Cooper's gelatine costs eight cents a box, holding two ounces. Unless perfectly transparent jelly, without clarifying, is required, it serves as well as the more expensive brands. Cox's gelatine costs fifteen cents a box, containing one and one half ounces. It is clear, and needs only to be strained to make a transparent jelly.
Isinglass comes in thin sheets, is very clear, and makes a brilliant jelly. It costs ten cents an ounce, and there are eight and one half sheets of the white, thirteen sheets of the red, to an ounce.
For dissolving and proportions, see page 412.
Unsweetened chocolate costs about thirty-eight cents a pound. It is usually divided into squares weighing one ounce each. Sweetened chocolate costs about fifty cents per pound, and is usually divided into bars, each weighing a little less than one and a quarter ounces.
Break the chocolate into pieces, and put them into a dry pan on the fire, where the heat is moderate. The chocolate melts quickly, and must be carefully watched, or it will burn. Add a few spoonfuls of milk to melted chocolate to dissolve it before adding it to custards.
Do not let a particle of the yolk get into the whites. Add a little salt, and they will whip more quickly. The "daisy beater," with the handle bent, as shown in illustration, is an excellent one for whipping eggs. Hold it flat, and whip with an upward motion.
One tablespoonful of powdered sugar to the white of one egg is the right proportion for sweetening meringue. Add but one spoonful of sugar at a time, place it on the side of the dish, and beat it in gradually from below. This will destroy the air-cells less, and leave the egg lighter than sprinkling the sugar over the top.
To whip cream, see page 408.
Milk is scalded when the water in the outside double kettle boils.
Raisins are more easily stoned if soaked a few minutes. Roll raisins and currants in flour before adding them to cake or puddings. If added the last thing they will then hold in place, and not sink to the bottom.
Use arrowroot to thicken fruit juices. It cooks perfectly clear, and does not destroy the color or cloud the transparency of the fruit.
Where essences or wine flavorings are used they are put in the last thing, and after the mixture is cooked. For cold desserts the mixture should be partly or entirely cold before adding them.
In molding mixtures be careful that bubbles of air do not form on the sides of the molds, as they leave holes and destroy the smoothness and beauty of the form. This can be prevented by pouring the mixture very slowly into the center of the tin.