroughly without skinning; put them into the soup kettle with a gallon of cold water, and cover the kettle well. Let the feet come to a slow boil and skim carefully. Then add the blades of mace and let the soup boil slowly till the meat Is reduced to rags and has fallen from the bones. Then strain into a white porcelain dish or pan, and set it away to cool. After it has congealed, scrape off fat and sediment, and a beautiful jelly will remain. Cut up this cake of jelly and put it into a thoroughly cleansed, white porcelain soup kettle. In the meantime grate the cocoanut very fine, till about a half pound is on hand. Mix this with the pint of rich cream or milk, and add the butter which has been rolled smoothly in the arrowroot or flour. Mix this carefully and gradually with the calves' feet stock or soup, and season with a grated nutmeg. The soup should then be set back on the fire and allowed to boil slowly for about fifteen minutes, stirring almost constantly. Pour into the tureen and serve with French rolls, or milk biscuit, made very light and thin. On fast days omit the calves' feet, using another ounce of butter instead.




Chestnut Soup.
Potage a la Puree de Marrons.

Make a good broth of the veal or beef; season with the Cayenne pepper and salt. Follow the rule given for making soups, by allowing a pound of meat to each quart of water. Skim and boil till the meat falls into rags; then strain and put in a clean porcelain pot. In the meantime shell the chestnuts and throw them into boiling water until the skin comes off easily. Put them into a saucepan with some of the soup water, and boil about thirty minutes, till quite soft. Press through a colander; add butter, pepper and salt. Then add to the soup. Make dumplings the size of a marble with fresh butter rolled in flour; and add. (See recipe for Dumplings.) Boil the soup about fifteen minutes longer and serve. Some prefer the soup without dumplings, thinking it gives more of the flavor of the chestnuts. On fast days use the oyster water instead of the beef broth, following the recipe in all other particulars, and adding a half tablespoonful of butter to the puree before pressing through the colander.

CHAPTER VI. THE BOUILLI.

"Le Bouilli."

The Creoles long ago discovered, or, rather, brought over with them from the mother country, France, the delightful possibilities for a good entree that lurked within the generally despised and cast aside Bouilli, and these possibilities they improved upon in their own unique and palatable styles of cuisine preparations.

In France the "Bouilli" is always served at the home dinner, and so with the new France, New Orleans. Far from rejecting the "Bouilli" as unpalatable and unfit for food, the Creoles discovered many delightful ways of serving it, and their theories of the nutrition that still remained in the boiled beef have been sustained by medical science. The most eminent scientists have found by experi-mtent that while heat coagulates the nutritious substances of the beef, only a small amount is dissolved when the water is heated gradually, and that the "Bouilli" is still valuable as an article of food.

The pleasant ways that the Creoles have of preparing it restores its flavor and makes it a delightful accompaniment to even the most aristocratic dinners. For breakfast the boiled beef left over is utilized in various ways.

We have selected from among many the following recipes, which need only to be tried to be repeated often, in one form or the other.

The recipes for the sauces mentioned will be found in the chapter especially devoted to "Creole S'auces."




Mirontons.
The Left-Over Bouilli.

This is a favorite way the Creoles have of serving the cold bouilli that has been saved from tlie preceding day:

Slice the onions fine; brown in one tablespoonful of butter. Chop the shallots and add to the onions, then add the garlic, thyme and bay leaf, all chopped very fine, and season with salt, Cayenne and black pepper to taste. When the whole is browning nicely add a tablespoonful of'flour and water, or left-over broth, sufficient to cover. Season this to taste, and then take two pickles, about one finger long, slice very fine and add. Let all boil about fifteen minutes, and then lay the cold bouilli, which has been thickly sliced, in a sauce. Set it to bake in the oven about twenty minutes. Gar-nisli with buttered toast and serve hot.




Boiled Beef Saute a la Lyonnaise.
Bouilli Saute a la Lyonnaise.

Slice the onions and brown them in lard, using about one tablespoonful. Skim the lard off the onions and put the beef in the pan. Stir up and smother. Add the oil, the peel of a lemon, out fine, and the Chili vinegar. Serve hot.




Boiled Beef a la Bordelaise.
Bouilli a la Bordelaise.

Slice the left-over beef. Then hash the shallots into very fine pieces; add a glass of white wine, pepper and salt to taste, and boil to half the quantity over a brisk fire. Then add the mashed beef marrow from the bone and two teaspoonfuls of "Sauce Espagnole" (see Tecipe), first melting the marro'w in a little bouillon. Stir rapidly over the fire, and as soon as it begins to bubble, withdraw it and set it back on the stove, letting it simmer gently for a quarter of an hour. Add the sliced beef for about ten minutes and then serve with Croutons or fried crusts.




Boiled Beef a la Faysanne.
Bouilli a la Paysanne.

Hash the left-over beef, and then chop five large onions very fine and cook them to a golden brown in butter. When nearly done, dust over them, a teaspoonful of flour and moisten with a little red wine. Cook the onions till done and then put In the cold hashed beef, adding a dash of French vinegar and a little mustard, and serve.




