Cake mix doctoring
I'm making a birthday cake for a friend tomorrow, I have limited time and a limited budget. (I'm a college student and don't want to have a bag of flour that I'll never lose just laying around) Does anyone have recommendations for making a white/yellow cake mix more exciting?
There are a couple strings on this topic on the site - search "cake doctor." A lot of them will reference a book of the same name that has hundreds of suggestions. The ones I've found most successful involve adding fruit - either crushed pineapple, or zest plus flesh of oranges. Somehow, that adds a shot of freshness to a mix that makes it really yummy. Happy friend's birthday!
Don't know if this will work for you, but I sometimes bake a yellow cake mix in a bundt pan, cool and unmold, then put it back in the bundt pan, stick chopstick holes through it all over -- lots of them! -- then pour cooled Jell-O in the holes and over the cake, refrigerate until the Jell-O is well set, unmold onto a serving plate and drizzle with a little powdered sugar mixed with a bit of cream. Just thin enough that the icing rolls down the bundt channels in a pretty way. Voila! It's good to go.
I know. It sounds like a 1950's junk recipe, and for all I know it may well be, but it does taste good. A few birthday candles and it's a party cake.
A Bundt pan is a nice idea since you don't have to mess around with layers and icing etc. What Caroline 1 says about drizzling works. If you use a Bundt pan, butter and flour well or use a spray that has flour in it.