The French cooks very generally use carbonate of ammonia to preserve the color of vegetables. What would lay on the point of a penknife is mixed in the water in which the vegetables (such as pease, spinach, string-beans, and asparagus) are boiled. The ammonia all evaporates in boiling, leaving no ill effects. They say also that it prevents the odor of boiling cabbage. It may be obtained at the drug-stores.
Parboil them; then, after cutting lengthwise, sautÚ them to a light-brown in a little hot butter or drippings.
This is undoubtedly the best manner of cooking parsnips: Scrape, and, if large, cut them; put them into well-salted boiling water, and boil until tender; then mash them, adding to four or five parsnips a heaping tea-spoonful of flour, one or two eggs well beaten, pepper and salt to taste. Form the mixture into small cakes three - quarters of an inch thick and two and a half inches in diameter, and fry them on both sides to a delicate brown in a sautÚ pan, with a little hot butter. Serve hot.
Are best made into little cakes, as described for parsnip fritters.
As you scrape them, throw them into a bowl of cold water, in which is mixed a table - spoonful of vinegar. When all are scraped, cut them either into half-inch lengths, or lengthwise into four pieces, which again cut into three-inch lengths; throw them into boiling water, in which are half a tea-spoonful of salt and one-third of a tea-spoonful of sugar to one quart of water. When done, drain, and mix them with white sauce, either drawn butter or a simple Bechamel.
The best mode of cooking carrots is to boil them with corned beef, and then serve them as a garnish around the meat. Carrots require a longer time to boil than almost any other vegetable. If large, boil them an hour and a half. It improves their appearance to cut them, into shapes of balls or pears before boiling; or they may be cut into half-inch slices, and then shaped with the tin cutters (see page 55). These come in different sizes.
If they are winter beets, soak them overnight; in any case, be very careful not to prick or cut the skin before boiling, as they will then lose their color; put them into boiling water, and boil until tender. If they are served hot, pour a little melted butter, pepper, and salt over them. They are often served cold, cut into slices, with some vinegar over them, or cut into little dice and mixed with other cold vegetables, for a winter salad.
Tie the stalks in bundles, keeping the heads one way, and eut off the stalks, so that they may be of equal length. Put them into well-salted boiling water, and cook until they are tender (no longer). While boiling, prepare some thin slices of toast; arrange the asparagus, when well drained, neatly upon it, and pour over a white sauce, as for cauliflower. The sauce Hollandaise is especially nice for asparagus. Time to cook asparagus, about eighteen minutes.