Dear Heloise: When a recipe calls for eggs but does not specifically say which size to use, always assume it means a LARGE EGG. It's the standard for most recipes. - Dayna in New Jersey


Dear Heloise: As the temperature drops, I get a craving for potato soup. It's my all-time favorite. Have you got a recipe for this delight? - Lorna H., Hugo, Minn.
Lorna, as a matter of fact, I do have a wonderful recipe for potato soup. You'll need:
4 medium potatoes, cubed
1 small onion, chopped
1 tablespoon shortening
1 cup water
2 cups milk
3/4 teaspoon salt
Dash of pepper

Cook potatoes, onion, shortening and water in a large pot until the potatoes are soft. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes. Makes about 4 servings. If you like this easy and tasty recipe, you'll find it and many more in my pamphlet Heloise's Spectacular Soups. To receive a copy, send $5, along with a stamped (70 cents), self-addressed, long envelope, to: Heloise/Soups, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. Or you can order it online at Remember, if you make a large pot of soup by doubling this recipe, you'll have enough to freeze for another meal when you're in a hurry. - Heloise

Dear Readers: Here are a few hints for soup makers:
1. For cream soups, top off with a dollop of sour cream, yogurt or chopped herbs.
2. For thicker soups, add grated cheese on top before serving.
3. For clear soups, add croutons, wontons or leftover noodles from Chinese takeout.
- Heloise


Dear Heloise: A zester isn't just for lemons and other fruit. Sometimes I'll use my zester to add some color to a dish by running the zester along the sides of a carrot to get small pieces, which I sprinkle on top. It adds a splash of color. - Bella P., Gilbert, Ariz.


Dear Heloise: I like fruit juice, but some brands are a little too strong, so I add club soda and enjoy the flavor and the fizz. It's refreshing, lower in calories and tastes great! - Lynda in Nebraska


Dear Heloise: Once in a while a recipe may call for liquor, but it's usually only a small amount. Instead of buying a large bottle, I go to a liquor store and buy the small bottles like the ones used on an airplane. One or two mini bottles and I have what I need at a much lower price than if I'd bought a larger bottle. - P.L. in Texas


Dear Heloise: When I make thumbprint cookies, I use a cork from a wine bottle to make the imprint. It's the perfect size, keeps my hands clean, and all my cookies are uniform-looking. - Nancy W., Newport, N.H.

It's all about the wash

Dear Heloise: Please remind your readers, including school kids, how and how often to WASH THEIR HANDS. Thank you. - P.F., Costa Mesa, Calif.

It's such an important topic. Proper hand-washing can help lessen the spread of disease, and it can help to keep us healthier. Here are the "hows," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (
• Wet hands with clean, running warm or cool water. Turn off the water and apply soap.
• Rub hands together to generate lather. Target the backs of your hands, palms, between your fingers and under your nails.
• Wash for at least 20 seconds.
• Rinse thoroughly under fresh, running water.
• Dry off using a clean towel or air blower.

As for the "how oftens":
• Before, during and after preparing foods, and before eating.
• When caring for a sick person, and/or treating a wound.
• After using the restroom, and/or changing a diaper.
• After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
• After touching an animal, animal waste or trash.

If you don't have soap, hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol can cut the number of germs on your hands. - Heloise


Dear Heloise: You recently wrote about how to fall. May I suggest fall prevention?
As we get older, we take smaller steps, even shuffle, and sit a lot.
Check with your local Council on Aging. They have wonderful classes to get you up and mobile, strengthen core muscles and teach you to balance.
Our area offers a tai chi-based class that was created to assist with strengthening muscles in your legs. You create a "grunt force" memory to "catch" yourself and prevent a fall.
There are so many classes and so much assistance out there if you look! And it's also a social activity. - Michelle C., via email

(c)2019 by King Features Syndicate Inc.