Archive for Family

Sweet, Caramel, Gooey Puffcorn

Grandmas are some of the best bakers in the world.  They seem to know how to make everything, and no matter how hard you try, nothing you make tastes exactly the way grandma makes it.  My grandmothers are two of the best bakers known to mankind.  My Grandma Bernice makes one of my all time favorite snacks, caramel puffcorn. It is a delicious layer of caramel draped over puffcorn, which turns it into a sweet and gooey snack.   Carmel puffcorn is a treat she makes whenever the whole gang is at her house.  My husband loves it so much that she even shipped some to us last fall! J   As a child, I remember Grandma Bernice always having a huge white metal bowl sitting on her counter holding this delicious treat.  It is so addicting that every time you walk past this bowl, you have to snag a handful of it.  Grandma Bernice also has a massive batch of this sitting on the table at what she calls lunch, the “snack time” after dinner, before you leave for home.  A person will never leave her house hungry.


While in Iowa this summer I saw puffcorn in the store and I had to buy a bag to take home with me to Texas.  Believe it or not, in the 6 years I have been in Houston, I have NEVER seen a bag of puffcom in any store here.  If you know where I can buy it here, please share the wealth!

Caramel Puffcorn

1 package puffcorn (I used Old Dutch)

1 cup butter

1 ¼ cups brown sugar

2/3 cup light corn syrup

1 tsp. baking soda

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

Combine butter, brown sugar, and light corn syrup in a 2 qt sauce pan, cook on medium heat until mixture has melted.  Once mixture has melted, add the baking soda.  The baking soda will cause the mixture to foam and rise up in your pan.

Pour puffcorn into large roaster pan.  Pour caramel mixture over the puffcorn and stir until mixed.

Place in oven at 250 degrees for 45 minutes, stirring at least every 10-15 minutes.

Remove from oven, pour on wax paper and break apart. Let cool and enjoy!

** I lined my roasting pan with parchment paper.  This made for a super easy clean up.

Grandma Mary’s Biscuits

My Grandma Mary has been baking and cooking her whole life. She is a very talented woman, in and out of the kitchen, and I feel very blessed that she has shared her recipes with me. You can taste the love she puts into her food. Whenever I make one of Grandma Mary’s recipes, the delicious aromas and scrumptious tastes bring back many wonderful memories of her dining room table.


biscuits and jam

One of my favorite recipes of my Grandma Mary’s to make is her baking powder biscuits. These biscuits are fantastic and make my mouth water by just thinking about them. They taste great with butter and homemade jam, covered with chicken and gravy, or used to mop up the last couple spoonfuls of soup. Now Grandma Mary doesn’t roll out the dough and cut out the biscuits in perfect rounds. She simply drops spoonfuls of the biscuit dough onto a cookie sheet and throws them into the oven. Because she doesn’t cut them out, the biscuits come out of the oven with cute golden brown little peaks and points on them. I once rolled out the dough and cut out the biscuits into the traditional rounds but, they didn’t taste the same. I know, I know, I am crazy right? My Grandma Mary has always made her biscuits this way, and I will continue to keep the tradition going strong and do the same.

Thanks Mama


me and mom

Moms are the best, aren’t they?! Well I have to say that mine is the absolute best! Hopefully someday, I will be the mom that she continues to be. As a single mom, my mom raised two girls, worked an 8-5 job, helped take care of our needs, and always managed to get a good meal on the table. My sister and I were always part of the meal, be it setting the table, cooking part of the meal, or sitting in the kitchen while mom quizzed us on our spelling words. Yep, you read that right. We sat on the kitchen stool (which mom still has in the kitchen today) and studied or read aloud to mom, kicking or screaming we had to do it. Our kitchen has always been an important part of our lives.


Mom taught me many wonderful things in the kitchen, and most of them require patience, which I need more of at times. She taught me the importance of creaming the butter, eggs and sugar together, to read the recipe completely before starting it,(many mistakes were made before I knew this) and most recently how to make and can homemade jam. Mom always comes to the rescue when I have a baking question or crisis. Mom has and will always be one of my greatest teachers, inside and out of the kitchen.


Because we live so far away, we frequently talk on the phone. On one of the last calls, she told me to watch for a package in the mail. WOOO WHOO!!! Any article of mail that does not look, smell, or feel like a bill is much appreciated! A couple of days later the package arrived. My husband let me know the minute I walked in the door that the package was here. He was also quick to tell me that he thought HIS name was on the package and he already opened it…AND he said the rhubarb-raspberry jam was awesome. Right, he thought his name was on it, hmm he knew there was going to be some kind of food in it and he wanted first dibs. Very tricky Mr. but I am not falling for that one.

I looked in the opened box and it was like Christmas! Mom sent two jars of homemade jam, rhubarb-raspberry and pear-raspberry. YUM! And she also sent me some decorating goodies from Wilton, icing bag ties, a decorating bag holder and tip covers!! Just what I have been eying at Michaels everytime I am there. I am excited about my new toys and I can’t wait to use them! Who wants frosted sugar cookies?

moms jam


ties and tips

Thanks Mama, you are the greatest! Love ya!