“Grandmas never run out of hugs or cookies.”
This isn’t the first, and won’t be the last time I write about my grandmother, or her famous baking.
If I had to pick only one food to eat for the rest of my life, it would probably be exactly what you see here; a piece of my grandmother’s homemade sourdough bread, or Mimi Bread as the grand-kids call it, smeared with butter and homemade jelly.
Growing up, every time I visited Mimi’s house, this was my first request, and I ate it at practically every meal. Now, as a quote-unquote “grown up,” well… not much has changed.
After coming home from school to Texas for the summer, Mimi’s house was one of my first stops. We sat talking for awhile, catching up on the family, friends, and how school was going, until eventually the topics were covered and the inevitable slipped out of my mouth:
“Do you have any Mimi Bread made?”
Being Mimi, she of course did.
It was time to move this conversation to the table… I had some serious work to do.
After I finished my bread, she offered me a taste of the oatmeal cake she had made for my great aunt’s birthday. It was fabulous- almost like an oatmeal bread with a German Chocolate Cake style icing.
I happily cut a generous piece to take home with me.
Wanting to copy the recipe for my own collection, I headed to the cabinet and found the box with her hundreds of recipes, all written on 3×5 cards.
Many were so worn and stained from their use over the years that they were difficult to read.
Some of the best memories I have with my Mimi were born from those recipe cards… making candy every Christmas, slaving all day in the kitchen to recreate the famous Nieman Marcus cookie recipe, and of course, baking my favorite bread.
It would be a terrible shame if any of those memories were lost. Those recipes tell the story of my childhood, and one day will help write the stories of my own children.
For that reason, they have to be preserved.
So I’ve decided to start on a project, a way to keep the memories alive and pay tribute to the many wonderful times spent in my grandmother’s kitchen.
Using her recipes, I’m going to create a cookbook of my all-time favorite “Mimi Recipes.”
I’m sure it’s a task that will be daunting at first and tedious at times, and it will be nearly impossible to pick my favorite recipes, but to preserve the memories my grandmother shared with her children and grandchildren, it will be completely worth it.
For now, I’ll share with you the recipe that inspired the idea.
- 1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
- 1 stick margarine
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups flour, sifted
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- pinch of salt
- 6 tbsps margarine
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 cup coconut
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Mix together oats, margarine, and boiling water. Let stand 20 minutes.
- Add sugar and eggs.
- Sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Add to other mixture and stir.
- Bake in a glass pan for 25 minutes.
- For icing, mix together margarine, sugar and milk in a saucepan over medium heat.
- Add coconut and pecans, then pour over hot cake.
- Allow to cool before serving.
This oatmeal cake recipe is just one of many that I’ll be sharing with you all on my journey to write Mimi’s Recipe Book.
Creating this book will offer me the chance to spend some quality time with my Mimi; something I haven’t been able to do since I moved away.
I know that looking back through all those old recipe cards will bring back a lot of great memories of the times we shared together.
And for that reason, I can’t wait to get started.