The chafing-dish, which, within the last few years, has gained so much favor, is by no means a utensil of modern invention, as its history may be traced to the time of Louis XIV. It finds its place on the breakfast table, when the eggs may be cooked to suit the most fastidious; on the luncheon table, when a dainty hot dish may be prepared to serve in place of the so-oft-seen cold meat; but it is made of greatest use for the cooking of late suppers, and always seems to accompany hospitality and good cheer. It is appreciated and enjoyed by the housekeeper who does her own work, or has but one maid, as well as by the society girl who, by its use, first gains a taste for the art of cooking. The simple tin chafing-dishes may be bought for as small a sum as ninety cents, while the elaborate silver ones command as high a price as one hundred dollars. Very attractive dishes are made of granite ware, nickel, or copper. The latest patterns have the lamp with a screw adjustment to regulate the flame, and a metal tray on which to set dish, that it may be moved if necessary while hot, without danger of burnt fingers, and that it may not injure the polished table. A chafing-dish has two pans, the under one for holding hot water, the upper one with long handle for holding food to be cooked. A blazer differs from a chafing-dish, inasmuch as it has no hot-water pan. Wood alcohol, which is much lower in price than high-proof spirits, is generally used in chafing-dishes.
The Davy Toaster may be used over the chafing-dish for toasting bread and broiling.