A Gift Cake {And A Giveaway!}




Hello Farmgirl friends!  I hope you have had the loveliest of holidays.




I received the sweetest gift in the mail from our very own Farmgirl, MaryJane, and I’ve just been so excited to share it with all of you!  Along with a very amazing recipe (more on that in a minute) was the sweetest little mini cocotte casserole ceramic dish with a lid.  In my favorite color of aqua!  I think I’m going to be buying more because honestly this is so darling and I can see so many uses for it.  (If you’re interested, you can buy them here.)


She also enclosed the sweetest friendship bracelet from her grand-daughter Mia and it is so pretty and it makes me so happy!  (Do you see it tucked in the picture above?)




The enclosed card was such fun though… the words really struck a chord with me, as they will with all of you farmgirls.  I have it tacked to my bulletin board above my office table so that I will read it often.




But, because I am a Gram that has grand-girls about the same age as MaryJane’s I am absolutely in love with the recipe for a Chocolate Gift Cake that was enclosed in the package.  This recipe was developed and photographed by her grand-daughter Stella Jane.


I’m not going to share the recipe because I believe it is coming in the Feb-Mar 2021 magazine and you’ll want to read it there!

But I’m so impressed with Stella.  I went to her public Instagram page and started following her there and reading about her recipes and her baking.  She has such fun videos to watch and WOW what an awesome young Farmgirl she is!  She also has her own website bakery where locals can order from her.  I want to just pick up the phone and place an order!




So today I was so excited to make her tiny little Chocolate Gift Cake in the ceramic mini Cocotte that was gifted to me along with the recipe.




Her recipe uses almond flour and is gluten free and so moist I could hardly believe it.  It also calls for maple syrup versus sugar and that made me really happy too.




The recipe is for two 4-inch layers with frosting in between.  And the frosting recipe shocked me… I didn’t think it would work.  It also only uses maple syrup for sweetening and its like MAGIC.  And oh my goodness… SO GOOD!!!




I can’t tell you how many times I just want ONE piece of cake!  And this little cake could not be more perfect!  It was enough for me to have a piece, my husband to have a piece and to share with my grand-girls… because of course I had to tell them all about Stella and what she has going on!




Gone in just a quick minute!  I think I will make another cake tomorrow and take it to a friend that could really use some cheering up.  It is the PERFECT size gift cake!!!

If you don’t subscribe to MaryJanesFarm magazine, now might be the time to do that here.  You really want to get your hands on this crazy good recipe of Stella’s!  I’m hoping she has plans for a cookbook soon!





MaryJane has so graciously offered to give a gift subscription to her magazine to one lucky reader!  All you have to do to enter is comment and tell me what your goals and hopes are for yourself in the new year.  

I am so thankful for all my special farmgirl friends… those that I have “met” here through the years of blogging for MaryJane, those that live local that mean so much to me, and those that live too far to see often but we keep in close touch.  My goal and hope for myself in this new year is to keep in much closer touch with these precious friends.  I feel it stronger this year than I ever have before.  May we all feel the need to reach out to each other to encourage, lift up, motivate and inspire.

I will randomly choose the winner next week on Friday, January 8.  The winner will be notified via email!  


Until our gravel roads cross again… so long.



  1. Carol says:

    Dori … I love that little cake. I need to get one! As you said, it’s THE perfect gift for a friend or for my two granddaughters! My hopes for the coming year are to reconnect with so many who I have been distanced from by the pandemic … in person! I’m also working on organizing my photographs! It’s something I love doing and it is ongoing! Happy New Year! Carol in Pennsylvania

  2. Amy ODonnell says:

    I have a similar little cast-iron pot and I can’t wait to try this recipe out! Just renewed my subscription last month, so I’ll be looking forward to the cake recipe.

    For 2021, I need to:

    End the procrastination bug that has plagued me for over a year

    Find better and better paying clients, and get off the job boards (I’m a writer)

    Get back onto my fitness track ASAP, or else.

