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Home Business Evva Hanes, Who Made Moravian Cookies World Famous, Dies at 90

Evva Hanes, Who Made Moravian Cookies World Famous, Dies at 90

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North Carolina farmer Eva Haynes turned the centuries-old Moravian cookie tradition she learned from watching her mother bake in the wood stove into a family business that now makes fragile, crispy cookies. has shipped millions of She made Moravian cookies every year, but she died at her home in Clemons, North Carolina on June 22, aged 90.

The cause was complications from a brain tumor, said grandson Jedidiah Haynes Templin, president of the Moravian Sugar Crisp Company, known as Mrs. Haynes’ Homemade Moravian Cookies.

The Moravians were pre-Reformation Protestants, originally from what is now the Czech Republic, seeking to escape persecution in Germany. Before the Revolutionary War, some left for Pennsylvania with recipes for spiced ginger cookies called lebkuchen.

They continued to move, establishing a religious community in the mid-1700s on a large stretch of land in North Carolina that became the city of Winston-Salem. Southern food scholar John Egerton notes that the North Carolina Moravian, like the Pennsylvania Dutch, calls him a “kind of theology and gastronomy,” with a strong bread-making tradition spanning hundreds of years. maintains the

Debbie Moose, a North Carolina cookbook author who wrote about Mrs. Haynes and other Moravian cookie bakers, recalled a time when cookies could only be found in the Winston-Salem area.

“It’s very peculiar,” she said in an interview. “I haven’t seen it in other parts of the state either.”

The youngest of seven children, Mrs. Haynes grew up watching her mother, Berta Foltz, bake and sell hundreds of thin cookies to supplement the little money the family’s small dairy ran. Other Moravian women sold cookies as well. A recipe popular around Christmas with molasses and warm winter spices such as cloves and ginger.

As a way to differentiate and extend shelf life, Mrs. Foltz began baking a vanilla-scented, crispy version. By the time she was eight, Eva was able to bake her own bread. By the age of 20 she had taken over her mother’s business and began to slowly expand her business, selling her version of the original Sugar Her Crisp and Traditional Ginger, but eventually also sold other flavors such as lemon and black walnut.

By 2010, the cookie was so popular that Oprah Winfrey added it to her “favorite” list. “It wouldn’t be Christmas if Quincy Jones didn’t send Mrs. Haynes cookies,” she wrote in the magazine.

Cookies are still rolled, cut and packaged by hand. They sell $2 million worth (about 10 million cookies) annually to both locals who visit the company’s small factory next door to their family’s home, as well as a solid list of domestic and international customers. .

“I could have made 100 pounds of cookies in eight hours if someone had baked them. I stopped for nothing,” Mrs Haynes said in a recent article. dictation history Produced by Southern Foodways Alliance. “I consider myself an expert in time and movement because I didn’t do any unnecessary movements.”

Eva Caroline Foltz was born on November 7, 1932, in Clemmons, a suburb of Winston-Salem, to Alva Foltz and Bertha (Crouch) Foltz, descendants of Moravian settlers in Pennsylvania. She was a shy, freckled redhead, with a strong work ethic and natural athleticism, Eva was a high school basketball star. She was hired to work as a nylon inspector at Haynes Hosiery (no relation). One of her reasons for that was because she played in company basketball. team.

“I still play basketball very well,” she wrote in a 2017 holiday letter to clients. She wrote every year until 2022 and published her autobiography, What More Could I Ask For, this year.

In 1998, she self-published a cookbook, Supper’s at Six and We’re Not Waiting, with 600 recipes based on the dishes she made for the big dinners she used to make almost every week.

The family cookie business was still a small kitchen enterprise when she married gum and candy company salesman Travis Haynes on June 13, 1952. The two met during her eighth grade and he was her only boyfriend.

“I knew she was looking for a husband,” Haines said in a 2019 video for Our State magazine. She said, “She didn’t know she was looking for her future employee. She got both.”

Together they grew their business, exhibiting at trade fairs, state fairs and wherever they could find customers. By 1970, the business had grown so large that he built a bakery next door to his parents’ house.

“We were tired of waking up to the smell of cookies every morning,” Mrs. Haines told Oral History. They then relied on their long-time baking staff, mostly women who learned the craft from the hands of the masters, for seven more reprints.

Mrs Haynes has a husband in addition to her grandson Jedidiah. Their four children, Ramona Haynes Templin, Caroline Haynes Fordham, Michael & Jonathan Haynes. Six other grandchildren. and three great-grandchildren.

Mrs Haynes was active in the 250-year-old Friedberg Moravian Church. This church is on the same road as the house her great-grandfather built for her in 1842, the one where she was born and where she died. Her children and her grandchildren all live nearby. Many work, or have worked, in the family business and carry on a philosophy often repeated by Mrs. Haynes:

“We made everything we could make, sold everything we could make, and made a few more every year.”

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