Thursday, 23 December 2010

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

 Ever since my niece arrived here in June she has asked me about a Red Velvet Cake.  I had not tried one and all I knew about it was that it was red.  I was then determined to make this cake for her birthday.  By chance I happened to notice that it was the feature cake on the cover of the 2010 Cook's Illustrated Holiday Baking issue.

Before starting to mix the batter I learned that by using buttermilk and vinegar along with a bit of cocoa, that a chemical reaction occurs between these ingredients to give the natural red colour.  Additional red food colour is used to intensify the colour.

First photo shows the basic batter.  Second photo shows mixing in the red colouring.  You mix the red food colour and the bit of cocoa powder together into a paste and then add it to the batter.  Somehow that keeps the cocoa in suspension while baking resulting in a more even colour.

You can see that ever so slightly the cake is a wee bit browner near the outer edge.
The cake is then topped with a very decadent cream cheese frosting.  Notice the very cute princess candles that are topped with silver stars.
Finally, the triple layer Red Velvet birthday cake.
Compare the final two photos, and you will notice that the slices of cake are almost identical.

For a recipe for Red Velvet Swirl Brownies visit Fizzy Thoughts.


Nazmiş Teyze said...

looks very delicious :))

(M)ary said...

Learned something new today: kitchen science of how to make something red! (Reminds me of a British podcast I used to 'Naked Scientist'.)

If you skipped adding artificial red dye how red do you think the cake would turn? I would be apt to skip the extre dye myself.

Heather said...

Hi Mary,
There was a photo with the recipe that showed how the cake would turn out without using the red colouring, and it was minimally red. I debated it as well, but decided in the end that I had to just try it at least once this way, and am glad I did. It was quite the vivid colour.