A Chocolate Cake Tribute « BackPrintEmail Friend
I’ll be honest. 2011 was an extremely tough year for this Jersey household, as my mother, Michelle, passed away on March 4, 2011. My inspiration in my life as a dairy wife and mom easily stems from my own mother. When I tie my apron around my waste, I always find my smile stretching a bit wider—thinking of my mom, who spent uncountable hours in her farm kitchen cooking for both family and friends.
My mother was not raised on a farm—actually far from it; she was an admiral’s daughter and lived in U.S. naval ports around the country. My father loves to recall that he lost 20 pounds the first year they were married. Growing up in a luxurious lifestyle, my mother didn’t learn to cook until after she married. She quickly learned, through many mouths to feed, to be an amazing cook. She always had more than enough food on hand for whatever surprise visitor stopped in.
My Jersey kids’ eyes widen when I tell them growing up on a family dairy farm in central Oregon, we never ate out. They think I’m exaggerating. But truth be told, I can count on one hand the times that we ate out as a family—they were that numbered. This is where my love to cook stems from—my upbringing in a large family setting, whose meals were always served family style around the dinner table.
And, one way I like to keep my mother’s memories alive, is by cooking her recipes for my own family that she so often made for me, my sisters and father growing up. My Jersey family quickly grew in love with my mother—from her caring heart, generosity and downright honesty—but they also grew in love with her cooking. I often share special stories with my Jersey kids of growing up in a large family on a West Coast dairy farm and all the fun-filled times we had with Grandma Michelle in her kitchen.
One very special recipe to me is my mother’s Dairyman’s Very Chocolate Cake that she impeccably made for us to enjoy on several special occasions— from dairy farmer potlucks that we had when I was a kid to Easter dinner.
Me and my Jersey kids sport aprons, turn up the radio and make this delicious chocolate dessert on special occasions—and you better believe that this March 4 will be one of those special days that we do the same, raising a cold glass of milk to raise a toast to Grandma Michelle.
Hi, I’m Karen Bohnert of Bohnert Jerseys located in the Illinois Quad Cities area. I am a mom, dairy farmer’s wife and dairy enthusiast – through and through. My pride and passion for each of these roles could fill a barn!
For those with a sweet tooth, try this Dairyman’s VERY Chocolate Cake.