Baking is a family tradition
Jennifer Earlywine grew up in Lewis County, just down the holler from her mother’s aunt, and up the holler from her paternal grandmother and aunt. She was surrounded by bakers. Her mother’s aunt baked and decorated wedding cakes; her mother baked and decorated birthday cakes at home. Her grandmother and aunt baked a variety of desserts, including a lot of cookies, but weren’t into decorating.
Earlywine taught herself to bake in her teens. Now married with children, she began posting photos on Facebook of birthday cakes she made for their parties. Soon, she began to get orders for her pieces.
“A majority of what I do is wedding cakes, baby shower cakes, birthday cakes,” says Earlywine, now the cafeteria manager at Fleming County High School and a consumer-member of Fleming-Mason Energy. But there are also seasonal pumpkin rolls—pumpkin spice cake rolled up with a cream cheese filling. She wondered if she could vary the theme, and started experimenting with other flavors—chocolate, strawberry, red velvet.
The original pumpkin roll recipe calls for turning the cake onto a dish towel that has been sprinkled with powdered sugar to let it cool before rolling. Earlywine says she made too much of a mess doing that, and now eliminates the step entirely. She lines her pan with wax paper and uses the paper to guide the cake rolling and unrolling.