Remain cautious around fire

Dear Readers: This is just a reminder that, while cooking, make sure you turn all handles on cooking pots to the side where tiny hands can't reach up and touch and where an adult passing by won't knock a pot of something hot on themselves. If you're wearing long sleeves, be very careful that your sleeves don't catch on fire. It's probably a good idea to change into shorter sleeves before you start cooking. Always have a fire extinguisher handy near your kitchen or in your garage.

According to the American Burn Association, roughly 250,000 children under the age of 17 will need medical attention for burns each year. Scalding claims the highest number of young burn victims.

In addition to getting burned on an open flame, there are also electrical and chemical burns, and according to the National Library of Medicine, electrical burns account for roughly 1,000 deaths per year. So, let's all be careful around fire or potential fires this year. -- Heloise

SEND A GREAT HINT TO:

Heloise

P.O. Box 795001

San Antonio, TX 78279-5001

Fax: 1-210-HELOISE

Email: [email protected]

MEME'S POTATO SOUP

Dear Heloise: If there is one thing my husband loves dearly on a cold day, it's soup. We usually have a soup and salad dinner on Fridays. I make a big pot of soup and get Italian bread form a local bakery. Add a salad to that, and you have a very nice meal.

I made some of your potato soup a few months back, and we loved it. It took so little time and effort to prepare. Would you reprint that recipe? -- Louise H., Mankato, Minnesota

Louise, you're right -- it takes so little time and effort to prepare and tastes great! Here it is:

4 medium potatoes

1 small onion, chopped

1 tablespoon shortening or butter

1 cup water

2 cups milk

3/4 teaspoon salt

Dash of pepper

Cook potatoes, onion, shortening (or butter) and water in a large pot until potatoes are soft. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes.

If you have some leftover ham or chicken, you can cut it up into very small pieces and add to the soup. It adds a little flavor and protein.

If you enjoy easy-to-make recipes that taste great, you'll love my pamphlet "Heloise's Spectacular Soups." To get a copy of this pamphlet, go to www.Heloise.com or send $5 along with a stamped, self-addressed, long envelope to: Heloise/Soups, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001.

Remember, most soups, stews and chili usually taste even better a day later, when all those great flavors have had time to mingle and blend. -- Heloise

COOKING WITH KIDS

Dear Heloise: I usually whip up some pancakes while my grandchildren are visiting, and I taught them how to help me.

I fill up a large funnel while keeping my index finger over the spout. Then, while the grill is hot, I move my finger and make pancakes the size of the lid of a jelly jar. Then, I move my finger back over the open end of the funnel. The kids call these baby pancakes, and we make lots of them. They each get a funnel and make a few. Some are only the size of a dime, and others might be the size of a salad plate, but it's fun! And at least I'm teaching them how to cook for themselves. -- Faith J., Colorado Springs, Colorado

King Features Syndicate

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