We take so many things for granted, our lives are so easy because of modern conveniences, even something as simple as stock cubes, so imagine what it would have been like before they were as readily available. I came across a recipe for ‘portable soup‘ – which doesn’t mean soup which can be transported from place to place, but is a recipe for what amounts to a stock cube which can be rehydrated as a base for the soup. Meat must have been much cheaper then, 10 lbs of shin beef and two chickens would be quite an expensive way to make soup, portable of not!
Portable Soup – Put on, in four gallons of water, 10 lbs. of a shine beef, free from fat and skin, 6 lbs. of a knuckle of veal, and two fowls; break the bones and cut the meat into small pieces; season with lot of whole black pepper, ¼ oz. of Jamaica pepper, and the same of mace; cover the pot very closely, and let it simmer for twelve or fourteen hours, and then strain it.
The following day take off the fat, and clear the jelly from any sediment adhering to it; boil it gently upon a stove without covering the sauce pan, and stir it frequently till it becomes very thick and in lumps about the pan.
Put it into saucers about half full, and when cold lay the cakes upon flannel to dry before the fire or in the sun ; keep them in a tin box with white paper between each cake. About an ounce weight will make a pint of rich soup; pour boiling water upon it with a little salt, and stir it till it dissolves. It also answers well for gravies and all brown sauces.
I guess the meat which is recovered would be eaten, but after cooking for 12 -14 hours I can’t imagine it would have much flavour left! Maybe it would be fed to the dogs.