The Larder.

Florence

From Cookery for Every Household, 1914, Florence B. Jacks.

Useful Requisites For the Larder:

—A wire rack, baskets, or wooden boxes for holding vegetables; bags of netting for lemons, a bread pan, one or two earthenware pans for milk with pieces of muslin to cover them, wire covers for cold meat and fish, odd cups, basins, plates, and dishes, also a few muslin bags for holding meat, hams, &c., or some improvised meat safes made of muslin bags stretched out by wooden hoops.
A refrigerator is an advantage in a larder but by no means a necessity, except in large establishments or in houses where ices are largely used (see Ices).

Daily Inspection of the Larder.

—Whatever else may have to be neglected in a house, a daily visit to the larder, or what constitutes the larder, should never be dispensed with. It is of the utmost importance that the food which is to nourish our bodies
be kept in good condition and free from all im« purities, or bad health and even poisoning might be the result. Besides the necessity from a health point of view, a visit to the larder is helpful in making up the bill of fare for the day, as all " leftovers ' should be considered before new material is ordered, also the utilisation of scraps.
The condition of all food being kept, such as game, poultry, vegetables, stocJr, fruit, &c., must be looked into and nothing allowed to waste. Then, what is of paramount importance, the cleanliness of the larder must have the strictest attention, as nothing tends to destroy food more quickly than dirty and unhealthy conditions.

Cleanliness.—Absolute cleanliness should be maintained in the larder by daily and weekly cleaning.
Daily Cleaning.—(1) Wipe over the shelves with a damp cloth and put food, not being used immediately for cooking, on clean plates and dishes.
(2)  Wipe over the floor also with a damp cloth or with a Drush with a damp cloth or swab tied over it.    (Sweeping and dusting must never be done while food is in the larder, as it simply raises the dust to let it fall afterwards on the food.)
(3)  Wipe out the bread pan.
(4)  Burn any scraps of fish, bones, or meat, vegetables, &c., that are not quite fresh.
Weekly Cleaning.—A special day should be chosen for this:
(1)  Remove all food from the larder.
(2)  Sweep and dust the walls and floor, gather up the dust, and burn it.
(3)  When the dust has settled, dust and scrub the shelves and wash the window and any wire gauze or perforated zinc that covers it, using carbolic soap, or, if the weather is hot, some disinfectant may be added to the water, such as carbolic, Jeyes' fluid, Sanitas, or Izal.
(4)  Scrub floor with soft soap or carbolic soap and water.
(5)  Leave door and window open to dry the place, as damp is most detrimental to food.    When dry, replace the dishes of food.
(6)  Thoroughly wash  out the  bread pan  and leave it to dry and air before returning the bread.
(7)  In hot weather hang up bags of powdered charcoal or place  bowls of disinfectant  on the shelves.
Occasionally.—(1) White-wash or lime-wash the ceiling about every six months.
(2)  Scald and scrub meat hooks and wire meat covers.
(3)  Wash muslin covers when necessary.
(4)  Fill up any cracks or mouse holes with cement, and place traps when necessary.
To keep Food without a Larder.—In many small houses and flats there is no proper larder, and one cupboard has to serve the purpose of larder and store room, and sometimes as a place for keeping dishes as well.
When this is the case the quantities ordered must be as small as possible, and cleanliness and order are all the more necessary. If the shelves are made of wood it is a good plan to have them covered with white oil-cloth, as this can so easily be wiped over, or washed. In addition to this cupboard, a meat safe_ should be provided and placed either outside or in a cool place.

Needless to say, it should not be placed anywhere near a lavatory.

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