Sundays With Loretta 8.30.15

Gretch & Bet, 1983 (aka Loretta and Sally)

Gretch & Bet, 1983 (aka Loretta and Sally)

I need a smile, today. I think we all do. We got our weekly emotional release, courtesy Miss Sally, right? (Which we thank her for because it was necessary, obviously.) Good.

The first is a continuation of our favorite kitchen helper, Loretta, and her domestic adventures in Tulsa, with Linda and Chris Lewis.

One day I dragged out my Crock-Pot and showed her how it worked.  Well, she thought this was just the best idea!  She promised a special dinner for us that evening. We came home to a ‘special dinner’ indeed.

Evidently mom had phoned her friend, Jane Wyatt, to tell her of the marvelous Crock-Pot – and Jane shared her recipe for Chicken Breast Smothered in Sauerkraut. So, we had Chicken and Sauerkraut. It was odd, and a little weird – but tolerable – for one meal. Loretta, however, had filled the Crock Pot to the brim…so we had Chicken Breast Smothered in Sauerkraut for the next night – and when some was still left over she tried to talk us into Chicken Breast Smothered in Sauerkraut for a third night… Chris finally staged a protest and refused to eat any more Crock Pot dinners!

Now, I have to get this off my chest, first- Jane Wyatt, why would you do this? What form of misery were you wanting to subject to innocent world citizens, when you created this recipe? As a person whose family was always very proud of their looooong removed German heritage, I’m going to dissent- sauerkraut is bad. Whoever invented it should feel bad. Jane Wyatt, no. Stop it. Don’t.

But, I mean, at least Loretta found her niche in the kitchen. She could manage a crock pot meal without filling the house with billows of smoke. What about simple stuff, though? Personally, I would have starved to death in the summers, as a teenager, if it weren’t for soup and macaroni and cheese. I can do that. Those are easy. Right?

This story was from Bruce Maclin, Loretta’s attorney. It was posted as a comment on our last tour through Loretta’s Nightmare Kitchen, but it really warrants being on the main page.

Loretta’s sister Polly Ann told me that once both Loretta and her housekeeper Miss Coney were ill with the flu. Miss Coney (who usually did everything) was the sickest so Loretta was taking care of both of them. Loretta called Polly Ann to say we’re starving over here. Polly Ann asked if she didn’t have some Campbell’s soup. Loretta said yes and Polly Ann said just put it in a pan, put it on the stove and when it came to a boil it was ready. Loretta called back and said she couldn’t tell whether or not it was boiling, but that the paper on the can was burning. Polly Ann took her some food.

GOD BLESS YOU, POLLY ANN. I would be lying if I said I hadn’t read this at least a hundred times, since July 26th. Each time, I just want to know Polly Ann’s whole reaction. I think of teenage Loretta taking a call from the studio for Polly Ann, and asking if she could do the job, instead, because Pol wasn’t home and “besides, I’m prettier.” I just picture Polly Ann walking in that door, bags of food on her arms, mocking her dear sister, “I’m prettier…”

Gretch, Pol, and Bet. (Your weekly dose of HOW THE HELL DID YOU JUST KEEP MAKING PERFECT CHILDREN, GLADYS?!)

Gretch, Pol, and Bet. (Your weekly dose of HOW THE HELL DID YOU JUST KEEP MAKING PERFECT CHILDREN, GLADYS?!)

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2 thoughts on “Sundays With Loretta 8.30.15

  1. Oh yes, we should have sent a personal reprimand to “Aunt Janey” as we called Jane Wyatt to NEVER share that awful recipe again, with anyone, ever! It was fairly dreadful, ha! We all worshipped Polly Ann, she was the strength of the family as her mother aged and after her passing. Polly Ann was a lovely matriarch and wore it well! I’ll share this with Pol’s daughter and pry some stories from her! Thanks Kayla!

  2. I love reading your entries about Loretta’s cooking adventures!

    I can’t even fathom what chicken breast smothered in sauerkraut would taste like. My late Grandfather used to make sauerkraut in huge earthenware jars and the entire house smelled of it while it fermented. There was so much of it and we couldn’t let it ‘go to waste’ as Granddaddy said. My Mother sprinkled sugar on it to get us to eat it. The sugar made it barely tolerable. I can’t imagine the damage it would do to chicken breast. At least, they should be tender!! Poor Lewis family enduring two meals of it!

    Thanks for another very entertaining segment of Loretta Young’s kitchen (mis)adventures!

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