I am what many would call a "Foodie" - amateurs who simply love food and/or drink for consumption, study, preparation and news.
Now the statement above should make it clear that I do not have any formal training when it comes to food preparation. I have, however, been told that I am a pretty good cook and I hope you enjoy reading this column as much as I enjoy writing it.
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My youngest daughter Milena has been on a cooking adventure while on winter break. As I write this at 8:19 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 26, she’s trying to convince her dad or me to run to the store for ingredients were missing for a Paula Deen cake she’s been begging to make for some time now. And while her dad and I aren’t running to the store again this evening, it’s one I’ll be making on Friday. It reminds me of summer, and right about now as the forecast calls for more snow and colder temps, I could use a taste of summer - Happy New Year!
Simply Delicious Strawberry Cake
1 15-ounce package frozen strawberries in syrup, thawed and pureed
1 18.25-ounce box white cake mix
1 3-ounce box strawberry-flavored instant gelatin
4 large eggs
½ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup water
Strawberry cream cheese frosting
¼ cup butter, at room temperature
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened (but still firm)
1 10-ounce package frozen strawberries in syrup, thawed and pureed (see helpful hint)
½ teaspoon strawberry extract (I omitted this)
7 cups confectioners’ sugar
Freshly sliced strawberries, for garnish, optional
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease two 9-inch round cake pans. Puree the thawed strawberries and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine cake mix and gelatin then add the pureed strawberries, eggs, oil, and water; beat with an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth. Pour into prepared pans, and bake for 20 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes then remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.
For the frosting: In a large bowl, beat the butter and cream cheese at medium speed until creamy. Beat in ¼ cup of the strawberry puree and the strawberry extract (if using). Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar, beating until smooth.
Spread the frosting between the layers and on top and sides of cake and garnish with sliced fresh strawberries if desired.
The frosting recipe only calls for ¼ cup of frozen strawberries in syrup, so save the rest for smoothies or an ice cream topping
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