Quick and Easy Mug Cakes: Over 75 Yummy Microwave Cakes by Jennifer Lee
My rating: 2/5 cats
PART ONE OF MUG CAKE MARCH IS OVER! PART TWO CAN BE FOUND HERE!!
WELCOME TO MARCH PROJECT! more mug cakes! several years ago, i did a sprawling 3-part mug cake review that starts here, and then i did a one-off mug cake here and yet there are still more mug cakes in the world waiting for me to make them! so i’m trying this book, which has 95 different cakes from which to choose. i will try not to repeat any flavors OR mugs from the previous projects, so wish me luck and awayyy we go! WHAT WILL HAPPEN?
TRIPLE CHOCOLATE CAKE
this is a pretty basic recipe, but a chocolate cake is always a good litmus test for a cookbook, and friends, this first attempt does not bode well for the project.
the book suggests you use a TALL mug for this, and i obeyed. AND YET the finished product was like a half-inch of cake, which you can see from my other mug cake projects, was a new and dismaying situation.
where’s the cake?? way down in the hole.
it’s not even a GOOD cake, it’s dry and crumbly and grainy.
the only good parts were the melted chocolate chips and the slurry of milk and melted dark chocolate bar. the cake itself was very disappointing.
what have i gotten myself into?
this time, i used a regular-sized mug, to avoid what happened on day 1.
a mere SUGGESTION of a cake. i used blackberry fusion jello, and the flavor was good, but the cake itself had a gummy texture that was not to my liking.
i made some fine whipped cream, though, and that part was good.
march project is not shaping up well at all.
ANDES MINTS CAKE
i have been instructed to “fail differently,” and it looks like i am obeying that command.
this recipe comes from the chapter called 4-ingredients-or-less mug cakes, which is already linguistically problematic, but i’m game! and yet again, a sad, mug-half-empty cake, despite the directions specifying you will need “an oversized mug,” which mine is not. (i am only obedient when i haven’t already been burned by the ‘fool me once’ game)
what i have learned this time is maybe cakes need more than 4 ingredients.
this one was extra dry and flavorless. it is a gross cake.
so here’s the question: do i abandon this project and use a different mug cake book for the rest of the month, or do i power through and hope to find at least one cake worth making here? because it is astonishing to me how poor the quality of these cakes has been, compared to those in the two other mug cake books i have tried. am i an optimist or a realist or a glutton for punishment? you decide.
the author of this cookbook says “I usually stick with vanilla pudding mix, but you can mix and match flavors to change the flavor of the cake.” since i no longer trust this woman’s assessment of what tastes good or what qualifies as food, even, and because vanilla is for chumps like greg, i went with pistachio pudding:
and since i am trapped in an oscillating-pattern-hellscape of dry to gummy to dry to gummy, guess what?
gummy. sticky. tacky. gluey. it was like eating a hot sponge—it swelled in my mouth, so desperate for moisture that it took mine own from me. i’m glad i have set the clock running on this project. i can’t take any more failures. or scares.
EASTER SURPRISE CAKE
i wasn’t going to abandon the book before making this recipe, which incorporates easter candy, inarguably the best seasonal candy of them all. it called for a mini cadbury creme egg, but i used a fullsized one because—my body, my choice. mini cadbury creme egg…pfft—what’s the point of that? anyway, this one has cadbury creme AND cadbury mini (not creme) eggs, and i decided to make it in a ramekin instead of a mug because this mug cake book doesn’t know how mugs work.
if not for the cadbury-product, there wouldn’t be much flavor, so i’m glad i went big, but it’s another spongy cake that isn’t pleasing in the mouth, and ends up being a slurry of conflict; a puddle of woe, the WWI of desserts.
i’m sorry you died for this, noble cadbury egg.
there will be three more recipes before i abandon ship for a different mug cake book:
HALLOWEEN CANDY CAKE
COOKIES & CREAM CAKE
HALLOWEEN CANDY CAKE
building on the relative success of the easter mug cake, i decided to do it in a bowl again. a spooooooky bowl.
i don’t know what ‘leftover’ halloween candy is- if you have candy, you eat candy; there’s candy you have eaten and there’s candy you will soon be eating and sorry, kids, for not answering the doorbell nom nom nom. anyhooo, i used hershey bars, m&ms, 100 grands, kit-kats, and twix, which turned into caramel morass
and i ate it all and now i have more ass
enjoy both that comedy and that caramel strand. this recipe was fine, but it’s just a bowl full of melted candy, so it’d be hard to mess it up.
COOKIES & CREAM CAKE
it should surprise no one that just when i decided to end it all—to turn my back on this book forever, that’s precisely when i found some mug cakes worth making.
you guys, this one wasn’t gross.
it was a little…taller than the others
but the true secret to its success? frosting
frosting makes the world go ’round.
it was a little denser than the best mug cakes, but it was by far the best from this book. until this next one, and brace yoselves—we’re about to go out with a bang.
it doesn’t look pretty yet, just a mess of chocolate cake with a gooey marshmallow center that someone may have overmarshmallowed, reasoning—even if the cake is as garbagey as all the others, at least i shall have marshmallooze! but then—
like i’m a machine in the hostess factory
this one was delicious. maybe i will rip out every other page in this book and just hold on to this one recipe, and it’ll be the last remnant of the civilized world nestled up under my tunic as everything falls apart around me.
welcome to new york.
ANYWAY, i start the new mug cake book today and i will add the link to that here. as for this book, despite the late-in-project deliciousness, which opens the door to the possibility that there are others here worth making, this is not a mug cake book i would recommend to others. if you want a mug cake, the grocery store has many options that are probably better than most of what i made from this book.
since i am abandoning this book in a couple of days and no longer have to worry about fitting my sprawling project in the newly-stingy gr review space, here’s some BONUS CONTENT for alissa—more of that cat mug!
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