Boiled Beef a I'lndlenne.
Bouilli a I'lndlenne.

This is a dinner dish. Crush the pods of two Cayenne peppers and a teaspoonful of powdered saffron and heat and brown in butter. Then moisten with a little bouillon. Boil the sauce down, and when nearly ready to serve, thicken with a little butter. Serve in a gravy dish with the "Bouilli," which has been nicely and tastefully garnished with lettuce leaves on a parsley bed.




Boiled Beet With Tomatoes.
Bouilli aux Tomates.

Take a half dozen fine, ripe tomatoes, and parboil them in butter, being careful not to let them burn. Add a pinch of flour and two good cups of bouillon, a little salt and pepper, a clove of garlic, a sprig of parsley, thyme and bay leaf. After two hours, take out the tomatoes and allow the beef to cook a few inin-utes in the sauce. Then serve on a flat dish, arranging the tomatoes around the beef and under each tomato put a nice piece of buttered toast.




Boiled Beef a la Bruxelloise.
Bouilli a la Bruxelloise.

Take about a dozen Brussels sprouts and blanch them in boiling water. Drain thoroughly and stew in butter with chopped parsley. After they have cooked ten minutes, take them out of the pan and parboil them in fresh butter, which has been melted before the stove. Salt and pepper to taste and garnish nicely around the bouilli and serve.




Boiled Beef en Papillottes.
Bouilli en Papillottes.

This is a nice breakfast dish. Take the left-over bouilli cut in ices and parboil slightly in butter. Make a forcemeat or quenelle of pork sausage, garlic, parsley and moistened bread crumbs, add two eggs, salt and pepper. Put a layer of this "farci" between each layer of sliced beef, and then add the bread crumbs, mixed with chopped parsley. Put the beef in oiled paper, folded as tightly as possible, cook a quarter of an hour in the oven and serve in the papillottes (paper).




Boiled Beef With Carrot Sauce.
Bouilli a la Crecy.

Make a good puree of fine, red carrots (see recipe), and then strain in butter. Add a gill of rich cream and salt and pepper to the taste. Put the bouilli in the platter and pour the sauce around it, serving hot just after the soup.




Boiled Beef With Lettuce.
Bouilli a la Laitue.

Take six fine, firm heads of lettuce, strip off all the green leaves, wash thoroughly and soalc and blanch in boiling water. Then throw them into cold water. When very cold squeeze in a towel till thev are thoroughly dry and cut off the stalks from below without In.iuring the heart. Fill this open place with forcemeat balls, made from the bouilli after the recipe already given in Boiled Beef en Papillottes, that is, fry them in lard, with fresh bread crumbs, soaked in bouillon and worked into the meat Chop up with pepper, salt and garlic, and add one or two hard boiled eggs. Tie the balls up and cook without adding water and fill the heart of the lettuce. This may be served around the body of the bouilli and makes a beautiful garnish.




Boiled Beef a la Lyonnalse.
Bouilli a la Lyonnaise.

Make a sausage meat of the bouilli, adding the pork sausage, garlic, parsley and thyme. Moisten some breau crumbs in water and dissolve over them two eggs, salt and pepper. Chop the whole and tie it tightly in a cabbage leaf. An hour before serving take out the remaining bouilli and the farci or stuffed cabbage leaf. Let them cool and cut them into slices and roll these in beaten eggs, and then in bread crumbs, and fry in butter. Throw over them a dash of powdered parsley and squeeze over all the juice of a lemon.




Boiled Beef With Egg Toast.
Bouilli au "Pain Perdu.

Take left-over or stale bread, slice it thickly and dip in cream or milk. Then dip it in the beaten whites and yolks of egg and fry in butter. Cut the bouilli into slices to match the bread, dip it in the egg and fry also. Serve on a dish with chopped parsley dashed o-ver it and a garnish of parsley or lettuce leaves.




Boiled Beef Saute With Onions.
Bouilli Saute aux Ognons.

Take three fine onions and parboil them in butter over a slow fire. When a rich, creamy brown, add clove garlic and Cayenne pepper. Cut the bouillon in thin slices and add, shaking the pan until browned. Place in the platter and serve with chopped parsley dusted over, and the juice of a lemon squeezed over it.




Boiled Beef a la Marsellaise.
Bouilli it la Marsellaise.

Slice the bouilli into thin, fine slices. Take a dozen onions, the smallest kinds, and dust over with sugar, and bake in the oven. When a good color, put a little of the bouillion in the stewing pan and boil down one-half. Moisten with a cup of red wine and thick meat sauce, allowing half and half in proportion. Then add the beef, the mushrooms, the bouquet garni, salt, pepper and a little nutmeg, and serve very hot.




Boiled Beef Sausage.
Saucisse de Bouilli.

Take the bouilli of the day before, mince and add chopped parsley, a few spices, salt and Cayenne pepper, and a little beef extract saved from the bouillon. Take a round of pork and add, mixing thoroughly. When the whole is well mixed, add a few truffles and a little Madeira. Fill some entrails that have been thoroughly cleansed with this meat and. shape the sausage as one desires. Boil in butter and serve alone. This makes an excellent breakfast dish.




