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GEXEF.AL MAXAGEMEXT OF THE SKIX, ETC.
Ix a state of nature, man accustoms himself to a plunge in the nearest pool or sea, and no doubt with great advantage to his health. Almost all animals are mbject to the. natural washing of the ruins of heaven; and to a certain extent the savage has this compulsory means of cleansing his skin. But iu our civilized state af society it is rarely that we get even damped by rain, and even a good andFbenlthy perspiration is to some people a not very common mode of getting rid of the superfluous scarf-skin. It becomes, therefore, doubly necessary that we should in some way supply this want i«f the system, ami the best means of doing this must cow be examined into.
Thn akin is not only an inveKtment of the body, mechanically packing np its organs, and protecting them from injury by its smooth and yielding surface, and by its constantly supplied layer of doad scarf-skin; but it is also the seat of an excretory apparatus* of no mean importance. This consists of two sets of small glands, one of which is destined to free the blood of a large part of its fluid in the shape of perspiration, while the other secretes au oily matter, which is intended to soften and lubricate the skin. The former of these are extremely minute, and quite beyond the scope of (lie unassisted eye; but the latter may. in many parts of the body, be readily seen to open upon the surface, and are very frequently full of their peculiar secretion. Both of these sets of glands end in small tubes, and iu order to the due dischargo of their secretions, they must be kept unclogged. There are said to be more than three thousand perspiratory tubes opening in a square inch of the palm of the hand, and the average for the whole body U little beneath that number, so that a man of ordinary Ktaturc has seven millions of small tubes opening upon the surface of his body, besides those destined to secrete oily matter. From these tubes a constant distillation 'it fluid is taking place, which Is insensible in small quantities, but very palpable under unuual degrees of exertion, or external heat. Its object is to regulate the temperature of the body, because, in becoming converted into vapor, caloric is rendered dormant, and thus withdraws a large amount from the surface. But in addition to these there are the sebaceous follicles already alluded to, which are distributed moro or less closely over the whole surface of the body, being less abundant where the perspiratory openings are most numerous, and via v*ra\. They aro altogether absent in the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet, and abound iu the face and scalp, as well as over the shoulders. Where there are hairs the sebaceous follicles and hair-tubes coalesce and emerge together, so that each hair oils itself as it grows, by passing through the course of the follicle, and this oil naturally spreads along the course of tho hair. The purpose of these follicles is clearly to keep the skin soft and free from cracks, to which it would bo otherwise liable when exposed to the sun and air, and hence they are very much more abundant in those races of mankind which have been long accustomed to a tropical can. It Is also supposed by many physiologists that this secretion ia intended to assist In cleansing the blood; and, I believe, with truth, for it cannot be denied that whi-n the skin is comparatively closed by disease and
neglect of ablution, the health suffers iu a certain degree. By mismanagement the skin may be made either to give way too readily, and thus produce exhaustion; or, on the other baud, to refuse to do its natural office, and so cause fever. To promote the proper cleansing of these tubes, and, while allowing of the due amount of secretion, to avoid excessive perspiration, is the office of bathing, the subject of the present article.
Bathing, as a promoter of health, may be either carried out in the open air, or in the house, or it may bo confined to a mere ablution of the body. Many people may be met with whose skins have never known the sensation of water, excepting the parts visible to the eye. Hundreds and thousands have never had a bath, and a still greater number only as an exceptional case, when ordered as a part of some plan of medical treatment. Yet it is well known that health depends upon a frequent ablution nf the whole body; and, though a bath is the most convenient and complete method of carrying out the process, yet, by means of a sponge or any similar object, it may be effected sufficiently to cleanse the pores. Whether by means of one or tire other, this should bo done at least two or three times a week, followed by strong friction by means of a coarse towel. In this way the follicles of the whole body aro kept clean at their mouths, and by the towels aro emptied of any thick matter contained iu their extremities, while at tho same time the vessels are braced, and are prevented from giving out more than a healthy amount of fluid. This effect is produced by the sponging with cold water; and, in addition, thero is the reactionary glow resulting from its contact, and which appears to be a natural process established to keep up an average temperature of the body, but kept iu abeyance when by the aid of artificial means it is no longer required. Those who use cold water regularly, either with the sponge or as a bath, are certainly able to bear exposure to the weather much better than without its aid ; and this good effect is no doubt dependent upon the regular education of the heat-generating organs, whichever and wherever they m^y be, Bo that they are at once ready to act the moment they are called upon ; and, almost immediately after the cold