1 tbs. vinegar
1/2 c. cream or milk
Nearly fill a clean frying-pan with strained water boiling hot; strain a tablespoonful of vinegar through double muslin, and add to the water with a little salt. [Break eggs one at a time into a saucer to detect any one which has spoiled.] Slip your eggs from the saucer upon the top of the water (first taking the pan from the fire). Boil three minutes and a half, drain, and lay on buttered toast in a hot dish. Turn [pour out] the water from the pan and pour in half a cupful of cream or milk. If you use the latter, thicken with a very little corn-starch. Let it heat to a boil, stirring to prevent burning, and add a great spoonful of butter, some pepper and salt. Boil up once, and pour over the eggs. A better way still is to heat the milk in a separate saucepan, that the eggs may not have to stand. A little broth improves the sauce.
From Common Sense in the Household by Marion Harland, New York, 1871
Comment: What, you thought giving a recipe a semi-French name to class up an otherwise pedestrian item was something new? Mais non, ma petite chou! This is oeuf poché with an uninspired white sauce, feh. Although we suppose if the optional “broth” was of a particularly fine or spicy quality the result could be enjoyable enough.
Oh, and you can skip the step of straining your vinegar if you are using standard commercially bottled stuff. Homemade vinegar was still common in the 19th century and would sometimes get bits of the “mother” or plain mold in it, making straining a prudent if not mandatory action.