In my back yard are two apple trees. One grows sweet red apples that ripen in early September. The other gives tart green cooking apples in mid July. The picture shows the latter's crop this year, processed, ready to go into the cupboard. (The loaf of bread has nothing to do with this post, but it fills the foreground and lets me show off my Gages Slough sourdough. That's another post.)
George L Herter was an ur-blogger who wrote about a great many things in the guise of cooking and housekeeping. Like a blogger his information is subject to reader approval. The sources are not always clear or independently verifiable. Yet many who tried this or that of his recipes testify to their goodness. The Bull Cook is still available in both hard and soft cover versions, on line or in your favorite used bookstore, for about $10. Here's a sample of his style and a good recipe:
ORIGINAL WORCESTERSHIRE SAUCE BY JOHN CRAFTONThis famous sauce was originated in Worcester, England, by John L. Crafton a chemist in 1835 and is an adaptation of early French sauces. He wanted desperately to make his every day food taste better and he certainly succeeded. The sauce was first called Worcester sauce then changed to Worcestershire sauce by commercial companies who tried to vaguely copy the original sauce. The story that the recipe was brought out of India by the third Baron Sandys in 1837 is entírely untrue. Several other chemists at the time brought out similar sauces.
The original recipe is nothíng at all like the present day commercial recipes. Commercial recipes for the most part are a black looking watery mixture of water, soy sauce, pepper and vinegar. They might be alright on chow mein or chop suey but hardly on anyhíng else. Real Worcestershire sauce is a líght reddish brown in color, is not at all watery but quíte a heavy bodied liqud, It contaíns very líttle water, has no soy sauce flavor at all although it does contain a Iimited amount of soy sauce.
Made by the original recipe ít costs only about 75¢ a gallon to make. People really IÍke it and your family will use a lot more of it than catsup. If you have it available for them Make up some for your church suppers also and put it on the table in old peanut butter jars with a spoon in it. lt will create a real sensation whenever you serve it.
Worcestershire sauce is not at all difficult to make.
Take an old gallon vinegar jug or one gallon jar and put in the following:
Take one 15 ounce can of red kidney beans, (costs about 10¢) drain and pass fhrough a food mill. Commercíal makers list tamarinds as a part of their recípe so that housewives will think that they cannot make their own as tamarinds are hard to find. Actually tamarinds are nothing but the pod from a tree in India that is nothing but poor cattle food and if eaten in any quantity is a severe laxatíve. One 6 ounce bottle of soy sauce.
1 level teaspoon of garlic powder, two State of Maine American sardines packed in soy bean oil They come packed six ardines to a can and cost about 10¢ a can. Remove two sardines, put them into a small bowl of vinegar and wash them off. Remove and mash up with a fork and add. Commcrcíal recipes say that they use anchovies to confuse housewives. Anchovies are actually nothing but a salt cured sardine.
Take about six or seven quarts of apples, either green or ripe. Peel them and slice them up and place them in about a six or eight quart cookíng pot. Cover them just to the top with brown vinegar. Add one onion sliced up about three ínches in diameter. Add the following to the sliced apples: three level tablespoons of ground cloves, two level tablespoons of ground tumeric, two level tablespoons of ground nutmeg, three level tablespoons of ground allspíce, three level tablespoons of powdered coffee or three cups of boiled down black coffee. Bring to a boil and slowly boil for two hours. As the water in the vínegar evaporates add half water and half vinegar to replace it. Stír frequently as apples burn easily, and also tend to stick to the bottom of the pan. Remove and run through a food mill and add eight cups of the puree to the jug or jar.
Now add: two level teaspoons of red ground pepper, four level tablespoons of corn syrup, six level tablespoons of salt, three level tablespoons of mustard, one level tablespoon of sugar.
Now fill the balance of the jug or jar up with vinegar. Shake up well and leave stand for 24 hours and it then is ready to use.
Worcestershire sauce is used for seasoning fish, meat, fowl, vegetables and vegetable juíces Here are jut a few of the many ways that it can be used:
1. Poured dírectly over mashed boiled potatoes and mashed in. This is a popular Irish custom and very good Be sure to try it.
2. Add three tablespoons to a glass of tomato juice.
3. In cooking pork chops sprinkle generously over the pork chops as you cook them, Gives them a clean, fresh flavor
4. Beef stew Add three tablespoons for about every quart of the stew.
5. Blend in two tablespoons into about each cup of brown gravy.
6. Sprinkle generously over turkey, chicken, duck, or goose dressing just as you serve them. It does wonders for dressings.
7. Sprinkle generously over beef hash just before serving.
8. Add one level tablespoon to each bowl of tomato soup just before servíng.
9. Sprinkle generously on hamburger buns before puttíng in the ham.The Bull Cook, by George L. Herter, Page 155-157
The Original Worcestershire Sauce above is the now distant springboard for Dum Luk's Sauce. Herter's sauce is mostly vinegar with spices to detonate your taste buds and apples to thicken the result. Lots of people like it. When Del ran a restaurant he couldn't make it often enough for the diners. I find Herter's sauce too unbalanced -- too acidic. So this is milder and, I like to think, more subtle, more balanced, more Chinese. Oh, all right, nuanced. There I said it.
Dum Luk's SauceWash and quarter about five pounds of tart apples: Bransons, Granny Smiths, Braeburns, etc. Simmer until soft. Pass through a food mill to remove seeds and such.
For each quart add: 1 cup -- or to taste -- sugar, teaspoon powdered anise, 1 teaspoon cloves, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, teaspoon cayenne, teaspoon celery seed, 1 teaspoon Coleman's Mustard, I tablespoon minced garlic, 2 tablespoons Mae Ploy, or other brand, Sweet Chilli Sauce, and 1 cup oyster sauce, 2 well rinsed sardines and 15 ounces drained canned kidney beans. The last adds fibre to thicken the sauce. Liquefy the above in a blender. Return puree to clean pot and simmer.
Meanwhile chop a medium yellow onion and cook just under a simmer with half an Anaheim Pepper and 8 black pepper corns in 1 cup of strong coffee for about 20 minutes. Liquefy and add to apple mixture. Add 1 cup Apple cider vinegar. Simmer for two to three hours. Let rest overnight. Return to a simmer and bottle.-- by Martin Langeland
As an historical footnote of a more or less spurious sort remember that tomatoes are native to the western hemisphere. Before the 1500's nobody made tomato based sauces in Europe. England, in particular, had a lot of apples. My bet is that some of the apple sauce was made as uppity as the local herb and spice supply permitted as a sauce for goose and gander.
The cat on the label? That is the before picture. After a nip, he'll be sleek and fat!
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