Here are a few handy vintage cookery tips for boiling fresh vegetables…
- A large percentage of the mineral and vitamin content in vegetables lies just under or in the skin. That is the reason baked or boiled potatoes are more nutritious than those that are peeled or scraped. If scraping or peeling is necessary, do it very lightly.
- Each vegetable should be cooked by a method that will bring out the color and flavor, yet retain its shape and highest possible food value. Boil or steam vegetables in a small amount of water and cook as quickly as possible. Overcooking causes the vegetable to become mushy and soft.
- Add about one and a half teaspoons of salt per quart of water.
- If cooking vegetables that are slightly over mature, add a little sugar to the water to improve the flavor.
- Bring water to boiling point, then add vegetables. A lot of vitamin content is lost and dissolved out when vegetables are added to water and then brought to boiling stage.
- Cook green vegetables in very little water and cook as quickly as possible.
- Cook white vegetables, such as potatoes, cauliflower and corn, in water to which a little lemon juice has been added.
- Drain vegetables and add melted butter or other seasonings.
- Save the cooking water, which contains minerals and vitamins, and use to flavor soups, gravies or for part of the liquid to mash potatoes.
- Remember to serve vegetables as soon as possible after cooking and make sure they are hot.
Source: Vintage Workbasket Magazine (1950s)