I've been mulling ideas for a Mother's Day cake for this weekend and decided to try out a new cake flavor. I'm still working on the cake design, but I decided to do a 6" round lemon poppy seed cake. I adjusted a buttermilk cake recipe I've been using for a while, since it makes a lighter cake. I don't plan to do any carving on this one, so the lighter, fluffier cake works great for me. This cake starts out with a yellow cake mix or 3 1/3 cups of my homemade basic cake mix, which I'll post below.
Lemon Poppy Seed Cake Preheat over to 350 degrees
1 boxed cake mix, suitable for a 9x13 pan OR 3-1/3 C Basic Cake Mix
3/4 C flour
1/2 C (1 stick) of butter, melted
2 beaten eggs
1 C butter milk (or 1 cup regular milk plus 1 Tbsp vinegar, allowed to sit 5 min. before adding)
1 tsp vanilla
4 tsp lemon flavoring
3 Tbsp poppyseeds
Add all dry ingredients (except poppy seeds) to the bowl and mix, then add butter and mix, then eggs and milk and flavorings a little at a time and mix. Last add the poppy seeds. I baked mine in 2-6" x3" round cake pans and it took about 40 minutes. If you cook it in a 9x13 or 2-8" rounds it'll take a little less time, probably 30-35 minutes. Next time I'm going to add an extra teaspoon of clear butter flavoring to get more of that rich, butter flavor.
Basic Cake Mix (from the Make-a-Mix Cookbook)
This recipe makes about 16 cups, or close to 5 mixes worth. I keep the extra in an old ice cream tub so it's air tight. I've tried using boxed cake mixes in many of my recipes instead of my homemade mix, but I just don't like them as well. I use 3 1/3 cups in any recipe to replace 1 box of cake mix.
8 C flour (not sifted, just scoop it into a large bowl)
6 C white sugar
1/4 C baking powder
1-1/2 tsp salt
2-1/2 C shortening (If you use margarine or butter the mix will have to be refrigerated, so shortening is best. If you used butter flavored you won't be able to make a really white cake with this mix, so go with the standard white.).
In a large bowl mix together all of the dry ingredients. Use a pastry blender to cut the shortening into the mix until well mixed. Store in any air-tight container in a cool, dry place. The mix is good for about three months. If you want to just whip up a cake using this basic mix add 1 C milk, 2 eggs and 2-1/2 Tbspn of butter and bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes. For chocolate cake, add 9 Tbsp of cocoa--this makes an incredibly fudgey, delicious cake.