Cover image for The cake mix doctor
Title:
The cake mix doctor
Author:
Byrn, Anne.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Workman Pub., 1999.
Physical Description:
454 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 21 cm
Language:
English
Subject Term:
ISBN:
9780761117193
Format :
Book

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TX771 .B97 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Summary

Summary

The Cake Mix Doctor is in! And the prescription is simple: By doctoring up packaged cake mix with just the right extras--a touch of sweet butter here, cocoa powder there, or poppy seeds, vanilla yogurt, sherry, eggs, and grated lemon zest for the Charleston Poppy Seed Cake--even the least experienced baker can turn out luscious signature desserts, time after time. The proof is in the taste, and the taste never stops--from Toasted Coconut Sour Cream Cake to Devilishly Good Chocolate Cake; from a to-die-for Caramel Cake and a Holiday Yule Log to cheesecakes, coffee cakes, sheet cakes, pound cakes, bars, brownies, and those all-important frostings, here are 175 fast, foolproof recipes that will transform the art of home baking in America.

Who could believe these cakes came out of a box? Moist, tender, rich, deep, and complexly flavored, without a hint of artificiality, each cake stand up and delivers. But without any of the fuss of baking from scratch. Anne Byrn, an award-wining food writer and self-described purist, creates recipes that employ a cake mix's strengths---convenience, ease-of-use, dependability, and almost imperviousness to overbeating, underbeating, overbaking, and underbaking.

In addition to the recipes are the Cake Mix Doctor's Q&A's, extensive "Doctor Says" tips, lists--15 Beautiful Birthday Cakes, 15 Cakes That Will Cash in at a Bake Sale--and more, all illustrated in a full-color photographic insert.


Author Notes

Anne Byrn is a national-award-winning food writer who has appeared as the Cake Mix Doctor on "Good Morning America", "Later Today", "All Things Considered", "QVC" (regularly), and over 75 other TV and radio programs. She lives with her family in Nashville, Tennessee.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Excerpts

