December 13, 2023
It’s party time but budgets are tight and time is just as tight if not tighter. What to do. Think simple when planning for desserts. Purchasing desserts is expensive and making desserts at home takes up precious time. Try these ideas:
First, use a cake mix and make it even better.
The average cake mix calls for water. Replace with an equal amount of milk or buttermilk.
Cake mixes typically call for vegetable oil. Replace with an equal amount of melted butter.
Add extracts for more flavor. Add peppermint to chocolate cake or coconut to vanilla.
Replace a ¼ C water with fresh lemon juice in a white cake mix.
Eggs provide structure and moisture in a cake mix. Add an extra egg to your mix. In a cake mix that calls for egg white use whole eggs.
Now other ideas:
1. Jazz up a chocolate cake mix with one or all of the tips above. Bake cake in a 9x13 pan according to package directions. Cool cake. Use a round cookie cutter to cut into small portions. Make a favorite chocolate frosting and beat it to make it fluffy. Frost the top of the cake rounds only and sprinkle with crushed candy cane.
2. After upgrading the cake mix add a ¼ - ½ tsp. coconut extract to a white or yellow cake mix. Bake in two layers. Beat whipped cream adding sugar to taste and ¼ tsp. coconut extract. Cool cake and frost, sprinkle with coconut.
3. Bake a yellow cake mix after substituting as described above. Add red food coloring to create a red cake, food coloring paste will give the reddest result. Bake in 9x13 pan. Cool and using a round cookie cutter cut into pieces. Using a can of whipped cream squirt a ring of cream around the edge of each cake piece covering the top only. Add a strawberry large end down to the center of the cake and add a dot of cream to the top of the strawberry creating a Santa hat.
4. Lemonade Angel Food Cake. Add 1 packet of lemonade or strawberry lemonade powder (the packets that make 2 quarts of lemonade) to the water in the recipe. Follow the directions for the angel food cake. Pour into Angel food cake pan and bake according to directions until lightly browned. Invert the cake until completely cooled. About an hour. This can also be made as cupcakes. Mini cupcakes would be great for a crowd. OR in a 9x13 pan.
Keep it simple but it looks oh so impressive.