Pioneer Potluck: About Ole Bluebelle

Ole Bluebelle was a slobbery, slanty eyed, big boned, big footed bloodhound.  She was sorta adopted into the family or maybe she adopted us! We pronounced her name in one word: OhBluebell


She was not a dog you would go out and buy and brag "isn't she the neatest, prettiest dog you ever saw?"  Cause neat she was not!  Forever slobber wrapped around her nose four or five times when she shook her head and mud caked on her big paws, always.  Pretty?  Well, she seemed to know when you were talking about her, especially when someone would say "isn't that just one ugly dog?"  She would give you the slanty-eyed, sad faced look and lay her head between her paws, and NEVER take her eyes off you.  She did have the knack for making you feel guilty - no mater what!

We had to lock the door to keep her in because she would sneak out at 4 or 5 in the morning, go around the corner of the house where the bedroom was, and let out a bark, a bellow, then sort of a baying-yodel that ended with a high pitched hic-up. 

My side of the bed was next to the wall of the log house we lived in.  The logs seemed to magnify strange noises coming from the outside. When "The Bluebelle noise" went off in the middle of a warm sound sleep, we would jump out of bed, stiff legged, hair standing on end, THEN open our eyes, restart our heart and let out all the air we sucked in after we realize it was "The Bluebelle noise!"  That happened way to many times, so we locked her in, and the imaginary intruders got locked out. 

She was sneaky too.  We would go away at work or shopping, come home and she would be lying on the floor in the front room by the fireplace.  But when we would go to bed, there would be mud, slobber and hair in the middle of the bed.  We could NOT catch her at it.  Every time we came home, she would be in the middle of the floor, seemingly sound asleep.  I did not like mud, slobber and hair in my bed!!

So we appointed someone to watch her when we left in the car.  Sure enough the minute we closed the car door, she would stand up, stretch, look around and head for the bedroom.  She would slowly put one big paw on the bed, then the other, then one back paw and the other, heave herself up, stand up in the middle of the bed for a minute, then start turning in circles, then flop down and go sound asleep.  (I think she got dizzy and fell down!)  When she heard the car come down the lane, she would slither off the side of the bed and belly crawl across the floor to the middle of the living room and put her face between her paws and pretend to be asleep.  We would come in and she would lift one eyebrow, open one eye and go "back to sleep."  We finally solved that problem, by putting a latch on the bedroom door, thus keeping her out of the bedroom and in the house, because one of her other traits was to follow the car down the lane with her "noise." 

She also was a source of laughter or terror, when she would sneeze, snort and shake her head, slobber flying everywhere.  Everyone got up, bumped and banged into each other to get away from slinging, flying slobber.  What did not go flying, ended up wrapped around her nose. 

I am sure you have known dogs like Ole Bluebelle.

Chicken Chili in Crock Pot

Or try turkey!
Heat crock pot and add the following:
1 1/2 pounds of chicken breast or turkey breast meat - cooked, cubed
2 cans of chicken broth
2 cans of water
1 large onion chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon chili powder (or less)
1 tablespoon ground cumin (or less)
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more)
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 four ounce can diced green chilies and liquid
1/2 pound (about 2 cups) Great Northern small beans.
Cook on high 4 to 6 hours, turn to medium or low 2 hours, depends how done the beans are.
Serve with the Cornmeal Muffin 

The Best Corn Meal Muffins

2 cups of Jiffy Biscuit Mix or Bisquick
1 box (8.5oz) Jiffy Cornmeal Muffin Mix
2 tblsp minced onion
2 tblsp red bell pepper diced-or green bell pepper
1 tblsp diced jalapeno (optional)
1/4 tsp garlic salt
2 tblsp room temperature butter
Stir together with a fork:
In a small bowl combine
1 egg
1 cup milk (or more for a moist consistency)
Stir into dry ingredients.  Mix well. Mixture should be very moist.
Oil or spray oil, in a large 9 muffin tin and fill with a half cup scoop.  Sprinkle tops with garlic salt and pepper.  Bake in hot oven of 425% for 20 minutes.  Test with a tooth pick to see if middle is done.  Sprinkle tops with shredded cheddar and place back in oven for 5 minutes.  
Serve with butter and honey. 

Corn and Ham Chowder

Fry 4 slices of diced bacon in heavy soup pot-take out and reserve
1 cup chopped onion - cook until tender
1/2 cup chopped fine red bell pepper (optional)
1 tbsp butter and stir in:
3 tblsp flour until blended into butter and bacon fat
Slowly pour:
3 cups of chicken broth into flour mixture and stir constantly until smooth
Bring to boil and add:
2 cups scrubbed diced new potatoes with peel
Simmer until potatoes are tender - about 10 minutes
Stir in:
Crumbled bacon
1 can cream corn
1/2  can whole corn-drained
2 cups diced ham
1 can canned milk
Slowly heat DO NOT BOIL and add:
2 cups of shredded medium cheddar cheese (this is optional) Just as good without cheese.
Pepper to taste
Serve in bowls sprinkled with bacon and green chopped onions
Corn meal muffins go good with this. 


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