    Get the house into better shape–organized and efficient

    Finish all the sewing, including a quilt that’s been sitting half-finished for five years

    Never again look at the calendar and wonder, “what happened to my year?”

  3. Bonnie McKee says:

    Happy New Year!
    My hopes for 2021 are to always show grace and kindness to everyone I encounter.
    To sew more quilts (mainly finishing several UFOs!) and bake more goodies to share with family and friends. ❤️

  4. Lori Fresina says:

    My goal for 2021 is to make more lap quilts for charity than in 2020. Charity quilts are new for me and I’ve felt such an accomplishment from making them. Peace and joy to you Dori in 2021!!!

  5. Lisa Strange says:

    I hope to finish my little vintage camper I named Mary Jane after my favorite author. Filled with aprons and all vintage things. I hope our business is prosperous and I hope to make a lot of new friends and have good times. Cooking and visiting with family is my favorite and I hope to have many more weekend taco
    Nights for my family. Merry Christmas and I hope you have a wonderful new year. Xoxo

  6. Stacey Mitchell says:

    I hope for health, love, and happiness, and peace.

  7. Carol Slater says:

    Oh that cake looks amazing, but I don’t care for maple syrup. I have a dish similar to that though. My goals for next year are to keep my family safe from CO-VID and to work my Pink Zebra business enough to help my youngest daughter make much needed improvements to her home.

  8. MS Barb says:

    My two big goals for 2021 are to pay off debt (my car & the one & only credit card bill) & to lose weight. I am making a conscious effort NOW to eat healthy, and avoid sugar… & I have a tight, but workable budget for 2021!

  9. Cyndie Gray says:

    Dear Dori: first thank you for the sweet post! And that little cake looks so amazing! I have been thinking about the upcoming new year also…and one thing I want to do is to make a more determined effort to keep in touch with my young adult grandkids ♥️ I have gotten in the rut of “they are too busy to mess with gramma”.
    My goal is to send them a snail mail note once a month (of our 13 grands, 5 are over the age of 18). Another goal for 2021 is to learn to embroider‼️ I thought I would do that during this year’s pandemic but I got back into crocheting! Which has been delightful to me but I want to learn something new in the coming year! Sorry for rambling on…I just love your posts & I am going to keep my eye out for the Feb/Mar issue!!

    • Kristalyn Peterson says:

      I love your idea to send snail mail monthly. I was so close to my grandparents even though we lived 13 hours apart. We exchanged letters every week from the time I left home until I was about 27 when we both had dial up to send email. You just inspired me to send a monthly card or letter to my children (all adults) and to my mother-in-law. Thanks!

  10. Tammy Granlees says:

    I’m looking forward to the new year, a new beginning old things passed. I’m going to make a effort to be more kind , more thoughtful to others. I really like the chocolate cake gift idea. I usually have great ideas, but then I talk my self out of gift giving thinking it’s not a good idea. Not doing that anymore. Thank you for always inspiring me to be better. Sincerely Tammy

  11. This year was a hard year on so many levels, for so many people. I hope that 2021 knocks the socks off of 2020 (in a good way). I pray for health, joy, peace and sustainability for everyone. And, that cake looks awesome. Can’t wait to see the recipe… I don’t currently subscribe but would like to. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Rebecca says:

    That cake looks delicious and is the perfect size for two old retirees! LOL. I will definitely have to try this recipe when I get it. My goals for the new year are to stress less and to live more in the present.

  13. Virginia Scott says:

    Hi Doris, I hope to be a better friend. I hope to use many of the ideas found in your blog to share with friends. I am blessed and don’t ever want to take that for granted.
    Thanks for your blog.

  14. Marla says:

    I just started up my subscription in November. Looking forward to reading it and would love to win!!

  15. Michelle Mitchell says:

    Looking forward to taking more time for myself this next year. Making healthy changes that will make it easier for me to continue providing for family and friends well into the future.