water is applied, a red blush appears on the skin, with a development of heat greater than before. Whenever this occurs it may be concluded that bathing or cold ablution is beneficial: and, on the contrary, when it is absent it is not prudent or safe to continue the practice without some experienced person to advise upon tho case. Many people who naturally are disinclined to this reaction become gradually accustomed to tho cold, so as at last to develop heat ns well as their more robust neighbors ; but some skins and constitutions can never ho made to bear cold with advantage, and are even braced by the use of hot water. This I have known many times; and, in spite of a long and cautiously carried out plan of cold-bathing, they have at last been obliged to give up the attempt, and havo recourse to the opposite extreme of hot-baths, or else let their skins remain in a s-tate of impurity. But these are the exceptions to the rule, and cannot be considered as affecting the mass of mankind, though still the fact should be known, lest individuals might bo induced to persevere too long in tho attempt, from a belief that nil ought to be able to bear the shock produced by the contact with cold water. It may be said that such individuals are In a state of disease; hot if so, all in this country must be included in the same category, for certainly I have known some who were In all other respects free from any ailment whatever, and yet could never bear the
contact of cold water, nor could they ever be made to develop heat rapidly after it, as in the ordinary reaction of bathing. In these individuals hot water at a temperature of 103 or I OS degrees is positively bracing, and in some cases I havo known it almost as great a panacea as the cold-water cure so much vaunted in the present day.
In the use of tho cold bath, whether marine or of fresh water, tho whole body should, as a rule, bo immersed, whe:e *ho object la to preserve the general health. For certain remedial purposes it may be desirable to use local ould; but as a general means of cleansing the skin, and at the same timo of bracing it, the better plan is to plunge tho whole body beneath the surface for a moment, and as rapidly as possible afterwards emerge from tho bath. It is seldom that a continuance longer than for a few seconds in tho water is of service, though in warm weather it is very pleasant, and in many cases does no harm; but that it does no .' d is equally clear, and, therefore, however pleasant a long-continued bath may bo in hot weather, yet it is to be by no means recommended. With regard to domestic bathing in cold water, tho sponging-bath is that which is chiefly to be used, as there aro few people who can bear immersion in cold water in. the house without too great a call upon the powers of tho system. Cold sponging produces quite as great a bracing effect, without abstracting too much heat ; and it also cleanses the skin quite as well as, or oven better than, immersion.. When regularly practised, and followed by the use of tho rough towel, no soap is needed to cleanse tho pores; but if only occasionally employed, this detergent is very useful. Tboso who take any kind of cold bath should not be slow and languid in their operations, but sponge themselves with briskness, and without delay rub themselves dry. In thii way tho mere activity of tho process aids in generating beat and producing reactiou, and avoids the tendency to chill, which is sometimes caused by a neglect of this precaution.
Where hot baths are taken on the principles previously allnded to, the temperature must be raised high enough to produce reaction, and they should not generally be taken just before getting into a warm bed, which will almost always canse excessive perspiration. Those who really benefit from a hot bath find that they feel cold after ono in which the temperature is too low ; but, if raised to 105 degrees, or even higher still, the skin is stimulated till it is in as great a glow as could bo produced in others by a cold affusion; and when this Is the ease, exposure to cold afterwards is borne with nearly as great impunity as in those who use tho cold bath instead, especially if after the hot bath tho body is at once fearlessly exposed to a cold atmosphere or to cold water itself. Such Is the Russian [dan, except that in their baths steam is used instead of hot water: but the effect is the same, and tho skin is stimulated exactly by the same action of high heat, though in the shape of steam instead of water. It appears in their plan to render them nearly as inncnsible to the effects of cold as our cold bathing does us ; and there can be no doubt that there is little difference in the amount of heat-generating power produced hy the two modes, however different tho principles upon which lln*y act.
MISCELLANEOUS COOKING. To Ron. Salmon.—Salmon is dressed in various ways, but chiefly boiled in large pieces of a few pounds weight. The middle piece is considered, if not the richest, yet the most sightly; then that adjoining the jowl; the tail
part, though nearly as good, being usually kept for cutlets. It requires great attention, and the boiling must be checked more than once. A piece of four to five pounds will take nearly an hour; but if double that weight, will not require more thau twenty minutes beyond that time, and if crimped, still less will be sufficient; let It, however, boil quickly in the hardest water, on a strainer placed in a large fish-kettle, and be thoroughly doue, for nothing is more unwholesome and disagreeable than fish that is under-cooked. Skim it well, or tho color will be bad. Tho moment it is ready lift up the strainer and rest it across the kettle, that tbe fish may drain; cover it with a thick cloth.
