Calvin spent a lot of time at his grandparents’ (Ed and Orpha Lunt) home in Duncan, Arizona. He was about seven years old when his grandpa Lunt bought him his first b.b. gun. His grandpa said, “Giving Calvin that b.b. gun was the worst damn thing I ever did. If anything's alive or moves he shoots it. It doesn't matter what it is: flies, butterflies, bees, wasps, lizards, rattlesnakes, a Gila monster. Nothing is safe when Calvin has his b.b. gun.”
While Calvin’s grandparents lived for a few years in Durango, Colorado, his grandfather had an old garage with a lot of mice in it. When Calvin was nine or ten years old, he took a ballpeen hammer and knocked a hole in the sheetrock at each stud joint on the floor – every 16 inches – because that’s where all the mice nests were. He collected all the baby mice and put them through his grandmother’s apple grinder. Calvin was proud he’d captured and gotten rid of all those mice, but when Grandma Lunt came outside and saw what he'd done, she was swearing mad. She turned around and filled a tub of hot water and soap and brought it back to Calvin and made him scrub and scrub that grinder. If he was expecting a trophy for killing them, he was disappointed because he got a cussing out and chores instead. Apple and chokecherry season was just around the corner and Grandma Lunt needed her press to make juice. Calvin’s favorite jelly is still apple-chokecherry, with just a hint of mice.
Calvin's dad once told me that Grandma Lunt (his mother-in-law) was the best cook he ever knew, and he ate homecooking his whole life. Though I only met Grandma Lunt a couple of times, I have some of her recipes and spudnuts is one of them. Tonight for family home evening we made them. I've made them several times before, but this was Calvin's first time. It's a good thing we only made a half a batch because we kept telling each other, "They won't taste this good tomorrow, they're best fresh -- better eat another one." And we did.
Soak yeast in potato water. Combine sugar, shortening, milk, and eggs. Beat well. Add yeast, water, and potatoes. Sift flour with salt. Add to rest of mixture. Roll out and cut with doughnut cutter. Let rise until nearly double. Fry in hot oil. Drain on paper towels. Dip in glaze while warm and let dry on a cooling rack.