I’m in a bad mood. I’ve been looking up easy home-made cake recipes. I have been cheated. Half the recipes I have found have been instant cake mix plus the standard ingredients you need to make said instant cake mix. This is not baking. This is cheating.
Now, I’m not saying that instant cake mix is evil and should be banned. Instant cake mix is a lazy, silly thing to have, considering that a cake 99% of the time is flour, sugar, eggs and a fat of some sort. Plus some baking powder. So spending money on a ready-made mixture that requires you to add eggs and a fat of some sort seems incredibly stupid to me. You’re basically buying a packet of flour, sugar, raising agents and added preservatives. Alright, you can just throw it into a bowl, add your eggs and liquid of choice (generally milk) and then bake it in the oven, but since you’ve made the effort to measure the amount of liquid you needed and you’re mixing it all up anyway, why not just measure some flour and some sugar?
I mean, not all instant puddings are bad. It takes a bit of effort to whip cream until it forms soft peaks, but that spray can is full of preservatives and added sugar, and if you’re using a food processor or hand whisk, how much time are you saving anyway? Some instant puddings are perfectly valid, like sugar free jelly, the ingredients of which are not normally found at home.
But instant cake mixtures are lazy. And weirdly rather expensive. Looking at my local supermarket, I can get a kilo of flour, a kilo of sugar and a pack of 12 eggs for about €4. A pack of instant cake mix costs me about €2 and only makes one cake.
It boggles the mind.
What annoys me more though is when you get these recipes on these fancy ass blogs saying “LOOK AT MY WONDERFUL ORIGINAL COOKIES, THESE ARE THE BEST!” and it turns out half the recipe is instant cake mix. I’ve had to scroll past a load of bollocks about how your middle-class, stay-at-home life is so stressful and your kids always want cookies and all that bollocks, only to find that your cookie recipe consists of instant cake mix, chocolate chips and milk.
I wouldn’t mind if I got the recipe from somewhere like allrecipes.com because the whole point of that is to share recipes, but you and your fancy blog can go and fuck yourself. And stop with the full-width pictures and 500 word unrelated rambles, show me the damn recipe already. It’s the pretentiousness that pisses me off. You’re claiming this recipe as your own (or saying you adapted it from your best friend’s recipe – someone who has just as an annoying blog as you do) and 99% of the recipe comes from a ready-made bag of flour, sugar and preservatives.
It’s even more annoying when you claim that your “awesome easy three-ingredient cake” recipe is actually just cake mix and some other shit to make it slightly different. Why not just put up an advert for your favourite brand of cake mix and fucking get it over with?
I understand that people are busy and that they don’t always have the time to make a fully fledged cake or whatever. That’s fine. We all have lives to live. But what I despise is the idea of pawning off an instant cake mix and a few other pieces as your own special recipe and claiming that it’s something absolutely amazing and unique when it’s not. Take the time and effort to make your own ‘instant’ cake mix. Actually create something for yourself, something you can point at and say “I made this!”
You will feel better about yourself. And your cake will be tastier. Trust me.
I’m going to give you a recipe now. This seems kinda against what I just wrote. But you didn’t come here to get a recipe, you came here to see a rant. Think of this recipe as a reward for putting up with my bollocks. As a little thank you. This is a piece of piss recipe that involves no cake mix. I call it the Whatever’s in That Fridge Doukissa. Doukissa is the Greek name for Duchess Cake, a chocolate fridge cake made with biscuits.
Serves as many as you want depending on how big you cut it.
250ml of assorted syrups, whatever you happen to have, preferably golden syrup or honey.
200gr butter. You could use some sort of butter substitute but it won’t be nice because it’s not really cooked. Do not use lard.
50ml or one tablespoon of Black Treacle or dark molasses. Which is basically just burnt, bitter golden syrup.
500gr of assorted biscuits, whatever you happen to have. Digestives/Graham Crackers, Rich Teas, oaty Hobb nobbs, chocolate Bourbons, Custard Creams… whatever. You pick.
100gr of chocolate Smarties, M&Ms, Minstrels, Hershey’s Kisses, chocolate chips, marshmallows, again, whatever you want.
Smash the biscuits up until they’re mostly broken, but still coarse. You want some lumps, you don’t want bread crumbs. Basically the consistency of dirt.
Melt the syrups and butter in a saucepan on a low heat. Don’t let it burn. Burning is bad. Stir gently to mix.
Throw everything, the crumbs, the chocolate and the melted stuff into a bowl and mix it all together. If it’s too sticky, throw in more biscuits. If it’s too dry and doesn’t hold its shape, add more melted butter and syrup.
Mix well, then throw into some sort of tray that you can fit in the fridge. Or just throw it in some Tupperware, throw it in the fridge and call it a day.
When it’s hardened, cut into pieces and eat.
Lasts for about a week, but don’t expect it to last. Doesn’t freeze well.
Anyway, that’s it for me. Happy baking.