Chap. IX. – Ornamental Jellies, pp.95-105.

[Ornamental Jellies Contents]

Fruits in Jelly.

   JELLIES that are transparent may be made to have a beautiful appearance, by colouring them with various colours and laying the one above the other; observing that one kind is cold before the other, which ought to be only milk warm, is put over it, otherwise they would mix together. A shape may be half filled with transparent jelly, and when cold any kind of fruit laid upon it, as grapes, peaches, &c. with vine leaves, to imitate nature, and the dish then filled up. When turned out it has a pleasing effect. Or, The top, or figures in the mould, may be filled with pure jelly, and when cold filled up with a blamange, or vice versa. When turned out it is ornamented with eggs, thus. Take the whites of hard boiled eggs, cut them in slices, then, with a small tin cutter, like those used in making peppermint drops, cut the egg in various shapes and place them upon the transparent jelly; when put upon the blamange part they are coloured blue, green, &c. 

   Shapes filled with transparent jellies have also a fine appearance by introducing figures, cut out of tin, made to stand upright and soldered upon a flat piece of tin to fit the mouth of the shape; they are then painted according to nature or fancy, such as Neptune in his car, drawn by dolphins, and other deities; also castles, bridges, &c. The shape being placed in a frame, or box of sand, is filled with jelly, and the figures immediately put in; when cold turn it out on a dish. It has a pleasing appearance, especially by candle light. The figures of tin serve also to support the jelly if the shape is high; they may be had from any tin-smith, and cost from five to twelve shillings. 

Apple Jelly.

   Pare and core apples, stew them in water till it is very strong; strain it clear off and add as much isinglass as make it a proper stiffness, then proceed as ordered in orange jelly. 

Blanc Mange. No. 1.

   Blamanges are made various ways. First, Take calf’s foot jelly, pound a few sweet and bitter almonds with rose, or orange flower water, mix them with the jelly; it is then put on the fire with a little isinglass, and a stick of cinnamon, made sweet according to taste; run it through a lawn sieve, or jelly bag, pour it into the moulds; when you turn them out dip them in warm water, and they will slip out. 

Green Ditto. No. 2.

   Having dissolved one ounce isinglass with two pints (mutchkins) water, add four ounces sweet and bitter almonds, pounded with rosewater, and as much spinage juice as will make it a good green colour; add a spoonful of brandy, set it over the fire; when just boiling strain it through a lawn sieve and pour it into moulds, or shapes. 

Or, No. 3.

   Dissolve one ounce isinglass for every two pints (mutchkins) water; boil it till one half is wasted, add the whites of eggs cast light, and sugar to your taste. Run it through a jelly bag upon some sweet and bitter almonds, pounded; give it a scald in a pan, on the fire, and run it through a lawn sieve into shapes. 

Blamange, No. 4.

   The way that is in most general practice

   Take one ounce picked isinglass, dissolve it in half a pint (mutchkin) of milk, or water, boil with it spices to your taste, the paring of a lemon, one ounce of bitter almonds, pounded with a little cream, which add to the isinglass when dissolved. Take two pints (mutchkins) fresh cream and sugar to sweeten it, mix in the isinglass, let it just boil; take it off, strain it through a lawn sieve, or piece of muslin; keep stirring it till almost cold, then pour it into shapes. When it is firm lay the plate or dish close upon the mouth of the shape, and turn it out; if it is made very strong it may be necessary to dip the mould in hot water first. 

Cream Jelly.

   Boil four ounces hartshorn shavings in three pints (mutchkins) water till one half is wasted; strain it pure, add half a pint (half a mutchkin) of rich cream, with spiceries, wine, and sugar to your taste; give it a boil, and keep stirring all the time, else it will curdle. When near cold pour it into cups, &c. 

Artificial Fruits in Jelly.

   They require a variety of moulds made of pewter or lead, cast, and made to open with hinges, like a muscle shell, in the same way as ice moulds; only with this difference, they have a round hole at the top, to put in the stone and stalk of the fruit you mean to imitate, which should be preserved carefully when in season and kept for that purpose. Have also a frame of wood, divided with small spars, to lay the moulds on to keep them steady. They are then filled with a strong jelly made of calves feet, or of cow heels, as already directed, and coloured according to the fruit imitated; sweeten and flavour it accordingly. Let it boil and fill the moulds, when beginning to firm put in the stones and stalks into each; when cold and firm open the moulds. Colour the fruit with a little azure blue, tied up in a piece of linen, to give them the bloom; for a yellow, use a yellow powder, and red, &c. dusting them carefully. A little practice will make it become easy; they will appear to the eye as real fruit. Or, paint the inside of the moulds before you pour in the jelly. 

