February continues (relax Kanye, if you read last week’s entry, WTF = Wedwand Talks Food).

This week, we focus not on a recipe, but on a memory.

On a recent food day at work, someone came in with a bakery item that I hadn’t seen for years, but it brought an instant recollections from childhood. Specifically, I recalled Sundays. Did you ever have a food you haven’t seen in eons bring back fond recollections of days gone by?

Most every Sunday we would go to church, my mom dad and me. On occasion, Mom would start cooking a beef roast or pork roast on low heat in the oven before we left.

On the way home from church, we’d sometimes stop at Ackermann’s Bakery on Irving Park Road in Chicago. Sadly, the bakery no longer exists. Many a neighborhood bakery has gone by the wayside.


Back then, the place would be packed with patrons, many of whom were fellow parishioners on a Sunday morning after service (or do you call them masses) People perusing pastries and pies for purchase to augment their Sunday suppers (or do you call them dinners).

We’d pick up a coffee cake. Usually a fruit filled Danish, sometimes an apple strudel, on infrequent occasions, the delicious decadence shown above. I don’t even know what they were called, but it was some sort of coffee cake that was whipped cream filled, powdered sugar topped and a breakfast tasty treat of joy. It was the manna from heaven I’d just heard about in church. It was the one that I liked best.

We didn’t get the “manna cake” often, hardly at all. My mom said it was too rich and I don’t think my dad particularly cared for them which is why it was a rare treat when we got one. Oh sure, back then my athletic, adolescent metabolism could eat half of the 5,000 calorie cake and not gain a pound so I wanted one every Sunday. Sometimes we got one.

We’d come home to the delicious aroma that only a slow-cooking Sunday roast can permeate the house with, slice the coffee cake of the day and read the Sunday paper waiting for dinner. My dad and I would fight for the Sports Page. The loser got the Comics. Mom would efficiently finish the dinner and a dip for later.

Most Sunday’s suppers at our house were served in the early afternoon. The evening sustenance was a bowl of freshly popped popcorn, sometimes actually shucked from a husk we picked up in Iowa, chips and dip (creamed cheese and a diluted beef bouillon cube, there’s your recipe) and/or a grilled cheese sandwich while watching Bonanza, Columbo or “a really big shew”. (1) (2)

So, back to the food day. It was probably just a minute or so later when I floated back into reality after the Sunday flashback in my mind. I figured, what the heck, I’m gonna slice me a piece of manna and take in a taste of the joy of Sunday’s past.

But I’m sure this has happened to you.

If you’ve got a food memory to share, Wedwand would appreciate yours.

(1) For those of you young’uns’ out there, before popcorn was synthetically grown in microwavable bags, it used to grow right out of the ground, on stalks, with ears that had kernels just like real corn. My family had relatives in western Iowa and sometimes, if we visited during harvest season, we’d come home with a shopping bag full of fresh ears of popcorn with kernels begging to be popped on the stove in oil.

(2) My mom was the master of delicious 2 ingredient dips for chips. The one in the article was simply a softened 8 oz package of cream cheese mixed with a diluted beef bouillon cube, stirred until creamy and chilled. The other was called California Dip. A bag o Onion Soup mixed with a carton of sour cream. Why THAT is California is beyond me, but it was darned good dipping for your chips and still is. See the lonely chips in the cover photo are just a waiting to be dipped.