The potatoes must be of equal size. Put them into a hot oven and bake until tender. The excellence of baked potatoes depends upon their being served immediately when they are just baked enough. A moment underdone, and they are indigestible and worthless; a moment overdone, and they have be-gun to dry. It requires about an hour to bake a large potato. This is a favorite way of cooking potatoes for lunch or tea.
The following is an exceedingly nice way of serving baked potatoes. Bake potatoes of equal size, and when done, and still hot, cut off: a small piece from each potato; scoop out care-fully the inside, leaving the skin unbroken; mash the potato well, seasoning it with plenty of butter, pep-per, and salt; return it with a spoon to the potato skin, allowing it to protrude about an inch above the skin. When enough skins are filled, use a fork or knife to make rough the potato which projects above the skin; put all into the oven a minute to color the tops. It is better, perhaps, to color them with a salamander. They will have the appearance of baked potatoes burst open.
Pare potatoes of equal size, and put them into the oven in the same pan in which the beef is baked. Every time the beef is basted, the potatoes should be basted also. Serve them around the beef.
Peel the potatoes, and with a vegetable-cutter (three-fourths of an inch in diameter) cut as many little balls as you can from each potato; throw these balls into boiling - hot lard, and fry (about five minutes) until done, when they must be skimmed out immediately. It is more convenient to fry them in a wire-basket (see page 53). Sprinkle salt over them as soon as done. It is a very good way of cooking potatoes as a garnish for beefsteak or game. The cuttings of the potatoes left after taking out the balls can be boiled and mashed. These potatoes must be served when done, or the crusts will lose their crispness.
Fried potatoes must absolutely be served the moment they corne from the fire. Nothing deteriorates more by getting cold or keeping than fried potatoes (with the exception of Saratoga fried potatoes, which are served cold). They may be sliced rather thin, and sautÚd in a little hot butter, pepper, and salt. The French usually cut potatoes into little rhomboidal lengths, and throw them into boiling lard, or clarified grease (see page 44).
The fat should be quite hot, and the pieces of potato skim-med out the moment they receive a delicate color, and placed on a sieve by the side of the fire. Sprinkle over salt, and serve them in a hot dish.
Ingredients: Half a pound of cold boiled potatoes, two ounces of onion, a heaping tea-spoonful of minced parsley, butter the size of an egg.
Slice the cold boiled potatoes. Put the butter into a sauce-pan, and when hot throw in the onion (minced), which fry to a light color; add the sliced potatoes, which turn until they are thoroughly hot, and of light color also; then mix in the minced parsley, and serve immediately while they are quite hot. The potato-slices should be merely moistened with the butter dress-
Add to four or five mashed potatoes (made according to re-ceipt, see page 191) a little nutmeg, Cayenne pepper, and the beaten yolk of one egg. Beat the potatoes with a fork; roll them into little balls, which roll in egg and cracker-crumbs, and fry them in a wire-basket in boiling lard. For a change, a little minced parsley might be added.
At the New York Cooking-school the teacher passed the sea-soned potatoes through a sieve, and then returned them to the fire, stirring them with a wpoden spoon until they left the sides and bottom of the pan. He said this prevented them from cracking when frying.
Pare carefully with a thin penknife some peeled potatoes, round and round, until all of each potato is pared to the centre. Do not attempt to cut the slices too thin, or they will break. Place them in a wire-basket, and dip into boiling lard. These potatoes are a pretty garnish around a roast, and are supposed to resemble roses.
Slice a generous pint of cold boiled potatoes. Put into the brightest of saucepans butter the size of a pigeon's egg, and when it bubbles add an even tea-spoonful of flour (the sauce not to be thick), which cook a moment, and then pour in a cupful of milk (or, better, cream), salt, and pepper; stir with an egg-whisk until it boils, then mix in the potato-slices. When they are thoroughly hot they are ready to be served.
Stir two cupfuls of mashed potatoes, two table-spoonfuls of melted butter, and some salt to a fine, light, and creamy condition; then add two eggs well beaten separately, and six table-spoonfuls of cream; beat it all well and lightly together; pile it in rocky form on a dish; bake it in a quick oven until nicely colored. It will become quite light.
There is a machine which comes for the purpose of cutting shoo-fly potatoes; it costs two dollars and a half. The potatoes are cut into long strips like macaroni, excepting that the sides are square instead of round. They are thrown into boiling lard, sprinkled with salt as soon as done, and served as a vegetable alone, or as a garnish around meat.