Where sugar is made by slaves, the little children feed constantly on it, and grow fat and healthy. But they are nearly naked, live out-of-doors, exercise constantly, and have nothing to do but play. Thus their lungs and skin gain the healthful and purifying action of the air and the sun, and the excess of carbonaceous food is rendered harmless. But for those whose skin never. meets the sun, rarely meets the air, and only now and then some water, a very different regimen is needful. Sugar, molasses, butter, and fats are chiefly carbonaceous, and therefore demand a large supply of oxygen through lungs and skin. And yet our custom is to use fine flour, which is chiefly carbon; butter and cream, chiefly carbon; sweet cakes, chiefly carbon; sweetmeats and candy, chiefly carbon; and worst of all, pie-crusts, chiefly carbon, and the most difficult of all food for digestion.
But the love for sweet food is common to all, and demands gratification. All that is required is moderation and temperance. For these reasons, a large supply is here provided of cakes and puddings, which are not rich, and yet are as highly relished as richer food. As pies are the most un-healthful of all food, some instruction and but few recipes are given, lest, if entirely omitted, the book would not be read so widely, and other more unhealthful ones be used.
The puddings here offered afford a great variety for desserts, are made with far less labor than pies, and are both more economical and more healthful. They also can be made more ornamental and attractive in appearance, and equally good to the taste. It is hoped, therefore, that the conscientious housekeeper will not tempt her family to eat unhealthful food when such an abundance is offered that is at once economical of labor, time, expense, and health. The first recipe for pudding can be varied in many ways, and has the advantage which heretofore has recommended pies, namely, that several can be made at once, and kept on hand as equally good either cold or warmed over. It is also economical and convenient, as not requiring eggs or milk.
Soak a tea-cup of tapioca and a tea-spoonful of salt in three tumblerfuls of warm, not hot, water for an hour or two, till softened. Take away the skins and cores of apples without dividing them, put them in the dish with sugar in the holes, and spice if the apples are without flavor: not otherwise. Add a cup of water, and bake till the apples are softened, turning them to prevent drying, and then pour over the tapioca, and bake a long time, till all looks a brownish yellow. Eat with a hard sauce. Do not fail to bake a long time.
This can be extensively varied by mixing chopped apples, or quinces, or oranges, or peaches, or any kind of berries with the tapioca; and then sugar must be added according to the acid of the fruit, though some would prefer it omitted when the sauce is used.
The beauty may be increased by a cover of sugar beaten into the whites of eggs, and then turned to a yellow in the oven. Several such puddings can be made at once, kept in a cool place, and when wanted warmed over; many relish it better when very cold. Sago can be used instead of tapioca. When no sago or tapioca are at hand, the following recipe for flour pudding may be used, baking a long time: