A Good English Stew


On three pounds of tender rump of beef, freed from skin and fat, and cut down into about two-inch squares, pour rather more than a quart of cold broth or gravy. When it boils add salt if required, and a little cayenne, and keep it just simmering for a couple of hours; then put to it the grated rind of a large lemon, or of two small ones, and half an hour after, stir to it a tablespoonful of rice-flour, smoothly mixed with a wineglassful of mushroom catsup, a dessertspoonful of lemon-juice, and a teaspoonful of soy: in fifteen minutes it will be ready to serve. A glass and a half of port, or of white wine, will greatly improve this stew, which may likewise be flavoured with the store-sauce, or with another, which we find excellent for the purpose, made with half a pint of port wine, the same of mushroom-catsup>, a quarter pint of walnut pickle, a tablespoonful of the best soy, and a dessertspoonful of cayenne-vinegar, all well shaken together and poured into a bottle containing the thin rind of a lemon and two fine mellow anchovies, of moderate size. A few delicately fried forcemeat-balls may be slipped into it after it is dished.

Obs.β€”The limits of our work will not permit us to devote a further space to this class of dishes, but an intelligent cook will find it easy to vary them in numberless ways. Mushrooms, celery, carrots, sweet herbs, parboiled new potatoes, green peas, rice, and currie-powder may be advantageously used for that purpose. Oxtails, just blanched and cut into joints, will be found excellent substitutes for the beef: mutton and veal also may be dressed in the same way. The meat and vegetables can be browned before broth or water is poured to them; but though, perhaps, more savoury, the stew will then be much less delicate. Each kind of vegetable should be allowed something more than sufficient time to render it perfectly tender, but not so much as would reduce it to pulp.