Baked Fish - Boiled Fish with Egg Sauce Scalloped Fish - Stewed Tomato
A. Class Work. Prepare Baked Fish.
Clean a four-pound haddock, sprinkle with salt inside and out, stuff, and sew. Cut five diagonal gashes on each side of backbone and insert narrow strips of fat salt pork, having gashes on one side come between gashes on other side. Shape with skewers in form of letter S, and fasten skewers with small twine. Place on greased fishsheet in a dripping-pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, brush over with melted butter, dredge with flour, and place around fish small pieces of fat salt pork. Bake one hour in hot oven, basting as soon as fat is tried out, and continue basting every ten minutes.
From the "Boston Cooking-School Cook Book." By Fannie M. Farmer.
B. The Effect of Different Ways of "Boiling" Fish.
Notice in which ways the fish is toughest, and in which it is tender, but keeps its shape. What is the advantage of the cheesecloth ? Formulate a rule for so-called "boiled" fish.
1. Place a small piece of fish (haddock or halibut cut in inch cubes) in a cup of boiling water, and boil rapidly for ten minutes.
2. Place a second piece of fish in a cup of boiling water, and simmer for ten minutes.
3. Repeat (2), but first wrap the fish in cheesecloth.
4. Repeat (2), but before putting in the fish add three-quarters of a teaspoon of vinegar or lemon and quarter of a teaspoon of salt.
Serve half of the fish with egg sauce. This is a medium white sauce made with water as the liquid, twice the usual amount of butter, and hard-cooked egg, either sliced or chopped. The sauce without the egg is known as drawn butter.
Scallop the rest of the fish. Soft bread crumbs may be added to the fish to increase the amount. Serve with stewed tomato.
The composition of fish is not unlike that of meat. In general, it is considered to be a somewhat lighter and less nourishing food than meat. Here is a comparison of the composition of two typical fish with beef.
Composition of Fish and Oysters.
Round Beef very lean
Cod Steaks edible portion
Round Beef all analyses
Mackerel edible portion
As fish contain less extractives and rather less protein also, it can well be substituted for meat in the dietaries of people who take little exercise.
Fish may be divided into groups according to the amount of fat the flesh contains, cod and whitefish being examples of lean fish, while salmon, mackerel, and bluefish are oily.
Fish spoils so readily that it is even more important to know how to select it than how to select meat. It is true that the flavor of fish is much better if it can be used as soon as caught. Since this is not possible with fish sold in market, such fish should be killed as soon as caught, and kept on ice. Notice that, in the market, fish exposed for sale is sprinkled with chopped ice. To be good, the flesh must be firm, not soft and flabby, and eyes and gills must be bright. With practice, the sense of smell is a great aid in determining freshness.
The amount of waste in head, bones, and skin is large, if fish are bought whole. Hutchison estimates that this may amount to seventy per cent as purchased, and even be as much as thirty-five per cent in fish as sent to the table. These facts must be taken into account in determining the actual cost of fish, as well as the real cost of canned fish free from waste. As usual with foods, the cost is no measure of the food value of the special kinds of fish bought. The fat fish are much more nutritious than lean fish on account of the fat present.
If fish have been cleaned at market, they should still be wiped inside and out with a damp cloth. Great care must be taken of fish after it has been bought. It should be kept cold, on ice if possible, but, unless the flesh is protected by skin, not directly on the ice itself. It must not stand long before being cooked.
The distinctive taste of fish is due partly to the fat present. Since the flavor - except in very oily varieties - is never strong, even greater care should be taken in cooking to preserve the extractives in fish than in meat. At least five per cent of the solid matter in fish may be lost in boiling. Acid, lemon juice, or vinegar, is often added to the water used in boiling fish in order to help coagulate the protein, and so keep the flesh white and firm.
In general, fish is about as digestible as meat, the kinds containing less fat digesting with greater ease than the more oily varieties. Salt, smoked, and pickled fish are all more difficult of digestion than fresh fish.
U. S. Dept. of Agriculture. Farmers' Bulletin No. 85. "Fish as Food." Bureau of Chemistry Bulletin No. 133. "The Preparation of Cod and other Salt Fish for Market."
1. Give a list of fish which would be classed as rich and oily, and of those which could be called dry. Which class usually has dark flesh ? Which are considered more easily digested ?
2. Why is pork or butter usually added in baking fish, but not in baking meat ?
3. Find out what fish are commonly sold in your home market. Make a table showing season and price.
4. Give ways suitable for cooking different kinds of fish.
5. In boiling a large piece of fish, why would it be convenient to put the fish on a plate or rack, and wrap up together? Would strips of cheese cloth placed across under a fish to be baked help in lifting it when done ?
6. How should a fish be cleaned ? Scaled ? Skinned ?
7. Consult cook books for sauces and garnishes suitable to serve with fish.
8. Suggest combinations of vegetables which are good with fish.
9. Suggest ways of serving left-over fish.
xlii oyster stew - fish chowder
A. Class Experiment. Cooking Oysters.
Put an oyster in water and heat slowly to boiling. Observe all the changes which take place, and the temperatures which cause the changes. When are oysters done ? What is the best temperature to use in cooking?
B. Prepare Oyster Stew.
Clean oysters by pouring a little cold water over them in a strainer. Add this water to the oyster liquor and strain through cheesecloth to remove any sand present. Feel each oyster to be sure no bits of shell remain. Season hot milk with salt, pepper, and butter, then add oyster liquor and oysters. How long will you cook it after the oysters are added? Allow about equal amounts of milk and oysters; and at least half a tablespoon of butter to each cup of milk. If thick stew is preferred, rolled crackers are sometimes cooked in the milk, or the whole thickened with flour.
C. Prepare Fish Chowder.
4 lb. cod or haddock
6 c. potatoes cut in 1/4 inch slices or
4 c. potatoes cut in 3/4 inch cubes
1 sliced onion
1 1/2 inch cube fat salt pork
1 tbsp. salt 1/8 tsp. pepper
3 tbsp. butter
4 c. scalded milk
8 common crackers
Order the fish skinned, but head and tail left on. Cut off head and tail and remove fish from backbone. Cut fish in two-inch pieces and set aside. Put head, tail, and backbone broken in pieces, in stewpan; add two cups cold water and bring slowly to boiling point; cook twenty minutes. Cut salt pork in small pieces and try out, add onion, and fry five minutes; strain into stewpan. Parboil potatoes five minutes in boiling water to cover; drain, and add potatoes to fat; then add two cups boiling water and cook five minutes. Add liquor drained from bones, then add the fish; cover, and simmer ten minutes. Add milk, salt, pepper, butter, and crackers split and soaked in enough cold milk to moisten. Pilot bread is sometimes used in place of common crackers.
From the "Boston Cooking-School Cook Book." By Fannie M. Farmer.