Thursday, November 24, 2011

Holiday tradition

Four years ago, our neighbor's house burned down. They were on vacation, thank G-d, and we saw the smoke and called it in. It was a hot, humid, summer day, and the firefighters were taking 10 minute shifts in gear fighting the fire - it was THAT hot. They couldn't save the house, but they DID get it stopped in time so that our neighbors could save some photo albums - you know, the IMPORTANT stuff.

We saw how hard the firefighters worked. They were risking their lives, not knowing if there was anyone in that house or not (we didn't know at the time that they were on vaca!). They did it because it was their job. My wife thought it would be a nice gesture if we made them a "Mommy Cake" (I'll get to that in a minute) for a thank you. So, since our city has three firestations, she started baking away and I delivered them on Labor Day. We figured that since these guys were out working on what most of the rest of us get as a three day weekend, the least we could do is give them some home cookin'. 

So for the last four years, on three day weekends & Christmas, the firefighters in our city get a delivery. A double-batch-sized home made Mommy Cake, one for each fire station. Last year, we decided it'd be a nice gesture to deliver one to the Police Department, too.

That's what I just got back from doing. Thanks, guys - I know you're out there in crappy weather and good, on holidays and weekends, all just in case I, and my fellow residents, need you in a hurry. It's appreciated.

Now... Mommy Cake.

Some years ago, when my mom was newly married, her mother mailed her a recipe, telling her it was a nice cake to make for when folks came over for coffee. (They did that sort of thing in 1950!) It was a sour-cream based coffee cake with cinnamon and walnuts. So Mom made it for the family and it was OK.

Until the fateful day when she went to make one and realized she didn't have any walnuts in the house. So... she left out the cinnamon and walnuts and added in chocolate chips.

To the best of my knowledge, she's never made it with cinnamon and walnuts since.

We grew up eating this wonderful food. What's it called? Well... Mommy made it, so Mommy Cake it became!!

And if anyone actually comments on this, yes, I'll post the recipe. (Evil of me, I know...)


Colin said...

Recipe, please!

Anonymous said...

As a volunteer firefighter, from a long way away, I know exactly why they did that and how hard they worked - I can guarantee that your gesture and acknowledgement are probably VERY well received! Thank you. We do this job for the citizens in our communities - sometimes for little or no pay. Your thanks make it worthwhile.