Secure the tail of the FISH in its mouth, the body in a circle; pour over it half a pint of vinegar, seasoned with pepper and salt; let it stand an hour in a cool place; pour off the vinegar, and put it in a steamer over boiling water, and steam twenty minutes, or longer for large FISH. When the meat easily separates from the bone it is done. Drain well and serve on a very clean white napkin, neatly folded and placed on the platter; decorate the napkin around the FISH with sprigs of curled parsley, or with fanciful beet cuttings, or alternately with both.
The Whitehouse Cookbook, by Mrs. F.L. Gillette (Year 1887)