The Cravings of the human palate are changing very essentially. Once, nuts were regarded as a luxury, a dainty only to be used between meals, or something for the children on extra occasions; but to-day they are looked upon as an assistant to the forces of nature in imparting nutriment. They produce heat and form flesh. They take the place of meat and are subject to no adulterations. They yield bounteously under cultivation and have become one of the most important articles of commerce.
By some scientists they are regarded as superior to meat and the fact that they can be used in so many forms in the culinary department recommends them to the housewife who is always ready to extend her repertoire of choice foods.
The chestnut was a prominent article of food among the ancients, and is to-day made into bread in many countries. The peasantry of the south of France make a daily dish of boiled chestnuts and milk and thrive upon it.
Flour made from the peanut is found to be more nutritious than that ground from any of the cereals; butter made from it (peanut butter) is also becoming a staple article of commerce and is used by vegetarians instead of butter made from cow's milk.
It is certain that a gain in flesh is observed where nuts compose the main article of diet. It is said by some that nuts are heavy and clog the system. The reason for this complaint is that they are usually eaten after a meal that is already too heavy. Another reason, some people cannot thoroughly masticate them. This brings into prominence their value when they are ground and cooked, and the fact that they afford a nearly perfect substitute for animal foods. There are several delicious products formed from nuts which can be procured at all the groceries. We append a few of the best ones with recipes for their preparation.
Steam one-half cupful of well-washed rice in one cupful of water with one-fourth teaspoonful of salt for one hour or until tender. Add to this an equal bulk of dry simmered protose, one egg and salt to taste; shape, roll in fine bread-crumbs; bake twenty minutes in a moderate oven. If liked one tablespoonful of chopped parsley or celery may be added before shaping. Protose as it comes from the can chopped may be used if preferred. H. F. L.
Put large, sound nuts into an earthen pan, and pour over them as much cold water slightly salted as will cover them. Leave them until the next day and rub them dry before using them. They make a good dessert. E. F. I.
Rub two slightly rounded tablespoonfuls of peanut or almond butter smooth with two-thirds of a cupful of water (the half-pint cupful sold in stores), according to directions for preparing the nut butter for bread Let this cream boil up for a moment over the fire. Remove from the stove, add one-half teaspoonful of salt and two tablespoonfuls of lemon-juice. Cool, and it is ready for use. If too thick, it may be thinned with a little lemon juice or water. More salt and lemon juice may be added if desired.
Pistachio nuts salted are so expensive an item, but such a picturesque addition to the table that one should learn how to prepare them at home. Take a cupful of the shelled nuts, blanch them and after removing the skins stir in some salt and a little sweet oil - perhaps a tablespoonful. Let the nuts stand for one-half hour, then put them in an oven to become crisp, but not too brown. They should be served in a tinted china dish that harmonizes with the color of the nuts, or in a bonbon basket of filigree silver. A few chopped pistachios scattered thickly over a charlotte russe add to the appearance and flavor of the dessert. A. C. F.
Cream two large spoonfuls of Brazil nuts with warm water, then stir in gradually nearly a pint of hot water. Mix in one-half cupful of tomato that has been stewed and strained. Boil it up once and thicken with a tablespoonful of flour and cook till done - about six minutes.
E. G. Don.
Put thin slices of protose into a three-quart basin in layers, with six tablespoonfuls of finely sliced celery, salt, and a slight dredging of flour until one-half or two-thirds full. Cover well with water and bake from one-half hour to one hour. Then spread over it the following corn pudding, sprinkle lightly with fine crumbs and bake until a delicate brown over the top. - Mrs. J. M. C.
Two cans of sweet corn rubbed through a colander, three well-beaten eggs, one cupful of milk; salt to taste. Mrs. J. M. C.
A combination of carefully blanched, thoroughly cooked, and sterilized nut meats with predigested cereals, put up in jars, and in tablets resembling caramels. Delicate as a confection and makes fat and blood with extraordinary rapidity. Ready to eat at once. E. F. C.
A delicious food beverage. It contains no chocolate, cocoa, tea, coffee, glucose, sugar, cream, or milk, but is a pure product of tropical fruits and nuts. It can be used in any way in which cocoa or chocolate is employed. C. A. L.
A preparation similar to malted nuts in composition but treated in such a manner as to produce a crisp, crusty mass with a rich nutty flavor.
Veritably the daintiest and most delicious food product ever discovered.
It melts in the mouth, comforts the stomach, and makes fat and blood with great rapidity. One-half pound to a pound per day is a not uncommon gain in weight on using. Ambrosia dissolves in hot or cold water.
P. E. F.