Friday, 23 May 2014

Anecdote Saturday - delicious menus.

Culinary Department on a Steamship - 1910 Travel Guide

'In former years the supply of salted meat, hardtack, etc., for the equipment of the steamer formed the most essential part of the catering, which was occasionally improved by carrying cattle on the hoof, and the victualing and culinary arrangements closely connected therewith, belonging to the most important department of the modern passenger vessel, have been considerably improved and changed during the last twenty years, owing to great advancement in the art of cold storage.'

'These improvements and changes have attained a degree of perfection which is not excelled in the first-class hotels in even the largest cities. The improvement made even in the catering for the steerage passengers during the last two decades plays an important part in the kitchen arrangements. The competition of the steamship lines, as well as governmental regulations, have both been effective.'

'The arrangements which have had to be made by the kitchen and bakery, owing to this great advancement, have given rise to the adoption of arrangements which are totally different from those formerly used. The modern bakeries, situated between-decks, bake delicious bread and rolls of all kinds, while the bakeries of the pastry cooks and confectioners are famous.'

'A steward of one of the large trans-Atlantic liners told the writer that the allowance for food for each first class passenger was $2.50 a day, without counting fuel, cooking, or any charge for service. On one of the large coastwise lines, the boast of the manager of the line was that the food for the first class passengers cost only 67 cents a day per passenger.'

'From this it will be seen that there is every desire to be liberal as regards the table of the first class. The table of the second class is equally good, considering the passage money paid, and is far better in every way than will be found in the ordinary country hotel. The food is better cooked and better served, and there are apt to be fully as many fresh vegetables.'

'The necessity of catering for 1,000 or 1,200 first and second class passengers on the modern express steamers presents conditions which are paralleled only by the most luxurious hotel. About twenty kinds of warm dishes, besides hot beverages, must, as a rule, be prepared for breakfast on the modern passenger steamer.'

'The luncheon comprises, in addition to the introductory course and salads, which latter are prepared daily and in a large number of different ways, three or four different soups, and eleven or twelve warm dishes, besides four or five different vegetables and an ample supply of cold dishes. The dinners on some of the ships consist of ten or twelve courses.'

to be continued....

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