“Dessert has the power to make celebratory moments great and hard moments bearable.” Yvette Kelly-Fields, host of What’s For Dessert
If you believe a world without dessert is one you don’t want to be in, then your in the right place. Welcome to What’s For Dessert!
I am Yvette Kelly-Fields the writer for this site and the host of What’s For Dessert podcast. The site like the podcast is designed to educate, entertain and inspire families and friends to gather around the table to talk and laugh and sometimes cry all while eating and enjoying dessert. You can a learn a lot about a person by the kind of dessert they eat.
And when I talk about dessert. I’m talking about any dessert. Dessert that you bake or dessert that you take out. Dessert that is decadent dessert that is healthy. Dessert that is out of this world and dessert that is fresh out of your oven.
Why a website and podcast about dessert – when there are already so many?
Well let me tell you a story. In 2019, my mother died. And all her good cooking died with her. The Sundays and holidays of roast turkey, roast beef, ham, fried corn, greens, macaroni and cheese, fried apples and mashed potato’s which was alway followed by the most amazing sweet potato pie, lemon cream pie, coconut cake, German chocolate cake or my absolute favorite dessert banana pudding with Nabisco vanilla wafers, Jello brand banana pudding and fresh sliced bananas incorporated throughout and topped with a sweet pillowey, perfectly toasted meringue.
Although my mom has stopped cooking herself some years before she died, she directed us on how to cook her good food. My sister 99% of the time knocked it out the box. Me 99% threw it the box more like a trash can.
Because I for many years was a step above a disastrous cook.
I say one step because I did manage to master the deliciousness of mashed potatoes and Rice Krispies treats (although I did mess that up once – if you keep listening to the podcast you will here the story). I was a master of my moms mashed potatoes but nothing more.
With mom gone, we didn’t know how we would get through the year much less through the holidays.
We were like zombies walking through the year. So When Thanksgiving came, we tried to piece together some semblance of normalicy.
As in years past, we put togehter a menu and hoped everyone would come. Just instead of meeting up at my moms it would be my sisters. Well that went that did not go well.
My brother and his family didn’t come. My daughter didnt come either but it wasnt uncommon for her to opt out of Thanksgiving. She always had her pick of places to go. Normally I didnt care. Christmas is really our holiday. No exceptions. But this year, my mom was gone. I needed family more than ever yet I had less of it. Nonetheless, my husband, son, sister and I made the best of it.
We pulled together our little meal sans the deviled eggs my daughter would’ve brought if she came. And to be quite honest our little meal was pitiful. The food was good. Mashed potatoes unbelievable as usual. But the mood was somber. It was not joyful, it was sad. My mother’s absence was felt.
However, all was not lost. It was time for dessert.
My son an excellent baker went over to the fridge and pulled out what would become the turning point of our Thanksgiving.
My son had crafted a homemade Oreo Cheesecake.
It was divine. Full of chunks of Oreo cookies folded into a hand mixed cream cheese confection with all the other good things that go into a cheesecake it sat beautifully on an Oreo crust clearly held together by butter and finely crushed Oreos.
For the first time in months, when thoughts of momma came to mind in stead of feeling her absence I felt her presence.
My mom loved dessert. Even as a diabetic she found a way to have dessert her way. My mom lived until 85 and dessert was a part of all 85 of her years.
The void I had been feeling suddenly felt filled. Desseet brought back good memories of my mom and I wanted to hold to that feeling for dear life.
And making and sharing desserts now are my way of holding onto that feeling.
Since that time, I have came to understand how desserts can really be the maker of a moment in life. It makes celebratory moments great and hard moments bearable
On that day dessert did both for me.
Not long after I found myself looking through cookbooks and food blogs about different desserts. And what I discovered is that every cook always had a story to share about why their dessert was special and what it meant to their family.
As a person who was discovering the many connections I had to dessert because my mom made them I decided I want to make her desserts and share our family stories as well make the desserts of other bakers and share their family stories and connections to their desserts.
While there are many websites and blogs of individual bakers and bakeries there are not many that share the diverse voices of all of these individuals in one place. We are a melting pot of people with unique celebrations that feature unique desserts. I want to share and explore all of that.
And what format is better for telling and sharing stories than a website and a podcast. Now you know why a website and a podcast.
And if you are wondering will there be any cooking and recipe sharing the answer is yes. The making and baking is as equally important as the eating. All of it has the power to bring us together and to fill us with joy and gratitude for delicious dessert, a loving family and great friends.
Now remember how I said I was just a step above a marginal cook but not wanted to get all invested in dessert making, well in my next post I will share how I went from baking disaster to baking master and turned baking into fund raising.
And I as I end this post I am about to go eat one of my favorite desserts homemade Cinnamon Rolls that I made using Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond recipe. Sound yummy, check it out.
Now you know what I am having for dessert – now I’ll ask you what’s for dessert?