Sunday, 25 January 2015

Weclome to Caker Cooking!

Do you like casseroles? Is Cream of Mushroom soup a vegetable in your world? Do you consider JELL-O a side dish? Then this site is for you!

Although my arteries forced me to stop blogging at the end of 2014, there’s lots for you to explore on the site, including over 250 recipes from over 60 community and church cookbooks. Some recipes are delicious. And some are…well, let’s just say the journey is always interesting. And beige. Very, very beige.

I'm always happy to respond to comments or questions. I hope you enjoy your visit. Happy (caker) cooking!


Monday, 29 December 2014

Best and Worst Caker Recipes of All Time

This is it, folks. The last post for Caker Cooking. I can't think of a better way to wrap things up than by featuring the best and worst caker recipes OF ALL TIME!

Which dishes shone brightly? (Or beigely. This is caker food we're talking about, after all.) And which dishes jiggled their way down the dark road of hell?

Click here to find out or click on the Best & Worst of All Time tab at the top of the page.

Monday, 22 December 2014

Caker Christmas 2014

As the Irish Rovers say, “Wasn’t that a party?”

I held my annual Caker Christmas party the other night where I asked Eye-talians to make and eat caker food. This year, I told my guests that I wouldn’t supply the recipes. They’d have to find their own. I was a little nervous, but they did me proud. The cultural divide between cakers and Eye-talians just got a little narrower, friends.

I asked people to bring their recipes so I could post them, but most forgot. So I’ll skip the recipes this year. Hope that’s okay. Besides, no one ever makes these dishes.

Nuts and Bolts
I first made this back in 2011 and forgot how much the recipe makes. You’re looking at a roasting pan, a 9x13 pan and a pie plate. Needless to say, everyone got a pail as a parting gift. Only problem? The smell of Hickory Sticks stays on your fingers forever.

Spinach Dip
Spinach Dip is awesome because there’s one less dish to wash. I mean, you could try washing a pumpernickel loaf, but it gets kind of mushy. I’m speaking from experience.

Meatloaf Muffins
I’m not sure if that was the name or not, but these ‘lil guys were pretty tasty. Best of all, you can enjoy one for breakfast with your coffee and not attract funny looks in the food court.

Cheesy Stuffing Cups
What a perfect accompaniment to Meatloaf Muffins! These had Stove Top Stuffing, cranberries and a binding agent. (My money’s on cream-of-anything soup.) I decided I’m going to invent a line of food shaped liked muffins. First up: muffin-shaped pizza! Speaking of pizza…

Hash Brown Pizza
Made by yours truly, the crust was hash browns and cheddar cheese soup and the topping was ground beef, tomato soup and cheese. Move over, Chef Boy-Ar-Dee. You may not be It-lee’s most famous chef for long! LOL!

Potato Casserole
This had layers of potatoes and ground turkey. There was also lots of cheese, which explains the pinched expression on everyone’s face by the end of the night.

Lobster Thermidor
Lobster is a little high-end for most cakers. If we’re going to eat seafood, we usually grab a can of salmon. Or a tempura-battered fish stick. This tasted pretty good. I’m going to send the recipe to Red Lobster and take full credit for it.

Carrot Casserole
I made this because I thought people would appreciate a vegetable option. If you're wondering where the carrots are, they’re covered in Velveeta, butter and Ritz crackers – as all vegetables should. Two people said it was the first time they’ve eaten Velveeta and I could only wonder why there’s so much suffering in the world.

Frankfurter Loaf
Presenting the winner of Best-Tasting Dish of Caker Christmas 2014! Folks, these are wieners baked inside a loaf of corn bread. The only thing missing was a carnie asking me if I wanted a ride on the Tilt-a-Whirl. It was served with mushroom gravy. From a can.

7-Up Cake
My Greek friend brought this. It’s a layer of berries with white cake mix on top with 7-Up poured over it. It wasn’t as good as Dump Cake, but not bad, provided you don’t mind coughing up bits of dry cake mix.

Sponge Toffee
One guest brought five packages of sponge toffee. Apparently, Eye-talians think you eat it with a spoon. It was fun watching people spend the evening trying to suck it off their teeth.

Walnut Pie
I made this. It has Ritz crackers, walnuts, egg whites and sugar. One guest said it was the best thing he ever ate. Another said it made him nauseous. Eye-talians are people of extremities.

Cake Mountain
My sister-in-law brought this. It’s Duncan Hines and the size of a shed. And yes, I had a piece for breakfast this morning. Time to get out the ol’ track pants. Speaking of track pants…

My sister-in-law also brought this three-kilogram jar of Nutella. I put it next to a soup can so you can see how big this mother is. I did the math and there are 16, 140 calories in this container. Which is three fewer calories than I ate last night.

That’s a wrap! Just look at that tapestry of beige! I’m off to eat the leftovers. Then I'm going to eat, like, a lot of fibre. Come back next Monday for my best – and worst – caker dishes of 2014.

Happy holidays and happy eating!

Friday, 19 December 2014

Santa's Balls

We're down to the final posts for Caker Cooking and if you take anything away from this blog, I hope it’s this: cakers love balls. I’ve featured more ball-shaped food on here than any other shape. (Triangles being a distant second.) Some may wonder why, but I say, "Don’t analyze. Just eat."

When I saw this recipe for Christmas Fruit Balls, two thoughts came to mind: 1) more balls and 2) it’s nice that maraschino cherries are considered “fruit.” So I set out to make them. And while I was tenderly rolling these balls in my hands, I had another thought: these balls deserve a better name.

