From The Royal Road to Health, by C.A. Tyrrell

Reform Cookery Book (4th edition)
Up-To-Date Health Cookery for the Twentieth Century.

Produced by Project Gutenberg


The following directions will be found generally applicable, so that there will be no need to repeat the several details each time. Seasonings are not specified, as these are a matter of individual taste and circumstance. Some from considerations of health or otherwise are forbidden the use of salt. In such cases a little sugar will help to bring out the flavour of the vegetables, but unless all the members of the household are alike, it had best not be added before bringing to table. Where soup is to be strained, whole pepper, mace, is much preferable to ground, both as being free from adulteration, and giving all the flavour without the grit. The water in which cauliflower, green peas, have been boiled, should be added to the stock-pot, but as we are now recognising that all vegetables should be cooked as conservatively as possible–that is, by steaming, or in just as much water as they will absorb, so as not to waste the valuable salts and juices, there will not be much of such liquid in a “Reform” menage. A stock must therefore be made from fresh materials, but as those are comparatively inexpensive, we need not grudge having them of the freshest and best.


The exact quantities are not always specified either, in the following recipes, as that too has to be determined by individual requirement, but as a general rule they will serve four to six persons. The amount of vegetables, given, will be in proportion to 3 pints, i.e. 12 gills liquid. Serve all soups with croutons of toast or fried bread.


White Stock. The best stock for white soups is made from small haricots. Take 1 lb. of these, pick and wash well, throwing away any that are defective, and if there is time soak ten or twelve hours in cold water; put on in clean saucepan–preferably earthenware or enamelled–along with the water in which soaked (if not soaked scald with boiling water, and put on with fresh boiling water), some of the coarser stalks of celery, one or two chopped Spanish onions, blade of mace, and a few white pepper-corns. If celery is out of season, a little celery seed does very well. Bring to boil, skim, and cook gently for at least two hours. Strain, and use as required. 


Clear Stock. For clear stock take all the ingredients mentioned above, also some carrot and turnip in good-sized pieces, some parsley, and mixed herbs as preferred, and about 1/2 lb. of hard peas, which should be soaked along with the haricots. Simmer very gently two to three hours. Great care must be taken in straining not to pulp through any of the vegetables or the stock will be muddy, or as we Scotch folks would say “drumlie.” If not perfectly clear after straining, return to saucepan with some egg-shells or white of egg, bring to boil and strain again through jelly-bag. A cupful of tomatoes or a few German lentils are a great improvement to the flavour of this stock, but will of course colour it more or less. 


Brown Stock. Take 1/2 lb. brown beans, 1/2 lb. German lentils, 1/2 lb. onions, 1 large carrot, celery, &c. Pick over the beans and lentils, and scald for a minute or two in boiling water. This ensures their being perfectly clean, and free from any possible mustiness. Strain and put on with fresh boiling water some black and Jamaica pepper, blade mace, &c., and boil gently for an hour or longer. Shred the onion, carrot, and celery finely and fry a nice brown in a very little butter taking great care not to burn, and add to the soup. Allow all to boil for one hour longer, and strain. A few tomatoes sliced and fried along with, or instead of the carrot, or a cupful of tinned tomatoes would be a great improvement. This as it stands is a very fine Clear Brown Soup, but if a thicker, more substantial soup is wanted, rub through as much of the pulp as will give the required consistency. Return to saucepan, and add a little soaked tapioca, ground rice, cornflour, as a liaison. Boil till that is clear, stirring well. Serve with croutons of toast or fried bread. This soup may be varied in many ways, as by adding some finely minced green onions, leeks, or chives either before or after straining and some parsley a few minutes before serving. 


White Windsor Soup. Take 4 breakfast cupfuls white stock or water, add 6 tablespoonfuls mashed potato and 1 oz fine sago. Stir till clear and add 1 breakfast cup milk and some minced parsley. Let come just to boiling point but no more. If water is used instead of stock some finely shred onion should be cooked without browning in a little butter and added to the soup when boiling. Rub through a sieve into hot tureen. 


White Soubise Soup. Melt in lined saucepan 2 oz. butter, and into that shred 1/2 lb. onions. Allow to sweat with lid on very gently so as not to brown for about half an hour. Add 1-1/2 pints white stock and about 6 ozs. scraps of bread any hard pieces will do, but no brown crust. Simmer very gently for about an hour, run through a sieve and return to saucepan with 1 pint milk. Bring slowly to boiling point and serve. 


For Brown Soubise Soup toast the bread, brown the onions, and use brown stock. 


