Candy making, baked goods and more at rural Montour
It’s open house day today, Friday, May 8, at Country Candies located in a brand new building just outside of Montour. The new retail store portion of the business is open Monday- Saturday with the exception of certain holiday and religious observances of the Amish family.
You’ll find a wide assortment of candies, baked goods along with a line of handmade gift items.
Alma and husband Gideon Kurtz, with daughters, Marie, Polly, Sarah and Lizzie, and along with daughter Marie who is here helping from Colorado temporarily ,they are busy filling the shelves a wide assortment of candies, breads, pies and donuts. There’s cookies, noodles and cakes all made or baked on premises.
They are now adding jams to their line for the first time.
And in addition to the candy and baked goods, daughter Mamie has hand painted and decorated items among gift items available.
“We’ve always done wholesale candy orders, making about five ton a year,” Alma Kurtz said Monday. “We started with candy making 30 years ago.”
The couple originally stated in the business while living at Maquoketa before relocating to Knoxville 18 years ago.
While there they also sold baked goods at farmers markets in Des Monies and Indianola.
“My mother was a baker for many years,” Alma recalls. Her parents, who live in Michigan plan to be here for the open house.
Alma said they were drawn to the rolling hills area of central Iowa and when the property just southeast of Montour became available they decided on the move, settling on Dec. 17 of last year.
Son Johnny Kurtz built their large new processing plant and retail store on the property. He operated Shoal Creek Construction but is now moving to Montana.
When visiting the new store you’ll likely be tempted to try a bit of everything.
Among the candies some of the best-sellers are peanut butter balls, cashew crunch, turtles and English toffee.
There’s quite a selection of unique offerings in the baked goods department. Alma says bacon, egg and cheese bread has quickly become a favorite among customers.
Here’s a sampling of a few of the offerings- candy- orange cremes, cream cheese truffles, mints and nut goodies; breads- rhubarb nut, onion cheese, blueberry banana and pumpkin; rolls, donuts, cake- blueberry cream cheese rolls, caramel cinnamon donuts, cherry coffee cake; pies- bumbleberry pie, strawberry rhubarb, chocolate expresso whoopie; cookies- monster, oatmeal crispy, 5 chip; bars- rice and roll, Congo, vanilla crumb; granola, chocolate peanut butter, seed granola, white chocolate almond; jams- rhubarb, jaelpeno peach, apple butter; fired pies- lemon, triple berry, peach; kaloches- cherry, red raspberry, blueberry.