A couple of days ago I shared a recipe for Tropical Cake. It was a cake mix fixer upper and it turned out pretty good. But not write-home-to-mama good. There's no mystery why. It started out as an out-of-a-box, full-of-who-knows-what, artificially flavored mix. OK, I have to be completely honest while I'm tossing out adjectives, it is also REALLY convenient. As in rip open the box, add 3 ingredients, beat for 3 minutes, toss it in the oven, easy. And while I'm being honest (it is SOOO tempting to fudge about being lazy in the kitchen, remember the Rice Krispy treat commercial?) if it weren't for the convenience of a cake mix, there would be a lot less cake taken to every family reunion, holiday gathering, Baptist "dinner on the ground," function I attend.
So this morning I made it my mission to make a yellow cake from scratch that could be assembled as a homemade cake mix. Something I could grab from the pantry, add a few wet ingredients, beat for 3 minutes, and toss in the oven. Here's how that worked out:
First I went to my go to cookbook, and turned to the Yellow Cake section (yes there was a 6 page section!) I picked the 2 egg version and divided the list of ingredients into 2 lists-wet and dry. I mixed up my version of the dry ones in a mixing bowl and told myself to imagine that I had just poured them out of a box.
This is where I almost gave up as the recipe called for creaming the butter and sugar and I had placed the sugar in the bowl of dry stuff. But I gave myself the "you're no quitter" speech and plunged on. You can heave a sigh of relief here, this post would have went nowhere in a hurry if I hadn't given myself that pep talk!
So I just dumped my version of the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry stuff, blended it for about 30 seconds and then beat it on medium speed for about 4 minutes. Poured it into a greased and floured 8x11 baking pan (I would have used a 9x13 pan with the 3 egg recipe) and baked it for 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
Oh. My. Goodness. I was thrilled with the texture and taste of this cake. And you can insert another happy sigh here because I am going to share the recipe with you! (Or if you don't really care, just fake it and read on for my sake.)
Dry ingredients (what I plan to store mixed and ready to go)
1 3/4 Cups plus 2 Tbsp flour (I used all purpose)
2 Tbsp baking powder (original recipe called for 2 tsp-oops- but it turned out good so I'll stick with the mistake)
1/2 tsp salt
1 Cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar
1/4 Cup softened butter with enough oil added to measure 1/3 cup total fat (original recipe called for butter and 1/4 Cup shortening)
3/4 Cup milk (I used skim)
1 tsp vanilla
I can't wait to try this in all my original cake mix "fixes" and "dump" cakes. I think it's gonna be awesome!