How To Use Dairy Produce: Part 1 – Milk
The Basic Preparation Of Foodstuffs: Dairy Products
These basic tips may seem unnecessary for most modern householders with a refrigerator in the kitchen, but modern devices can make people lazy and it is still well-worth while knowing ‘why’ we must do some things. It is also worth remembering these tips when there is no refrigerator to hand or when it so small that it will not hold everything you need, such as when camping, boating or on holiday in some parts in the world.
Milk has been called ‘nature’s perfect food’, because no other food, taken alone, can support adult human life. It is of the utmost importance for the growth and development of adolescents, but it must be clean because bacteria also find it very nourishing and quickly multiply in it. If your milk is not bought pasteurized, then it should be scalded and cooled quickly before drinking it.
How To Scald Milk: Rinse out a clean saucepan with cold water, pour in the milk and apply heat until bubbles form around the side of the pan. Maintain it at this temperature, in other words, not letting it boil, for 3 minutes. Do not let it overheat, as milk burns very easily. Pour immediately into a clean receptacle and put in a basin of cold water and cover with a muslin cloth to discourage flies and dust getting in.
How To Keep Milk Fresh: If milk the is not be preserved in the receptacles in which you bought it, pour it into a clean container, which has been rinsed with cold water. A warm receptacle will cause the milk to stick to the sides and go off much more quickly. Always keep milk covered and in the coolest place in the larder. it is a good tip to remember that draughts usually occur at ground-level and that hot air rises. Never keep milk in an airless cupboard and in hot weather stand the milk in a container in a bowl of water with the cloth covering hanging in the water. The muslin will soak up water, which will evaporate, which dissipates the heat, ensuring that the container remains cool. Keep milk away from strong-smelling foods, as it absorbs smells easily. Never mix old and new milk together.
Sour Milk: Milk straight from the cow is slightly alkaline, but as it ages, lactic acid is formed and it becomes what we call ‘sour’. Pasteurizing or scalding the milk slows down this process. Milk which is ‘just on the turn’ can be revived by boiling with a pinch of bicarbonate of soda to restore the alkalinity. Once the milk has gone too far and has curdled, it can be strained through (cheese) cloth, thereby separating the curds from the whey. The curds can be used as a filling for cakes, tarts, scones etc and the whey can be used as the liquid for making scones, cakes and soups etc., as it still has much goodness.
Evaporated Milk: Evaporated milk is ordinary milk, which has had some of its water evaporated by heat in some way or another before being containerised. Once reconstituted by adding water, it will last only a little longer than fresh milk does.
Condensed Milk: This form of milk is just evaporated milk to which sugar has been added before canning. Sugar acts as a preservative and will preserve the milk for about a week. Do not keep in the tin, but decant it into a jug or bottle.
Dried Milk: Dried milk comes in a variety of forms and notice should be taken of the instructions on the label. Specialized products can be bought for babies, invalids, convalescents and dieters, all of which contain varying amounts and types of added vitamins and minerals. Usually, they are very much lower in fat content than conventional milk.