Glazed Oatmeal Cake (and a cookbook review!)

If there’s anything more comforting than coming home to a freshly baked casserole and a jug of sweet tea, I don’t know what it is.  Casseroles are one of those things that are more than the sum of their parts, with a whole lotta love stirred in.  They are warm, soothing and fill you up just right.  They taste especially good after a hard day’s work.

When I heard about The Casserole Queens Cookbook, I added it to my Amazon wish list immediately.

Since these two lovely ladies live in Texas, I couldn’t resist.  And when Yankee Bobby Flay challenged them to a Casserole Throwdown, I was eager to see them conquer!  And boy, did they ever.  Their Chicken Pot Pie had him with his tail between his legs.  He couldn’t throw enough expensive and exotic ingredients into his casserole to beat these ladies.  They stick to the classic casserole recipes, but add just enough of a modern twist to make them even more delicious.

In case you’re wondering, the book does not rely heavily on condensed cream-of-something soups.  Some recipes do use it, and if you’re against that sort of thing, they provide recipes for homemade versions.

Their cookbook is full of delicious recipes that I couldn’t wait to make.  The book is divided into family pleasin’ recipes, casseroles with a gourmet touch, lighter casseroles, side dishes, breakfast bakes, and desserts.  I’ll let you guess which section I read first ;)

Once Sandy showed proper respect to Texas King Ranch Casserole (by not changing a single thing about the original recipe), I decided I trusted her enough to try the lighter Queen Ranch Casserole.  I absolutely loved this dish. Although, I have to say that my version was probably not considered ‘light’ due to my homemade chicken broth with a ½” layer of fat on top.  But delicious, it was!

We also enjoyed the Pork Chops with Sauerkraut baked in a bacon-lined pan, a little nod to the large Czech and German population in central Texas.  Since we’re Czech, we are a very sauerkraut-friendly family and gobbled it up.  And just last night, I put the Coq au Vin in the oven before we headed to the field to plant the first set of winter crops.  There’s nothing else I’d rather pull out of my oven after all that field work.  We piled it high over bowls of quinoa and ate it wordlessly.  I will be making this recipe again and again—it has the flavors of something that baked all day but only took 2 hours.

There are many other savory recipes I want to try (Valley-Style Arroz con Pollo, Boo-yah Bouillabaisse, Migas casserole, and Caramel Cinnamon Sweet Rolls, just to name a few), but I couldn’t wait any longer to dive into the dessert section.  A whole section of scrumptious desserts that only require 1 dish to make?!  Sign me up!  The Apple Gooey Butter Cake whispered sweet nothings in my ear, but in the end, I was charmed most by the Glazed Oatmeal Cake.  I knew I wanted to scale it down to make a smaller version (not that I couldn’t eat the whole 9 x 13” pan myself, mind you).

This is the best cake recipe I’ve made in a loooong time.  The tender cinnamon cake is topped with a crunchy frosting made of coconut, pecans and brown sugar that you broil in the oven.  The texture of the frosting alone will have you wanting to scrape it off the entire cake and straight into your mouth.

I fully recommend making the entire 9×13″ recipe from Crystal and Sandy, but if you would like a smaller version, I’ve scaled it down below.

Finally, a little tip to Bobby:  bless your heart for challenging Southern cooks, but you couldn’t beat a blind grandma with one arm at Southern cookin’.  Food just tastes better down here, but thanks for visiting us.  We hope ya had a real nice time. :)

Disclaimer: I received this cookbook for free to review. The opinions are all my own, and I really did make and enjoy many of their recipes.  Don’t believe me?—I’ll send you photos of my kitchen sink full of dirty dishes.  Then I’ll ask you to come wash them for me because I’m drowning in a sea of dirty dishes.

5.0 from 2 reviews

Glazed Oatmeal Cake
 
Makes 1 small 6″ cake.
Ingredients
For the cake:
  • 2 tablespoons rolled oats
  • ¼ cup hot water
  • 6 tablespoons shortening, plus extra for pan
  • 5 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • ¾ cup flour
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅛ teaspoon baking powder
For the frosting:
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup chopped pecans
  • ⅓ cup sweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 teaspoon milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a 6” round cake pan with shortening and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, add the rolled oats and hot water. Let sit while you make the rest of the cake.
  3. In a medium bowl, beat together the 6 tablespoons of shortening and sugar. Cream very well, then add the egg and beat til combined.
  4. In another bowl, whisk together all remaining dry ingredients (flour, cinnamon, salt, baking soda and powder). Add this to the creamed shortening mixture and stir with a spatula until just combined. Add the oats and their soaking water and stir until just combined—do not overmix. Pour into the cake pan and bake on the center rack for 29-32 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  5. Let cool completely before moving on.
  6. When ready to serve the cake, preheat the broiler to high. Combine the butter, brown sugar, milk and pecans in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and boil for 1 minute. Turn off the heat and stir in the coconut. Spread the frosting evenly over the cake, then place it about 4” from the broiler and broil for 3-5 minutes, keeping a very close eye on it to keep it from burning. The frosting should be deliciously crunchy and crisp. Enjoy!

Comments

  1. says

    This cake looks delicious!

    And as a New York Gal, I’m laughing at the way you say a blind grandma could beat Bobby Flay at southern cooking. But southern cooking does look amazing, I’m starting to read more about it.

    -Miriam

  2. says

    This sounds like comfort food at it’s best. I have to say, when I’m really busy working but need to get dinner on the table I will often opt to make a casserole. In fact, last night I made tuna noodle florentine casserole. The chicken pot pie you mentioned sounds quite good especially with the chilly rainy weather we are having today.

    I will have to check out this cookbook on Amazon. Nice review.

  3. says

    Oh my, if I were near I’ll wash the dishes for a piece of this oatmeal cake! It looks scrumptious! I could only imagine how exquisite those casserole recipes are. Would add to my wish list as well.
    Hugs

  4. Jessie says

    This is my mother’s famous cake recipe! She called it What Cake, because everyone always says, “Mmmm…what is in this cake?!” after taking their first bite. Now that she has passed away, we make it for every birthday.

  5. says

    Neat idea for an oatmeal cake. I wonder if this means casseroles are making a comeback? Perhaps they should, since they are perfect for potlucks, dinner parties, leftovers…not to mention one-dish meals.

  6. says

    I watched that Throw Down and loved it when the ladies won. :) (Even though I admire Bobby Flay!) I also liked your your review and knowing that they provide “cream of soup alternates.” All winners in my book.

  7. says

    Fabulous cake and that’s a terrific review! Being a girl from the Deep South – I love casseroles, cream of anything and firmly believe that a little mayonnaise and cheddar in a dish makes everything taste better!

    Thanks – I’m going to have to check this one out!

  8. says

    Oh my goodness! Never even thought of an oatmeal cake. This looks absolutely delicious! I am definitely going to make this now that the holidays are approaching. Thanks!

  9. says

    Oh that sweet freckled bobby flay didn’t stand a chance!! great review!! I had family in town and missed these gals at HEB!! I am still kicking myself for not attending the event , glad your enjoiying the book!!

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