  16. Judy Nance says:

    Thank you for your post. The cake looks delicious, and making it gluten free is a great idea. Who could resist chocolate anything???? I am hopeful that 2021 will bring freedom to all of those living in fear of this virus. I live very isolated, but within a small mountain community in Colorado. We all have agreed to cancel social events within the community, but we do stay in touch, and make sure everyone is okay, dropping off gifts and visiting on our front porches. I pray that 2021 will bring more gratitude for the freedom we experience in this country, and the realization that the strongest of US, can help the weakest of US. The smallest gesture of kindness makes a difference, and that our power to be happy is, has always, been within us.

  17. I plan on praying more, and reminding myself, at the beginning of each new day, to FEAR NOT ! Each day is sufficient unto itself ! And to Thank God for waking up each morning that I do !

  18. Marlene Capelle says:

    In 2021 I hope to get out of this house and say hi to strangers and friends without a mask. I hope to go to some real club meetings and talk to people in person. I hope for peace, but that’s nothing new, contentment, strength and health. I hope to spend the entire summer at the cabin and breath fresh air and hear birds sing and watch all the wildlife scamper about and maybe this year the moose will make it to our side of the lake.

  19. Dena Jardin says:

    2020 was a year filled with stress, fear and disappointment for so many. My goal for 2021 is to focus on the positive aspects of every day life; to find a bit of joy each day and continue to encourage others as we get through this pandemic together. Our mouths are covered with masks, our smiles do not show; we must smile with our eyes and speak kindness and understanding with our words.

  20. Elisabeth says:

    I love this! This is such a cute idea! I’m going to have to check this edition out!!

    In 2021 would Iike to finish some UFOs I am working on, grow my business, pay off my car, grow closer to the Lord… the list goes on and on!

  21. Kim says:

    This cake looks so yummy! While I have many goals for the coming year, my focus will be to become a better, and competent, weaver. The entire process is so delightfully encompassing. Running my fingers through different fibers whether animal or plant based thrills me. And the mechanics of the process are fascinating. Because completed pieces tend to pile up, I’m working on ideas to share the completed weavings with others. Thank you for your encouraging posts.

  22. Amy Stong says:

    My goal for 2021 is to become a better person.

  23. Donna Stone says:

    My hopes a goals for 2021 are to help guide my mom who had a tia in 2020 and my husband whom has had early on set Parkinson’s for 20 years . He is goin to have dibs (brain surgery) sometime this year as meds no longer help his Parkinson’s. So I will stand tall and strong this year to help them in 2021. Love to all this coming year. I am blessed.Want to try this cake out too.

  24. Melida Freego says:

    This sister has been struggling with the covid virus and going through my back issues of Mary Jane’s Farm for comfort and inspiration. Comfort and joy!

  25. Sheryl says:

    A special joy in life is spending time with our grandkids. For the coming year hoping to do more of that. If this year has taught us anything it is how much we need those who add joy to our lives and wellness and how to be happy on our own as well.

  26. Beth ONyon says:

    Hi Dori

    My goals this year are to re-engage. I have been through some rough health issues over the past few months and it will continue into 2021. Through this time I have grown apart from my farm girls due to treatments, doctor appointments etc. I miss them so. I live somewhat remote and so it gets lonely from time to time. My farm girl sisters are my salvation. Reconnecting with them will give me the support I need but will also give me the opportunity to support someone else. Thanks for your great blogs

  27. Alvena Meyer says:

    I wish for peace and good health for All. My goals are to eat healthy and find a creative, productive hobby for myself. I love Cyndies goal of keeping in touch with the older grandkids. I am going to copy that goal. Thanks Cyndie.

