As the popularity of jelly salads waned on the potluck tables, the Jell-O company decided to attempt to increase sales in 1969 with the slogan, “Jell-O could fill any void.”
The company came up with the idea of poking holes in a baked cake, then adding the prepared flavoured Jell-O into the holes, chilling and then adding icing or whipped cream.
Thus what is now known as a “Poke Cake” was born, traditionally using a white cake mix. Since then Poke Cakes may contain Jell-O, milk puddings, condensed milk or even runny icing.
But years before, cooks were already preparing Poke Cakes, simply calling them sheet cakes.
This week’s recipes feature a sheet cake with a filling, made often in our family. The Poke Cake recipe comes from a Jell-O recipe brochure.
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Lemon Lime Sheet Cake
1 pkg. lemon cake mix
1 small pkg. lime Jell-O
3/4 cup boiling water
1/2 cup cold water
1 envelope Dream Whip topping mix
1 small pkg. lemon or vanilla instant pudding mix
1 1/2 cups cold milk
Dissolve Jell-O in 3/4 cup boiling water. Add 1/2 cup cold water and stir to fully dissolve. Set aside in refrigerator.
Prepare cake mix following directions on the box. Pour into a greased 9x13 inch pan. Bake according to instructions. Cool for 20-25 minutes.
Poke deep holes in the cake about 1 inch apart. Pour Jell-O into the holes and refrigerate.
To prepare topping, chill a bowl. Blend the Dream Whip mix and pudding with the cold milk. Whip until stiff, about 8 minutes. Immediately frost the cake and return to the refrigerator to thoroughly chill. Serve chilled. Leftovers should be stored in refrigerator.
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Strawberry Poke Cake
1 white or lemon cake mix
1 small package strawberry Jell-O
1 cup boiling water
1 cup cold water
1 tub Cool Whip
Prepare and bake the cake following instructions on the package. Cool about 15 minutes.
Prepare Jell-O with boiling and cold water and stir until all crystals are dissolved.
Carefully, using a meat fork, poke holes in baked and chilled cake, about 1/2 inch apart.
Pour Jell-O over holes until all Jell-O is used.
Chill 3-4 hours. Top with Cool Whip and refrigerate until ready to serve. Store leftover cake in refrigerator.
Joyce Walter can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org