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Dry Beans Boiled with Mutton or Pork


Prepare a quart of beans, and then boil them ten minutes and drain them. Cut in rather large dice about two pounds of breast or neck of mutton or the same of pork, and of the same pieces, and put meat and beans in a stewpan, cover well with cold water; season with a bunch of seasonings composed of five or six sprigs of parsley, one of thyme, a bay-leaf, and two cloves, salt, pepper, a little nutmeg grated, a carrot cut in three or four pieces, two onions, and a piece of turnip. Boil gently till the whole is thoroughly cooked; remove the seasonings, and serve meat and beans together. This makes also a nourishing dish and not an expensive one. The nutritive qualities of beans are very well known, and very much exaggerated too. Even Professor Liebig once said that "four quarts of beans and two pounds of corned beef or pork boiled to rags, in fifty quarts of water, will furnish a good meal for forty men."

We must say that we have not been able to try the experiment, but we should like very much to see what kind and how much work forty men would do, and for how long, with such a diet. There are many things that look or seem well, and even magnificent in theory, though entirely impracticable. It sounds well, especially to those who do not understand the meaning of it, to say that we feed mostly on gluten, albumen, gelatine, etc., and that we require so many ounces of carbon, oxygen, etc., in twenty-four hours. Every thing that we eat may be, with the exception of salt, turned into charcoal; but no one has yet been known to feed on it.


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Hand-Book of Practical Cookery (1884).

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