Almond Milk Soup. Wash well 1/4 lb. rice and put on to simmer slowly with 1-1/2 pints milk and water, a Spanish onion and 2 sticks of white celery. Blanch, chop up and pound well, or pass through a nut-mill 1/4 lb. almonds, and add to them by degrees another 1/2 pint milk. Put in saucepan along with some more milk and water to warm through, but do not boil. Remove the onion and celery from the rice (or if liked they may be cut small and left in), and strain the almonds through to that. See that it is quite hot before serving.


NOTE.–For this and other soups which are wanted specially light and nourishing, Mapleton’s Almond Meal will be found exceedingly useful. It is ready for use, so that there is no trouble blanching, pounding, &c. 


Brazil Soup. Put 1 lb. Brazil nuts in moderate oven for about 10 minutes, remove shells and brown skin–the latter will rub off easily if heated–and grate through a nut-mill. Simmer gently in white stock or water with celery, onions, &c., for 5 or 6 hours. Add some boiling milk, pass through a sieve and serve. A little chopped parsley may be added if liked. 


Chestnut Soup. Chop small a good-sized Spanish onion and sweat in 1 oz. butter for twenty minutes. Add 2 to 3 pints stock and 1 lb. chestnuts previously lightly roasted and peeled. Simmer gently for one hour or more, pass through a sieve and return to saucepan. Bring to boil, remove all scum, add a cupful boiling milk or half that quantity of cream, and serve without allowing to boil again.


Plain White Soup. Into enamelled saucepan put 2 ozs. butter, and as it melts stir in 2 ozs. flour. Add very gradually a breakfast cup milk, and stir over a slow heat till quite smooth. Add 3 or 4 breakfast cupfuls white stock, bring slowly to boil and serve. 


Velvet Soup. Prepare exactly as for Plain White Soup, but just before serving beat up the yokes of 2 or 3 eggs. Add to them a very little cold milk or cream, and then a little of the soup. Pass through strainer into hot tureen, strain through the rest of the soup, and mix thoroughly. 


Parsnip Soup. Take 1/2 lb. cooked parsnips or boil same quantity in salted water till tender, pass through a sieve and add to a quantity of Plain White Soup or Stock. Bring to boil, and if sweet taste is objected to add strained juice of half a lemon. 


Turnip Soup is made in exactly the same way as Parsnip Soup, substituting young white turnips or “Golden Balls” for the parsnips, and many people will prefer the flavour. A little finely chopped spring onion or chives and parsley would be an improvement to both soups. These–except the parsley–should be boiled separately and added just before serving. 


Palestine Soup. A very fine soup is made thus:–Pare and boil 2 lbs. Jerusalem Artichokes in milk and water with a little salt till quite soft, then pass through a sieve or potato masher, and add to quantity required of Velvet Soup. 


Westmoreland Soup. Put in soup pot some very plain stock, or water will do quite well. Add 1 lb. lentils, 1/2 lb. onions, small carrot, piece of turnip, and a stick or two of celery, all chopped small, also a teacupful tomatoes. Boil slowly for two hours, pass through a sieve and return to soup pot. Melt a dessert-spoonful butter and stir slowly into it twice as much flour, add gradually a gill of milk. When quite smooth add to soup and stir till it boils.


This is a very good soup and might be preferred by some without straining the vegetables. The lentils might be boiled separately and put through a sieve before adding.


The foregoing are all varieties of White Soup and these could be extended indefinitely; but as such variations will suggest themselves to everyone, it is not necessary to take up space here. 


Cauliflower Soup can be made by adding a nice young cauliflower, all green removed, cut in tiny sprigs, and boiled separately to the quantity required of Plain White Soup. The water in which boiled should be added also. 


White Haricot Soup is made by substituting haricot or butter beans for the cauliflower. These should be slowly cooked till tender and passed through a sieve or masher. 


Celery Soup. For this use a large well-blanched head of celery. Either chop small when cooked, or pass through sieve before adding to White Soup. 


Asparagus Soup. Take a bunch tender asparagus. Set aside the tops. Blanch stalks in salted boiling water for a minute or two, then drain and simmer till tender in a little milk and water. Pulp through sieve and add to White Soup when boiling. Cook the tops separately in salted boiling water. Drain and add to soup in tureen. Tinned asparagus makes very good soup. It requires little or no cooking, only to be made quite hot. Pulp stalks and put in tops whole. 


Clear Soups. It is unnecessary to give every recipe in detail for these also, if a rich clear stock has been prepared according the directions, page 11. These of course may be varied according to taste or convenience, and all the ingredients specified are by no means indispensable. Some may be left out and others added as they are at hand or in season. When celery is not to be had celery seed or celery salt gives a good flavour. A hasty stock may be contrived at anytime with chopped onions, shred carrot, and some lentils–green or yellow or both. The vegetables should be lightly fried in a little butter, the lentils scalded or washed well, and all boiled together for an hour or even less with the required quantity of water. Strain without any pressure. Then a still more hasty stock can be had with any of the excellent “Extracts” which are on the market. Their flavour will be appreciated by all, and the fact that they are manufactured from pure, wholesome cereals–barley, chiefly, I believe–should go a long way to commend them to those who have no favour for the uric acid products of “Animal” Extracts.


