Cinna-swirl Elephant Ear memories

Food memories are strong. I’ve been nostalgic for the bakeries of my Vermont childhood, and there are many great ones. As a teenager, instead of church on Sunday mornings, I took guitar lessons. Afterwards, while others were still in church, my mom and I drove to a couple of bakeries – sometimes glazed donuts, or powdered jellies. Most magical were the cinnamon twists and elephant ears that I couldn’t imagine how to make as a younger person. I ended up briefly interning at this favorite bakery in my senior year of high school. Some of my earliest memories are of making eclairs from scratch with my mom, a baker herself who would show me everything from pies to gravy. Her influence, as well as a few weeks’ worth of 2am mornings and cinnamon twisted into different pastry forms in jovial musical bakeries taught me to dream more of what is possible with baking. My mom passed away a bit more than a year ago, and I miss cooking with her, terribly. She is still present, honored, influential, alive, in my cooking. These days, a great Sunday is still complete with art and flaky cinnamon treats in a secular peace.