Mommy's famous! OK, maybe not famous, but she did make the paper! Here is a copy of the article.
March 23, 2008
She makes City Farmers Market sweeter
Baked goods made with imagination
By TIFFANY ARNOLD
Fran Clingan makes homemade goodies to sell at Hagerstown City Farmers Market. This "lamb cake" encrusted with fresh coconut is an example of some of the homemade goodies Fran Clingan sells at Hagerstown City Farmers Market. This time, Fran "Snooky" Clingan transformed what could have been a two-layer coconut cake into a "lamb."
Weeks ago, she created a "groundhog" cake, a Bundt cake made to look as though it were snow covered, with crumbled Oreo cookies - the "dirt" - dusted at the center and a sign that read, "Looking for my shadow." There's a lot you can do with a good cake mold and a passion for baking. Clingan, 60, of Hagerstown, has lots of both. "I've always liked to cook," Clingan said.
The Herald-Mail met with Clingan at her North End home, where "lamb cake" rested on her kitchen counter, with cookie bouquets - iced sugar cookies on sticks - and homemade marshmallows nearby. Her many, many cake molds (including one shaped like a series of trains) were stored away in a cabinet. The "lamb cake" is adapted from another of her recipes, Snooky's fresh coconut cake, for which she uses freshly grated coconut. Since December, Clingan has been selling her baked goods at the Hagerstown City Farmers Market, where she is known as the "cookie lady." But it is not the first time Clingan's cooking has been available for public consumption. Clingan's mother, the late Dottie Thompson, owned the View Street Diner, a mom-and-pop restaurant that was open more than 30 years. The restaurant closed in 2000. Clingan said she was the restaurant's cook during the last five or six years it was open.
"If you've been in Hagerstown long enough, you've eaten at View Street," Clingan said.
Thompson, who died in 2004, told The Herald-Mail in 2000 that had it not been for Clingan and her daughter-in-law, she would not have been able to stay open as long as she did.
Clingan has been feeling the pressure to reopen the diner, but has not yet made up her mind. She considers selling her goods at the City Market a "baby step."
Diner or no diner, Clingan won't be hanging up the oven mitts anytime soon.
Talking with Fran Clingan
Clingan talks a little more about her love for cooking:
Q: If you had a chef at your beck and call, someone who would make up the dessert of your dreams, what would you request?
A: I like fancy things. If I had my way, I'd have chocolate mousse with white chocolate stripes. If I had a chef, I would want something I wouldn't make myself.
Q: Is there any baked good you absolutely would not eat?
A: No, not really.
Q: What are some things your family members request often?
A: My son likes chocolate delight - it has pudding in it. My daughter and I, we like most baked goods.
Q: What sorts of things do you make for dinner?
A: If I'm cooking for my husband, it's hamburger, hamburger, hamburger. Potatoes, potatoes, potatoes.
Q: So back to the chef scenario, if that chef were there to prepare you dinner, what would you request?
A: I probably wouldn't like that because I like to cook. Having this table down at the market allows me to fix so many things - each week it's something different.
There is a recipe for the cake and also pictures....pretty cool eh? :-)
I've been a busy beaver. Mom and dad came down for Easter dinner. So Sunday I putzed around the kitchen all day. I not only did the cooking for Easter dinner, but I also made a seven layer salad to have with dinner for tonight (monday). Then tonight, I made dinner...we had the seven layer salad, almond orange chicken (yum yum) and the rest of the baked butter beans from last nights dinner. I had strawberries with a fruit dip/topping drizzled over the top. (heavenly). After dinner, I cleaned up the kitchen and then immediately messed it up when I put together perogi casserole for tomorrow nights dinner (I had to make mashed potatoes..and i don't use instant, cook noodles, saute onions...so I dirtied a lot more pans.) Now I'm done, the kitchen is once again clean and I'm just sitting here relaxing.
The problem...I've been eating like a pig today. I can't seem to get enough food to feel full....er satisfied! What's up with that??????? Oh if I can just stay out of the kitchen....which is literally feet away....in full view!