by the sackful - baking with an Irish mom
My mom's Irish eyes
always laughed , especially when she was baking. She was a very pretty
woman, but when I think of her I see her wearing an apron dusted with
flour. That's because my mother could bake. I mean, she could bake. And
she loved it because she would hum when she was baking.
While other kids were
eating their bowls of cereal for breakfast, we were eating freshly baked
Irish soda bread or scones.
And because she wanted the best nutrition for her children, she'd
sprinkle in extra wheat germ. We didn't know that. We only knew how good
the breads were.Sometimes she'd make
sweet breads as gifts for friends. Her zucchini
bread fell into the hands of someone who owned a gourmet store.
They begged her to make it for them. She went out and bought a fifty pound
sack of flour and set herself up in business. The bread caught on and
the store wanted her to start manufacturing it, but mom didn't want to
be in business. She wanted to be home with her children. Baking was her
expression of love.On the holidays she'd
go crazy with pies. Some people had cranberry relish. Not us, we had
cranberry tart. She started two weeks before Christmas.
With her Irish and English background, she leaned toward traditional recipes.
She made her own mince meat filling,
and she did lots of it. The other mothers would come by to get some for
their own pies. In exchange they would bring in shoe boxes with their
home made cookies, or little gifts for us. I always think of Christmas
when I see a shoe box.Mom was very exact
with measuring which is part of the secret to her success. She also had
a light touch. She said that she learned from her mother that you had
to treat the dough as if it was one
of your children to get a good pie crust. She shared her secrets
with all of us, but none of us bake the way she does, probably because
we were always asking her to do the baking. Poor Mom, years after her
own children were out of school, she was baking for the PTA bake sale.
DIANA: Diana is the creator and editor of InMamasKitchen.
previous mother top
of page next mother
contact us membership agreement