Wash a quantity of watercress and chop it slightly; put two ounces of butter in a stewpan with two tablespoonfuls of flour and stir over the fire until well-browned, then pour in gradually one-half pint of water and keep on stirring over the fire until boiling. Season the sauce with salt, pepper, a little grated nutmeg and sufficient lemon juice or vinegar to give it an agreeable acidity. Put in the watercress, boil up, then turn it into a dish, and serve as a vegetable.
Trim off the coarse ends of the stems and thoroughly wash the watercress, then put it into a saucepan of boiling water with salt and boil it. When cooked, turn the watercress into a colander and press out as much of the water as possible; put about two ounces of butter in a stewpan to melt, then put in the cress and sprinkle over it a little flour. Stir the cress over the fire for ten minutes, and pour in one-half pint of broth, season it with a small quantity of grated nutmeg, salt and pepper and boil for ten minutes longer, stirring all the time. Turn the watercress onto a hot dish, garnish with croutons of fried bread and halves of hard-boiled eggs, and serve.