"As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy, and to make plans."--Ernest Hemingway

Aunt Thelma's Texas Potatoes Recipe

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This recipe for Aunt Thelma's Texas Potatoes, by , is from Cater Cook'n, one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We help families or individuals create heirloom cookbook treasures.

Susan Aud Sonders
Added: Sunday, October 9, 2005


2 lb. bag frozen hash browns
1 can creme of chicken soup
2 c. grated medium sharp cheese
1/2 c. chopped onion
16 oz. sour cream
1/2 c. butter
1/4 box corn flakes
salt and pepper
1/4 c. butter

Melt 1/2 c. butter and mix it in a large bowl with frozen hash browns, soup, onion, sour cream, cheese, salt and pepper. Place in a 9x13 pan.
Let it sit while you melt 1/4 c. butter in a skillet. Add as many corn flakes as possible, coating the flakes with the butter. Place this mixture on top of the potatoes in the 9x13 pan. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350 for 1-1 1/4 hour. Cover with aluminum foil the last fifteen minutes if the corn flakes begin to get too brown.

Personal Notes:
Personal Notes:
Cater Family Memories from Susan: This recipe is requested by our kids on a continual basis. It has a special place on the table every Christmas brunch and Easter beside the Honey Baked Ham.
My memories of reunions are at Aunt Thelma and Uncle Everette's house. The sounds of family around the beautiful piano as Aunt Thelma and Terry played. The harmony of the high sopranos and the low altos as they crowded around and sang shoulder to shoulder. Playing with many cousins in the basement as Alan practiced being a disc jockey and Larry chasing me with his eye lids turned inside out. Catching fire flies in the dark by the spooky burial grounds. The sounds of chicken popping in the fryer, potatoes mashing, heels clicking on the linoleum floor, and sisters, cousins and in-laws crowding into the kitchen, talking and laughing as they each prepared their specialty. A long table in the dining room filled with so much food, so much commotion and so much love.
I also learned to eat and love fried eggs at the big white house with the huge porch and sweeping stair case. When I would move into the kitchen in the morning, Uncle Everett would give me a big cheerful “good morning” and ask if he could fix me bacon and eggs. Of course I said yes but I thought he meant scrambled eggs, for that was the only kind I liked. But when it arrived on the plate it was fried. I ate it, didn’t like it and smiled. From that day on, each year, at the same time, I would have fried eggs in the big kitchen in New Harmony, as that scenario repeated itself each summer. Even now, each time I make them, I think of him.
As I ate, I would talk to the parakeet, trying to make him talk like Aunt Thelma could. “Toast and jelly” or “cup of coffee” it would say over and over again. I was astounded and asked her repeatedly how she did it. She would just laugh and say “all my birds have talked.” I had spent many summer hours at home playing my “teach your parakeet to talk” record over and over again and never heard a peep out of any of my parade of parakeets.
Nights in New Harmony were spent sleeping above the huge porch in the screened in room and I was lulled to sleep to the sounds of semi-trucks traveling below me to Illinois. It is soothing sound, to this day.
Uncle Everett made me feel pretty. He would prepare the boys of New Harmony in advance that I was coming and, upon my arrival, would tell me about all the boys that wanted to take me out. He was the social connector of the town, linking people to people. I would watch him at the gas station next door and marvel at how friendly and interested he was in others. It was his gift. Because of him, the boys of New Harmony would drive up and down main street to get a glimpse of the girl from Michigan. I thank him for building my confidence through my teen years.
When Aunt Thelma moved to the retirement home, she kept a special box in the closet. Lindsay, Jason and Melanie still have treasures received from that box. All year Aunt Thelma would accumulate trinkets and stash them away. After dinner, the kids looked forward to picking out what they wanted. Even though Lindsay’s porcelain cat is now broken, she keeps her ear rings in it. Another treasure is a doll, now with one eye, that sits high out of harms way in the closet. After treasure hunting, Aunt Thelma would take us to the park to “count deer.” The number was always above a hundred which was magical to us. Then we would go for ice cream cones in town. I always felt a sense of loss when we drove away each summer and headed North. I thought of how wonderful it would be to be near all our relatives all the time. . .




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