Southern Strawberry Cake for my Dad's Birthday
If you have been in the south for any length of time you have probably come across this strawberry cake. It is super strawberry and perfectly pink, and it is basically a doctored cake mix. But, don't let its pretty pink color fool you, most of the requests I've had for this come from men. And, as southerners who feel that bringing one another food for every occasion will make things better, it is as likely to show up for a funeral as a little girl's princess birthday party. I've seen a couple of different versions some use a white cake mix while others use yellow - I much prefer the white. Some put berries in the cake and juice in the frosting (like this one) and some do just the opposite, but they all turn out basically the same - super yummy. For, a while, I spent A LOT of time trying to duplicate this cake without a cake mix and jello, but finally came to the conclusion that it couldn't be done. In the process, I did come up with a strawberry cake that I actually like better, but it is not quite as sweet, not quite as pink, and really not the same as this one. It does have a great fresh berry taste, though. I will share it with you sometime, and let you decide. But, Daddy's favorite is this one, so this is the one he gets, and I have to say that it is the most common strawberry cake recipe for a reason - it really is good, and easy to make too.
A few notes on this recipe:
This cake has quite the reputation for falling, but don't let that stop you from trying it because I can tell you how not to let that happen. First, the only time I personally have had this happen was when my son was younger, and I just couldn't seem to get the message across about not jumping down the stairs while the cake is in the oven, so obviously discourage jumping. Just make sure your oven is really preheated. Almost there is not good enough. And, make sure it is actually done before you take it out of the oven. It will get quite brown because cake mix does that, so expect it. Don't think because it is brown that it is done, instead make sure a pick inserted into the center comes out clean. I really think removing the cake from the oven before it is done is the culprit of these stories.`
One of the great things about it is that if frosts so easily. You don't even need to crumb coat it.
And yes, for you decorators out there, the buttercream crusts, but it is not stiff enough to pipe roses (but maybe you could leave some juice out if you really want to try it). And, if you are piping watch for seeds getting caught in your tip an making things come out funny. You should be able to dislodge any seeds with a toothpick and keep on going
Southern Strawberry Cake
yield: 1 (2 layer) 9 inch cake
1 box white cake mix (I used Pillsbury.)
1 3oz box strawberry jello
1 cup frozen slice strawberries, thawed, drained and juice reserved
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup water
2 sticks butter
2 lbs. confectioners' sugar
reserved strawberry juice (about 1/2 cup)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two 9 inch cake pans with parchment and grease and flour them. With an electric mixer, mix cake mix and eggs, adding eggs one at a time and beating well after each addition. Add the jello, strawberries, canola oil, and water. Mix until well combined. Divide evenly into the cake pans and bake for approximately 30 minutes or until a pick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool 10 minutes in the pans. Invert onto wire racks, remove parchment, and cool completely before frosting.
Beat together butter and confectioners' sugar with an electric mixer. Beat in enough strawberry juice to make frosting spreadable. I use about 1/2 cup of juice. Frost cake between layers and on sides and top. Enjoy!
Source: I am not sure of the original origin of this recipe. If you know where it came from, please let me know so that I can give them credit.