Beef Croquettes.
Croquettes de Boeuf.

Mince the beef with sausage meat and add garlic, parsley, pepper, salt and onions, and bread crumbs soaked in water. Add the whites of two eggs beaten to a froth. Make into balls and roll in the beaten white of an egg, and fry, being careful not to cook too rapidly. Wlien sufficiently browned, pile in a pyramid shape on a dish, garnish with parsley sprigs and serve.




Boiled Beef Gros Sel.
Bouilli Gros Sel.

This is the simplest way of serving the bouilli, and the one most used by the Creoles as a daily dish. Take the bouilli from the bouillon, and serve on a platter, laying the whole on a bed of parsley and lettuce. Serve with salt or French dressing.




A Good Every-Day Hash.
Hachis.

Chop the left-over bouilli fine in dice shapes, and to every quart of the meat allow one onion, a tablespoonful of butter, two hard-boiled eggs, two cold (leftover) potatoes, a half pint of water, and salt and pepper to taste. Chop the potatoes, onions and eggs fine and put them into the stewing pan with the meal, adding by degrees the butter, salt and 1-2 Pod of Red Pepper, Without the pepper with a little dash of Cayenne. Stew very slowly for about fifteen or twenty minutes and serve hot.

CHAPTER VII. CBEOIE GUMBO.

Goxnbo a. la Creole.

Gumbo, of all other products of the New Orleans cuisine, represents a most distinctive type of the evolutiooi of good cookery under the hands of the famous Creole cuisinieres of old New Orleans. Indeed, the word "evolution" fails to apply when speaking of Gumbo, for it is an original conception, a something suigen eris in cooking, peculiar to this ancient Creole city alone, and to the manor born. With equal ability the olden Creole cooks saw the possibilities of exquisite and delicious combinations in making Gumbo, and hence we have many varieties, till the occult science of making a good "Gombo a la Creole" seems too fine an inheritance of gastronomic lore to remain forever hidden away in the cuisines ot this old Southern metroipolis. The following recipes, gathered with care from the best Creole housekeepers of New Orleans, have been handed down from generation to generation. They need only to be tried to prove their perfect claim to the admiration of the many distinguished visitors and epicures who have paid tribute to our Creole Gumbo.

Gumbo File,

First, it will be necessary to explain here, for the benefit of many, that "File" is a powder manufactured by the remaining tribe of Choctaw Indians in Louisiana, from the young and tender leaves of the sassafras. The Indian squaws gather the leaves and spread them out on a stone mortar to dry. When thoroughly dried, they pound them into a fine powder, pass them through a hair sieve, and then bring the File to New Orleans to sell, coining twice a week to the French Market, from the old reservation set aside for their home on Bayou Lacombe, near Mandeville, La. The Indians used sassafras leaves and the sassafras for many medicinal purposes, and still sell bunches of the dried roots in the French Market. The Creoles, quick to discover and apply, found the possibilities of the powdered sassafras, or "File," and originated the well-known dish, "Gumbo File."

To make a good "Gumbo File," use the following ingredients:

Clean and cut up the chicken as for a fricassee. Dredge with salt and blacit pepper, judging according to taste. Cut the ham into dice shapes and chop the onion, parsley and thyme very fine. Put the lard or butter into the soup kettle or deep stewing pot, and when hot, put in the ham and chicken. Cover closely and fry for about five or ten minutes. Then add the onion and parsley and thyme, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. When nicely browned add the boiling water and throw in the oyster stock, which has been thoroughly heated. Add the bay leaf chopped very fine, and the pepper pod, cut in two, and set the Gumbo back to simmer for about an hour longer. when nearly ready to serve dinner, and while the Gumbo is boiling add the fresh oysters. Let the Gumbo remain on the stove for about three minutes longer, and then remove the pot from the fire. Have ready tie tureens, set in a "bainmarie," or hot water bath, for once the File is added the Gumbo must never be warmed over. Take two tablespoonfuls of the File and drop gradually into the pot of boiling hot Gumbo, stirring slowly to mix thoroughly; pour into the tureen, or tureens, if Uiere should be a second demand and serve with boiled rice. (See recipe.) The rice, it should be remarked, must be boiled so that the grains stand quite apart, and brought to the table in a separate dish, covered. Serve about two spoonfuls of rice to one plate of Gumbo.

The above recipe is for a family of six. Increased quantities in proportion as required. Never boil the Gumbo with the rice, and never add the File while the Gumbo is on the fire, as boiling after the File is added tends to make the Gumbo stringy and unfit for use, else the File is precipitated to the bottom of the pot, which is equally to be avoided.

Where families cannot afford a fowl, a good Gumbo may be made by substituting the round of the beef tor the chicken.




Turkey Gnmbo.
Gombo de Dinde.

