Sometimes, where great economy must be practised, and the sum allowed for the entire meal for three people is only sixty cents, it is difficult to remember just such accessories in the way of vegetables as are as inexpensive in their way as the meat, and for this reason the following very modest menus are offered as samples of what can be accomplished in the way of very inexpensive dinners.
This is an excellent winter dinner.
Buy for four persons one pound or one and a quarter pounds of scrag of mutton; chop it into pieces, and put it into an iron pot with one quart of water, one large onion cut into slices, and a small cupful of pearl barley. Let it simmer for two hours, adding a little water if it becomes too thick. Serve boiling hot with the mutton in it.
This is very inexpensive. The scrag of mutton costs from eight to ten cents; the barley is eight cents a pound - about two cents' worth is sufficient; the onion may be reckoned as one cent. It can be made a little more costly by buying what is called the best end of the neck. Six or eight chops would weigh the pound and a quarter required, and would cost perhaps twelve to fourteen cents. The chops look somewhat better than the chopped-up scrag, but the nourishing quality is as good in the latter.
Choose large potatoes, and with a scoop cut out small balls; boil these and serve them sprinkled with chopped parsley.
Cut into small dice, boil until tender, throw away the water, and serve with a white sauce made of milk, flour, and a teaspoonful of butter. Two turnips are sufficient for a dish.
Apples are cheap early in the winter. Three or four at a cent apiece should be pared and cored, and placed in a low baking-dish with two dessertspoonfuls of tapioca, and enough water to cover the whole. Bake in a slow oven. By soaking the tapioca over night a less quantity will do, say, one and a quarter spoonfuls.
N. B. - Both sago and tapioca are very economical because, when soaked over night, they swell greatly, and they can both be cooked with water, instead of milk, with good results.
Buy one and a quarter pounds of leg of veal at ten cents a pound; cut the meat into dice, and place it in a stew-pan with a piece of mace and a pint of milk. Place it back of the fire so that it will not burn, and thicken it before serving with a teaspoonful of flour.
Bake four large potatoes until nearly done; then cut in half, remove the insides, beat them up with milk, replace in the skins, and serve in a pyramid.
Cut a cabbage into thin strips as if for salad; boil it in salted water, but every time the water comes to the boiling point throw it away for three successive times; after the third boiling use milk instead of water, and add a little nutmeg. If nicely cooked in this way, cabbage is as palatable and as digestible as cauliflower.