Hen and Chickens in Jelly.

   Make a strong blamange as directed No. 4. add two ounces sweet almonds blanched, and pounded in a mortar with cream or milk; take a sufficient quantity of it to fill the moulds. Divide it in three parts; in the first bason white, the second bason colour brown with chocolate, the third bason colour yellow with the yolks of eggs boiled hard, and finely pounded, or a little gamboge. When all ready, fill the hen mould with the brown; fill three small chicken moulds with white, three with yellow, and two with brown. Have ready also some lemon skins, boiled tender and cut in small stripes to imitate straws, which strew upon the bottom of the dish into which the moulds are to be turned; cover them with a strong, clear jelly. When cold, turn out the hen into the centre of the dish, and the chickens round her; you may place a white one on her back. Make a comb and bells of a wafer, which fix on and paint the bills yellow; then pour in some more clear jelly to keep the whole steady. 

Hen’s Nest in Jelly.

   Prepare a blamange as ordered in No. 4., season it with cinnamon; then take a number of the smallest eggs you can get, according to the size of the dish you want filled; pierce a hole in the top with a pin, and in the narrow end make one larger; put the broad end to your mouth and blow strong, by which means the egg is soon emptied. Wash the shells clean and set them in egg cups, with the small end up, to pour the blamange into; keep stirring the blamange till almost cold, and pour it into the eggs. 

   Make a strong jelly of cow heels, run it very clear (vide p. 92.) Take a deep china bowl, or bason, of the size you want; cut some lemon skins (which should be boiled tender) in narrow stripes to imitate straw; then pour into the bason about a pint (mutchkin) of the clear jelly, more or less according to the size of the bason. Then take the eggs filled with blamange, carefully chip and take off the shells; place a few of them upon the jelly, strew on a few of the lemon straws, then pour another pint (mutchkin) of the clear jelly upon them. When cold, lay on a few more of the eggs, and fill or cover the whole with the clear jelly, dressing it out with the lemon straws all round the edges. When cold and firm, loosen it round the edges, dip the shape or bason in hot water; turn it out on a flat china, or crystal dish. Ornament it with sprigs of any green, sweet herb, or boxwood. 

Fish Pond imitated in Jelly.

   Take fish moulds of various sizes, fill them with blamange, turn them out and colour them to imitate nature. Then pour into a deep dish as much pure jelly of calfsfoot, or cow heel, and properly seasoned as will cover the bottom well. When firm lay on a few of the fishes, with the painted sides downwards, and cover them with more of the pure jelly. When the jelly is firm lay more fishes across the others, and up and down, so that they may appear in various situations when it is turned out. Pour on more jelly, when cold, lay on a few of the largest ones; then fill up the bason, or shape, to the top with jelly. When well firmed turn it out, first loosening the jelly round the edges, and dipping it in hot water. Let the jelly be almost cold when you pour it over the fishes

   For variety. The fish may be gilded, or covered with Dutch leaf, to imitate gold and silver fish; fill a china dish nearly half full with clear calfsfoot jelly; when it is cold lay a few of the gold and silver fish upon their edges that they may be well seen, then fill up the dish with more clear jelly; when firm turn it out into a crystal dish. 

Moonshine Jelly.

   Make a piece of tin in the shape of a half moon, as deep as a half pint bason; make another in shape of a large star, one smaller, and a few lesser ones. Take some calfsfoot jelly stock, sweeten and clarify it as ordered in making jelly; run it very clear, put it into a pan; blanch and beat an ounce of sweet almonds, with rose, or orange flower water, thin; strain the juice of it through a fine cloth, which add to the jelly, also four spoonfuls fresh-cream, and stir it till it boils. Have ready the dish, place the half moon in the middle, and the stars round it; fix the tins so that they may not be moved out of their place when pouring in the jelly. Pour the moonshine into the dish, when quite cold and firm draw out the tins; then fill up the vacancies with clear jelly. Or, It may be coloured with azure blue, cochineal, and chocolate, in imitation of the sky, and the moon and stars will have a better effect and shine bright. Garnish the dish with all manner of rock candies, &c. 

Floating Island.

   Have a deep dish, according to the size you want, take two pints (mutchkins) rich cream, sweeten it to your taste; add the grate of a lemon and a gill of wine, whip it up very light, pour out the thin from it into the dish. Take thin slices of French rolls, lay them gently on the surface of the cream in the dish; then a layer of calfsfoot jelly; next a layer of the roll in slices, and over that a layer of red currant jelly; then slices of the roll, and over that hartshorn jelly, over that very thin slices of the roll; then lay on the whipt cream as high as you can and pour all the thin into the dish; garnish the rim with sweetmeats, biscuits, &c. – It is often used for a middle dish. 