So I’ve christened them Santa’s Balls. Let’s just say the sprinkling of shredded coconut sealed the deal. Picture it: there you are in your apron and knitted slippers on Christmas Eve, announcing to your guests that you’ll be serving Santa’s Balls shortly and would anyone like a top up on their Kahlua? Talk about memorable holiday moments!

Speaking of memorable holiday moments, my Caker Christmas party is tomorrow night! I have no idea what my Eye-talian guests are bringing. This terrifies and excites me. Come back Monday when I post all the carnage.

½ bag white miniature marshmallows
2 cups graham wafer crumbs
½ cup red cherries, halved
1-15 ounce can Eagle Brand milk
1 cup chopped walnuts
Mix altogether, chill overnight. Shape into balls and roll in coconut. (See note.) Store in covered container in the refrigerator.

Note: The mixture was pretty, er, hard when I took it out of the fridge. Let it warm slightly before attempting to roll Santa’s Balls in your hands.

Source: From the Lakeshore Ladies Kitchens

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Cardboard Tube Christmas Tree

It’s a fact. I can’t wrap presents to save my life. I cut the paper all crooked, the scotch tape always gets stuck in my hair (that's after using it on my nose like a Biore strip) and just try writing out someone’s name on one of those teeny-tiny gift tags. Especially if that person’s name is Mephistopheles.

The upside to wrapping presents? You’re left with all those cardboard tubes. And when you have cardboard tubes, you have the makings for another wonderful caker Christmas craft. We don’t let anything go to waste. Cakers are the original recyclers.

Why, just look at this majestic Christmas tree. I bet you'd pay close to $20 for this at Sears. But I made it for mere pennies. You can decorate it any way you want. Just be careful when using the X-Acto knife. If you think wrapping presents with ten fingers is hard, just try wrapping them with nine.

Come back Friday for my final holiday recipe. Then it's my Caker Christmas party round-up on Monday!


1) Cut the cardboard tube into 1-inch pieces.

2) Watch your fingers or else you'll end up like this!

3) Glue the pieces together in the shape of a tree, spray paint the crap out of it and decorate with balls, ornaments, hair, whatever you fancy!

Monday, 15 December 2014

Heavenly Angel Cake

Do you hear what I hear? Is it my imagination or is it the heavenly sounds of a church senior choir in rehearsal for Christmas Eve service? I just hope they don’t sing that “Hark are the bells merrymerrymerrymerry Christmas” song because it’s very difficult to master and the only time I’ve heard it done right was when barking cats covered it.

Speaking of heavenly things, put down your Suzy Shier bags and take a break from holiday shopping with this Heavenly Angel Cake. Talk about simple pleasures! You’re only a box and a can away from making it. If you manage to screw this up, there’s little hope for you in this world, my caker friend.

True, it’s a little on the chewy side, but it's moist and what more can you expect from a two-ingredient cake? I got a little Martha Stewartson with mine and put a poinsettia in the middle. If you do the same, make sure you tell your guests not to eat the poinsettia. They may look good, but they leave an awful aftertaste. Trust me on this one.

Hey! Are you ready for another caker Christmas craft? Get out your cardboard tubes and meet me back here on Wednesday.

340 g pkg angel food cake mix
540 ml can crushed pineapple
1 large angel food cake pan, ungreased

Set oven to 350°. Disregard directions on cake mix box! Pour cake mix and pineapple into large bowl. Stir together until all cake mix is moistened. Pour into large angel food pan. Bake 1 hour or until tester comes out of cake dry. (See note) Invert on rack until cool.

You can either ice cake or serve plain with ice cream. Berries on the side are good also.

Note: Mine was done around the 50-minute mark.

Source: 75th Anniversary Cookbook, Paterson Memorial Presbyterian Church, Sarnia, Ontario

(This was the church where my mom got married. Mad props to The Caker Queen!)

Friday, 12 December 2014

Crustless Pumpkin Pie

Next Saturday night, I’m hosting my annual Caker Christmas party. I invite Eye-talians over and everyone brings a caker dish. I usually assign the recipes but this year, I’m throwing caker caution to the wind. “Bring whatever you want,” I said to them. “So long as it's caker.”

Why do I have a feeling I’m going to regret this? I’ll post all the gory details on Monday, December 22. If I survive.

Until then, help yourself to a big wedge of this Crustless Pumpkin Pie. I was hoping it would turn out like Impossible Pie, where all the layers separate to create a top layer, middle section and crust. It didn’t work out that way. I guess the crust was in there. Somewhere. I brought this to my work potluck and got a mixed reaction. Some people liked it. Others felt crust-robbed.

But, as Mother always says, “You can please some people most of the time, but you can’t make friends none of the time.” She’s wise beyond her years, that one. Anyways, don’t forget to serve this under an avalanche of Cool Whip.

¾ cup sugar
½ cup Bisquick
2 tablespoons butter
1 large can evaporated milk
16 ounce can pumpkin (see note)
2 ½ teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons vanilla

Beat together until smooth. Pour into greased 10-inch pie plate. Bake 50-55 minutes at 350°.

Note: The can I bought wasn’t 16 ounces, so make sure you measure it out. If you care about accuracy. If not, toss the whole thing in there.

Source: St. Mary’s C.W.L. Crafton Cookbook, St. Mary’s, Ontario