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Ol' Town Sweets a House special

October 08, 2002|by ANDREA ROWLAND

andrear@herald-mail.com

BOONSBORO - Kathy House strives to satisfy other people's sweet teeth at Ol' Town Sweets in Boonsboro.

The trim chef rarely dips into the cookie jar herself, daily making and baking but rarely tasting the confections and baked goods that fill her new store at 7 N. Main St.

"I like making it, but I don't eat it," House said.

She fulfilled her dream of owning and operating a bakery when she opened Ol' Town Sweets in late July, she said.

After spending 19 years working for other people as a bakery and deli manager in several local food-chain stores, "It feels really good to work for myself, to make decisions based on my experience," House said.

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The Rohrersville resident, 36, said she's especially grateful to have found a store space in nearby Boonsboro. Ol' Town Sweets fills the space vacated by La Patisserie.

"We're just so thankful we got this place," said House, who added a full-service kitchen before moving into the building.

She prepares the bulk of her store's merchandise in-house, selling her sweet treats to retail customers and local markets, she said. In addition to her popular potato candy, House makes a variety of fudge, pies, cookies, cakes, muffins and breads from scratch.

Her fudge flavors range from caramel and chocolate to maple and mint. Her no-bake cookies - consisting of oatmeal, peanut butter, sugar, vanilla and syrup - tend to out-sell such other homemade cookie types as peanut butter blossoms, chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, sugar and snicker doodles, House said.

She makes fruit cobblers, oversized muffins and a wide assortment of pies, including scrumptious sweet potato and Boston cream. House sometimes spends the day baking such goodies as brownies, sticky buns and cakes, she said. She welcomes custom orders for birthday cakes.

House also prepares such fresh breads as pumpernickel, butter-crust wheat, rye, marble, Italian, baguettes and hot-dog rolls.

Her spacious store features an old-fashioned hard candy counter and fresh-baked bagels, baklava and sugar-free pies that she bakes in-house but doesn't prepare from scratch, House said.

She bakes daily to ensure that her customers benefit from the freshest products, and donates left-over baked goods to the New Beginnings food bank in Maugansville, House said.

She carries fresh dairy products from South Mountain Creamery, but doesn't stock ice cream because another Boonsboro business specializes in the frozen stuff.

"I want to be a good neighbor," House said.

She sells both juice-sweetened and sugar-sweetened preserves, butters and jellies under her store's label. In addition to edibles, Ol' Town Sweets boasts such gift items as decorative cookie jars, cookbooks, recipe boxes and cookie cutters.

House - who manages the store solo except for the help her mother provides in preparing potato candy twice weekly - plans to expand her selection of such bulk baking food items as sugar, oats, nuts and decorative sugar sprinkles, she said.

Ol' Town Sweets is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The store is closed on Sunday and Monday. House accepts cash or checks.

The store's phone number is 301-432-4400.

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