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Cake mix magic

UserWiki, Wikimedia Commons

A cake mix is the basis for this delicious chocolate Kahlua cake.


Cake mixes are sometimes frowned upon, but I have never felt that way about them.

When I was a kid, my parents liked to visit some friends of the family and play card games. My sister and I hung out in the living room while the adults played cards in the dining room. Every time, the couple served cake as a dessert.

The wife had to make her cakes from scratch, as her husband thought anything else was unacceptable. But as nice as she was, her homemade cakes were very dry. My sister and I called them chokey cakes, but we maintained our polite gratitude for the culinary kindness offered.

It is a good thing we always were served orange soda to go along with it. So, in the defense of cake mixes, homemade is not always better.

Here are some of my favorite recipes that use cake mixes and I hope you enjoy them.

Hawaiian dessert

1 package (18 1/4-oz.) yellow cake mix

3 packages (3.4-oz. each) instant pudding mix, 1 vanilla, 1 cheesecake and 1 white chocolate

4 cups cold milk

1 1/2 teaspoons coconut extract

1 package (8-oz.) cream cheese, softened at room temperature

1 can (20-oz.) crushed pineapple, well drained

2 cups heavy cream, whipped and sweetened

2 cups flaked coconut, toasted

1. Mix cake batter according to package directions. Pour into 2 greased 9-by-13-by-2-inch baking pans. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until the cakes test done; cool completely.

2. In a large mixing bowl, combine pudding mixes, milk and coconut extract; beat for 2 minutes. Add the cream cheese and beat well. Stir in drained pineapple (draining for a while in a sieve and then giving it a few good squeezes works great).

3. Spread mixture over the cooled cakes; top with whipped cream and sprinkle with coconut. Chill at least 2 hours before serving. Makes 24 servings.

Chocolate Kahlua cake

1 box chocolate cake mix (not with pudding)

1 package (3 3/4-oz.) vanilla or chocolate instant pudding mix

2 cups (1 pint) sour cream

4 eggs

3/4 cup salad oil

1/3 cup Kahlua

1 package (6-oz.) semisweet chocolate chips (about 2 cups)

1. In large bowl, combine cake mix, pudding mix, sour cream, eggs, oil and Kahlua. Mix until well blended. Stir in chocolate chips.

2. Pour batter into well-greased and floured Bundt cake pan. Bake at 350 about 1 hour or until cake tests done. (Poke a toothpick in. It should come out clean. Or touch cake surface with a fingertip. If it springs back and doesn’t leave a dent, it is done. Also, the edges should begin to pull away from the pan.)

3. Cool in pan 5 to 7 minutes before removing. Cake is very moist. You can drizzle a glaze over the top when it is cool. Mix a little Kahlua with confectioners’ sugar to desired consistency.

Lemon gelatin cake

In case there is anyone who doesn’t have this recipe.

1 box lemon cake mix

4 large eggs

1 1/3 cups water

2/3 cup vegetable oil

1 package (3-oz.) lemon gelatin

For icing:

2 lemons, juiced

1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

1. Spray a 9-by-13-by-2-inch baking pan with nonstick spray and sprinkle with flour. Tip and tap the pan to evenly distribute the flour.

2. In the bowl of a mixer, combine the cake mix, eggs, water, oil and gelatin together. Pour into the greased and floured pan.

3. Bake in preheated oven for 27 to 30 minutes. While the cake is baking, prepare the icing by mixing the lemon juice and confectioners’ sugar together until smooth. When the cake is done and still hot, prick with the tines of a fork. Immediately pour the lemon icing over the top. When cool, store, covered, at room temperature or store in refrigerator.

Lemon lime refrigerator sheet cake

I got this recipe from my mom decades ago and it is always a big hit.

1 package lime gelatin (4-serving size)

1 package Duncan Hines Lemon Supreme cake mix

For topping:

1 envelope whipped topping mix (2 1/2 cup yield)

1 package lemon instant pudding mix (4-serving size)

1 1/2 cups cold milk

1. Dissolve gelatin in 3/4 cup boiling water. Add 1/2 cup cold water; set aside at room temperature.

2. Mix and bake cake as directed in a 9-by-13-by-2-inch baking pan. Cool cake 20 to 25 minutes.

3. Poke deep holes through top of cake while it is still warm and in pan, with a meat fork or toothpick (I like to use a chopstick). Space the holes about 1-inch apart.

4. With a measuring cup that has a pouring spout, slowly pour the gelatin into the holes over the top. Refrigerate cake while preparing the topping.

5. In a chilled, deep bowl, blend and whip topping mix, instant pudding and cold milk until stiff, 3 to 8 minutes. Immediately frost cake. Cake must be stored in refrigerator and serve chilled.



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