Shirley McMurtrie

Adoption in our house

I have three adopted children: Rick, Tom and Anne. This story is not about them. It is about my husband’s Aunt Orpha, his Uncle Bill’s wife. She was from northern Ohio and has been dead since the early eighties. I met her soon after I married.
Aunt Orpha was a sweetheart. She put up with Uncle Bill. I don’t remember if she had been married before, but I think she had. She was a favorite of mine. Uncle Bill and Aunt Orpha would come from Hillsdale, Michigan, to our house to watch TV.

Spanish rice

Years ago when i worked as a telephone operator in Angola, Indiana, i learned how to cook rice the South American way. A fellow operator had been married to a man from Venezuela. The main difference is how the rice is prepared. Her Spanish Rice had no meat. She just browned raw rice in a little oil and sauteed it a few minutes. Then she added canned tomatoes, onion and green pepper, cooking until the rice was tender. I understood this was the mainstay of poor folks' diet down there. Do i have you confused as to what is really Spanish Rice? It is whatever you want it to be. Try mine.

Chicken pox

My doctor book says that Chicken Pox is a common, mild infectious disease of childhood. It also says that it is a rare disease in adults. That's what it says. The virus is spread from person to person by airborne droplets. Patients are highly infectious from about two days before the rash appears until about a week later. The rash consists of a mass of small, red, itchy spots that become fluid-filled blisters ina short time. After a few days, the blisters dry out and become scabs. That is, if you don't scratch them. Then you have a real mess.

Anytimee borsch

I like beets. It seems the fresh ones can only be found in the summertime. No matter, the canned ones are good, too. This recipe calls for canned beets. I will save the fresh ones to where they can star alone. A great soup for a hot summer day.

Cranberry Grape Salad

I am always looking for ways to fix table grapes. Grape go well with almost any other fruit. I never thought about using table grapes in a salad until a group from church took a trip to Cumberland Falls in Kentucky. We ate lunch there. They serve the most delicious grape salad. This recipe is tasty, too.

Cheese Spread

There are times you need a cheese spread. Rather than buy a jar, make your own. Then you will know wha's in there. If you are like me, you probably have all the ingredients on hand anyway. Try this one

Smashed Spiced Sweet Potatoes

I like sweet potatoes about any way you can fix them. In fact, I buy a 20 pound box of sweet potatoes every fall from a man who brings them up from the Carolinas and parks in front of Janet’s Hair Salon in beautiful downtown Maynardville. It takes me all year to finish that box. I am always looking for new ways to fix them. I come up with this recipe the other day. It is a variation of a rutabaga recipe I tried. They are spicy but not like a pumpkin pie. Try them and see what you think.

Sour Cream Apple Pie

Apple pie. Apple pie. Custardly, creamy apple pie. Only a few apples in the fridge? All this pie takes is three pie apples. Then it only takes a pie shell. If you have some dough in the freezer left over from your last baking bash, rescue those apples and make this pie. If there is not quite enough apples, that's ok. Maybe throw in a few raisins. Notice that there is no cinnamon in this apple pie.