  28. Kristalyn Peterson says:

    This post was so welcome today. Thanks for sharing. I can’t wait to try the cake. I love the idea of a personal size cake (but not a cupcake). This idea made me think about how wonderful it would be to give personal cakes as a gift for “just because.” I am a gift giver by nature, but the cake is not just a gift, it is an act of service, as well.
    My goals-
    Increase my gratitude through Journaling weekly, take a budget boot camp course and implement new tools into my budget, put in a new garden area, practice meditation and prayer daily, continue to meal prep so that dinner is easy when I come home from work, take a walk daily. P. S. Weight loss is a goal, but I struggle with this one, so it isn’t part of my big list.

  29. Brenda Wheeler says:

    The past year has been a strange one, but it has brought my family and friends closer. Helping each other with words of encouragement, grocery shopping, little gifts to lift someone’s spirit, just a simple call to let others know someone cares. I liked to continue throughout 2021 even when the pandemic is finally over. There is nothing so precious as family and friends. God has been very good to me through this difficult year. I’ve have wonderful friends and Farm Girl Sisters here at Mary Jane’s Farm. This last fall I purchased a spinning wheel and hope to fill up winter hours with it. Also, a Farm Girl Sister offered me a walking wheel. Hope it works out for me to get it. That would be so awesome!

    I love chocolate cake. This one is perfect in size for my husband and me. Thank you for sharing your lovely gift with us Dori. Farm Girl Hugs!!

  30. Joanne says:

    Love the small cast iron pot!! The color brings some light to the gray of winter!!
    I spent this down time finishing a bit of overdue projects and I have more planned to complete in 2021!
    I am hoping to spend vast amounts of time with my precious grand kiddos—some of which I have not seen in person in a year!!
    Thank you to the person who figured out ZOOM-it has saved my sanity at more than one occasion!
    I miss long catch-ups with friends at the coffee shop-long dinners with former coworkers and cuddles with kiddos!
    I hope our new normal will occur sooner rather than later and we have learned to savor every moment of it

  31. Cassandra Brungardt says:

    I am ‘retiring’ from one job and will start a new chapter in my life, so my hope is to do that with grace and joy.

  32. Leisa Joan says:

    I hope to be less critical of others, a constant struggle since I’ve been a teenager…

  33. What does that mean , exactly. My post is awaiting moderation ?

    • Dori Troutman says:

      Hi Kathy! All is means is that I have to moderate it to make sure its not spam! Thank you for commenting! Hope you have a lovely day.

      ~ Dori ~

  34. Candace S Hall says:

    I want to get bake to my baking and hope to make a cookbook by the end of the year.

  35. Ashley says:

    What a wonderful cake 🙂 My personal goals for 2021 are about continuing the journey of self sustainment.
    •I started beekeeping last year after taking the apprentice level Beekeeping course through the University of Montana School of Extended and Lifelong Learning and have now completed the journeyman level course. 2021 beekeeping goal is to harvest honey!
    •I have been an advocate for pollinators for several years now. Particularly for Monarch butterflies. 2021 pollinator protection goal is to grow all my own milkweed and plant one more Monarch Weigh-station.
    •2021 literacy goal is to read one book a month, continue reading each MaryJane Farm Girl Magazine cover your cover, and to complete the KJV Bible, Genesis-Revelation!
    •I was gifted 4 ducklings last September and now have 2 beautiful male and 2 female Rouen ducks. 2021 goal is to complete their pond and collect duck eggs!
    •2021 health goals involve going for a walk each day regardless of weather conditions! Also to maintain hygienic standards, keep a budget and be creative in gifting, my goal is to make my own soaps (goat milk!) and laundry detergent.

    Spring is going to be busy getting all these goals underway, I hope MaryJane will give us some beekeeping and soap making tips!

  36. Brisja says:

    My goal this year is to sort and organize the things in my home, and to only keep the things I look forward to using or doing. For the past several years I have been busy educating my son and teaching clubs and classes. He graduated this year, so I will actually have time to focus on non-school related creative pursuits! I love MaryJane’s magazines and have made several of the crafts and recipes I’ve found in them. I love the idea of finally having time to do that again.

