COOKING APPARATUS. If cookery be raised to the dignity of a chemical art (and there is no good reason why it should not) we ought to regard cooking vessels as chemi cal apparatus. It is, however, chiefly in the mode of applying and economising heat, that such apparatus calls forth the exercise of ingenuity.
Of the ordinary cooking vessels we need say nothing ; their simplicity has rendered them familiar to all ; but of the modern cooking stoves and apparatus, many examples evince skilful arrangement.
In the so-called bachelor's kettles,' of which Spiller's is a recent specimen, the problem seems to be to determine in how short a space of time, and with how little trouble, can a frugal meal for one person be prepared. Spiller's apparatus consists of a kind of saucepan, with a small opening on one side to admit air, and a flue fixed in the opposite side to let off smoke. A very shallow tea-kettle forms the cover to this saucepan. In the middle of the saucepan is a small iron grating, and on this grating is placed one of those small net-work arrangements of sticks which constitute ' patent firewood' and which are now sold so cheaply at one farthing each. This wood being kindled, and the kettle placed over it, the heat is so confined as to make the water in the kettle boil by the time the wood is consumed. With some of these contrivances a kind of small frying-pan is sold ; and by using a larger piece of patent firewood, time is allowed for a small dish of savory cookery after the water has boiled : the kettle being quickly replaced by the pan. There is a certain amount of usefulness in the contrivance, which makes it available for others besides the bachelors' whom the patentee seems to have had in his thoughts.
Many varieties of gas cooking-stoves have been introduced, in which gas jets are made to yield heat sufficient for the processes of boiling, stewing, roasting, baking, frying, &c. Among other varieties is Defries' Economic Gas Cooking-stove,' which is made to suit either large, or small culinary wants. Mr. Boggett's gas stoves, for which a patent was taken out in 1850, comprise many varieties, which differ from each other chiefly in the mode of making the heat practically available. There is one form called the Liverpool Gas stove, in which separate departments are pro vided for roasting, baking, broiling, frying, boiling, stewing and steaming. For many of these purposes the gas is supplied in a ring of jets. On a recent festive occasion at Exe ter, 11. Suer cooked a monster joint of meat by means of this apparatus. The meat weighed 505 lbs., and was cooked in a gas oven in five hours, with an expenditure of about five shillings worth of gas.
The kitchen ranges, and other stoves and grates in which coal or coke is burned, are for the most part contrived both for warming apartments and for cooking ; hut some are designed especially for cooking. The Cottager's stove, designed by Mr. Grant, and manufac tured by Messrs. Bailey of Holborn, consists of a square iron case supported on four legs. Inside this case, and near one end, is a fire pot, the top of which opens into a flue to carry off the smoke ; the rest of the vacant space constitutes an oven ; while the top, being flat, is available for many cooking pro cesses. In some of these stoves a boiler is
attached to that end which is nearest to the fire.
The cooking apparatus of Messrs. Burhidge and Healy is founded on the plans of beating developed by Mr. Sylvester. There are, as it many other similar kinds of apparatus, a large range, an oven, a boiler, a hot-plate, and various subsidiary parts ; but its chief features consist in the economising of fuel, and in lessening the amount of radiation sent into the middle of the room. This radiation is an annoyance to the persons present, and in volves a loss of some of the heat produced; and it is unquestionably an improvement, other things being equal, if nearly the whole of the heat produced can he applied to the purposes for which it is primarily intended. Among the many forms of cooking appara tus, that of Mr. Brown is distinguished by having the whole kitchen range, with its oven boiler, hot-plate, &c., set in a frame-work which may be placed in any sized fire-place, however large, without setting. The throat, or opening to the flue, is formed in the iron-work of the range itself, so as to be at once deter minate in shape and size. With this range is used an Automaton Roasting jack, arranged in a singular way. In front of the range is placed a sort of semi-cylindrical oven, with the usual hooks and dripping pans for roast ing. A hollow tube projects from the lower part of the oven ; and when the oven and range are arranged for cooking, this tube is thrust into an opening beneath the fire-place of the range. While the contents of the oven are exposed to the action of the fire, a current of air is continually drawn through the tube into the oven ; and this current sets in rota tion a vane-wheel to which the suspended hooks are attached.
Remington's Roasting apparatus, recently introduced, is, as the name imports, adapted to roasting only. The meat is suspended and roasted by a jack. There are concave reflec tors above and below, which reflect the heat so as to act on the upper and under surfaces of the meat. The centre of both reflectors is perforated; the fat which drips from the meat passes through the perforation in the lower reflector into a small vessel beneath, and is from time to time poured into another vessel. which is perforated and placed over tile per. forations in the upper reflector. The inventor hence calls his apparatus not only a roaster but a ' self.acting baster.' Soyer, whose gastronomic skill has acquired some notoriety, has devised a veil pretty and scientific cooking stove, in which spirit is the fuel used. A lamp is so placed as, by its heat, to boil spirit placed in a vessel above ; the steam or vapour of this boiling spirit has no outlet, except through a tub( which gradually becomes so narrow as to re• semble a blow-pipe ; this blow-pipe is placed opposite to a second spirit-flame, and Bic blowpipe wafts such a constant stream of spirit-vapour into this flame as to heat it greatly, and to make it act rapidly on small cooking vessels placed above it. There is a good deal of chemical ingenuity shewn in thus feeding one sphit-flame by vapour de rived from another.