Excerpts

Deeply Chocolate Almond Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting The only thing more delicious than one slice of this cake is a second slice of this cake. But fear not! Only the frosting is a calorie-buster. The rich almond-scented cake is made with buttermilk, vegetable oil, and just three eggs. Bake it a day ahead of serving so the flavors have time to meld. serves: 16 preparation time: 10 minutes baking time: 28 to 30 minutes assembly Time: 20 minutes Solid vegetable shortening for greasing the pans Flour for dusting the pans 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped 1/3 cup water 1 package (18.25 ounces) plain devil's food cake mix 1 cup buttermilk 1/2 cup vegetable oil, such as canola, corn, safflower, soybean, or sunflower 3 large eggs 1 teaspoon pure almond extract Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting (page 421), made with pure almond extract 1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 F. Generously grease two 9-inch round cake pans with solid vegetable shortening, then dust with flour. Shake out the excess flour. Set the pans aside. 2. Heat the chopped chocolate and water in a small saucepan over low heat until melted, stirring constantly. Set the pan aside to cool for 10 minutes. 3. Place the cake mix, buttermilk, oil, eggs, almond extract, and melted chocolate mixture in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute. Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes more, scraping the sides down again if needed. The batter should look thick and combined. Divide the batter between the prepared pans, smoothing it out with the rubber spatula. Place the pans in the oven side by side. 4. Bake the cakes until they spring back when lightly pressed with your finger and just start to pull away from the sides of the pan, 28 to 30 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool for 5 minutes. Run a dinner knife around the edge of each layer and invert each onto a rack, then invert them again onto another rack so that the cakes are right side up. Cool completely, 30 minutes. 5. Meanwhile, prepare the Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting. 6. Place one cake layer, right side up, on a serving platter. Spread the top with frosting. Place the second layer, right side up, on top of the first layer and frost the top and sides of the cake with clean, smooth strokes.Place this cake, uncovered, in the refrigerator until the frosting sets, 20 minutes. Cover the cake with waxed paper and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Or freeze it, wrapped in aluminum foil, for up to 6 months. Thaw the cake overnight in the refrigerator before serving. RX the Cake Doctor says... It's the unsweetened chocolate added to this cake mix that improves the flavor. For an even more intense chocolate flavor, dust the pans with unsweetened cocoa powder instead of flour. Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting I first tasted a chocolate cream cheese frosting at the Tennessee State Fair about five years ago. It was a revelation-chocolate and cream cheese were natural partners! Since then, I flavor this frosting with pure almond extract if I'm making a chocolate almond cake or with pure vanilla extract for a buttermilk devil's food cake, a yellow layer cake, or brownies. makes 4 cups, enough to frost a 2- or 3-layer cake preparation time: 10 minutes 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, at room temperature 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 teaspoon pure almond extract or pure vanilla extract 4 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted 1. Place the cream cheese and butter in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until combined, 30 seconds. Stop the machine. Add the cocoa powder, extract, and confectioners' sugar and blend with the mixer on low speed until the ingredients are moistened, 30 seconds. Increase the speed to medium and beat until the frosting is fluffy, 2 minutes more. 2. Use at once to frost the top and sides of the cake of your choice. RX the Cake Doctor says... When you fork into a cake that has been deliciously enrobed with this frosting, the cake world is your oyster. It's the one to always keep in mind. Pumpkin Pie Crumble Cake This recipe comes from Margaret Neblett of Nashville, who got it from a friend, who got it from a friend in Chicago, and so on. Word spreads when there's a great recipe! This dessert is much like a pie in that it has a cinnamon-enhanced pumpkin filling, but much like a cake with a soft crust. And the crunchy topping is the best of both worlds. Don't be concerned that 1 cup of the cake mix is reserved for the topping. The filling bakes up firm and creamy without it. serves: 18 to 20 preparation time: 15 minutes baking time: 70 to 75 minutes assembly time: 5 minutes Solid vegetable shortening for greasing the pan Flour for dusting the pan 1 package (18.25 ounces) plain yellow cake mix 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter or margarine, at room temperature 4 large eggs 2 cans (15 ounces each) pumpkin 1 can (5 ounces) evaporated milk 1 1/4 cups sugar 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter or margarine, chilled 1 cup chopped pecans 2 recipes Sweetened Cream (page 432) 1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease a 13- by 9-inch baking pan with solid vegetable shortening, then dust with flour. Shake out the excess flour. Set the pan aside. 2. Measure out 1 cup of the cake mix and reserve for the topping. Place the remaining cake mix, the butter, and 1 egg in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until well combined, 1 minute. Using your fingertips, press the batter over the bottom of the prepared pan so that it reaches the sides of the pan. Set the pan aside. 3. For the filling, place the pumpkin, evaporated milk, 1 cup sugar, remaining 3 eggs, and cinnamon in the same large mixing bowl used to prepare the batter and with the same beaters (no need to clean either), blend on low speed until combined, 30 seconds. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat until the mixture lightens in color and texture, 1 to 2 minutes more. Pour the filling over the crust in the pan, spreading to the sides of the pan with a rubber spatula. Set the pan aside. 4. For the topping, place the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, the chilled butter, and the reserved cake mix in a clean medium-size mixing bowl. Rinse and dry the beaters. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed until just combined and crumbly, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stop the machine and stir in the pecans. Use your fingers to thoroughly knead the pecans into the topping mixture. Distribute the topping evenly over the filling mixture. Place the pan in the oven. 5. Bake the cake until the center no longer jiggles when you shake the pan and the pecans on top have browned, 70 to 75 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool slightly on a wire rack, 20 minutes. 6. Prepare two recipes of the Sweetened Cream. Slice the cake into squares and pass the Sweetened Cream to spoon on top.Store this cake without the Sweetened Cream on it, covered in aluminum foil or plastic wrap, in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. RX the Cake Doctor says... Originally, this recipe called for margarine, but I think it benefits from the taste of butter. Lemon Buttermilk Poppy Seed Cake When springtime flowers come into bloom and you're planning a meal out of doors, don't forget this delicate, moist poppy seed cake. I created this recipe in much the same mold as the Charleston Poppy Seed Cake, except this one isn't boozy. Buttermilk lends a down-home air to this pretty cake that is as suitable for breakfast as it is for dessert. serves: 16 preparation time: 15 minutes baking time: 45 to 50 minutes Vegetable oil spray for misting the pan Flour for dusting the pan 1 package (18.25 ounces) plain white cake mix 1 package (3.4 ounces) vanilla instant pudding mix 1/3 cup poppy seeds 1 cup low-fat vanilla or lemon yogurt 1/2 cup vegetable oil, such as canola, corn, safflower, soybean, or sunflower 1/2 cup buttermilk 4 large eggs 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon) 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (from 1 lemon) 1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly mist a 10-inch tube pan with vegetable oil spray, then dust with flour. Shake out the excess flour. Set the pan aside. 2. Place the cake mix, pudding mix, poppy seeds, yogurt, oil, buttermilk, eggs, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute. Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes more, scraping the sides down again if needed. The batter should look thick and well blended and the poppy seeds should be evenly distributed. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing it out with the rubber spatula. Place the pan in the oven. 3. Bake the cake until it is golden brown and springs back when lightly pressed with your finger, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool for 20 minutes. Run a long, sharp knife around the edge of the cake and invert it onto a rack, then invert it again onto another rack so that the cake is right side up. Allow the cake to cool completely, 30 minutes more. 4. Place the cake on a serving platter and serve.Store this cake, covered in aluminum foil or plastic wrap, at room temperature for up to 1 week. Or freeze it, wrapped in foil, for up to 6 months. Thaw the cake overnight on the counter before serving. RX the Cake Doctor says... Both fresh lemon juice and lemon zest work wonders in transforming an ordinary white cake mix into this exceptional, lemony cake. Buttermilk adds flavor as well, plus a moist texture. Excerpted from The Cake Mix Doctor. Copyright (c) 1999 by Anne Byrn. Reprinted with permission by Workman Publishing. Excerpted from The Cake Mix Doctor by Anne Byrn All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Introduction
Doctoring Cake Mixes
Cake Mix 101
How to Use This Book
Chocolate Cakes
Cakes with Fruit
Strike It Rich Cakes
Cake-Mix Classics
Special Occasion Cakes
Cheesecakes and Gooey Cakes
Coffee Cakes
Cakes with Spirit
Incredible Bars and Comforting Cookies
This Can-t Contain Cake Mix
Lighter Cakes
Just the Basics
Frostings, Glazes, and One Compote
Conversion Table
Bibliography
Index