Don’t get me wrong, I like good food and I like to cook. I’m writing a food blog after all. There’s nothing quite like home cooked food and the satisfaction of knowing that your family is eating fresh and healthy as much as possible.
However, I’m all for the kind of cooking that means I can spend a little less time in the kitchen so I have more time for whatever else I want to do, even if it is just sitting down and lazing when the mood hits me. So I’m always happy to try out shortcuts in the kitchen so long as I’m not compromising on the quality of what I cook and serve.
I must confess that I have been tempted, on occasion, to reach out for readymade or so called instant foods from the store shelves, if only because it meant I could save some time because had to do what seemed like too many things all at the same time! Yet every single time I have resisted this temptation, thankfully, only because of the thought of what was actually in those boxes scared me.
For example, this is what the Pilsbury Rich Choco Super Moist Sureme Cake Mix says it contains, according to the information the company provides – “Ingredients : Sugar, Enriched Bleached Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Wheat Starch, Cocoa Processed With Alkali, Baking Powder (Baking Soda, Calcium Phosphate, Sodium Aluminum Phosphate), Contains 2% Or Less Of: Propylene Glycol Monoesters, Cellulose, Mono And Diglycerides, Corn Starch, Salt, Natural And Artificial Flavor, Xanthan Gum, Propylene Glycol Esters Of Fatty Acids, Sodium Caseinate, Cellulose Gum, Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 1, Polysorbate 60, Sodium Stearate, Datem, Tbhq And Citric Acid (Antioxidants)”. If that list doesn’t scare you to death, it certainly looks like the ingredients themselves might eventually!
Take for example the cake mix of the sort I just mentioned above. How great would it be to be able to make a batch of your own cake mix with ingredients you’re happy to be using? Well, you can and it’s very easy to do. This Cake Mix makes a very soft and moist cake too.
This is not a particularly original idea but one that’s been in use for quite a while. You just need to mix up the dry ingredients and they will store in the freezer for up to two months. I tend to usually make small batch cupcakes or a smaller cake for tea so I usually divide the mix into two ziplock bags and freeze them for easy use.
I find this cake mix really handy when one has kids at home, and there’s a constant and unexpected demand for cakes just when the last thing one has time for is baking a cake! Or even when someone drops by unexpectedly, or when I need a quick-to-make cake for dessert or some other occasion. You can bake this Cake Mix into a simple Vanilla Cake or even add other flavours to this Cake Mix like I’ve done with this Lime Tea Loaf.
The recipe below makes 6 cups of dry Cake Mix which is enough to make two 9” cakes for a two-layer cake or one 9” x 13” tall cake, one 12-cup Bundt cake or 24 cupcakes. Depending on what you’re going to bake you will have to adjust the baking times accordingly. So two 9” cakes (for a layer cake) would take about 25 minutes, a 13” tall single cake would take about 35 minutes, a Bundt cake about 45 minutes and cupcakes would need about 20 minutes. Please note the baking times are an approximation.