  37. Becky Krout says:

    Just to be a little more financially stable and not stress about it

  38. Lori says:

    Such a cute little cake! I can’t wait to make one!
    For this next year my family and I are believing for better health and a new place to live. Lots to do to get packing!
    Be blessed in 2021!

  39. Shari Dunlap says:

    Goal: finish my BSN and return to farming and gardening!
    The cake looking good and I wanted to lick the plate, but restrained. LOL

  40. Christine says:

    I love the cake idea.
    Next year I want to get my photos organized, continue working on genealogy, organizing and downsizing our stuff, send notes to my grandkids and great grands, get back to crocheting and read through my Bible.

  41. Shannon says:

    My biggest goal this coming year is to get back to creating. I need to learn to relax and just dive into my projects, lose myself more. I want to figure out not being such an over the top perfectionist and learn to go with the flow more. I want to find my joy in art and in life again.

    On a less philosophical note, I want to paint the remainder of the interiors of my house and continue in decluttering. I also want to plan a vegetable garden and actually get everything in the ground.

  42. Tiffany says:

    Hi Dori,

    Oh, I can just taste that cake! What a brilliant idea for a gift. My goal for next year is to “live closer to the Earth” by starting a vegetable garden, canning and crafting more than buying ready made goods. I hope to continue focusing on the important things in life such as my faith and family and not sweating the small stuff. I wish you and your family a very happy and healthy New Year!

  43. Gail Larson says:

    Thak you! Thank you! I welcome and embrace the the inspiration you so kindly shared!❤
    My goal for 2021…remain hopeful and positive and share it with as many people as I can.
    I just retired from working in an office my whole life…I’m 74 years young. I’m ready to have some fun and include as many people as I can. Watch out 2021 and pandemic be gone…I’m ready! Let’s get creative and happy!

  44. Marion says:

    Those little cakes are adorable! I can’t wait to try one.
    My goal for the coming year is to learn, hopefully by teaching myself, how to knit Continental style. I have heard that it makes color work so much easier. I love color work- that’s why I started knitting in the first place. But I haven’t been able to master it by using my regular style of knitting.

  45. Elaine says:

    This new year I pray to regain my desire to sew, cook, and pass along things I no longer need or use.
    My husband passed 2 months ago and I look forward to be a stronger woman for myself & others.
    Would love a subscription to Maryjane’s Farm to help point me in the right direction.
    Thank you.

  46. Colleen Maki-Varney says:

    My goals are to keep in closer touch with my family members, especially my “elders”, who are not on the computer. Hand-written letters, like we all used to write, and phone calls, when able to. Having hearing-impaired family (including myself) makes phone calls harder to enjoy, but I need to make the effort. Happy New Year!

  47. Mary Rauch says:

    Plans for 2021! I am 81 and plan to make it to 82 in 2021! Good start, right? Next is to “Be Kind Until It Hurts”. I’m hearing too much fear and anger and it troubles me. I plan to spread kindness to the best of my ability and availability.
    You probably have no idea what a treat it is to read your articles (which must take so much time and attention to detail). As busy as you are, I especially appreciate your gifts to us when you share your life.
    Please include me in your drawing. Thanks in advance.
    One of your Ohio friends.

  48. Gail says:

    I love your farm spirit.
    You always lift me up when I read your blog.
    Thank you for smiling even when I’m sure you wanted to cry.
    Blessings in the New Year.
    Love the small cake.
    Matthew 6:33

  49. winnie Jackson says:

    Happy New and safe Year! I have celiac and would love the cake recipe. I do not have sucha small pot. We ladies are all grateful for the gieways. Oh are you a blessing during these trying time. Blessings, Winnie Jackson 🙂

  50. Victoria L. Manfrin says:

    Goals for 2021 are to be more active in my personal life. Would like a part time job so that I can surprise help more people. Continue on my new life journey and remain healthy. Love the little cakes, such a great idea ♥️ Happy 2021

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *