Thursday, February 16, 2012

Velvety Red

Not the cleanest slice, but still yummy!
So a few years ago I made a Red Velvet Cake for my girlfriend (aka The Panda) for her birthday. I am not a huge fan of chocolate cakes, but this one came out nice and moist and quite delicious. The best part of this cake was the icing, which was NOT cream cheese based. I don't care how your grandmother, who may have even invented the recipe, made the icing, cream cheese icing has no place on anything.

The reason I'm writing about this recipe today is because I made another Red Velvet Cake for my sister's birthday, which wasn't actually red because I had no food coloring. My icing didn't come out quite as good this time around because of the butter I was using (there is NO substitute for real butter when baking) but it was still quite good.
Here's the recipe I used:

Cake:
  • 1 C Oil
  • 1 1/2 C Granulated Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 4 TBSP Cocoa Powder
  • 4 TBSP Red Food Coloring
  • 1 TSP Salt
  • 1 TSP Vanilla
  • 1 C Buttermilk
  • 2 1/2 C Sifted AP Flour
  • 1 1/2 TSP Baking Soda
  • 1 TBSP Distilled White Vinegar

Icing:

  • 5 TBSP AP Flour
  • 1 C Milk
  • 1 C Butter
  • 1 C Granulated Sugar
  • 1 TSP Vanilla

So first things first, pre-heat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and grease two 9 inch cake pans. For the cake:
  1. Cream together the 1 C Oil and 1.5 C Sugar.
  2. Add the eggs and mix well.
  3. Make a paste of the food coloring and cocoa powder and add to the batter.
  4. Separately mix together the 1 TSP salt, 1 C buttermilk and 1 tsp vanilla.
  5. Alternately add the flour and buttermilk mixture to the batter. I did 1/3 flour, 1/2 butter milk, 1/3 flour, rest of butter milk, then rest of the flour.
  6. Mix soda and vinegar together (Yes, this is going to foam up so don't use a tiny bowl). GENTLY fold the baking soda mixture into the batter. Do NOT beat or strongly stir the batter.
  7. Gently pour the mixture into the 9 inch cake pans and bake for 30 Minutes.
Be sure to allow the cakes to cool completely before trying to ice them. You can, however, make the icing while the cakes are baking. To do that:
  1. Cook 5 TBSP flour with 1 C milk over low heat, stirring constantly. It will take some time but the mixture will thicken up. Be sure to keep stirring to avoid clumps and to prevent scalding.
  2. Once the mixture is nice and thick remove from the heat and let cool completely.
  3. Seperately, cream together 1 C butter, 1 C sugar and 1 tsp vanilla. Cream until it is nice and fluffy!
  4. Once the flour mixture is cool, add it to the creamed mixture and continue to beat until it's a good spreading consistency.
Decorated and ready for the birthday girl!
That's it! Now just fill and ice your cake! I make a double batch of the frosting and fill it with that (and that makes too much to be honest, you can probably get away with just one), but you can always fill it with anything... like whipping ganache... or chocolate mousse, or raspberry gelee. The possibilities are endless!

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