Nothing is ever lost In a well-regulated Creole kitchen. When turkey is served one day, the remains or "left-over" are saved and made into that most excellent dish — a Turkey Gumbo. It is made In the same manner as Chicken Gumbo, only instead of the chicken, the turkey meat, black and white, that is left over, is stripped from the bones and carcass. Chop fine and add to the hot lard, and then put in the ham, cut fine into dies shapes. Proceed exactly as in the recipe above, only after adding the boiling water, throw in the bones and carcass of the turkey. At the proper time remove the carcass and bones, add the oysters, and then remove the pot and "File" the Gumbo. Serve with boiled rice. Turkev Gumbo, when made from the remains of wild turkey, has a delicious flavor.




Squirrel or Babbit Gumbo.
Gombo d'Ecureil ou de Lapin.

Skin, clean and cut up the squirrel or rabbit, as for a frlcasse. Dredge well with salt and black pepper. Cut the ham into dice shapes, and chop the onion, parsley and thyme very fine. Put the lard or butter into a deep stew pot and, when hot, put in the squirrel or rabbit. Cover closely and fry for about eight or ten minutes. Then proceed in exactly the same manner as for Chicken Gumbo; add the "File" at the time indicated, and serve with boiled Louisiana rice. (Se recipe.)




Okra Gumbo.
Gombo Fevi.

Clean and cut up the chicken. Cut the ham into small squares or dice and chop the onions, parsley and thyme. Skin the tomatoes, and chop fine, saving the juice. Wash and stem the okras and slice into thin layers of one-half inch each. Put the lard or butter into the soup kettle, and when hot add the chicken and the ham. Cover closely and let it simmer for about ten minutes. Then add the chopped onions, parsley, thyme and tomatoes, stirring frequently to prevent scorching. Then add the okras, and, when well-browned, add the juice of the tomatoes, which imparts a superior flavor. The okra is very delicate and is liable to scorch quickly if not stirred frequently. For this reason many Creole cooks fry the okra separately in a frying pan, seasoning with the pepper, Cayenne and salt, and then add to the chicken. But equally good results may be obtained with, less trouble by simply adding the okra to the frying chicken, and watching constantly to prevent scorching. The least taste of a "scorch" spoils the flavor of the gumbo. When well fried and browned, add to the boiling water tabout three quarts) and set on the back of the stove, letting it simmer gently for about an hour longer. Serve hot, with nicely boiled rice. The remains of turkey may be utilized- in the gumbo, instead of using chicken.

In families where it is not possible to procure a fowl, use a round steak of beef or veal, instead of the chicken, and chop fine. But it must always be borne In mind that the Chicken Gumbo has the best flavor. Much, however, depends upon the seasoning, which is always high, and thus cooked, the Meat Gumbo makes a most nutritious and excellent dish.




Crab Gumbo.
Gombo aux Crabes.

This is a great fast-day or "maigre" dish with the Creoles. Hard or soft-shell crabs may be used, though more frequently the former, as they are always procurable and far cheaper than the latter article, which is considered a luxury. Crabs are always sold alive. Scald the hard-shell crabs and clean according to recipe already given, "taking off the dead man's fingers" and the spongy substances, and being careful to see that the sandbags on the under part are removed. Then cut off the claws, crack and cut the body of the crab in quarters. Season nicely with salt and pepper. Put the lard into the pot, and when hot throw in the bodies and claws. Cover closely, and, after five or ten minutes, add the skinned tomatoes, chopped onions, thyme and parsley, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching. After five minutes add the okras, sliced fine, and when well-browned, without the semblance of scorching, add the bay leaf, chopped fine, and the juice of the tomatoes. Pour over about two quarts and a half of boiling water, and set back on the stove and let it simmer well for about an hour, having thrown in the pepper pod. When nearly ready to serve, season according to taste with Cayenne and added salt; pour into a tureen and serve with boiled rice. This quantity will allow two soft-shell crabs or two bodies of hard-shell crabs to each person.




Oyster Gumbo.
Gombo aux Huitres.

Put the lard into a kettle, and when hot add the flour, making a brown roux. When quite brown without burning, add the chopped onions and parsley. Fry these, and when brown, add the chopped bay leaf; pour in the hot oyster liquor and then add the hot water. ,When it comes to a good boil, just before serving, add the oysters which have been well drained, without pouring water over them, however. Cook for about three minutes longer and take off the stove and stir gradually two tablespoonfuls of File into the boiling hot gumbo. Have the tureen ready in a "bain-marie," or hot water bath, and pour in the gumbo and cover. Bring to the table immediately and serve with boiled rice, allowing about six or eight oysters to each person.

Shrimp Gumbo. Gombo aux Chevrettes. Lake shrimp are always used in making this gumbo, the river shrimp being too small and delicate. Purchase always about 100 shrimp, or a small basketful, for there are always smaller shrimp In the pile which, when cooked, amount to little or nothing. In making Shrimp Gumbo, either "Fille" or Okra may be used in the combination, but it must be borne in mind that, while the "File" is frequently used, shrimp are far more delicious for gumbo purposes when used with okra. The shrimp should always be scalded or boiled before putting in the gumbo. (See recipe for "Boiling Shrimp.")




