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Coal and Range

Proper care of the range and intelligent use of the coal are also essential factors of success in cooking. If the drafts are left open too long, the greatest heat is often lost before cooking begins. If they are closed the moment the coal is kindled, the heat will remain steady for a long time. When the coals look whitish, they are becoming exhausted and beginning to fall to ashes, and this condition arrives quickly when rapid combustion takes place from open draughts. Piling the coal above the level of the fire-box is another error generally practised by ignorant cooks. The heat does not increase from the depth of coal, but from the breadth of surface. Piling up the coal, in a mound which nearly touches the top of the range, results in heating the iron red-hot, warping the lids out of shape, destroying the saucepans, and very likely burning the food. No articles cooked on top of the range require excessive heat, and are usually spoiled by too rapid cooking.


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The Century Cook Book (1901).

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