Okay – a strange title for a foodblog, but I could really use a mommy hug right now. It’s been one hellava summer. Victor’s surgery, my wisdom tooth, then – and I’m sure it was from the pain meds and a complete change in diet for me – I was in and out of the hospital most of the week with bleeding intestines.I have no food restrictions, I can eat whatever I want whenever I want. I just have to stay away from NSAIDS – pain meds that are blood thinners. I didn’t. My bad.

And then, to make a bad summer worse, my Unkie Dick passed away this morning. Only 77. Besides being just a fantastic and wonderful guy, he was also my very last uncle. I’m not ready to be the oldest generation. A mommy hug would be good right now.

But… Since mom is with Unkie Dick, I had to do the next best thing – make a dessert like she would have made.

My mother was queen of desserts. We had dessert virtually every night – and with six kids in the family, that was quite a feat. She could whip up something in a heartbeat, from scratch cookies to pineapple cream pie – or her most excellent fudge. And, as a modern housewife, she always had cake mixes in the cupboard. But a plain ol’ cakemix cake was not mom’s style. She had to doctor them up, create something new and wonderful. In short, experiment and have fun.

She had a Duncan Hines recipe pamphlet that she gave me with her cookbooks – and needing a mommy-recipe, I pulled it out tonight. Glancing through the recipes, I found a perfect “Mommy Dessert” – Buttery Cranberry Cobbler.

  • 1 pkg Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe Butter Recipe Golden Cake Mix, divided (I used America’s Choice yellow cake. Better ingredients)
  • 1 cup quick cooking oats (I used old fashioned, I never have quick cooking in the house)
  • 3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened and divided (I used butter)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 can (16oz) whole berry cranberry sauce

1. Preheat oven to 375F. Grease and flour 13x9x2-inch pan.

2. For topping, combine 1/2 cup dry cake mix, oats, and 1/4 cup butter in medium bowl with fork until crumbly. Set aside. (I added 1/2 cup walnuts – mom always improvised!)

3. For base, cut together remaining dry cake mix and remaining 1/2 cup butter with fork until crumbly. Stir in eggs and water until mixture is moistened. Spread on bottom of pan. (I used the mixer. Mom never followed directions, either.)

4. Stir cranberry sauce until smooth. Spread over batter in pan. Sprinkle with topping. bake at 375F for 35 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

I cut the dessert into 8 pieces – in honor of the 8 of us who used to sit around that table every night – and actually juuust a tad more generous than mommy used to be. It came out great! In fact, I may just have to go back for seconds.

It was the perfect mommy-hug. Thanks, mom.