And they really thought it wouldn’t last…
My, my, my! 10 years ~ 936 posts!
Thanks to all of you for following me through the years, making it quite the incredible ride! I like sharing recipes with you, and love reading your great comments and viewpoints!
Wish I could give my husband, Bill, a medal for putting up with my tribulations when making a new recipe over the years, the late meals, and hearing, "I just need to take one more picture!” Thanks, dear! He is the epitome of patience!
Then there’s Bubba! He’s actually Bill (Jr) but Bubba here. Tomorrow, Oct 30th, is his birthday and he is taking these chocolate chip cookies to work for a treat. He always says he likes cookies better than cake, he must get that from me. 😉
|Bubba at Hadrian's Wall - Northern England|
He deserves credit for getting this blog up and running, and answered endless questions for me. He’s a Software Engineer V. He's my very own personal IT person! Thanks, Son and Happy Birthday! We're so proud of him!
|Half-way up on the London Eye|
Bubba cooks too! If you’ve been around here awhile, you’ve seen his Homemade Summer Sausage recipe, which has turned out to be one of my most popular recipes (note "Popular Posts" in the sidebar), I see it everywhere, and for good reason, it is delicious!Thanks also to our younger son Matt for his input with food and all. He’s a Forensic Electrical Engineer, who takes much pride in his work, and sets a wonderful example for his son, who says Dad is his greatest hero. We're so proud of both of them!
|Matt and Matthew|
Matthew, our 8 year-old grandson, is an awesome young man, a good student and a great little athlete with his new love being lacrosse.
|A chef in the making?|
Matthew loves chocolate, like most of us!
Few words sound sweeter than Hershey!
Mae reviews books frequently, and I particularly enjoyed her excellent review of Hershey: Milton S. Hershey’s Extraordinary Life of Wealth, Empire, and Utopian Dreams, by Michael D’Antonio.
Born September 13, 1857, Milton Hershey was the good millionaire who offered Americans the five-cent chocolate bar, who founded an idealistic community for his employees, making it all work ~ chocolatier, philanthropist; a warmer type of capitalisim, a forward thinking entrepreneur who wanted to bless people with his money, while sustaining a global brand.
The name Hershey evokes one of the largest and most well-known chocolate manufacturers in the world, you’re familiar with the candies… Hershey Milk Chocolate Bars, York Peppermint Patties, Twizzlers, Milk Duds, Skors, Rolos, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Jolly Ranchers, Mounds (my favorite) and Kisses.
Milton Hershey was a shrewd man but kind, the opposite of his father, Henry. Although, Henry was intelligent he was a dreamer, always on a mission, away hustling yet another “get-rich-quick” scheme that soon failed, creating an unstable lifestyle for his family.
He got love and support from his mother, Fanny (Veronica). She was a respected lady who raised Milton in the tradition of her strong Mennonite faith. Fanny was educated in a ladies’ finishing school and became a major influence in the path Milton’s life took.
Silk garments and gold-capped walking sticks were Henry’s favorite attire, while the family was really so poor that Fanny “sometimes ‘stripped’ her neighbor’s cows, milking them after their udders had been emptied, just to get the little that was left,” D’Antonio tells us.
Milton began his career working in sweets after quitting school at 12 years of age, in 1869. He endeavored several projects with financial aid provided by his Aunt Mattie, while she and his mother pitched in helping him with the projects.
He experimented with making his Crystal A caramels, using milk instead of paraffin; by increasing the amount of milk he used, along with the fat content, he made caramels that didn’t stick to the teeth. He wasn’t sold on caramels and knew he should devote his time to the production of good chocolate.
Through many trials, he learned the secret of producing chocolate sweets: use skim milk and low slow heat for the chocolate and milk mixture.
Picture living in a neighborhood such as Hershey built for his workers ~ stylish modest homes, with indoor plumbing; appealing landscaping, a library, a huge arena, parks, a zoo, and a trolley system providing transportation to and from work, all surrounded by fields and dairy farms from which he ordered the milk.