Well, then, if a good, clear stock is prepared, all that is necessary to convert it into 


Clear Soup a la Royale is to prepare a savoury custard with two yolks and either a cup of stock, diluted “Extract,” or milk. Steam in shallow, buttered tin, cut in small squares, diamonds, &c., and put in tureen along with the boiling stock. 


Julienne Soup. Cut different vegetables–carrot, turnip, celery, &c., in thin strips about 1 inch long, boil in salted water, and add to boiling clear stock. 


Spring Vegetable Soup. Have an assortment of different young vegetables comprising as many distinct and bright colours as possible–green peas, French beans trimmed and cut diamond-wise, cauliflower in tiny sprigs, carrots, turnips, cooked beetroot stamped in fancy shapes or cut in small dice, and leeks, chives, or spring onions shred finely. Cook the vegetables separately, drain, and add while hot to boiling clear stock in tureen. 


Thick Soups. Most of the thick soups are so well-known that they need not be repeated here. Suffice it to say that they will gain both in purity and flavour by substituting vegetarian stock for that usually made by boiling meat, ham bones, and the like. Great care should be taken with such soups as lentil, split-pea, potato soup, &c., to avoid a coarse “mushy” consistency. This can be done by rubbing the peas, &c., through a sieve when cooked, and adding such vegetables as carrot, turnip, onions, &c., finely chopped, to the strained soup. 


“Reform” Pea Soup, if nicely made it will be quite possible to allure some unsuspecting victims who have always declared they never could or would touch pea soup, into asking for another helping of “that delicious–ahem–what-do-you- call-it-soup.”


Have ready a good-sized-soup pot with amount of water required boiling fast, and into this throw 1/2 lb. split-peas for every 2 pints water. The “Giant” variety is best as they are BO easily examined and cleaned. Rub in a coarse cloth to remove any possible dust or impurity. This is much better than washing or scalding, as the peas “go down” so much more quickly when put dry into the fast boiling water. Such a method will seem rather revolutionary to those who have been accustomed to soak peas over night, but a single trial is all that is needed to convince the most sceptical. Add 1/2 lb. onions, cut up-these may first be sweated for 10 minutes with a little butter in covered pan. Simmer gently but steadily 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Rub through a sieve and return to saucepan. When boiling add some turnip in tiny dice and some carrot in slices as thin as sixpence, also finely chopped spring onion, leeks or chives, according to season, and a little finely minced parsley five minutes before serving. Stock may of course be used for this soup, but is not at all necessary. With stock or even a little extract, a very good lentil or pea soup may be made at a few minutes’ notice by thickening with “Digestive” Pea Flour or lentil flour, as the case may be. Such soups can be taken by those of weak digestion. No vegetables should be added in that case, or if so they should be strained out. 


Mulligatawny Soup. Chop up 2 apples and 1 Spanish onion and stir over the fire with 2 ozs. butter till quite brown, but not burnt. Add 1 oz. flour (and if wanted somewhat thickened, one or two spoonfuls “Digestive” lentil or pea flour), 1 teaspoonful curry powder, and a cupful of milk, previously mixed together. Stir till smooth and boil up, then add some good stock–brown would be best–and simmer for half an hour longer, removing the scum as it rises. Serve with boiled rice, handed round on a separate dish. 


Hotch-Potch. This soup is to be had in perfection in the summer months when young, tender vegetables are to be had in great variety and abundance. The more different kinds there are the better, but care must be taken to give each just the proper amount of cooking and no more, or the result will be that by the time certain things are done, others will be mushy and insipid. Bring to boil the necessary quantity of clear stock–water will do. Have ready a cupful each of carrots and turnips in tiny dice–the smaller ends of the carrots being in thin slices–a cauliflower in very small sprigs, one or two crisp, tender lettuces finely shred, cupful green peas, some French beans trimmed and cut small, a dozen or so of spring onions, 2 tablespoonfuls each of lentils and rice, and any other seasonable vegetable that is to be had. Add each in their turn to the boiling stock, the time required being determined by age and condition. If very young and fresh, the carrots will require only 30 to 40 minutes, the turnips and spring onions rather less, and the cauliflower less still. French beans require about 20 minutes, peas and lettuce 15 minutes, while the rice and lentils should have about half an hour. Much must be left to the discretion of the cook, but one point I would emphasise is, don’t over-boil the vegetables. There seems to be an idea that a safe rule for vegetables is the more you cook them the better, but the fact is they lose in flavour and wholesomeness every five minutes after they are done. This is why “second day’s” soup so often disagrees when the first has been all right. A few slices of tomato may be added. They should be fried in a little butter, cut small, and added shortly before serving, also some chopped parsley. 


