Thursday, March 5, 2009

Ah, the comfort of Oatmeal Cake

Whenever my friend, Amy, gets together with her mom and sisters their "girl talk" centers around laundry. Can you believe that? Laundry!

(I try hard to not think about laundry for six days out of the week. On one day of the week I actually have to clean some clothes, but I sure wish I didn't.)

Amy swears that she and her home gals love the laundry talk. The latest in stain fighting techniques makes them giddy. I cannot tell you how many times I've spilled on myself in front of Amy and she's offered to clean my shirt.

Know what they don't talk about when they get together? Food. Can you believe that?!

Now, this is a completely foreign concept for me because for as long as I can remember (and this goes back to growing up on the farm), my mom, sisters, and I have talked food. Every time we get together we talk about what new recipes we've tried lately. We talk about our favorite Food Network shows (Paula Deen, of course!). We even help each other plan menus for parties.

We are a family of food lovers.

Probably about once a week someone in my family will send a group email asking for a recipe, a menu idea, or a "what's-for-dinner?".

So last week when Jenn asked for the recipe for Mom's Oatmeal Cake, we all chimed in with an "ooooh, that sounds so good!" Mom's Oatmeal Cake is a very old fashioned recipe for rich, dense, chocolate cake with white frosting. It's my dad's favorite cake.

Suddenly, a plan was concocted and kitchens from Chicago to Dallas to Tucson started firing up their ovens. All four of us made Oatmeal Cake last weekend, and I have almost all the pictures to prove it. (Somehow Jenn's pictures didn't make it. Sorry.)

Jodi and I used regular oats for ours, and we both thought it was a little dry around the edges. I don't know what Jenn used, but she thought her cake was dry too. Mom used instant oatmeal, and hers, of course, was perfect.

So now, here are some pictures of the Great Oatmeal Cakeathon of 2009.

Mom's beautiful cake:

Jodi's artistic endeavor (with her husband Matt in the picture--isn't he cute?!)

And my sad contribution:
(and don't even start with me about how my photos are bigger than theirs. I don't know how that happens!)

Should you have a craving for some good, old fashioned comfort food, you should try this recipe. And don't forget to trace some diamonds in the frosting on the top of your cake.

Oatmeal Cake
1 C. oatmeal
1 1/2 C. boiling water
1/2 C. shortening
1 1/2 C. white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/4 C. flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/2 C. cocoa

Combine oatmeal and boiling water in a small bowl. Let stand for 20 minutes.

Cream together shortening, sugar, and eggs. Add oatmeal mixture.

Sift together flour, soda, salt, and cocoa. Add to creamed mixture.

Put in a greased 9 x 13" pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

White Frosting
1/4 C. butter, softened
1 t. vanilla
1/2 pound powdered sugar
about 1/4 C. milk

Note: I doubled the frosting recipe because, well, I like a lot of frosting!


  1. Why, yes! That man is VERY cute!! :)-

    We've only got a row of cake left to go (without having shared any)! Love the stuff!!

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  2. Your cakes all look delicious. How fun to be able to do that all in one weekend together.

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  3. This looks great, Shelly. And our family is the same way. . . talking about what we're making. . .and planning menus. :)

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  4. So fun! These are the things that continue to draw us all together. Wonder what our next challenge will be, Shelly.

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