Rock Island.

   Fill a deep china dish with clear calfsfoot jelly, also five or six fish moulds with a blamange; turn them out and gild them, and when the jelly in the bason is firm, lay in the fishes, with some transparent red currant jelly, in thin slices, around them. Take a French roll and rasp it, wet it over with the white of an egg and strew silver bran, or glitter, over it; stick a sprig of boxwood, or myrtle, in the top, and place the roll in the middle of the dish; beat up the white of an egg very light, put it over the sprig in imitation of snow; fill up the dish with clear jelly, garnish the sides of the dish with sweetmeats, or any other thing, to ornament it, such as cattle, &c. in rock candy, round the edge of the dish, according to fancy. 

Desart Island.

   Take a piece of paste made of flour and water, form it to resemble a rock, about three inches in breadth on the top; paint it to represent nature, and place it in the midst of a china dish, or bason; set on it a figure, either of stucco or china, having a crown of rock candy on it’s head, and a knot of rock candy at it’s feet. Make a roll of paste an inch thick, which fix on the inner edge of the dish, half round the dish; cut eight or ten pieces eringo root about three inches long, and fix them upright to the roll of paste on the edges. Make the imitation of gravel walks over the bottom of the dish, with nonpareils; set small sugar figures up and down in them. Roll out some paste, cut it out like Chinese rails, bake, and set it up on each side of the walks with gum, and form an entrance where the Chinese rails are, with two pieces of eringo root for pillars. 

To make the Chinese Rail.

   Take two ounces of flour, one ounce pounded sugar, four drops gum arabic; dissolve the gum in half a gill of water, add as much indigo, or Prussian blue and gamboge, as make it a beautiful green; put it all in a small bason, mix and work it well; roll it out thin, cut it in long stripes, about two inches in breadth; then, with a paste knife, cut them out in imitation of a rail, lay them on a sheet of paper; when pretty hard raise it up and bend it in a circular shape, set it before the fire to harden, then put it round the dish, or walk, &c. 

Chinese Temple.

   This is a very pretty ornament in deserts, they require a set of tin moulds of the shapes you intend to be represented; then make ready a paste thus. Take one ounce pounded sugar, half an ounce fresh butter, and four ounces flour; boil the sugar and butter in a little water, beat up an egg and mix it with the sugar and butter when cold; then add the flour, make it into a stiff paste; roll it out very thin, lay it upon the moulds, cut it out, with a paste knife and paste runner, in figures, according to your fancy. The paste is then dried upon the mould before a fire; or they are set in a cool oven, and when cold, the paste is taken off carefully and one part joined to another with strong gum water, or isinglass, anointing their edges with a pencil dipped in it, and placing one piece over another; observing to make the pillars of sufficient strength to support the whole; place sweetmeats within them, and garnish the dish according to fancy. 

A Dish of Snow.

   Stone a dozen of apples, put them through a sieve, take out the skins and cores, put the pulp into a bason; beat up the whites of twelve eggs very stiff, sweeten the pulp and season it to taste; beat it up very light, then stir in the eggs, mix it all together very light; heap it upon a china dish as high as possible, set round the dish a Chinese rail, place a sprig of myrtle on the top. 

Snow Cream.

   Take a deep dish, fill it with strawberries and sugar to taste; take some sprigs of rosemary, place a large one in the middle and several round the dish, then whip up cream in proportion to the size of the dish, very strong, heap it high all over the dish; it will have a grand appearance. 

A Whim Wham.

   Take Naples, spunge, Savoy, or sugar biscuits, or diet loaf in slices, soak them in wine, lay them on the bottom of a dish; take a proper quantity of cream, break in a few whites of eggs, whip it up light, and pour it over the dish. 

A Trifle.

   Cover the bottom of the dish with Naples and spunge biscuits, macaroons, ratafia biscuits, &c.; wet them well with wine. Then make a good boiled custard, not too thick, and when cold put it over them; then a syllabub over that, or cover it with whipt cream; garnish it with jellies, flowers, nonpareils, &c. 

A Grand Trifle.

   Take a large, deep china dish, or bason, have ready some very rich calfsfoot jelly, with which fill the dish half full; when it begins to fasten, have ready all kinds of cakes and biscuits, broken and mixed, stick the jelly full of them, pour over it a pint (mutchkin) of cream or more, according to the size of the dish, then lay round it currant jelly, raspberry, and calfsfoot jelly, cut in pieces. Whisk up two quarts (a pint) rich cream, being first sweetened and seasoned with lemon grate, lay on the froth as it rises on the dish, as high as you can, then strew it over with nonpareils, &c. This is very nice when all mixed together.