A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006. Now a Popeyes fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

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Entry from June 24, 2006
Striped Bass a la Manhattan
"Striped Bass a la Manhattan" was served at Delmonico's in the 1800s and appeared in several cookbooks. Charles Ranhofer's The Epicurean (1894) detailed many of Delmonico's dishes.

The Epicurean. A Complete Treatise of Analytical and Practical Studies on the Culinary Art Including Table and Wine Service, How to Prepare and Cook Dishes, an Index for Marketing, a Great Variety of Bills of Fare for Breakfasts, Luncheons, Dinners, Suppers, Ambigus, Buffets, etc., and a Selection of Interesting Bills of Fare of Delmonico's, from 1862 to 1894. Making a Franco-American Culinary Encyclopedia.
New York: Charles Ranhofer, 1894.

Pg. 731:
(2428). STRIPED BASS OR SEA BASS à LA MANHATTAN (Bass Rayée ou Bass de Mer à la Manhattan).
Raise the fillets from a striped bass; remove the skin and bones, pare each one into an oval two inches by three inches, and lay them in a buttered sautoir; season with salt, pepper, and very finely chopped onion; moisten with white wine, and cook smothered in the oven; now lay them under the pressure of a light weight, pare once more, and when exceedingly cold cover entirely with jellied mayonnaise (No. 613), and return them to the ice-box. Prepare a pound of very fresh, boneless and skinless bass, put in a sautoir two tablespoonfuls of onions, and six ounces of clarified butter; first fry the onion lightly, then add the well-drained fish; season with salt, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper, and cook in a moderate oven; drain and let get cold; now suppress all the small bones from its meat and pound it well, slowly adding the stock mingled with a few spoonfuls of bechamel sauce (No. 409) reduced with mushroom essence (No. 392) until it becomes quite

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thick. Rub the forcemeat through a sieve, and place it in a vessel on ice to beat up well, incorporating into it a gill of jelly (No. 103); try a small part to discover whether sufficiently firm, and then add a little dissolved isinglass; thicken on ice and put in the value of a pint of unsweetened and well-drained whipped cream. Coat some No. 2 mousseline molds (Fig. 138) with jelly, dredge over chopped lobster coral, and fill with the preparation; keep them on ice, and when very hard unmold and dress in a circle one beside the other on a round or oval dish into the bottom of which a little jelly has been poured and allowed to harden; in the center dress the escalops of bass; surround with chopped jelly and croûtons; brush the fish over with almost cold jelly, and keep the dish very cold until ready to serve, sending it to the table accompanied by a fine herb mayonnaise sauce (No. 612).

How to Cook Fish (1908)
by Myrtle Reed (1874-1911)

Pg. 48:
Butter a baking-dish, put in the cleansed fish, rub with melted butter, season with salt and pepper, and cover with thin slices of bacon and bread crumbs. Add a little boiling water and bake in a very hot oven, basting as required.

Pg. 59:
Clean and trim a four-pound bass, skin, remove the bones, and chop very fine. Add four tablespoonfuls of butter, season with salt, pepper, and grated nutmeg, and add enough cream to make a stiff paste. Shape into cutlets, dip in egg and crumbs and fry in deep fat, or sauté in clarified butter. Drain. and serve with Tomato Sauce.

Posted by Barry Popik
Food/Drink • (0) Comments • Saturday, June 24, 2006 • Permalink