Old Friends and Fresh Apples


Apples are the main ingredient in numerous family recipes and when they are gathered fresh and prepared immediately, they taste their best.  Nanny enjoyed growing, harvesting and preparing fresh fruits and vegetables and during the warm months of the year, the kitchen counter at her farmhouse near Parrott was usually filled with various home-grown delights.  The gems that she did not prepare fresh were either preserved in canning jars or frozen for later consumption. 


Once Nanny and Granddaddy Scott closed the country store, retired from farming, and relocated from Terrell County to Richland, I was able to visit with them nearly every day.  We went shopping and as I recall, experienced some unique adventures; and when she went foraging for fresh food items, I was her companion and frequently the chauffeur.  Granddaddy was by then a bed-bound invalid so he looked forward to my visits and I rarely missed a day, sometimes going by several times each day. 


As we trekked around our community, sometimes even on dirt roads, Nanny recalled stories about our neighbors, family and friends, and many of her anecdotes caused us to share in one of her favorite activities, laughing out loud.  The majority of the tales that I now share with you readers were revealed by my precious Nanny. 


One of Nanny's comrades was Ms. Myrtle Moore, who with her husband "Dock" and their family, lived a few miles up the Columbus Highway near the tiny community known as Brooklyn.  I knew the family because their son Steve was my classmate in school; Nanny knew Ms. Myrtle because she was kin to the Monkus family, with countless relatives residing downhome in Terrell County, and a longtime family acquaintance. 


Ms. Myrtle was employed for years in downtown Richland, one of the establishments being Little's Drug Store, where as youngsters we frequently stopped by the emporium.  Once we made our snack selection, we relaxed at those unique sets of tables and chairs fashioned out of wire and painted in white and trimmed with chrome.  The heyday of soda fountains had long passed but in Richland we hold on to our history and nostalgia a little longer than most.  I still remember the whirling sound those large ceiling fans made, and although the bus station segment had been closed for years, the old schedules were still posted outside in an enclosed wooden bulletin board. 


On the country corner of the Moore property were several apple trees and every season they invited Nanny to harvest and enjoy the fruit, and of course she accepted their generous invitation.  Once the ripe red apples were picked, we washed them and began making several recipes.  Apple picking adventures with Nanny were times to remember and cherish. 


Nanny taught me how to make fresh applesauce, Apple Brown Betty, traditional apple pie, and from the ingredients we preserved in the freezer, she taught me how to make fried fruit pies.  In our family we referred to these delights as lefts and rights because that is what Granddaddy Scott called them, and to describe the fried pies as delicious is justifiable. 



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