Southern Way Of Cooking Rice

Wash the rice thoroughly through several waters, using the hand. Put it into a saucepan with a pint of water and a half teaspoonful of salt to each cupful of rice. Let it boil covered until the water has boiled away; then draw it to the side of the range, open the cover a little, and let it steam until thoroughly dry. Do not touch the rice while it is cooking. This receipt is furnished by a Southern negro cook.

Gumbo File

(A New Orleans Dish)

50 oysters.

1 fowl cut into pieces.

pound of veal cut into pieces.

pound of ham cut into pieces.

3 tablespoonfuls of tomato.

1 tablespoonful of drippings.

2 onions.

teaspoonful of salt.

teaspoonful of pepper.

teaspoonful of powdered thyme.

teaspoonful of marjoram.

Dash of cayenne.

2 tablespoonfuls of sassafras powder.

Wash well the outside of a fowl (see page 180), and cut it into pieces. Cut the veal and the ham into small pieces, and dredge all of them well with flour.

Put the onions, sliced, into a pot or large saucepan with one tablespoonful of fat or drippings, and fry until brown; then add the pieces of chicken, veal, and ham. Turn them often, so all will brown evenly; this will take about twenty minutes. When the meat is browned, add two quarts of hot water; cover the pot, and let simmer for two hours. After the first hour add the salt, pepper, thyme, marjoram, and tomatoes. At the end of two hours, if the meat is tender, add the oysters and the oyster juice, and let remain on the fire only long enough to ruffle the gills of the oysters. Take from the fire, and add two tablespoonfuls of sassafras powder, and stir until a little thickened (do not add the sassafras until the pot is removed from the fire).

Serve in a meat-dish with a border of boiled rice. This is a dish much used in the South. It may be served as a chowder, with the meat and liquor together, or may be served separately, using the liquor as a soup.

Powdered sassafras leaves may be obtained at the grocer's.

Chicken Gumbo

Cut a chicken into pieces; roll the pieces in flour; put them into a pot with a few slices of salt pork and one sliced onion. Saute them a light brown; then add four quarts of hot water, and simmer it until the chicken is nearly cooked; then add two slices of boiled ham, two quarts of sliced okra, one half can of tomatoes, and one pod of red pepper. Continue to cook until everything is tender. Season with salt and pepper, and just before serving stir in one teaspoonful of sassafras powder. If sassafras twigs can be had they are better than the powder, and should be added with the vegetables.

This is a favorite Southern dish. It resembles a chowder, and is so hearty as to almost constitute a dinner in itself.