Position and Arrangement - Cleaning-Butter, Milk, Bacon, Lard, Bread, Cheese, Fresh Eggs - To store Eggs - To store Butter - Potatoes and Root Vegetables - Onions - Apples - Choice of Apples - Pears - Lemons - Vegetable Rack.
The larder should be at a distance from the kitchen range and hot-water pipes, and should have a northerly aspect to ensure coolness and absence of bright sunshine; it should, however, be dry, light, well ventilated and scrupulously clean. The ceiling should be limewashed frequently, the walls if not tiled being treated in the same manner. Slate shelves are preferable to wood; but in any case there should be a slate slab on which the butter and milk may be placed, as these articles are easily contaminated. If the sun's rays strike on the window a cloth kept well moistened should be fastened over it in such a way that the air is not excluded. A pail of cold water standing on the floor also lowers the temperature.
No brushing should take place near food; the shelves should be wiped daily with a damp cloth to gather up the dust, and scrubbed (as well as the floor) with carbolic soap weekly, care being taken that a dry day be chosen. The window should be open constantly; in fact, perforated zinc gauze is better than glass, as fresh air can thus be always admitted. The upper part of the door should also be formed of this material, to ensure a through draught. Hooks for hanging meat should be placed in the ceiling in line with this draught. The floor, if possible, should be of stone. The mistress should inspect the larder daily, to see that all odds and ends of food are utilized, and that none are overlooked and allowed to become sour. Wire covers should be provided for covering cold meats, etc., butter and milk being covered with fine muslin; the latter should be kept in a shallow milk-bowl, as it remains sweet longer than in a jug. An ice chest or refrigerator, costing £5 for a small size, is a great convenience and an economy.
In hot weather butter may be placed in a basin which is allowed to stand in a larger bowl of cold water containing saltpetre, the ends of the muslin covering resting in this so that the muslin is always damp. An inverted unglazed flowerpot placed in a soup plate containing water, and covered with a wet cloth sufficiently large to rest in the water, forms an admirable receptacle for butter or lard in hot weather.
BACON AND HAM should be tied up in brown paper, and suspended from the ceiling.
LARD should be covered closely, and kept in a crock or on a plate covered with a basin.
BREAD should be kept in a closely covered earthenware bread-pan, which has a hole in the lid for ventilation. Daily it must be wiped out to prevent it becoming musty ; weekly it must be washed and well dried.