Pare, quarter, and core some mellow, tart apples. Place in a bake dish, and cover them so as to keep in all the steam. Let them bake until perfectly tender. Remove from the oven, and lay them in a glass fruit dish, dusting them with pulverized sugar as they are put in.
Since self-sealing cans have become so cheap, there is little demand for dried fruits, although a change is often a luxury. In drying fruit or sweet corn, the chief thing is to evaporate as quickly as possible the water that they contain, and keep them from being exposed to the dust and insects. An evaporator is the best for drying fruits; but if that can not be obtained, the oven is the next best thing. Care should be taken, however, not to get the oven too hot. The doors should be left open, to allow the steam to escape. The practise of drying fruit in the sun is not to be recommended. The sun fades the fruit, and when dried in this way, it has lost its peculiar flavor, besides having been exposed to flies and other insects, as well as to the germ-laden dust.
Before cooking dried fruit, the process of drying must be undone as far as possible, bringing the fruit back to its original condition. This may be done by soaking the fruit in water over-night, and then cooking in the same water, letting it simmer slowly; or it may be steamed in a steam-cooker until it is perfectly tender. Care should be taken to keep the fruit in as natural a condition as possible.
Look over and wash well; soak overnight, and cook in the same water in which they were soaked. Simmer gently for three or four hours. When tender, lift from the stew-pan, with a silver fork, sifting pulverized sugar over the pieces. Put into individual sauce-dishes.
The sweet California prunes are the best. Wash well, and soak in plenty of water overnight. Put them in a granite stew-pan, and let simmer gently for half a day. By cooking them a long time, the sweetness of the fruit is brought out, making sugar unnecessary.
Cook the prunes as in the preceding recipe, and remove the skins and pits by sifting through a colander. The prune juice should be drained off before sifting, as the puree should be quite thick. If it is too thin, heat it hot, and then pour it over the white of an egg which has been beaten to a very stiff froth, beating all the time the puree is being poured over it. The hot puree will cook the egg sufficiently.
Wash in boiling water and then soak in cold water overnight 1 cup of prunes. In the morning cook in a steam-cooker two or three hours, when they will be perfectly tender. They should have barely enough water to cover them when placed in the steamer. When cool, sift through a colander, and put where it will get very cold. Beat the whites of three eggs very stiff and carefully fold into the sifted prunes, pour into a pudding dish, and bake in a very quick oven just long enough for the egg to set. This may be served either hot or cold.
Cook the apples as directed in recipe for dried apples, and at the same time cook half as many raisins, letting them cook very slowly. When the apples are nearly done, put in the raisins, and let them simmer together for half an hour. The raisins will sweeten the apples sufficiently.
The juice of fruit is much easier to digest than the fruit in its entirety; as the seeds, skins, and woody tissues, which are so irritating to the weak stomach, are rejected. Fruit juice can be used in many ways : as a beverage; as a substitute for cream, when used with grains; or in the form of jelly (without sugar).
The juice, or sweet wine, can be obtained from all juicy fruits.