Sunday, October 24, 2010

Childhood Fall Memories

As October quickly passes O Wise One and I start picking up pecans under the pecan trees in the yard. We have many pecan and walnut trees here on Hickery Holler Farm. They are in various stages of development and most have been either planted or grafted by us. Picking up pecans brings back such childhood memories for me of fall. I grew up on a farm in Southern Louisiana, in a house surrounded by huge pecan trees. Every fall our days were filled with raking vast amounts of pecan leaves after school so that we could find the pecans easily and picking up pecans by hand. Huge rough brown burlap sacks of pecans were then hung in the shed to dry and sold. It was extra farm income for my family and we were always given a small portion of the pecan money for movies and spending money. I remember taking off my shoes and wading barefoot through that thick St Augustine grass feeling around with my toes for those pecans. I remember sitting and shelling pecans for mama to put in the freezer for her delicious pecan pies that were a regular on the Thanksgiving and Christmas table.  And anyone remember Fantasy Fudge made with marshmallow cream and sweetened condensed milk and loaded with our homegrown pecans.

Another memory of fall was the making of the sugar cane syrup. Daddy would load up us kids and across the river we would go to " Hazeller's"  house. She was  the lady who made the best syrup in the county. Cooking up huge vats of syrup out in a shed in her back yard. Similar to the set up below!

Once the syrup was cooked it was put into shiny silver buckets  and home we would go.

Mama would make a big pan of cat head biscuits. Then you would take some of that syrup and pour into a plate. Then you would take a big spoon full of that sweet cream that was always in the refrigerator that mama skimmed off the top of the milk bowl everyday. You would drizzle that thick sweet cream over that syrup and SOP  it all up with that biscuit. You have never lived until you have done some biscuit sopping !!!!

Another October regular were the spider lillies that always bloomed at pecan time. They would make their leaves in the spring of the year and die back until fall. Every October they would put up these spidery red blooms. 

Spider Lillies won't grow here in The Holler. I have naked ladies which is a Lily in the same family but it puts up as pink and white trumpet shaped bloom in the fall. Pecans always make me think of the spider lillies because they grew around the pecan trees and were always there when we were picking them up. Mama would always be reminding us " not to break off her lillies" !

What were your favorite fall memories?

Blessings from The Holler

The Canned Quilter


  1. Beautiful memories.

    Our main fall cash crop was black walnuts. Picked up by the truck loads. We got our share of money from that and it was used for Christmas gifts.

  2. I didn't know they had to be hung and dried. We did collect them and sell them to a place in town one year.

    We we have one of those bowls on our property. I call it a cow bowl, haha. hubby's family used to water their dairy cattle in it, and hubby has kept fishing minnows in it.

    I want to learn how to make good biscuits, and I want to learn how to make my own cream like that, too.

    Have a blessed week!

  3. Wish I were close by for some of those fresh Pecans...I love them in cakes, what a fond memorie. Sop! I'm sure glad I know what that means :o)...Sometimes I pour syrup on a plate and put a dab of butter in the middle of it to mash it all around and then use my Angel biscuit to Sop!
    Sometimes life is good :o) to remember fond memories..Ginny

  4. Did Jerry Clower teach you how to sop a biscuit? LOL!! Danny's family always made molasses and I loved those days while they were being made but I never liked molasses except in Gingerbread!!

    Danny can really made a sop solution out of butter and what ever syrup or honey he can find and drag a cathead biscuit thru it just right!! My girls still make him mix up thier syrup and butter for them!! I've never heard of the cream part!!

    Thanks for the memories!

  5. Finding blogs like yours are one of the best things about the internet.
    My husband and I are watching a cooking show and they mentioned "cat head biscuits". We're both born and raised in Massachusetts, and we'd never heard of them. I googled "cat head biscuits" and followed a link to your blog.
    Thanks for sharing a piece of your childhood with me! I hope you have a wonderful Fall and holiday season.


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