Shrimp Gumbo File.
Gombo, File aux Chevrettes.

Scald and shell the shrimp, seasoning highly with the boiling water. Put the lard into a kettle, and, when hot, add the flour, making a brown roux. When quite brown, without a semblance of burning, add the chopped onion and the parsley. Fry these, and when brown, add the chopped bay leaf; pour in the hot oyster liquor and the hot water, or use the carefully strained liquor in which the shrimp have been boiled. When it comes to a good boil, and about five minutes before serving, add the shrimp to the gumbo and take off the stove. Then add to the boiling hot liquid about two tablespoonfuls of the "File," thickening according to taste. Season again witn salt and pepper to tasie. Serve immediately with boiled rice. (See recipe, "Boiled Rice.")




Green or Herb Gumbo.
Gomho aux Herbes.

Soak and wash the leaves thoroughly, being careful to wash each leaf separately, to be sure there lurk no insects in the folds or ridges. Then trim by taking off all the coarse midrib of the leaves, which will make the gumbo taste coarse and unpalatable. Boil the leaves together for about two hours and then parboil by adding a teaspoonful of cooking soda. Strain and chop very fine, being careful to save the .water in which they were boiled. Cut the brisket of veal and the sliced ham into small pieces and dredge with black pepper and salt, and chop one large white or red onion. Put a heaping teaspoonful of lard into a deep frying pan, and, when hot, add the chopped veal and the ham. Cover and let it simmer for about ten minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Then add the chopped onion and a little sprig of parsley chopped fine. When it comes to a rich brown, add the greens and when these are boiled add four quarts of the water in which the leaves have been boiled. Throw the finely chopped bay leaf, thyme, sweet marjoram and the red pepper pod and the clove and allspice, mashed fine. Set it hack on the stove and let it boil for about one hour longer, adding the Cayenne or "hot pepper," and you will have a regular Creole gumbo peculiar to New Orleans alone. Serve with boiled rice.




Cabbage Gumbo.
Gombo Choux.

Shred the cabbage and wash each leaf separately and thoroughly to avoid insects. Then chop the entire head very fine, into pieces about half the size of dice. Cut the steak or brisket into small squares, also the ham, and fry in the deepest kettle you have, putting the meat into the pot when the lard is very hot. When it begins to brown, add a chopped onion and the sausage, and then add the chopped cabbage, stirring and pouring in enough water to prevent it from burning. Throw in the red pepper pod and a dash of Cayenne, and salt to taste. Add a litle black pepper. Stir often and allow the ingredients to cook well, gradually adding, if necessary, a little water, and stirring frequently to prevent burning. When thoroughly cooked, make a cream sauce as follows:

Take one pint of new milk and two tablespoonfuls of flour and mix thoroughly, so as not to be lumpy. Stir this into the gumbo while boiling, and continue stirring for five minutes. Serve with boiled rice. If it is not possible to procure milk, almost the same effect may be attained by mixing the flour in cold water of the same measurement and stirring in as already given. The gumbo must not be allowed to stand on the fire after the flour has been boiled on it for five minutes, as it will burn.

CHAPTER VIII. FISH

Du Poisson.

The perfectio'n and variety of the fish found in the New Orleans market are unsurpassed. AVe have here all the fish found in the waters of the Gulf of Mexico contiguous to New Orleans, the Mis-siissippi Sound and our own lake shores. These constitute the famous salt-water varieties, such as the Sheepshead, considered by many the best fish in the Gulf; the famous Pompano and Spanish Mackerel, the dainty Croaker, the toothsome Flounder, the Bluefish, the Silver Trout, Tenderloin Trout, Speckled Trout and the Grouper. Among shell fish we have the Hard-Shell Crab, the Soft-Sh-U Crab, considered a great luxury In other parts, but always to be found in the New Orleans market; the appetizing Lake Shrimp; that delicicus bivalve, the Oyster; the Crawfish, and the famous Green Turtle, so highly prized as a dainty morsel. Again, in the rivers and bayous and small streams of Louisiana

we have many delightful varieties of fresh-water fish, such as fresh-water or Green Trout, the Sacalait and a coarse fish called the Buffalo. The River Shrimp of Louisiana are unique in the United States. They are cf a far more delicate variety than the Lake Shrimp and much prized as an article of food. Both Lake and River Shrimp are abundant in the summer time and are used alike by rich and poor.

In the following recipes the most delightful methods of preparing these fish are given, methods which may be used by all according to the purse, the co-n-ditions of the poorest having been considered as well as the wants of the wealthy. All are equally recommended, being the most perfect preparations of their kind in use among the Creole housekeepers. It might be added hers, for the benefit of any Northern housekeepers into whose hands this book may

fall, that many of the recipes may be modified according to good judgment in preparing the fish found exclusively in the Northern markets. For instance, in making the famous "Courtbouillon," which is in all respects a distinctive Creole conception, any firm fish, such as the Bass, may be used, though, of course, the flavor of the aelicious Red Snapper or Red Fish used by the Creoles to the exclusion of all other fish in making a "Courtbouillon," will be found wanting. With modificatio-ns that wi?] suggest themselves to any intelligent housekeeper, they may be used the world over in preparing fish of other varieties than those which are the delight and pride of the New Orleans J?!isn Market.

