GREENVILLE — Kathy’s Cookies & Pies Owner Kathy Jarrett, of Arcanum, said she has beautiful memories of her grandma baking.
“She was pretty fluffy,” Jarrett said. “All you would see is her sitting at the table, because she couldn’t stand a lot to do it, and her hands folding that dough and rolling and kneading it, and flour flying in her beautiful puffy hands. I just loved the love coming out of that. I want to give that same love.”
That is what inspired her to open Kathy’s Cookies & Pies last month, on S. Broadway Street, in Greenville. She said she has been steady ever since.
“The first week was very good because of Thanksgiving,” she said. ” A lot of people were squeezing in their pie orders.”
She is now getting lots of Christmas cookie orders, she said. They are a five-ingredient, cut-out butter cookie made with requested designs, and they are very time-consuming. From start to finish, the cookies take about a three-day process, Jarrett said.
After the cookies are mixed, they are rolled out. Jarrett’s husband Jim makes the guides she uses alongside the dough, to make sure the thickness is even. The cookies are then cut out, baked and once cooled, they are iced. The icing process is what takes the most time, she said. The cookies are iced with Royal Icing, involving lots of beating of egg whites and sugar. They are outlined with the icing, and then the area in-between the outline is flooded or covered with icing. After the icing dries, the cookies are decorated with great colorful details and textures.
“I don’t want to rush them, because I want people to have the best,” Jarrett said. “I don’t cut corners, including using only the very best ingredients, such as: real butter, farm -fresh eggs from my own flock and the very best vanilla.”
Jarrett’s daughter Kacie Langley takes care of the business side, including answering phones, taking orders, waiting on customers and stocking the display case. She is also working on a company website. Langley said it is
inspiring watching her mother bake. The craftsmanship and how that has been passed down is very important to her and her three children, she said.
“My middle daughter, Lydia, is so sentimental about baking, and she is only 4,” Langley said. “She loves this angel cookie cutter and wants to come and bake with grandma. It means a lot to the kids, because they see it means a lot to us. It’s that sense of closeness with past generations of our family. The memories are tied to those flavors of the seasons.”
In addition to cookies and pies, Jarrett also bakes buckeyes and brownies. She also takes requests and is open to baking new items. She does not bake cakes at this time. Companies have ordered special cut-outs that include their logos and shapes that coincide with their company’s themes, such as teeth or tooth brushes for some of the local dentist’s offices. Many businesses are ordering now for their Christmas parties. Jarrett likes to have two weeks notice for the cut-out orders; about a week for drop cookie orders, such as chocolate chip, or white chocolate walnut, and a couple of days notice for pies. She also has a special delivery every Saturday from Square Doughnuts, of Richmond, Indiana.
“I am surprised at the number of people coming in,” Jarrett said. “I have never met them before, so it is almost like I am putting them to a test to see if they will like my baking. I have to do well. Hopefully they are returning customers. We want feedback from people about what they want to see in a bakery, because I can be very wrong in what I have.”
Before opening the bakery, Jarrett was in the dental business for about 30 years, as a licensed Expanded Function Dental Assistant. She said her biggest concern was the customer’s happiness.
“I wanted them to have a very good filling and no complaints,” she said. “I feel the the same way here and want to maintain that same integrity. I want my customers to be happy. If they are not happy or they think it doesn’t taste good, I want to make it right for them.”
Inside the bakery, Langley is selling her hand-made crocheted garments from her Etsy.com business The Colt and Filly. Some of the inventory includes: shawls, mittens, infinity scarves, cowls, hats, boot cuffs and children’s bear hoods. She said, her grandmas showed her how to knit, and now her children are showing interest.
“We are a sentimental bunch,” she said.
Kathy’s Cookies & Pies is located at 316 S. Broadway Street, in Greenville. The hours are 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday – Saturday. Payments can be made by cash and check. For special orders, calls are received and checked daily, by calling 937-316-8141. For more information, visit Facebook.com/Kathy’s Cookies & Pies.