The Hershey Improvement Company was established as an incentive for his employees to build their own home within guidelines Hershey drew up to insure the community would grow as he envisioned. Eventually, in 1906, the town became known as Hershey.
Catherine Sweeney, a beautiful Catholic woman, with an obscure past, employed in the ribbon section of a New York City department store, became Milton's wife on May 25, 1898. He gave her security in life, she gave him gaiety and peace of mind.
|Catherine Sweeney Hershey|
They had no children, but while they lived sensibly at home, they traveled extensively and extravagantly. Catherine died in 1915 after suffering many years from a debilitating disease of the nervous system at the age of 43.
With no children of his own, in 1909, Milton placed most of his wealth in trust to his school for orphans, the Milton Hershey School.
Per Success Magazine, October 1927, Hershey revealed: “When my wife died-and we had no children-my old mother, who had been my abiding guide, said: ‘Milton, don’t let your millions spoil you,’ and right then I decided not to give my millions a chance to spoil me, by simply giving then away."
By 2002, the endowment was worth $5 billion, making it the wealthiest private school. Thanks to Milton Hershey’s generosity, not one of the students has to pay a cent for schooling!
What sets Milton Hershey apart from other entrepreneurs? Unlike Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, Carnegie, and other “robber-barons” who demanded back-breaking labor for pathetic wages, who treated their workers horrendously, Hershey inspired love and loyalty in his workers, rewarding him in the process. He could be a demanding leader but on the whole, he was fair and treated them well.
And ~~~ not one of the aforementioned, ever built his workers a whole town!
6,000 Hershey employees, the children from his school, 4 local bands, flowers, many speeches, and a 3 foot-tall cake, helped Milton celebrate his 80th birthday at the arena.
Milton Hershey died of pneumonia in Hershey Hospital on October 13, 1945, at the age of 88.
A bronze statue of him with his arm around an orphan boy, stands in the Hershey School, with the following words below it: “His deeds are his monument. His life is our inspiration."
September 13 is International Chocolate Day,
the day of his birthday!
This is a compelling book, almost like a novel. A businessman with little formal education whose idealistic values along with his chocolate empire, led to a legacy that lasts to this day.
There’s much more to the book, he owned sugar plantations and mills in Cuba, he loved gambling, he was an entertaining raconteur, and imagine: he gave away $60 million back in the early 1900’s!
It’s a good read, I really enjoyed the book, thanks Mae!
The cookies are good too! A little chewy and packed with that great dark Hershey chocolate flavor.
This makes a lot of cookies, about 6 dozen, cut recipe in half if you want fewer cookies.
|Poke extra chips on top of dough now|
Use a 3 tablespoon scoop if you like larger cookies and bake a little longer until edges are golden.
Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 cups salted butter, softened
2⅔ cups packed light brown sugar
⅔ cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
4 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups flour
1 cup uncooked quick-cooking oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1½ teaspoons salt
3 cups Hershey bittersweet chocolate chunks or discs (about 24 ounces)
1 cup Hershey semisweet chocolate chips (about 8 ounces) plus extra*
Beat butter and sugars wot a stand mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add eggs, 1 at a time; beat until well-combined after each addition, beat until fluffy, about 1 minute, beat in vanilla.
Stir together flour, oats, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl.
Gradually add to butter mixture, beating until well blended.
Stir in chocolate chips.
Chill 24 hours.
Preheat oven to 375°.
Drop heaping tablespoon of dough onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets 2” apart.
Bake until edges are golden and bottoms are set, but cookies are still very soft to the touch, 12-14 minutes.
Remove cookies from oven, cool on baking sheets 5 minutes.
Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.
Makes about 6 dozen.
*Poke a few extra chocolate chips or discs into the dough balls just before baking, they will be more visible and who doesn’t like extra chocolate chips?
Note: It took a while but I solved the problem of parchment paper not adhering to the baking sheet: Spritz cooking spray several places on the pan, lay parchment paper on top ~ paper stays in place, no more slipping and sliding!
Enjoy and remember...
If you eat them in the dark,
Woo hoo to all of you!
You all are amazing!