To Broil Salmon.—Cut slices an inch thick; put them Into buttered paper and place thcm on the gridiron; or tho paper may be omitted, and the slices broiled upon, the gridiron, rubbing the slices with a bit of fresh butter wrapped in ganze ; sprinkle freely with salt. They will be done in a few minutes, and should be served as hot as possible.
To Fet Trout.—Scale, gut, and clean them; take out the gills, egg and crumb them; then fry In lard or oil until of a light brown. Serve with anchovy sauce and sliced lemon.
Boiled Tcrket.—Fill the body with oysters, and let it boil by steam without any water. When sufticiently done, take it up ; strain the gravy that will be found in the pan; thicken It with a little flour and butter, add the liquor of the oysters intended for sance, aUo stewed, and warm the oysters up in it; whiten it with a little boiled cream, and pour it over the turkey.
Goose.—Scald four or six sage-leaves, according as they are fresh or dry, the fresh ones being the strongest; chop them fine; take one large or two small onions, chop them, and then pour boiling water over them to make them eat mild; mix the sage and onion with rather more thau an equal quantity of line bread-crumbs; season well with pepper and salt; put this inside the body of the goose; roast before a quick flro an hour or more, according to the size of the bird. Geeso are sometimes stuffed with potatoes, the whole body being filled with them, either whole or mashed; but it absorbs so much of the gravy as to injure the richness of the bird. Apple-sauce and gravy arc sent up with geese in separate tureens.
To Roast Pigeons.—Scald some parsley, chop it with Uie livers, mix them with a piece of fresh butter, season with pepper and salt; put a portion inside each pigeon; cover tho breast with a slice of bacon fat; roast them; serve with parsley and butter in the dish.
Sweetreeads Stewed.—After blanching, stuff them with a forcemeat of fowl, fat and lean bacon, an anchovy, nutmeg, lemon-peel, parsley, and a very little Cayenne and thyme; when well mixed, add the yolks of two eggs, and fill the sweethreads. Fasten them together with splinter-skewers, and lay them in a pan, with slicos of veal over and bacon under them; season with pepper and salt, mace, cloves, herbs, and sliced onion; cover close over the fire ten minutes, then add n quart of broth, and stew gently one hour; take out the sweetbreads, strain and skim the broth, and boil it to half a pint; warm the sweethreads in it, and serve with lemon round.
Vbal Cttlets.—Cutlets are cut either from the fillet or the neck, but chops aro taken from the loin. Som« persons havo deprecated tho practice of beating meat, but it is essentially necessary in veal cutlets, which otherwise, especially if merely fried, are very indigestible. They should bo cut about one-quarter, or, at the. moat, one-half an inch in thickness, and well beaten; thoy will then, when fried, taste like sweethread, be quite as tender, and nearly as rich. Egg theni over, dip in bread-crumbs and savory herbs, fry, and servo with mushroom sance and fried bacon.
Or: Prepare us above, and fry them; lay them in a dish, and keep them hot; dredge a little flour, and put a bit of butter into the pan; brown it, then pour a little doiling water into it, and boll quickly; season with pepper, salt, and catsup, and pour it over them.
To Stew Lamb.—Put It into a stewpan, with a little .'il, parsley, chives, and mushrooms, or half a dozen black trutiles, either whole or sliced, together with some trenches of bacon. Let it stew gently in any kind of broth, and when thoroughly done take it out, strain the fravy, and serve the joint along with truffles or mushrooms only. To be well done it will require four hours in stewing.
Bheast Op Lamb.—Cut off the thin ends, half boil, then strew with crumbs of bread, pepper, and salt, and serve in a dish of stewed mushrooms.
Lbo Op Muttob Bkaisbd.—Take a very small leg of mutton, cut (ill' the knuckle, and trim it nicely; half roast it; then put it into a stewpau, with the trimmings, the knuckle-bone broken, a few slices of fat bacon, or two ounces of butter, an onion stuck with cloves, and a bundle of sweet herbs. Shake the stewpan over the fire until there is gravy enough from the meat and the trimmings to stew the mutton, and take care to turn it in the braise. When very tender, take it up, remove the fat from the gravy, strain it, and bwil it quickly until it is reduced to a glaze; pour it.oYer the mutton, and serve it up on SLpui-ie of vegetables.
CAKES, PUDDINGS, ETC.
