Summer Fun…….


Brush-And-Paint-Pot__12715-480x320 7888-main

Are you asking yourself the question what does white paint, wooden fence, and Frosty & Karen have in common?  Well, they all came together on a hot summer day over forty years ago,  Our two older brothers were told to paint the fence on the farm and that they could have their two younger siblings help them, and I emphasize the word help . What was supposed to happen is Matt and I were to start at one end of the fence and Dan and Mike at the other and meet in the middle.  The older brothers were suppose to help because no parent in their right mind would arm an 8 year old and 11 year old with white oil based paint unsupervised. LOL


Mike and I were set up to paint, but instead of letting us be on the same side of the fence, the older brothers were convinced that it would be much quicker if we were on opposite sides.  Dan and Matt left Mike and I to paint.  It was hot and we were board so the mischief began.   Mike dipped his paint brush and brought it up to the fence and mimics and informercial “Watch it, that’s a freshly dipped paint brush” then splat. I got splattered with paint, giggled, and at the same time whined “Mike stop it!” and he replies, it’s only paint.   My sister Sandy was at the kitchen window monitoring the situation, but when she saw us go back to painting she thought all was well….After awhile she heard through the window “Mike stop it, Mike please stop!” And then she heard my frustrated drawn out MIKE……she knew she had to separate us.   Seeing me covered in paint she came running out of the house, but then stopped in her tracks as she watched me paint my brother while singing Frosty The Snowman”  I sang the entire song……

Sandy grabbed both of us, took us to the cellar where there was a shower, stripped us to our underwear and scrubbed the paint off of us as quickly as possible.  While trying to reprimand us, she laughed at the same time.  We did not get in any other trouble for my parents felt the scrubbing with the turpentine and soap was enough punishment.  Though my mom did tell my sister, Sandy, to get us both out of the house before my dad got home from work.  We were given a long lecture about the dangers of oil based paint on skin…:) Sadly no one thought to take a picture of us covered in paint.

IMG_0673(this is how hot it was that day)

Yes, we were back painting the fence the next day, but no-more “Frosty or Watch it, thats a freshly dipped paint brush”.   Mike and I would get into spats, but he was my best friend and we had many adventures together on the farm.  And his charm usually kept us out of trouble.  I never told him this before, but his love and friendship made high school bearable for me by letting me hang out with him and his friends.

Growing up, one of the things Mike and I did together was to make chocolate chip cookies.  My mom would smile, God bless her, because out of a recipe that made 3 dz cookies, we would get maybe 18.  Mike liked to make them big for two reasons, it took less time and eating one cookie was like having three at once.

Since I have already posted my chocolate chip cookies recipe, I’m going to share one of Mike’s favorite desserts, Chocolate Torte.  This recipe comes from my very first cookbook “Hershey’s Make it Chocolate“. I put a couple recipes together to make my chocolate torte. I will give you the original recipe first and at the bottom I tell you how I altered it.

IMG_1073Fudgey Pecan Torte

Ingredients heat oven 350 F or 180 C baking time is 45 mn

1 cup unsalted butter, melted

1 1/2 cups of sugar

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

3 large eggs, separated and at room temperature

2/3 cup Hershey’s Cocoa

1/2 cup all-purpose flour (I prefer to use bread flour)

3 tablespoons water

3/4 cups of chopped pecans (optional for those with nut allergies)

1/8 tsp cream of tartar

1/8 tsp salt

Royal Glaze: In a small sauce pan combine 1 1/3 cups of Hershey’s Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips and 1/2 cup whipping cream. Cook over very low heat, stirring constantly, until chips are melted and mixture begins to thicken.

Procedure: Line bottom of 9-inch springform pan with aluminum foil; butter foil and side of pan.  Heat oven to 350 f or 180 c. In large mixer bowl combine melted butter, sugar and vanilla; beat well.  Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Blend in cocoa, flour and water; beat well. Stir in nuts.  In a small mixer bowl beat egg whites, cream of tartar and salt until stiff peaks form; carefully fold into chocolate mixture.  Pour into prepared pan. Bake 45 min or until top begins to crack slightly. Cool 1 hour. Cover; chill until firm.  Remove side of pan. Pour Royal Glaze over cake, allowing glaze to run down the side. Spread glaze evenly on top and side. Allow to set. Garnish with pecan halves, if desired. Serves 10 to 12

My kicked up version because I was young and fearless: Follow the recipe as is except if you are going to use pecans in the batter make sure they are finely chopped. Once the torte is cooled and chilled; sides removed, split the torte into four equal parts.  Place the first slice on a cake plater; spread chocolate mouse almost to the edge, repeat the process.  With the last slice flip it on top and peel away the foil.  Then pour the Royal Glaze on top, spreading evenly on top and side.  Allow to set. enjoy

Chocolate Mousse: recipe makes four 1/2 cup servings *Double the recipe for the Torte


1 Teaspoon unflavored gelatin

1 Tablespoon cold water

2 Tablespoons of boiling water

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa

1 cup chilled Whipping Cream

1 Teaspoon Vanilla extract

In small bowl sprinkle gelatin over cold water; let stand 1 minute to soften. Add boiling water;stir until gelatin in completely dissolved and mixture is clear.  Cool slightly. In small cold mixer bowl stir together sugar and cocoa; add whipping cream and vanilla. Beat at medium speed scraping bottom of bowl occasionally, until stiff peaks form; pour in gelatin mixture and  beat until well blended.  Use as a filling or place in individual serving bowls. Note: when doubling recipe you will use 1 entire envelope of gelatin/ double remaining ingredients. Follow the above directions and use a large chilled bowl.

Hope you have enjoyed this story and recipe. Until next time; KK


One thought on “Summer Fun…….

  1. I never knew this story! I love it and everything about the farm. It was and will always be a place I cherish. The long drawn out summer days that seemed to go on forever and even the chores never felt like chores cause there were so many of us doing them. That summer we stayed with all of you on the farm is one of my most treasured memories. I love you all so much and I will always hold you in my heart as my extended family.


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