Linda Simmons began selling with the Emporia Farmers Market in 2010. She is well known for her gourmet cookies and sweets. She sells cinnamon rolls, pies and breads. She also often has sugar free baked goods for sale.
Q: What's your first kitchen or baking related memory?
A: My first baking memories were from my pre-teen, 4-H years. Next was after Wayne and I married and left Denver following the flood of June 1965. We moved to a farm in Nebraska and I spent a lot of time alone while Wayne was working in the fields, so I read cookbooks to entertain myself. One cookbook showed how to knead bread, so I tried it. From there, I moved on to other baked goods. Five years later I became interested in decorating cakes. I enjoyed that for many years, and making cinnamon rolls.
Q: Some say baking is simply science, but your cookies are often as beautiful as they are delicious. Would you describe yourself as more scientist or artist in the kitchen?
A: Art was my favorite class in high school and in the years I attended college, so I guess I'd consider myself more an artist in the kitchen than a scientist.
Q : What's your favorite thing to bake?
A: Cookies were not something I'd done much of until we moved to Emporia, and making fancy cookies is every bit as much fun as decorating cakes, so those are the kinds I make. I try to do a variety of fancy cookies in sugar free, as well. That, I guess, would be the science part of my baking.
Now I'm baking artisan "rustic" breads as well, and that's a new kind of art. And yes, it's as much fun as cakes, cookies, a variety of quick breads, and baklava!
My favorite thing to bake? Everything. I just like to bake.
Q: How long have you been in Emporia? How did you get started with the Emporia Farmers Market?
A: In earlier years I had sold baked goods at the Dodge City farmers' market. When we lived outside Kansas City, MO, we drove to Emporia to visit family and liked to visit the farmers' market while we were here. So when we moved here in 2009, I was already interested in taking part.
We really like Emporia. The people are extremely friendly. In a city this size, the farmers' market is an important part of the community. I look forward to interacting with the folks shopping at the market, as well as the other vendors.