Cake mixes. Packet mix cakes. Boxed cake mix. Call them what you like, these time saving packages have been a life saver for me many a time. We've had visitors pop in unannounced or at short notice and with nothing else in the pantry to serve them, I've fallen back on making a cake from a packet mix a few times. There's no doubt about it: they're super easy to make, minimum effort is required on your part (cracking the egg would probably be the hardest bit) and they only dirty one bowl, one spoon and a couple of measuring cups. Plus, they're almost fool proof. Almost.
I like to keep a few boxes handy for emergencies. That way, I can have a clean house and a scrumptious cake baking in just a few minutes. Okay maybe not. The clean house bit would take me a few hours. Maybe even a few days.
I've seen in quite a few places in recipe-land, different uses for cake mixes. Cookies seem to be the most popular. They came with comments such as 'amazing', 'super soft' and 'you'd-never-imagine-this-was-made-using-a-packet-mix-cake'. Interesting.
So I tried this out for myself. And people, I was not disappointed. These are indeed amazing. They're soft and chewy and airy. They do have a slight 'packet mix cakey' flavour to them, but I quite like it. And the best part is that the fillings are totally versatile. Add whatever you'd like. Nuts, chocolate bits, pieces of chocolate bars, even leave them plain if you wish. It's up to you.
Cranberry Cake Mix Cookies
makes 14 cookies
260g vanilla cake mix
¼ cup oil
1 egg, lightly beaten
heaped ¼ cup cranberries
¼ cup white chocolate
Preheat oven to 180C and line a tray with baking paper. Sift the cake mix into a large bowl and add the oil and egg. Stir until combined. Add the cranberries and chocolate and mix until just combined, being careful not to overmix. Shape the dough into balls (I made mine about the size of golf balls) and place on the baking tray, leaving room as the dough spreads. Bake for 8-12 minutes or until cookies have spread and are very lightly golden brown. Cool slightly on the tray before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.