How to Tell Good Fish.

Unless perfectly fresh, fish is unfit for use. Care should be taken to see that the gills. are bright and red, the scales shining, the eyes clear and the flesh very firm and free from any unpleasant odor. In the New Orleans Fish Market the ver-dors generally clean and scale the fish, if requested to do so; but this cleaning and scaling is not to be entirely depended upon, because it is rarely thorough, only the heavier scales and entrails being removed. On coming home from the market, the fish should be Inmaediately rescaled and thoroughly cleansed and washed without soaking in water; it is far better to let the water run over the fish, for thus the smallest particle of blood is removed. This is very important in order to have a good, wholesome, savory dish. Then sprinkle the fish on the inside with salt, and set in the ice box. If this is wanting, put it in a very cool place, but it is always best for it to remain on ice until ready to use, especially during the summer.

Methods of Cooking Fish.

Visitors to New Orleans declare that nowhere is fish cooked in such palatable ways as in this old Franco-Spanish city. The experience of generations of fine old cooks has been brought to bear upon the preparation of the fish found in the Louisiana waters, and those of the Mexican Gulf, with the result that a Creole code of rules tor the cooking of even the smallest and less important fish prevails, and it is considered little short of barbarous to depart from it.

The Creole methods of boiling and baking fish are the perfection of culinary art and unlike any methed in vogue elsewhere.

Special recipes are, therefore, given for the boiling and baking of S'heepshead. Redfish, Red Snapper, as, also, for making the world-famous Creole "Co'urt-bouillon" and "Bouillabaise." These rules should be strictly observed in cooking these fish if one would bring out the best flavor of each. But there are other fish, such as Green Trout and Perch which, when simply boiled and served with appropriate sauces, are known to reserve their best flavor for this species of cooking.

The following general rules for boilmg broiling, baking, stewing and trying fish shoulud be carefully followed wherever Indicated in the recipes.




Boiled Fish.
Poisson Bouilli.

General Rules for Boiling Fish.

Clean and wash the fish thoroughly. Make a small letter "S" with knife on the back, pass twine around the body of the fish so as to secure it. Never wrap or tie in a cloth. Have ready a kettle of boiling water and throw in a sprig of onion, thyme and bay leaf, eight or ten cloves, about two dozen allspice, all-mashed tine; a bit of lemon peel and a red pepper pod. When the water has boiled long enough to have extracted the flavor of these ingredients, drop the fish in carefully, so as to avoid breaking. Let it boil about ten minutes and then take out carefully. Put into a strainer and drain quickly. Place on a bed of parsley with garnishes of lemon and serve either a Mayonnaise or Genoise Sause or Sauc-2 Hollandaise. (See recipes.)

The Creoles add a clove of garlic to the boiling water, but this is according to taste.




Broiled Fish.
Poisson Grille.

General Bules for Broiling Fish.

Always use the double broiler, made of wire, as this allows the coo'k to tuin the fish from side to side without disturbing the body during the process of broiling, and possibly breaking the flesh Clean the fish, without cutting off tho head and tail. When the fish is large split down the back; else broil whole. Always serve broiled fish whole. 'Have a clear moderate fire. Expose first the flesh side to the fire, and then the skin, as the latter browns it is liajble to burn quickly. Great care must, therefore, be taken not to burn the skin side.

Before placing on the broiler, rub the fish well with salt and pepper, mixed In a little sweet oil or a little butter oil or butter. If the fish is small, broil on a quick, clear fire; if large, as mentioned above, the fire must be moderate, or the outside of the fish will be charred before the inside is done. When the fish is done through and through, which can quickly be determined by the fish parting easily from the bone, remove the gridiron from the fire, and loosen the fms from the broiler with a knife, being careful not to break the flesh. Then place the hot dish over the fish, and, with a dexterous movement, turn the two back again, thus separating the gridiron from the fish and placing the latter in the dish. Butter well, seasoned with a little pepper and salt, it deemed necessary, and pour over a tablespoonful of chopped parsley and lemon juice. Serve with garnishes of sliced lemon and parsley, or garnishes of delicate green lettuce leaves.




BAKED FISH.
Poisson au Gratin.

General Rules for Baking Fish.

Clean the fish, cutting off the fins. Make the letter "S" on the sides. Rub well inside and out with pepper and salt. Butter a stewpan and put In one large chopped onion ahd a wineglassful of white wine. Place the fish in the pan, put in the oven and let it bake about twenty minutes, having been careful to place lumps of butter over it and basting frequently. When done carefully, lift the fish out of the pan and put it into the dish in which it is to be served. Take the gravy in which the fish has been cooked and add about a cup of oyster water, the juice of one lemon, two tablespoontuls of chopped mushrooms, one tablespoonful of minced parsley, thyme and sweet marjoram, ten allspice, one clove of garlic, a little Cayenne, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix all thoroughly over the stove, adding a little butter if the gravy adheres too much to the pan. Pour o-ver the fish, and garnish with whole mushrooms and slices of lemon laid alternately upon Croutons or dried toast, cut diamond shape.




