Beth Stewart caught a love of baking from her mother, who every Christmas made platters of cookies for family and friends.
“My mom had my sister and me in the kitchen when we were young girls and we used to always bake with her,” said Stewart, of Botetourt County.
When her second child was born 6 1/2 years ago, Stewart decided to quit the nursing profession to be a stay-at-home mom. And about a year ago, she decided maybe she could earn money for the family out of her home instead of going back to nursing.
She started her business, Beth’s Cookies and More, in January 2010. She bakes and sells a variety of cookies, dessert bars and cakes. A few weeks ago, a friend brought some of Stewart’s cookies by the newspaper office for me to try. Along with some co-workers, I tasted her raspberry almond thumbprints, her pecan pie cookies and her oatmeal raisin spice cookies. They were extraordinary — soft, rich and full of flavor.
Stewart says the raspberry almond thumbprints are her best seller, and I can understand why. They were my favorite, too. Other offerings include cranberry white chocolate chip, gingersnaps with cream cheese frosting, almond bars, whoopie pies and brownies. Stewart does cakes, too, including a chocolate pound cake, a sour cream pound cake and an old family favorite called the sticky toffee pudding cake, a Christmas tradition for the Stewart clan.
“How can anything be better than brown sugar, butter, heavy cream and then the dates?” she asked. Indeed.
Beth’s goods cost $6 to $14 per dozen for cookies and bars. Cakes are sold in halves (or loaves) and full-size for $8 to $28. She uses no preservatives and features seasonal specials sometimes, which can be seen on her website, www.bethscookiesandmore.com. To learn more or order dessert from Stewart, call (540) 580-2662 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.