Kitchen Memories Push Me

I love baking. I’m pretty sure it’s no secret. The fact that I have a pan of brownies cooling right now kind of proves that.

Baking helps you release all the stress that builds up. It’s a creative outlet too. Another reason to bake – personally – is the fact that it connects me with my family. So many of my memories (as many people) food is involved.

Even a memory so simple as going to my grandma’s house because I was bored at home, I knew I would find her in the kitchen. That kitchen I can still remember to this day, even though it’s long gone. Even down to those white and green curtains and fake wood grain table with the metal band around it. These memories bring me home, these memories are the memories I want to pass on to my niece’s & nephews – even though they never knew my grandma.

I was raised by three strong & independent women. My grandma, my mom & my aunt. I spent a lot of the time in kitchens with each of them, taking it all in – and eating a lot of everything.

My grandma was the one who taught me food brings people together. Food doesn’t have to be fancy or take hours to make to be good. It’s meant to be shared. You always share your food. You never know how that simple sharing will impact that person.

Through the time I was lucky enough to share with my grandma I was able to taste and see the foods that a lot of people don’t know about now. I am a strict veggie eater now, but back then I wasn’t & honestly I’m glad I wasn’t. I know I would have missed out on a lot – especially with my grandma.

I remember banana pudding with those vanilla wafers. It was special when she made it – even if she used boxed pudding & cookies. I know what poor man’s cake is. I also know the raisin cookies she’s famous for making is part of my Scottish heritage.

All of the things I remember her making, I’ll make them and share them. I may do them in a different way, but I’ll keep her memory alive.

The second woman is my aunt. From her I have a love of working with chocolate and making cookies.

When I was younger she would make chocolates and candy to sell. During the holiday season she would also make cookies. I always ended up helping her in one way or another.

My first job with helping was making the chocolate covered raisins and peanuts. Later on my job was helping with cutout cookies.

I remember tables and tables full of cookies and candy. I even remember the sugar glass. Sugar glass was always the scary thing because it’s just hot lava that can leave serious burns on your skin. I’ve learned to make sugar glass on my own.

I have to say though, since I’ve gotten older – I honestly don’t like making cutout cookies that much at all. As a child though, when you’re helping an adult make something it’s great. Now as an adult, I’ll buy cutout cookies if I want them.

The last woman & the most important is my mom. She did whatever she could to make sure we were fed. Not only fed, but that we all sat down at the table together.

The best noodles in the world are the ones my mom makes. The down side is, my mom doesn’t measure ANYTHING when she makes them. This makes it hard for me to make them. It is the one thing that I really want to know how to make. They’re made for every special occasion.

She’s also the one who introduced me to the no-bake cheesecake. Which is super simple and great if you don’t have a lot of time to make a New York style cheesecake.

Even those simple things of boxed mixes and no bake cookies are there. Blueberry muffins out of a box, apple turnovers from the freezer and doughnuts out of biscuit dough.

All of these memories and recipes are ones I want to share. I also want to share some of my own. I want to learn new things, I want to be great at what I’m doing. The desserts I make – I want people to talk about them.

Right now I’m set on track to make 1 cake a month. Working toward getting better at my cake making.

The cake in the pictures is the cake I made for my oldest niece. She turned 8 last month and I knew I was going to make her cake. I made a hot pink vanilla cake and paired it with a bubble gum flavored buttercream. Loads of sprinkles and big gumballs top it off.

My next cake is a peanut butter chocolate cake – which I’m making tomorrow.

I know this post is kind of weird and random. I just want everyone to know how important food memories are. When you’re spending time in the kitchen with your family, remember that moment will be frozen in time for them – forever. Take the time to teach – even if it’s a box mix or how a timer works.

One Reply to “Kitchen Memories Push Me”

  1. Kitchen and food memories are some of my fondest memories as well! I remember from a young age both my mother and grandmother would work side-by-side in the kitchen cooking and baking and it didn’t take long for me to roll my sleeves up and be right there alongside them. When I was really young they would stand me on a stool and lovingly walk me through what they were making even if I was too young to do it myself they always made me feel included.

    You mention sugar glass. I had never heard of it so I looked it up. Looks amazing. One thing I love that you can only get around Christmas time here in the Maritimes is Barley Clear Toy Candies. We never made them. Don’t think anyone knew how. We got them from a local candy maker. I guess they are popular in Germany (though I don’t remember them specifically from there), Scotland and England as well.

    I loved reading about your memories. They brought back so many of my own!

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