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OYSTER PATTIES (am entree).
289. Ingredients.—2 dozen oysters, 2 oz. butter, 3 tablespoonfuls of cream, a little lemon-juice, 1 blade of pounded mace; cayenne to taste.
Mode.—Scald the oysters in their own liquor, heard them, and cut each one into 3 pieces. Put the butter into a stewpan, dredge in sufficient flour to dry it up; add the strained oyster-liquor with the other ingredients; put in the oysters, and let them heat gradually, but not boil fast. Make the patty-cases as directed for lobster patties, No. 277: fill with the oyster mixture, and replace the covers.
Time.—2 minutes for the oysters to simmer in the mixture.
Average cost, exclusive of the patty-cases, Is. id.
Seasonable from September to April.
The Oystkb Fisheby.—The oyster fishery in Britain is esteemed of so much importance, that it is regulated by a Court of Admiralty. In the month of May, the fishermen are allowed to take the oysters, in order to separate the spawn from the clutch, the latter of which is thrown in again, to preserve the bed for the future. After this month, it is felony to carry away the clutch, and otherwise punishable to take any oysters, between the shells of which, when closed, a shilling will rattle.
TO KEEP OYSTERS.
290. Put them in a tub, and cover them with salt and water. Let them remain for 12 hours, when they are to be taken out, and allowed to stand for another 12 hours without water. If left without water every alternate 12 hours, they will be much better than if constantly kept in it. Never put the same water twice to them.
OYSTERS FRIED IN BATTER.
291. Ingredients.—# pint of oysters, 2 eggs, 4 pint of milk, sufficient flour to make the batter; pepper and salt to taste; when liked, a little nutmeg; hot lard.
Mode.—Scald the oysters in their own liquor, beard them, and lay them on a cloth, to drain thoroughly. Break the eggs into a basin, mix the flour with them, add the milk gradually, with nutmeg and seasoning, and put the oysters in the batter. Make some lard hot in a deep frying-pan, put in the oysters, one at a time; when done, take them up with a sharp-pointed skewer, and dish them on a napkin. Fried oysters are frequently used for garnishing boiled fish, and then a few bread crumbs should be added to the flour.
Time.—5 or 6 minutes. Average cost for this quantity, Is. lOd.
Seasonable from September to April.
Sufficient for 3 persons.
Excellence Of The English Oyster.—The French assert that the English oysters, which are esteemed the best in Europe, were originally procured from Cancalle Bay, near St. Malo; but they assign no proof for this. It is a fact, however, that the oysters eaten in ancient Rome were nourished in the channel which then parted the Isle of Thanet from England, and which has since been filled up, and converted into meadows.
292. Ingredients.—4 lb. of salt to each gallon of water. Mode.—Scale the fish, take out the gills and clean it thoroughly;
lay it in boiling water, salted as above, and simmer gently for 10 minutes. If the fish is very large, longer time must be allowed.' Garnish with parsley, and serve with plain melted butter, or Dutch sauce. Perch do not preserve so good a flavour when stewed as when dressed in any other way. Time.—Middling-sized perch, J hour. Seasonable from September to November.
Note.—Tench may be boiled the same way, and served with the same sauce.
The Perch.—This is one of the best, as it is one of the most common, of OHr fresh-water fishes, and is found in nearly all the lakes and rivers in Britain and Ireland, as well as through the whole of Europe within the temperate zone. It is extremely voracious, and it has the peculiarity of being gregarious, which is contrary to the nature of all fresh-water fishes of prey. The best season to angle for it is from the beginning The speech. of May to the middle of July. Large numbers of
this fish are bred in the Hampton Court and Bushy Park ponds, all of which are well supplied with running water and with plenty of food; yet they rarely attain a large size. In the Regent's Park they are also very numerous; but are seldom heavier than three quarters of a pound.
293. Ingredients.—Egg and bread crumbs, hot lard.
Mode.—Scale and clean the fish, brush it over with egg, and cover with bread crumbs. Have ready some boiling lard; put the fish in, and fry a nice brown. Serve with plain melted butter or anchovy sauce.
lute..--. 10 minutes.
Seasonable from September to November.
Note.—Fry tench in the same way.
BEECH STEWED WITH WINE.
294. Ingredients.—Equal quantities of stock No. 105 and sherry, 1 bay-leaf, 1 clove of garlic, a small bunch of parsley, 2 cloves, salt to taste; thickening of butter and flour, pepper, grated nutmeg, 1 teaspoonful of anchovy sauce.
Mode.—Scale the fish and take out the gills, and clean them
thoroughly; lay them in a stewpan with sufficient stock and sherry just to cover them. Put in the hay-leaf, garlic, parsley, cloves, and salt, and simmer till tender. When done, take out the fish, strain the liquor, add a thickening of butter and flour, the pepper, nutmeg, and the anchovy sauce, and stir it over the fire until somewhat reduced, when pour over the fish, and serve.
Time.—About 20 minutes.
Seasonable from September to November.
395. Ingredients.—i lb. of salt to each gallon of water; a little vinegar.
Mode.— Scale and clean the pike, and fasten the tail in its mouth by means of a skewer. Lay it in cold water, and when it boils, throw in the salt and vinegar. The time for boiling depends, of course, on the size of the fish; but a middling-sized pike will take about 5 an hour. Serve with Dutch or anchovy sauce, and plain melted butter.
Time.—According to size, \ to 1 hour.—Average cost. Seldom bought.
Seasonable from September to March.
The Fijlb.—This fish is, on account of its voracity, termed the fresh-water shark, and is abundant in most of the European lakes, especially those of the northern parts. It grows to an immense size, some attaining to the measure of eight feet, in Lapland and Russia. The smaller lakes, of this country and Ireland, vary in the kinds of fish they produce; some affording trout, others pike; and so on. Where these happen to be together, however, the trout soon becomes extinct. "Within a short distance of Castlebar," says a writer on sports, "there is the small bog-lake called Derreens. Ten years ago it was celebrated for its numerous well-sized trouts. Accidentally pike effected a passage into the lake from the Minola river, and now the trouts are extinct, or, at least, none of them are caught or seen. Previous to the intrusion of the_ pikes, half a dozen trouts would be killed in an evening in Derreens, whose collective weight often amounted to twenty pounds." As an eatiug fish, the pike is in general dry. *
296. Ingredients.—1 or 2 pike, a nice delicate stuffing (see Forcemeats), 1 egg, bread crumbs, 5 lb. butter.
Mode.—Scale the fish, take out the gills, wash, and wipe it thoroughly dry; stuff it with forcemeat, sew it up, and fasten the tail in the mouth by means of a skewer; brush it over with egg, sprinkle with bread crumbs, and baste with butter, before putting it in the oven, which must be well heated. When the pike is of a^ice brown colour, cover it with buttered paper, as the outside would become too dry. If 2 are dressed, a little variety may be made by making one of