I love to bake, but I will admit that I am not a baking purist. I don’t make everything from scratch. I love cake mix and brownie mix. I have been known to use all forms of pie crust from dry mix to frozen. It’s hard to beat the ease and taste of these items. Trying to make things from scratch is always a fun challenge, but sometimes it’s just easier to use the box. I have learned though that even with boxed mixes, you can still put a personal spin on things and make it semi-homemade.
That is exactly that I did for my class snack this week! I started with a box of Butter Pecan cake mix and a container of Whipped Butter Cream frosting. After a little bit of tweaking, these items didn’t stay in their original form. I did a little research to see what pairs well with the flavors and went with my natural attraction for autumn flavors. I added about a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice to the cake mix. The spices mixed with the nuttiness went very well together! Normally, I would have gone for just cinnamon as the addition, but I figured a mixed spice would take it up to the next level.
For the frosting, as weird as this sounds, I added a tablespoon of breakfast syrup and a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice. I had read that butter pecan pairs well with maple and caramel, so that is why I added a little syrup to the frosting. Adding the spices almost makes it the perfect base for a french toast like taste. The great thing about these cupcakes is how the nutty flavor and the spices really balance our the sweet of the frosting. I had to try one just to make sure they were safe and oh yeah, they were good. Real good. I think my husband had three!
Last week, I was attempting a trickier snack that didn’t turn out (I’ll do it again now that I’ve learned a few things) and I needed something quickly to substitute. I used my trusty brownie mix from Costco and then I added peanut-butter and mini Reese’s Pieces. Small changes and additions can take something that anyone can make into something uniquely from you. My personality is usually the type that colors in the lines, but when it comes to baking, I love exploring new flavor combinations. It’s fun to experiment and take a basic treat into something semi-homemade!