On Sweetening Tainted MeatThursday, September 1, 2011
Back in 1824, when most of us didn't have refrigerators, there were times when the chops we were planning to have for dinner might have gone off a bit.
Taking them out to the backyard for a short eulogy -- and a longer dirt nap—might seem like the appropriate response today, but in Jolly Old England they had other plans. Egerton Smith advised—in his weekly paper, The Kaleidoscope; or, Literary and Scientific Mirror -- that he had found, "by many experiments, that meat entirely fly-blown has been sufficiently purified to make good broth, and had not a disagreeable taste, by being previously put into a vessel containing a certain quantity of beer."
I sometimes (and others, frequently) consider me, the utterly-uncredentialled Dr Sanscravat, to be tainted meat. Would Smith's methods serve to sweeten me?
Soaking in beer surely seems worth a try.
Among the shortcomings of antiquated receipts of this sort is their regrettable penchant for vagueness. Really, now, "a certain quantity?"
What sort of measurement is that?
In the interest of science, I believe it only prudent to approach the experiment in a modern quantitative manner, and to add said beer, one pint at a time, until the desired level of sweetness is obtained.
Editor's Note: The "doctor" promised to document every stage of his experiment and submit a full report, forthwith. However, the last time he conducted a similar experiment, with much the same set of intentions, he was but eighteen years old, and kept no notes whatsoever. He did, what's more, amuse/dismay his entire collection of of aunts with a protracted series of heaves -- dry and otherwise -- at a huge family picnic.