STEWED FISH.
Poisson en Matelote.

General Rules for Stewing: Fish.

Clean the fish well and slice and pour over one cup of good, boiling vinegar. Make a roux by putting one tablespoon-ful of lard into the stewpan, and when hot add gradually two tablespoonfuls of flour rubbed smoothly. When quite brown, take the fish, which has been previously rubbed with salt and pepper, and place in the pot. Let it simmer gently a few minutes, and then add a large chopped onion, parsley, one clove of garlic, one sprig of thyme, a bay leaf, two blades of mace and eight or ten allspice. Let these brown and cover with water sufficient to prevent burning. Put the fish on a slow fire to stew, and when half done, add a little Cayenne, and, if possible, add a pint or glass of Port wine. When done, place the fish in a dish, pour the gravy over it, and garnish with Croutons, with alternate slices of lemon and prepared horseradish.




FRIED FISH.
Poissons Frits.

General Rules for Frying Fish.

Certain of the fish of the Mexican Gulf are always best when fried. Of these are the toothsome Croakers, the delicate Sacalait and Patassas, and also the Speckled Trout when served in tenderloin steaks.The secret of good frying lies in having the lard heated just to the prO'per point. If the fish is placed in the boiling lard. It is liable to burn quickly without being cooked through and through. If placed simply in the well-heated lard. It absorbs the fat and is delicate and tender and there is no tax upon the digestive organs. Always have sufficient lard in the pan to fry all the fish that is on hand, and never add a lump of cold lard to the heated substance. This checks the cooking of the fish and spoils the taste. If the lard spits and crackles, that is no evidence of boiling. It only means that the lard is throwing off drops of moisture that have crept in. Boiling lard is perfectly still until it begins t smoke, and then it is in danger of burning and must be removed from the fire. To test the lard, drop In a piece of bread. If It begins to color, the lard Is ready for frying. When the fish is fried, skim It out, draining off all the fat. Butter is never used in frying fish, as it burns quickly.




A Short Resume of the Way in Which Fish of the New Orleans Market should Always Be Cooked.

Sheepshead may be boiled, broiled or baked, and is good with any sauce.

Redflsh is principally used in making "Courtboulllon," or It Is boiled and served with an HoUandaise Sauce, or baked.

Red Snapper should always be boilea or baked. It is delightful served a la Chambard, but It Is best a la Creole.

Grouper Is served In the same way as Red Snapper.

Flounder should always be baked a la Nouvelle Orleans, or a la Normande,or with a white wine sauce as in Baked Sheepshead, or in the famous recipe "Sole a la Orly."(See recipe )

Pompano should always be broiled and served with Sauce a la Maitre d Hotel.

Spanish Mackerel should always be broiled in the same manner as Pompano, and served with Sauce a la Maitre d'lHotel.

Bluefish should be cooked and served in the same manner as Pompano and Spanish Mackerel.

Speckled Trout is generally broiled and served in tenderloin, or a Tenderloin Trout, with Sauce a la Tartare.

Green Trout and Perch should be broiled and served with a Sauce a la Maitre d'Hotel, or else boiled and served with a Sauce Genoise, or an HoUandaisa or Drawn Butter Sauce.

Croakers are fried and served with garnish of parsley or lemon.

Patassas, Sacalait and other small fish are served in the same manner as Croakers.

Soft-Shell Crabs may be fried in the same manner as Croakers, or broiled and served on toast.

Shrimp are generally boiled, witQ plenty of seasoning. The River Shrimp are always served as boiled, shells and all, but the Lake Shrimp enter into many combinations in cooking.

Hard-Shell Crabs may be stuffed, stewed, fried and ntade into Gumbo.

All left-over broiled, baked or boiled fish should be utilized in making salads, croquettes, etc.

Oysters are served in almost every conceivable way, and enter into the most delightful combinations in cooking.

A fish weighing three pounds, or smail fish in quantity sufficient to make three pounds (uncooked) will serve six persons.




THE SHEEPSHEAD.
Casburgot.

Of all the fish found in the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the Sheepshead is perhaps the most to be commended for frequent household use, being susceptible of a far greater variety of modes of preparation than any other fish, the flesh being of a less richer fiber than the Red-fish, Red Snapper, Pompano and Spanish Mackerel, it may be used from day to day without injury to the stomach. It is good in almost any form and may be boiled, baked or broiled, and served with almost any sauce.




Boiled Sheepshead.
Casburgot Bouilli.

Clean and skin the Frogs; scald well in boiling lemon juice and salt. Dry with a clean towel. Mix thoroughly a little black pepper, salt and olive oil, or butter melted, and rub the Frogs thoroughly, rolling them over and over. Take out and put on a double wire broiler, being careful to turn frequently to prevent scorching. When done, place in platter of delicate lettuce leaves or parsley and garnish with sliced lemons and olives.



