So the Recipe Shower has come and gone and I have failed to post this for quite some time. My apologies. By day I work at a University, so it's a busy time of year.
In the end I chose to give my friend a recipe for my Chocolate Wacky Cake, which is my grandmother's WWII ration recipe featuring no eggs or butter. It's delicious! If you want to try it out it's super easy to make, recipe is at the bottom of this post.
As I said in the last post, I love to give a themed gift so I picked out a rectangular cake pan, spatula, and wisk to give with this recipe, since these are items you would need to bake the cake. Luckily I noticed that mixing bowls, measuring cups and spoons had all already been fulfilled on her registry. The Bride loved all her gifts, and as she is an avid baker, I know she will especially appreciate a cake recipe. I have to give a shout out to the Maid of Honor! She did the sweetest thing I've seen someone do with all the recipes. She bought a photo album type book with single slots for each recipe card and collected the recipes at the shower and slid them all into place. This way the Bride's recipes are organized and kept all in one place. Bonus-they stay clean under their plastic page protectors!!! Genius. I will definitely add that to my bag of tricks for the next shower I throw.
I got some twitter traffic about how one plans a recipe shower or what exactly that meant, so here is a brief run down. For the person(s) hosting the shower, plan as you normally would. Pick a date, place, make your guest list, but when you mail invitations include an index card or printed recipe card with each invite. You can usually buy packs of recipe cards at grocery stores or kitchen supply places with pretty graphics and fun details such as notes that feature "From the Kitchen of... " or "Cook with Care Instructions." Explain to guests on the invite to fill out the card with a recipe of their choice for the Bride (and Groom) and bring it to the shower. Even guests who are unable to attend are able to contribute by mailing their recipe on the provided card to the couple.
Using this invitation to contribute a *free* recipe is also a way to steer guests away from giving a tangible gift at the Shower (if the Bride and Groom are on board with that), especially in this economy a lot of couples are saying one gift on their Wedding day is enough. You could phrase it "You're invited to a Cooking Shower! Hosted by Sarah's Bridesmaids. Instead of gifts the Bride requests of gift of your cooking skills! Please share a favorite recipe on this card and join us for good company, tea and desserts on September 19, 2009 at 2pm at the Cambridge Tea Room, West Chester, PA. Please RSVP to Eliza by September 5, 2009 at (phone or email)."
Here is the recipe: Grandma Betty's WWII Wacky Cake
3 c. flour
2 c. sugar
1/2 c. cocoa
2 teas. baking soda
2 teas. salt
2 tbs. red wine vinegar
2 teas. vanilla
2/3 c. vegetable oil
2 c. cool water
Combine dry ingredients in one bowl and wet ingredients in another. Slowly stir dry ingredients into wet mixture. Pour into a lightly greased rectangular 9" x 13" pan or split between two 9" round pans for a layered cake.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 to 35 minutes. Enjoy!