Looking for a Mother's Day treat that really says you care? That you care enough to take on a dessert that uses three different bowls? Plus a baking pan? That sound like real love! Just don't tell anyone that this cake is so easy it's practically criminal. If you can bake a box cake, you can make this elegant dessert.
- 1 white or yellow cake mix
- 3 eggs
- 1 c. water
- 1/2 c. oil
- 2 c. water (lukewarm)
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 pkg. strawberry drink mix (Kool-Aid)
- 1/2 c. Ultra Gel®
- 1 lb. strawberries, hulled and sliced in 1/4" slices
- 1-8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1-8 oz carton non-dairy whipped topping
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- For the cake layer:
- Make cake according to package directions, using the water, eggs, and oil. If the package directions are different from the ones in the ingredient list, use the ingredients on the package directions.
- Pour into a greased half sheet pan (12.5"X17")and bake until lightly browned (about twenty minutes). Cool thoroughly (put it in the freezer to cool if you're in a hurry.)
- For the glaze layer:
- Combine the sugar, drink mix, and Ultra Gel® and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
- Add the Ultra Gel® gradually while stirring with a wire whisk. Allow to thicken for about ten minutes, then stir until smooth and glossy.
- For the cream cheese layer:
- Cut the cream cheese into cubes for easier handling, then use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese until smooth.
- Add the whipped topping and continue beating until smooth. Set aside.
- To assemble the dessert:
- When the cake is completely cool, spread the cream cheese filling over the top. If the top tears, don't worry--the glaze will cover it. But it won't tear if it's completely chilled.
- Place the strawberry slices decoratively on the cream cheese filling.
- Drizzle the glaze over the top. Smooth if desired.
- Refrigerate at least two hours for flavors to develop.
- Garnish with whipped cream and additional strawberries.
First, put the ingredients together for a box cake according to the package directions. I put in the ingredients from a Duncan Hines cake mix, but your mix might be slightly different. The big thing is that you end up with a thin layer of cake for the base of the dessert. Author's note: Sometimes people ask why I made this cake so large (one-half sheet pan size) and the reason is that it just makes everything come out right--the cream cheese, the whipped topping the glaze and the berries. But if you don't want to make this much, use a 9x13 pan and only use half of the prepared cake batter and other ingredients. The other half of the cake batter will make some yummy cupcakes! Whatever baking pan you use, you only want the cake batter to be about 1/2" thick.
Be careful when you bake--the batter is thin and will cook quickly. Just cook until lightly browned--no more than twenty minutes.
Set the cake aside to cool. Put it in the freezer if you want to hurry things up.
While the cake is cooling, start the glaze by combining the sugar, unsweetened drink mix, and Ultra Gel in a bowl. Stir the ingredients lightly, then add the water all at once and continue stirring with a wire whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Set aside to thicken.
To make the cream filling, cut the softened cream cheese into cubes for easier handling, then mix with an electric beater until smooth.
Add the thawed non-dairy whipped topping and continue to beat with the electric beater until smooth.
Assemble the cake using the following process:
Spread the cream cheese filling onto the cooled cake.
Arrange the strawberries over the cream cheese filling
Drizzle the glaze over the top of the strawberries. Smooth if desired.
Refrigerate for at least 2 hours to blend the flavors before serving.
And there you have it! A Mother's Day treat that looks hard for the one that made motherhood look easy!