Strawberry cake recipe questions

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Joined Jun 28, 2001
I was doing a wedding cake consultation at work and the bride asked for strawberry cake. I remember trying Duncan Hines' strawberry cake a long time ago and thought it would have been really good if it wasn't for that gross artificial flavor. So now it's been on my mind and I want to make it. I found a recipe that calls for strawberry Jell-o mix and strawberry jam to be added to a white cake mix. I'm thinking I can use a vanilla cake recipe and add vegetarian strawberry "Jell-o" to not only avoid the gelatin (I'm a vegetarian), but to avoid the artificial taste as well since it's made with strawberry powder instead of being just artificially colored and flavored sugar/gelatin. Is there a reason these recipes call for Jell-o? Is it just for the strawberry flavoring or does the gelatin do something in the recipe? Because I could just as easily use straight strawberry powder.

Anyone else make this type of cake? Any suggestions?
 
2,938
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Joined Mar 4, 2000
Gelatin's thickening power can't withstand the heat of baking (not sure if the same is true for the vegetarian stuff), so if you have access to strawberry powder, use that instead. You'll get a more intense, straightforward strawberry flavor. And please post your results! :lips:
 
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Joined Mar 10, 2002
You can also substitute the fat (oil) with strawberry preserves. I don't know if this falls into the vegan category, but with a few drops of strawberry candy oil, it tastes fresh, homemade and real.
 
337
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Joined Jun 28, 2001
Yeah, I didn't think so either. I guess most people just use Jell-o since it's a cheap and readily available strawberry flavoring. And yes, I will definitely post results! Thanks!

Brink, do you know of a brand that makes naturally flavored strawberry oil? I've only seen the artificial kind. If this cakes turns into a hit, I'll start selling it, but I can't use artificial flavorings for the cakes I sell.
 
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Joined Mar 10, 2002
Lotus, I don't know about the natural extracts. I use the candy oil from CK Products, which is artificial. You could also just use the preserves and add a few extra chopped berries, or puree and strain some super ripe berries and use it for part the water. This would probably also give the cake a more natural pink color. I suppose you could make your own kosher/vegan jam so it would fall more in your standard offerings.

Hope this helps.
 
2,938
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Joined Mar 4, 2000
There's a brand of natural flavoring that I've seen in health food stores called 'Frontier'. It's an oil-based extract, and it states on the package that it can be used in cakes. They do have strawberry flavor.
 
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