Chocolate Cake Mix

While I’m certainly not an expert at baking, I do have a few tricks up my sleeve. Despite the fact I rarely actually bake, I’ve, through experimenting when baking cinnamon rolls, learned quite a few tricks. This video takes you through pretty much the entire process from start to finish.

At first, I wash my hands, complete with soap. Next, I gather and check the various supplies. Following that is the mixing of the liquids (I consider eggs as liquid) then pouring in the cake mix. Stirring it up follows. Thanks to not having a blender or stirring machine (whatever they’re called), I have to do it by hand. You might find it weird, but I have better control and flexibility when do things on the floor than I do a table or counter. While the box mentions of doing 450 strokes, I don’t go by that. I, instead, go by looks. I focus quite a bit on getting rid of the clumps present, especially big ones over a half centimeter. I use one hand and both of my feet to hold the bowl (one advantage of the floor – you can use more than just your hands), and stir with the remaining hand. When that hand gets tired, I swap hands. I repeatedly swap until both hands are tired. In that case, I focus on smashing the clumps or doing something else.

One area I have little experience with is the oiling/greasing of the insides of the pan. This ended up causing part of the cake to stick to the pan and not come off. Fortunately, it was still oiled enough so as to not stick.

At this time, I get the oven preheating. Again, I don’t follow what the box states, but closely. It may be 350°F on the box, but I always subtract about 10°F. From experimenting that I’ve done with the baking of cinnamon rolls, this is how I get things to bake so well. It also prevents burning and minimizes sticking making the pans easier to clean in the end.

After a bit more stirring, I pour the batter into the cake pans and try to get reasonably close to a 50/50 split. I also have little experience with using the spatula to clear out the bowl more so I take longer than usual and I’m not as fast.

Once the oven is all warmed up, I put the cake pans in the oven and set the timer. I, first, use the shortest time listed. Starting about 80% of the way through, I begin checking the progress of the cake to see how it’s going. When the time is up, doing some tests to make sure it’s well done remains. If it comes out clear, it’s done. If not, I add about 3 more minutes.

In baking, the key color you’ll learn to enjoy is golden brown. That’s often the sign that it’s done.

How did the cake come out? Although I’m not much into chocolate, this cake came out really good compared to what I’m used to. Although it stuck to the pans because I wiped away too much of the oil, overall, it wasn’t too bad. You learn from your mistakes so my next round, whenever that will be, will be better.