As I sit here typing this to you all, I am munching on one week old, left over cake from my son’s Famous Jungle/Diego themed party of last Saturday. The party was a big hit with my boy save the fact that there was one MAJOR item missing (which was not requested but I should have KNOWN being the perfect mother I am supposed to be)…the piñata. I was informed after the party, “ I had a lot of fun mommy but you didn’t give me my piñata. I wanted a dinosaur one.” Like, how was I supposed to know that one? Well it looks like we have next years party planning already begun. Note to self: “Don’t F up next year. Have dinosaur piñata ready in advance.” Got it! The boys are off at Disney land tonight and I am happily sitting on my comfy couch eating birthday cake (which on the day of the party I couldn’t stand!) that has stood up superbly to the curing time in my new “Black Beauty”. I call my new fridge Black Beauty because she is a perfect 10, just like her namesake. I never want to be without her again…EVER!!! I honestly don’t know how I ever liver without this fridge…seriously. Samsung has made 28.9 cubic feet of pure domestic bliss. I love her and I’m not ashamed to say I damn near worship her! But anyway, the real reason for this post is CAKE. You all must have this recipe. It is my go to, out of a box cake. When time is tight or I’m simply uninspired …when it comes down to it, this is the ‘recipe’ that I pull out of my um…pocket. ;-0 This is not a subtle cake, it is a workhorse (lots of horse references here tonight, hmmm….anyway). It can withstand lots of lack of baking knowledge, over baking ( just cut off the crust and make a smaller cake the center will most likely still be really good) under baking ( call it a pudding cake and be done with it). Mix and match flavors you have on hand or get creative with flavor creations. It’s kind of fun and the kids or hubby can mix it up in a bowl and it will come out just fine. So, what is the cake I speak of? “Wine cake”. And here ya go.
- 1 box cake mix (any flavor)
- 1 small box instant pudding mix (any flavor but not the sugar free kind)
- 3/4 cup cream sherry (I have also used unsweetened sour cherry juice and other not so sweet juices)
- 3/4 salad oil
- 4 eggs ( I’ve used 3 and I’ve used 5 when I forgot the recipe and it still came out yummy) –
- mix-in’s like chocolate chips, frozen fruit like blueberries, sprinkles, chopped up marachino (sp?) cherries, or whatever else you wanna play with.
Give it a try.
Just go lightly with it the first time, if you are unsure, and see how it turns out) Put all this stuff into a big bowl and mix it with a big wooden spoon. Don’t even worry if there are some lumps of cake mix that don’t get all the way broken up. It never seems to make dry bits in the cake.
Note; this batter will be pretty darn thick but don’t freak out, it’s supposed to be.
Now, just pour it into 2, 8 or 9 inch round cake pans or divide it up evenly among what ever pan sizes you want to use and bake those babies at 350F in the center of the oven ‘till they set in the center.
To check that, here is what I do: first move the pan a bit, if it is wobbly in the center leave it alone for a while more, if it looks solid on top when moved, touch the center lightly. If it stays down where you touch it let it bake some more. If it springs back up slowly when you touch it then take it out. ( Cake will also start to shrink away from the sides of the pan a bit when it is done.)
Let the cakes cool for 10 minutes then turn them out of the pan and let them cool the rest of the way on a cooling rack if you have one. This cake doesn’t need frosting but most people want it anyway.
Here is a recipe for an that my mom made a lot when I was growing up;
Old fashioned butter frosting
- 2 sticks of butter soft, room temp)
- 16 oz powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons milk (or a bit more if you like)
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla
mix the butter and the sugar until there are no lumps.
Add the vanilla and gradually add the milk ‘till it is the consistency you like.
You can also add other flavors besides vanilla or use other liquids besides milk (Irish crème, amaretto, rum and then whisky always goes nicely with a chocolate cake J Play with the flavors of the mixes too.
White cake with pistachio pudding, strawberry cake with lemon pudding, chocolate cake with chocolate pudding and a flayer of raspberry jam between the layers, coconut cake with lemon pudding and lemon curd between the frosted layers…the choices are endless.
I’ve even tried it with berry jello mix and that wine they serve at Passover (that I can’t remember how to spell right now) instead of pudding and sherry, it came out different but still, nobody threw it away.
Let me know what YOU come up with. I always want to try something a little new. Hope you have fun with this.