Murdo Girl…Fern’s chocolate cake

Fern’s Cafe has been featured in several of the Murdo Girl stories, and many of you readers have been reminiscing about Fern’s chocolate cake. I didn’t think much about it at first. I figured one good chocolate cake was about the same as any other good chocolate cake. I got a little curious though, when someone posted the recipe on Pat Bechard’s FB page. Fern was Pat’s grandmother. The person who posted it said they got it from Lois Jaide.

I decided to bake the cake. I’ve gained ten pounds since I started the Murdo Girl blog back in March… It landed on my hips Just in time for the Murdo all school reunion. My other prediction about the bad hairdo came true as well. I got my hair cut twice and it’s still too short.

Not this short


Let’s pretend I’m a good cook. I’m going to take you step by step through the building of Fern’s Chocolate cake.


1-Ferms cake

I read it over several times just to get a feel for it. The recipe said, *add butter the size of an egg. You’ll notice that the cake doesn’t have any eggs in it, but you’ll need one anyway so you can measure the butter accurately. If you double the recipe, you will need 2 eggs. Just be sure you don’t put the eggs in the cake.


The first step is to boil the cocoa and milk together until thick. How thick? I guess I could have called someone, but I decided to wing it. I waited until it was the consistency of thick mud.That part went fine.

The next step is to add flour, sugar, baking soda, milk, and vanilla. So far so good. The recipe didn’t tell me how I was supposed to mix it up. Should I use a mixer, or should I just hand stir it? I decided to hand stir it. I thought the batter looked a little too thick, but it sure did taste good. I love cake batter and cookie dough. I’ve been known to consume so much of the cookie batch before it’s baked, what’s left is hardly worth heating up the oven for. I know raw eggs might kill me, but I’m a risk taker.

I found a loaf pan and sprayed it with cooking spray. The recipe said to grease the pan, but the spray is so much easier.

All my good loaf pans are out in the RV..That’s a lie. I don’t have any good loaf pans. This is the best one. It looks “cooked in.”



I baked the cake at 350 for 35 minutes. It came out of the oven looking like the first picture. When it cooled down, it looked like the second picture. It sunk in the middle and the top cracked. I wasn’t concerned. There is remedy for every problem.

You turn the cake upside down on a pretty plate
Find the recipe for your favorite frosting
And frost it


You’re welcome

Kip and I decided this recipe is a keeper. I looked online to find an explanation as to why it fell in the middle, and I found a couple possibilities. One being not enough liquid.  I might add an additional 2 tablespoons of milk next time. The cake does have a unique, but really good chocolate flavor. Even though the batter seemed dry, the texture turned out to be moist and just the right denseness, so I don’t know. Should I have used a mixer?

My kids always loved my chocolate chip cookies and my Mom’s lemon bars. I used to be able to make them both without looking at the recipe. All of a sudden one day, they weren’t good anymore. I visited my son and his family in Wyoming and they wanted me to make my homemade chocolate chip cookies. I tried four or five times and no matter what I did, they were as hard as a rock. They were even too hard to dunk.

I wonder if any of you Murdoites still have your Jones County cookbook. I love it. As you can tell by the shape it’s in, I used it all the time when my kids were still home. I love the pearls of wisdom on each page like, “Some husbands know all the answers. They’ve been listening for years.” It’s fun to see the names and remember the ladies who gave up their very best recipe’s for the cause.

The recipe for Mom’s yummy lemon bars is in the upper right hand corner under all the spilled coffee. 

I also have this cookbook written in 1951 probably by The Methodist Church basement cooks

This is the recipe Mom contributed. Do you notice anything funny?

It’s a recipe for eggless, milkless, butterless cake…at the end it says, you can put 2 eggs in it if you want to. Why? To make the name shorter? What is all this egg controversy about anyway?


How low can you go? You’ve heard of a wall flower? I’m a rug flower


You’re supposed to curtsey twinkle toes

I’m just taking a little break from the campaign. We’ll finish it up after the party




15 thoughts on “Murdo Girl…Fern’s chocolate cake

  1. countrygirl57 July 11, 2016 / 7:49 pm

    You have not gained 10 lbs!! Have you?? The cake looks good. I might have to try it!!😊😊😊 and risk the mouth ulcers from the chocolate!!😊😊

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

  2. scoper07 July 11, 2016 / 8:06 pm

    I know how to boil water. Does that count? Fewer calories.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. sanjuan831 July 11, 2016 / 8:16 pm

    Your mom’s lemon bars were fabulous and I have made them. Hint: your cookies didn’t turn out cause you were making”chocolate ship cookies”. Chocolate cake sounded Delish! Your frosting recipe looked easy. Another good episode. Are you up for hosting a cooking show or video?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. sanjuan831 July 11, 2016 / 9:13 pm

    My sons could film you cooking but think we need a better title because the Egg Bureau might be upset.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mary Francis McNinch July 11, 2016 / 9:58 pm

      Is there really an Egg Bureau? Do bureaus get upset? If you make Mom’s eggless cake, will you put eggs in it?

      Liked by 1 person

      • sanjuan831 July 11, 2016 / 10:01 pm

        Eggsactly. I would.


      • scoper07 July 12, 2016 / 10:18 am

        Those who can’t teach write exams. Oh did I say that out loud? Sorry exam writers. If you want to file a complaint call BR-549. Ask for Junior.


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