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<p>Title should say substitutions instead of s, but I can't figure out how to edit the title.</p>
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<p>I have a few recipes that call for things like cream of mushroom soup and boxed cake mix (dump cake, chicken rice casserole, etc).  Is there any recipes out there about how to make a homemade version of crappy processed foods?  I'm wondering if for the cake mix you can just mix all the dry ingredients in a  regular cake recipe together and have that work.</p>
 

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<p>Mushroom soup would be fairly easy. I'd make a basic white sauce and add in mushrooms. It would take a little longer though than just opening a can. In a small pan, melt 1 or 2 tablespoons of butter, and briefly saute 1 cup of mushrooms, sliced or chopped.  Then sprinkle in a tablespoon of flour. Stir for a minute or two. Slowly add 1 cup of milk or chicken stock and sitr until it thickens into a sauce. You can control the thickness by adding more flour or less liquid and/or cooking it longer. You can also add flavour with some herbs - thyme or marjoram would be nice - but that depends on what herbs you are using in the rest of the recipe. </p>
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<p>I just googled "homemade cake mix" and came up with too many responses to post them here. If you do the same, I think you'll find something that you can make ahead of time and keep on hand for convenience.</p>
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<p>Once you start using a white sauce instead of canned soups, that's all you'll use.  It takes some getting used to, cause the flavor is different, but it really is much yummier to use a white sauce.  Often, I put in a teaspoon of better than bouillon chicken flavor to flavor the sauce.  It works well, and it gets that salty, savory flavor that you miss without the can.</p>
 

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<p>Honestly, I'd recommend using allrecipes.com or something and just searching for a recipe alternative that doesn't use convenience foods.</p>
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<p>I do this all the time. I'll search for a recipe - "rice pudding," maybe, or "chicken paella" - and just open a bunch of possible hits. Within a group of about 6-8 recipes, I ALWAYS find one that uses basic ingredients instead of convenience foods. It takes me about 5 minutes to find a recipe this way (I can disregard a recipe within seconds of scanning the ingredients list), which is not bad at all, especially if you print it out and add it to your recipe box/binder/folder so you can easily find it again later.</p>
 

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<p>for the cream-of soups I have had good luck making home made bechamel (white suace) or a quick gravy (flour, butter, stock, onion, garlic, worsteshire).  Never undersetimate the power of wine!  You can always thicken up a sauce after the fact with a little roux or cornstarch.</p>
 
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