Some of the most famous chefs in the world are men, but usually when you think your memories in the kitchen, they probably don't involve your father. Most men, for some reason, aren't overly fond of hanging out in the kitchen, creating a meal for their family.
My own dad was one such man. He could cook, don't get me wrong - it just wasn't high on his list of fun activities. Except for fudge - and peanut blossom cookies. My dad could make the kitchen hum with activity when he uttered those famous words - "Let's make some fudge". He'd pull out the saucepan, grab the milk and the cocoa, and create the most delicious fudge. It wasn't your typical thick and creamy fudge, but it was a more thin confection, with an almost snap to it. It was a recipe that was, for years, found on the back of a Hershey's Cocoa container, but that recipe has almost disappeared from society today. Which is a shame, because that fudge is the stuff of dreams, right there.
My dad is coming to visit at the end of the month. I wonder if I could get him to make me some fudge. If I'm able to convince him, I'm planning to take the entire batch to my room with a good movie and just enjoy the heck out of it.
Dad was also known in our family for a love of the peanut blossom cookies. Peanut butter cookies that are baked until just done - softly set, as opposed to crunchy in texture - and then removed from the oven and the garnished with a chocolate. When I was a kid, he used the Brach's Chocolate Stars, but those, too, have almost disappeared from store shelves. Now he uses Hershey's Kisses, which are just as yummy and delicious but don't have quite the same memory feel as the Brach's Chocolate Stars.
The great thing about baking with your family is the fantastic memories that it makes for everyone involved. At any given moment in time, no matter what is going on in your life, you can pull up those memories and be bathed in comfort.
Most of us probably remember Dad out in the yard, working on a car or watching a football game - but did your dad create a kitchen memory with you?
Do you have a food that you remember cooking with your father?