Granny D’s delights – The Saratoga Sun
Cottage industry owner that makes candy, cakes, breads and pies, is getting attention
Darlene Scheneman has been baking and making sweet treats since she was a little girl growing up in Utah in what she said was a little tiny town. “It is called Roosevelt, right below Flaming Gorge,” Scheneman said. “It is a pretty rural area and the population is not much bigger than Hanna.”
Scheneman is no stranger to baking and confections.
“I started baking bread when I was six years old, maybe even a little younger,” Scheneman said. “I learned out of necessity. I started with basic white breads and yeast breads. We lived on a farm, my mother had to work and my father had his work. I was the oldest of four girls and I was the only one who could make bread.”
Scheneman said most of her recipes are her own. She said there are times a recipe will be of interest to her from some other source, but Scheneman finds herself taking the instructions and ingredients and making it her own.
“There’s a lot of trial and error,” Schneneman said. “But I know what I am trying to make usually.”
Scheneman graduated high school and went to work for a bakery in Utah at age 19 and eventually became the manager.
“I had cooked for my family growing up and a few small restaurants, but baking was different,” Scheneman said. “You have to be precise to get the desired product. I did a lot of donuts in the first job. I still make donuts today.”
While working at the bakery she started making treats for craft fairs.
“I actually started attending the fairs with my hand crafts and while selling them, I started selling some of my baked goods because people started asking me for them,” Scheneman said. “I found myself having more success with my baked goods than hand crafts, so it just took off from there.”
Her experience with baked goods and confectionery got stronger than she took on different jobs.
“I worked in schools where I baked for them, including the law enforcement academy here in Wyoming,” Scheneman said. “I managed a Safeway bakery in Douglas for a while and I would see things they were doing and then I would make my own recipes which I felt improved whatever I was making.”
Her breads, cakes, donuts, pies and breakfast rolls have fans.
At the farmers market in Saratoga, Scheneman said her jalapeno bread always sells out. In truth, almost everything she took to the market back then was sold.
Granny D’s was born.
She wanted to brand herself and it is working by all the orders she is starting to get.
An outstanding product she makes is candies.
The array of different candies she can make comes across on her plates of sweets she offers.
The plates can have pecan turtles, dark chocolate almond bark, milk chocolate peanut clusters, chocolate covered toffee and the list goes on and on.
Russell Stovers, Whitman’s Chocolates, See’s Candy, Godiva, Cadbury’s would probably be nervous about putting their products up against Granny D’s.
Her English toffee has a special meaning to her.
“That recipe comes from my great, great grandmother in England,” Scheneman said. “That is a handed down recipe and you won’t find it out there.”
Her candy is not only delicious, but also aesthetically pleasing to look at.
“I try to be creative with taste and look,” Scheneman said. “I have been making candy since I was seven. My family made candy every Christmas. My mother made Divinity and my aunt taught me how to make the English toffee. There were a lot of family recipes handed down to my family. Then there are times I see a recipe and I think I can do something better and try my hand at it.”
Scheneman laughs as she said there have been plenty of flops over the years on the first try of making something, but that doesn’t deter her from trying again.
“I use real butter, quality ingredients and I don’t skimp,” Scheneman said. “It is expensive to make.”
She said the reason her prices are considered so reasonable, she sells boxes of candy for $20 that has a tremendous variety and tastes like it should cost double to triple her price. The quantity she gives for the price is somewhat starting too, it is because she make her products at home.
“I make large quantities at a time and this helps with cost,” Scheneman said. “Also, I want people to enjoy what I create and making it expensive is not my business model.”
Roger, her husband, is the reason she came to Carbon County. He was raised in Hanna and missed the community.
Scheneman had to back off from managing bakeries due to the heavy workload required.
Both of us had some health issues and we needed to take it easier,” Scheneman said. “So we moved to Hanna about a year ago.”
Roger was a meat cutter when he lived in Hanna back in the 80’s. “There were almost 2,000 people living here,” He said. “I knew a lot of people then and it was a place where everybody knew each other. There are good memories of this place for me and we decided we wanted to live here.”
Scheneman said all her confectionery and baked goods can be done to order.
“I do many orders. I am on Facebook and I get a lot of business from that site as people learn about me,” Scheneman said. “I sell a lot of jalapeno bread products from bagels to focaccia bread. My breads, I would say, are as popular as the candy and sweeter baked goods.”
She said orders usually take a couple days.
“Bigger orders might take three days,” Scheneman said. “You can’t rush a lot of the recipes.”
Scheneman said her website needs revamping but to get in contact with her about Granny D’s products, she recommends calling her at 307-359-8716.
Scheneman already has a retail outlet interested in carrying a selection of her products, which is not surprising to anyone who has tasted her wares.
She has a dream of having her own place to serve her products.
“One day I would like to have a little store for all that I make to have a selection of what I create,” Scheneman said. “But I am a long way off from that happening.”
There are enough residents in Carbon County who have tasted their products at the farmers markets and craft fairs this past year, who hope that a Granny D’s store is really not that far into the future.
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