To Mabe A Plain Pcddinu.—Weigh three-quarters of a pound of odd scraps of bread, whether crust or crumb, en: them small, and pour on them a pint and a half of boiling water, to soak them well. Let It stand till the water is cool; then press it out, and mash the bread smooth with the back of a spoon. Add to it a teaspooufiil of beaten sringor, some moist sugar, and three-quarters of a pound of currants. Mix all well together, and lay it in a pan well buttered. Flatten It down with a spaou, and lay some pieces of butter on tho top. Bake it in a moderate oven, and serve it hot. When cold, it w;U turn out of the pan, and eat like good plain cheesecakes.
To Make A Tea-cake.— Rub into a quart of dried flour of the finest kind a quarter of a pound of butter; then beat up two eggs with two teaspoonl'uls of sifted sugar and two tablcspoonfuls of washed brewers' or unwashed distillers'yeast; pour this liquid mixture into the centre of the flour, and add a pint of warm milk as you mix it; beat it up with the hand until it comes off without sticking; set it to rise before tho fire, having covered it with a cloth ; after it has remained there an hour, make it up into good-sized cakes an inch thick; Bet them in Ha plates to rise before the fire during ten minutes, then bake them in a slow oven. These cakes may be split and buttered hot from the oven, or split, toasted, and battered after they are cold.
Scotch Sitort Bread — Pnt two pounds of butter in Botue warm place over night, where it will gradually
I become soft without at the same time melting. Take two 1 quarterns of tiour, and mix with it half a pound of loafsugar in powder, and lemon-peel and blanched sweet almonds (in quantities according to taste), cut very fine. Add all these to the butter, and knead the whole till it appears like dough; then add a tablwpooufal or two of yeast; again knead it, and roll out into cakes of the proper size and thickness. Ornament tho edges with candied lemon and comfits, having previously pricked tho edges with a fork.
A Patna Rice Pi'dding.— Wash a quarter of a pound of whole rice, dry it in a cloth, and beat it to a powder. Sot it upon the fire with a pint and a half of now milk till it thickens, but do not let it boii; pour it out and let it stand to cool. Add to it some cinnamon, nutmeg, and inaee. pounded, sngar to the taste, half a pound of suet, shred very small, and eight eggs, well beaten, with some salt. Put to it either hall' a pound of currants, clean washed and dried by tho fire, or some candied lemon, citron, or orange-peel. Bake it half an hour with a pulf crust under it.
Babed Custard.—Boil and sweeten with fine sugar a pint of milk, another of cream, with a stick of cinnamon and a bit of lemon-peel, fill the cups, and hake for ten minutes.
To Mabe Apple Fritters.—Take ono pint of milk, three eggs, ^att just to taste, and as much flour as will make a batter. Beat the yolks and whites separately, add the yolks to the milk, stir in the whites with as much flour as will make a batter, have ready some tender apples, peel them, cut them in slices round the apple, take tho core carefully out of tho centre of each slice, and to every spoonful of batter lay in a slice of tho apple, which must be cut very thin. Fry them in hot lard to a light blown on both sides.
To Mabe A Rich SHRD Cake.—Take a pound and a quarter of flour, well dried, a pound of butter, a pound of loaf-sugar, beat and sifted, eight eggs, and two ounces of caraway seeds, ono grated nutmeg, and its weight in cinnamon. Beat tho butler into a cream, put in the sugar, beat the whites of the eggs and the yolks separately, then mix them with the butter and sugar. Beat in the flour, spices, and seed a little before sending it away. Bake it two hours in a quick oven.
To Mabe RrsRs.—Beat up seven eggs, mix them with half a pint of warm now milk in which a quarter of a pound of butter has been melted, add a quarter of a pint of yeast and three ounces of sugar; put them gradually into as much flour as will make a light paste nearly as thin as hatter ; let it rise before the fire half au hour, add more flour to make it a little stiffer, work it well, and divide it into small loaves or cakes, about five or six Inches wide, and flatten them. When baked and cold, put them in the oven to brown a little. These cakes, when first baked, are very good buttered for tea; if they are made with caraway seeds, they eat very nice cold.
PREPARATIONS OF FOOD FOR INVALIDS.
O.ve of the loveliest accomplishments-of a lady is to understand how to make the invalid in her family comfortable. Food prepared by the kind hand of a wife, mother, sister, friend, has a sweeter relish than the mere ingredients can give, and a restorative power which money cannot purchase. These receipts will enable the watchful attendant to vary tho food as choice or symptoms may render expedient. Jellies and meat broths,