PINEVILLE, Mo. — When Grandpa cooked oatmeal for nine children each morning, those youngsters soon learned a way of jazzing up the everyday standby.
That early improvisation led Joetta Mackey to follow that spark of creativity.
“We always made simple syrups for our pancakes, and when you have oatmeal every day, we spiced it up with flavored syrups,” she said.
Mackey’s new business, Simply Syrup, features a line of 17 delectables. The syrups are great for enhancing coffee, pancakes, grilled meat of all kinds, dump cakes, lemonade, tea, other drinks and more, she said.
“I like to bake and cook and feed people,” Mackey said. “I come from a large family, and we celebrated everything with really big meals. We would go beyond and above with birthday parties with food.”
That love of celebration motivated Mackey to help others take their food to the next level.
Mackey said she uses her creativity to bring unrefined sugar and her own fruit extracts together to form the perfect syrup. Some syrups feature her own 12-spice mix, and some feature professional water-based extracts.
Flavors range from cotton candy and key lime pie to angry mango and blackberry lavender. Her 17 syrups easily can be modified to grow the line to 30 syrups, she said.
Mackey markets her syrups at the Downtown Simsberry Farmer’s Market in Pineville and usually sells out every Saturday. Her repeat customers offer tips, sales tales and explanations of ways they use the syrups.
She said customers use the maple bacon, black cherry and angry mango with grilling beef, pork, chicken and fish.
“The syrup makes it very tasty. It’s the heat and the sweet,” she said, smiling.
Coconut cream, for example, can be used in every morning’s coffee or in a fruit salad, she added.
“The syrups are very versatile,” she said. “My customers pour it in their coffee and use it on their barbecue.”
Still, other customers utilize the angry mango to line a glass for an adult beverage, she said.
Mackey said helping others comes easily to her. The syrup creator also likes to aid people with ways to eat better. From healthy eating (veggies from her hydroponic garden or greenhouse) to selling canning books and offering know-how, Mackey shares her secrets to enjoying food and making every bite worth it.
She hopes that customers find their own delectable uses for her syrup. “I love to feed people. It feels really good whenever people enjoy the syrups,” she said.
“It’s all about the customers. I hope to build long-lasting relationships … and make all our lives a little sweeter.”
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