Winter Hotch-Potch. This also may be very good. All the vegetables will require much longer cooking. Some will not be available, but in their place will be celery, parsnips, Brussels sprouts, leeks, &c. Dried green peas, soaked for 12 hours, can be used, or a good canned variety, and I may say that many delicious vegetables are now to be had in tins, or, better still, in glass jars. 


Scotch Broth. For this wash well a cupful good fresh _pot_ barley, bring to boil in plenty of water, pour that off and put on with clean cold water. Simmer for 2 hours and then add a selection of vegetables given for Hotch-Potch. 


Mock Cock-a-Leekie or Leek Soup is an excellent winter soup. Take a dozen or more crisp fat leeks–flabby, tough ones are no use–trim away all coarse pieces, chop up the tender green quite small and simmer in covered pan with a little butter. Add to quantity required of either white stock or plain white soup, which should be boiling. Shred down the white of the leeks, fry in a little more butter, and add twenty minutes later. Cook till quite tender. If stock is used, some well-washed rice should be added about 30 minutes before serving. If white soup is prepared, it is best to cook the leeks thoroughly before adding, then merely bring to boil and serve. 


Green Pea Soup. This is a delicious summer soup. Have a clear stock made with fresh green vegetables, such as lettuce, green onions, spinach, bunch parsley, sprig mint, &c., the shells wiped clean and about half of the peas–about 2 lbs. will be needed–reserving the finest. Rub through a sieve, return to saucepan and bring to boil. Add remainder of peas, boil 15 minutes, and pour into tureen over an ounce or so of butter. Some may prefer cream in place of butter, in which case add just before serving, and do not allow to boil up. 


Mock Hare Soup. Prepare a rich well-flavoured brown stock, rubbing through the greater part of the German lentils, &c., to make it of a thick creamy consistency. The flavour will be best if such vegetables as carrot and onion are sliced and fried brown before boiling. Toast two tablespoonfuls oatmeal and one of flour to a light brown, mix with it a teaspoonful ground Jamaica pepper and smooth with a little cold water. Add to the boiling soup and stir till it boils up again. Mushroom ketchup, a few fried mushrooms, some piquant sauce, “Extract,” &c., &c., may be added or not at discretion. 


German Lentil Soup. Scald 1/2 lb. German lentils for a minute in boiling water, drain and put on with quantity of boiling water required. Fry some onions, celery, and tomatoes–if to be had–in a little butter till brown, and add. Simmer about 2 hours, and rub through a sieve. Add a little ground rice, cornflour, to keep the pulp from settling to the bottom. A little milk or cream or ketchup may be added if liked. 


Butter Peas Soup. Cook butter peas as for stew, [Footnote: See page 35. [Butter Peas or “Midget” Butter Bean, below]] pulp through a sieve and add to quantity of liquid required, which may be white stock or milk and water, and should be boiling. Add a small white cauliflower, cut in tiny sprigs (or any tender fresh vegetables cut small and parboiled separately). Simmer till cauliflower is just cooked, add some chopped parsley, and serve. 


Mock Turtle Soup. Prepare a quantity of strong, clear, highly-flavoured stock of a greenish-brown colour. The colour can be obtained by boiling some winter greens or spinach along with the other things. A few chopped gherkins, capers, or chillies will give the required piquancy. Have 4 ozs. tapioca soaked overnight, add to the boiling stock and cook gently till perfectly clear. Some small quenelles may be poached separately and put in tureen. 


Tomato Soup. When this soup is well made it is a general favourite, but it must be well made, for it is impossible to appreciate the greasy, yellow, dish-water-looking liquid which is sometimes served in that name.


Put in a saucepan 2 ozs. butter, and into that shred finely 1/2 or 1 lb. onions. Add half or more of a tin of tomatoes or about 1 lb. fresh ones sliced, and a cup of water or stock. Simmer very gently for an hour and rub through a wire sieve, pressing with the back of a wooden spoon to get all the pulp through. _Everything_ should go through except the skin and seeds. Return to clean saucepan with stock or water, and two tablespoonfuls of tapioca, previously soaked for at least an hour. Stir till it boils and is quite clear. This soup may be varied in many ways, as by substituting for the tapioca, crushed vermicelli, ground rice, cornflour, &c. Some chopped spring onions, chives or leeks, added after straining are a great improvement, also chopped parsley, while many people like the addition of milk or cream.