قراءة كتاب The Skilful Cook A Practical Manual of Modern Experience

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The Skilful Cook
A Practical Manual of Modern Experience

The Skilful Cook A Practical Manual of Modern Experience

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دار النشر: Project Gutenberg
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left undone.’

How much healthier and happier, too, many girls would be, if, instead of going out in all weathers, day after day, to earn a miserable pittance in any such employment as daily governesses, they would do some of the lighter housework, cooking, &c., at home. By being able to do with one servant instead of two, they would save probably more than they could earn in other ways, besides being much stronger from the exercise thus taken. But too many girls are, unfortunately, imbued with the vulgar notion that work is not genteel. What a Moloch this gentility has been and still is! What a number of human sacrifices are continually placed at its shrine, and what puppets its votaries become! Mr. Smiles says: ‘There is a dreadful ambition abroad for being “genteel.” We keep up appearances too often at the expense of honesty, and though we may not be rich, yet we must seem to be so. We must be “respectable,” though only in the meanest sense—in mere vulgar outward show. We have not the courage to go patiently onward in the condition of life in which it has pleased God to call us, but must needs live in some fashionable state to which we ridiculously please to call ourselves; and all to gratify the vanity of that unsubstantial genteel world of which we form a part.’

It would effect a moral revolution if women would only look at matters in the true light. How much crime and misery may be traced to mismanaged unattractive homes! How many deaths to the ignorance of hygiene! How much intemperance to the physical depression caused by badly cooked food! Let us hope that the refinement, falsely so called, which is only another name for vanity, laziness, and selfishness, may soon give way to the true refinement of heart and mind which considers nothing too menial which will benefit others; nothing too common that will add to the happiness of our fellow-creatures.

If we women could earnestly and courageously endeavour to do the duty nearest to us, remembering that all honest work, of whatever kind, has been for ever ennobled by the great Founder of our Faith, so should we be, one in one way and one in another, ‘helping to move (to quote Dean Goulburn) the wheels of the great world system whose revolutions are bringing on the kingdom of Christ.’ ‘To be good and to be useful,’ as Canon Kingsley says, ‘are the two objects for which we were sent into this world.’



She looketh well to the ways of her household.

Proverbs of Solomon.

Take care that you know definitely what sum you can afford to spend on your household expenses, and make it a point of conscience never to exceed it. Market with ready money, if possible; but, if it is more convenient to pay by the month, or quarter, never make that an excuse for letting your bills mount up to double what you can afford to pay. With accounts, carefully kept, it is quite possible to regulate the expenditure to the income.

Never order things at random, but inquire the price of everything before purchasing. Take every pains to know how to judge of the quality of meat, groceries, &c., so that you may not be imposed on. Never be ashamed to say you cannot afford to have this or that. To be poor may be a misfortune, but it is not a fault; and, indeed, to be rich is often a far greater misfortune. The discipline of poverty, and the self-denial it involves, will often strengthen a character which the luxury of riches would enervate.

Cultivate sufficient independence of character to enable you to form your household, and regulate your expenses according to your own means, and not according to the income of your neighbours. What does it matter if some may sneer at your thread-bare carpets and frugal fare? The approval of your own conscience is of far more importance than the friendship of the vulgar-minded. Above all things keep your accounts most strictly. Without this you are like a mariner without a compass, or chart, you don't know where you are or what is your position, and you will find yourself, before long, on the rocks of debt and difficulty. Extravagant housekeeping has been the cause of the most serious evils; and, if persisted in, will be sure, in time, to wreck the peace and happiness of yourself and family.

Extravagance is, no doubt, often the result of mere thoughtlessness, but that does not mend matters. There is as much evil wrought by want of thought as by want of heart. If it is true that there is but one step between the sublime and the ridiculous, it is equally true that there is but one step between folly and wickedness. Therefore, all young housekeepers ought to give earnest attention to the management of their affairs, for certainly in these matters the ‘wise woman buildeth her house, while the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.’



The human body is constantly wearing out. With every movement, every breath drawn, there is some waste of its substance. To repair this waste, and, in the case of children, to provide material for their growth, a certain amount of food should be taken daily. The food taken should consist of such qualities as will make flesh and muscle; such as will also keep up the heat of the body, and give force, or the power of movement. These foods must contain a certain quantity of liquid, and the salts necessary to keep the blood pure.

Table of Foods.
Flesh-forming or Nitrogenous. Heat-giving or Carbonaceous.
Examples Meat Examples Butter
  Poultry   Suet
  Fish   Dripping
  Game   And fat of all kinds
  Eggs   Sugar in whatever form
  Cheese   Starch, which is contained in all vegetables

The foods under the head of flesh-formers, although classed as flesh-formers, are really compound foods. They contain some heat-giving as well as flesh-forming properties.

The heat-giving foods, on the contrary, are all simple foods. Life could not be sustained on any one of them alone, whatever quantity might be taken. These facts are sufficient to show the necessity of a mixed diet. Professor Church says in his lectures on this subject: ‘Our food must be palatable, that we may eat it with relish, and get the greatest nourishment from it. The flavour and texture of food, its taste, in fact, stimulates the production of those secretions—such as the saliva and the gastric juice—by the action of which the food is