Victorian London - Publications - Etiquette and Household Advice Manuals - Cassells Household Guide, New and Revised Edition (4 Vol.) c.1880s [no date] - Making Sweatmeats

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Volume 1



    Candied Horehound£ Take some horehound and boil it till. the juice is extracted, when sugar, which has been previously boiled until candied, must be added to it. Stir the compound over the fire until it thickens. Pour it out into a paper case dusted over with fine sugar, and cut it into squares or any other shapes desired.
    Peppermint Drops.£ A brass or block-tin saucepan must be rubbed over inside with a little butter. Put into it half a pound of crushed lump sugar with a tablespoonful or so of water. Place it over the fire, and let it boil briskly for ten minutes, when a dessert-spoonful of essence of peppermint is to be stirred into it. It may then be let fall in drops upon writing paper, or poured out upon plates which have been rubbed over with butter. 
    Ginger Drops,£ Mix one ounce of prepared ginger with one pound of loaf sugar; beat to a paste two ounces of fresh candied orange in a mortar, with a little sugar. Put the above into a brass or block-tin saucepan with a little water. Stir them all well, and boil until they are sufficiently amalgamated, which will be when the mixture thickens like ordinary candied sugar. Pour out on writing paper in drops, or on plates as for peppermint drops.
    Lemon Drops.£ Grate three large lemons; then take a large piece of best lump sugar and reduce it to a powder. Mix the sugar and lemon on a plate with half a teaspoonful of flour, and beat the compound with the white of an egg until it forms a light paste. It must then be placed in drops on a clean sheet of writing paper, and placed before the fire£ to dry hard rather than to bake.
    Damson Drops.£ Take some damsons and bake them without breaking them. Remove the skins and stones, and reduce them to a fine pulp by pressing them through a sieve. Sift upon the pulp some crushed lump sugar, and mix it with a knife or spatula until it becomes stiff. Place it upon writing paper in the form of drops ; put them in a gentle oven to dry, and when dry take them out and turn them on a sieve. Then wet the paper, and the drops will separate from it, after which they are again to be placed in a very slack oven, and dried until they are hard. They are placed in layers in a box with paper between each layer, and in that way will keep well, if air and damp are excluded.
    Raspberry Drop.£ Gently boil some raspberries with a little water, and then remove the skins and seeds, after which a pulpy juice will remain. To one pound of this juice add the whites of two eggs and one pound of sifted lump sugar, well beat up together. The addition must be gradually made, and the mixture well beat up for a couple of hours. When arrived at a proper degree of consistency, the composition is to be placed in large drops upon paper slightly rubbed over with butter. They may be dried either in a warm sun or before a slow fire, but not hastily. A larger raspberry drop or lozenge is made as follows :£ Take of raspberries two or three pounds, and boil them slowly, stirring them until there is little or no juice left; then put into the saucepan as much moist or crusted sugar as there was fruit at first ; mix the two off the fire, and when thoroughly incorporated spread the compound upon plates£ chirp or ironstone are best£ and let it dry either in the sun or before a slow fire. When the top is dried, stamp or cut into small cakes of any shape you choose ; set these again down to dry, and when ready lay them in boxes, with a sheet of paper between each layer. Like all similar preparations, they are best kept quite free from all damp ; and, therefore, tin boxes, with closely-fitting lids, are better than any other. At the same time more depends upon the dryness of the place they are kept in than upon the material of the box.

[--grey numbers in brackets indicate page number, 
(ie. where new page begins), ed.--]

source: Cassells Household Guide, c.1880s