Stewed Frogs.
Grenouilles en Fricassee.

Take the legs of one dozen Frogs and prepare the same as for frying. Take a tablespoonful of butter and put in a frying pan. When it begins to melt, add a tablespoonful of flour and stir constantly. When it begins to brown nicely, add a half pint of water and a pint of oyster water. Throw in the Frog legs as it begins to boil, and add salt and pepper, a little Cayenne, a sprig of thyme, bay leaf and sweet marjoram, eight or ten allspice, one clove. Let it simmer about fifteen minutes and take off the fire. (Have ready the yolk of a beaten egg, and add, blending well, and serve immediately with garnishes of Croutons, and fried in a little butter, with oysters laid upon them.



CHAPTER IX. SHELL FISH.

Des Crustaches.

Under this heading are classed the shell fish found in our Louisiana waters and those of the Mississippi Sound adjacent to New Orleans. Oysters, Shrimp, Crabs, and Crawfish and the famous Green Turtle — these are the delightful varieties that are common articles of food among the people and which are to be had for the fishing.

That delicious bivalve, the Oyster, has its home among us. Everyone who has visited New Orleans in winter has noted the exceptionally palatable oysters that are sold in every restaurant and by the numerous small vendors on almost every other corner or so throughout the lower section of the city. In the cafes, the hotels, the oyster saloons, they are served in every conceivable style known to epicures and caterers. The oyster beds adjacent to New Orleans send to our markets the famous Bayou Cook and Barataria Oysters, eagerly sought and highly prized for exquisite flavor and unsurpassed in quality. The Mississippi Sound is well-nigh stocked with oysters from one end to the other, and millions of cans are shipped yearly from Biloxi and other points to every point of the United States. And so with our celebrated Lake and River Shrimp. No oysters are caught in the Mississippi Sound between May and September,- because they are somewhat milky and considered unfit for use, and so strict are the laws governing the uses of dredges in the Sound that a watchman accompanies each dredge-boat to see that no attempt is made to use the dredge in less than fourteen feet of water, the idea being that dredges shall not be used where the water is sufficiently shallow to admit of their being dug of tongs. Thus are preserved, in all their splendid flavor and almost inexhaustible supply, our oyster beds, and while the yearly increase in consumption of this delicious bivalve has tended to alarm scientists and to awaken an interest in the question as to whether the American oyster beds may not likely become depleted, scientists acquainted with the oyster beds on our Gulf coast, say that for domestic purposes there are sufficient oysters to supply the United States. The railroad facilities for handling oysters can hardly; be improved, and fresh and fine and ready to be eaten, they arrive in our markets. The Bayou Cook and Barataria Oysters are with us all summer, and New Orleans is the acknowledged commercial center of the oyster trade on the Gulf coast.

New Orleans opened the eyes of the United States to the possibilities of the oyster in every variety and form of cooking. Her chefs evolved the most dainty and palatable ways of preparing them, and while raw oysters remained practically an unknown quantity in aristocratic centers in other states of the Union, the Creoles, quick to discover and apply, placed the raw oyster on their table as one of the greatest delicacies that could be offered the most fastidious appetite. In the following recipes are given the most delightful manner of serving:

OYSTERS.

Huitres a la Creole.

There has already been given, in the chapter devoted to soups, the several ways that the Creoles have of preparing oysters in this style. (See Oyster Soups.) In a general treatment of oysters, it presents, first, that famous but exceptionally palatable manner in which oysters can be eaten at all hours, day or night, without overloading the stomach or causing the least symptom of indigestion, viz:



Baw Oysters on Half Shell.
Huitres en Coquilles.

Allow six oysters to each person where the bivalve is used to begin the dinner or breakfast. Have the oysters opened in their shell and remove one-half of the shell. Drain the water from the oyster shell, without disturbing the oyster, and place in plates, with cracked ice, sprinkled over with a quarter of a sliced lemon in the center of the plate. Serve with black pepper and Cayenne, if desired, or the famous Maunsell White, sold in all New Orleans oyster saloons. A half cup is given as "lagniappe" by the dealers to their customers.

Dainty rolls of fresh butter and oyster crackers are served with raw oysters.



Oysters Served in a Block of Ice.
Huitres sur la Glace.

This is one of the prettiest ways of serving oysters at a dinner or luncheon, as well as one of the most recherche. Have your dealer send a square block of ice of the size desired and make a hollow in the center of the block by placing a flat-iron on the top, scooping out with the iron the shape desired. Then place a folded napkin on a platter and stand the block of ice upon it. Pepper the oysters nicely with Cayenne and black pepper, and place in the ice. Then take sprigs of parsley and decorate the platter, placing between decorated radishes, and alternate slices of lemon, and serve the oysters with lemon cut in quarters. The effect of this decoration is very charming. Smilax may be substituted for the parsley or mixed with it. The cavity should be square and deep, leaving walls of ice about two inches in thickness.



Broiled Oysters.
Huitres sur le Gril.