It was a couple of years ago when I chanced upon a red velvet cake. I’ve never tasted a red velvet cake. I thought it was just some ordinary cake that was soaked in red food coloring, but boy was I wrong about that! A good friend of mine was celebrating his 34th birthday and his mom was so sweet to bake him a red velvet birthday cake. While all the boys converged on the poker table and the girls were busy catching up with stuff … I snuck my way out of the convo to check out the birthday cake. Funny thing is, I got stuck at the cake table and couldn’t get enough of it. I still can’t figure out what made it taste so good. It’s like red chocolate cake, but not totally chocolatey like that. It was just so good with the cream cheese frosting !
Beet root is often used to achieve the deep red color to this cake as well as it helps retain moisture with the inclusion of grated boiled beet root into the batter. I don’t really fancy beets, but I just might give that a whirl for mere experimental sake. I’ve read a few reviews on red velvet cakes and most have issues with achieving a uniform rich red color due to the cocoa powder. I have yet to play around more with this awesome cake, as I don’t want to disappoint myself with the outcome since I have such great recall on how good it was.
This could be a real contender for my son’s next birthday cake. Although I don’t know how he’ll take to the red color, but I’m sure he’ll be tripping on it.
RED VELVET CAKE
For the Cake:
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
2 large eggs, at room temperature, separated
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 ounce red food coloring (4 teaspoons), optional
1 cup nonfat buttermilk
For the Cream cheese frosting :
12 ounces soft light cream cheese
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2-1 ounce chocolate, grated, for garnish (optional)
FOR THE CAKE
FOR THE CAKE:
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Coat two 9-inch round cake pans with cooking spray.
- Whisk all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.
- Beat sugar and butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until crumbly, about 2 minutes. Beat in egg yolks one at a time, then vanilla and food coloring (if using) until Smooth.
- Beat in half the buttermilk on low speed until smooth, then half the flour mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then beat in the remaining buttermilk. Beat in the remaining flour mixture just until combined.
- Clean and dry beaters. Beat egg whites in a clean medium bowl at high speed until soft peaks form. With a rubber spatula, gently fold the whites into the batter until just incorporated, using long, even strokes. Divide the batter between the prepared pans, spreading to the edges. Gently rap the pans against the counter once or twice to settle the batter.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then invert the layers onto the rack, remove the pans and let cool to room temperature, about 45 minutes more.
- FOR THE FROSTING & TO ASSEMBLE CAKE:
- Beat cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Place one cake layer top-side down on a serving plate; cover with half the frosting, spreading just to the edges. Set the second layer on top, top-side down. Spread the remaining frosting on the top only. Sprinkle with grated chocolate, if desired.
Photo Credit: wmc75
Photo Credit: vynsia
Photo Credit: pike.corinne