This is how it all begins….!Vincent Dreffs
Who? Two Part Post – stay tuned!
What do you do to follow up to a long-standing, storied career in catering and events? Well, most would work to stay off their feet, begin to collect stamps, garden or travel – not Vincent Dreffs.
At an incredibly young age, I asked for my own Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer (K5SS) for Christmas. I knew there were a lot of wonderful things that could be made with that baby. To this date, I still have that very mixer and almost EVERY attachment to keep it spinning out tasty treats. Additionally, having an extended family of great cooks that also had the patience to teach me the artful skill has always naturally led me toward the kitchen and; to this day, almost refuse to visit someone’s home without bringing an edible or elixir for them to enjoy.
Pretzel’s quickly became a family favorite; however, the task of making them always fell to my Aunt Dorothy. I am sure this was not her first choice for relaxation but I am sure she enjoyed the silence once we all had one in our mouth. As a small child, the true art of pretzel making was safe until it came to using the infamous ‘lye’ solution that gives the flavor, color and texture of a true pretzel. It wasn’t until I was in my late-teen years that Aunt Dorothy allowed me to imbibe on the entire process and then it was carefully monitored. The years of gaining tips and tricks for successful pretzel making were shortened with her generosity of knowledge. Also, she was just as committed to making as authentic product as possible, every time. that she taught the importance and details too. Unfortunately, Aunt Dorothy was stolen from earth much too soon and we now lean on her daughter Judy to be the expert and continue the pretzel legend.
To this day, I still use some of the tools of the trade that I asked for as a learning teen. Another great lesson was to take care of the necessary equipment so you have it to serve you for many years. The proclamations of safety, not only in the kitchen but with the ingredients rings clear each time I embark upon another batch. Additionally, the systematic approach that Aunt Dorothy taught plays over and over in my mind with every batch of soft, flavorful, twisted goodness. Lastly, the enjoyment that each bite brings reminds me why hard work is important and the reward is far greater than the effort.
I have come to realize that this labor of love is really a reflection for the love and thankfulness that I have for my Aunt Dorothy. Her pretzels were the result of a gift of time, love and patience for our family. At the time, I am sure she didn’t realize they were a part of her legend and so many fond memories. I dedicate each pretzel to my Aunt and hope that whoever consumes them understands the decades of practice and commitment from family that is hand-rolled into each one.
Stay tuned for our next blog post to learn about co-founder Dawn Atchley.