Red Velvet Cake has all the glamor and mystery of a bygone era. Nobody seems to be able to say for certain who invented it or precisely where it originated, some say New York at the Waldorf Astoria while others claim that it is certainly more Southern in origin. What is agreed on is that this desert is as good to eat as it is to look at.
The flavor is subtly chocolate, but not too overpowering and when layered and topped with cream cheese icing it certainly looks decadent. Traditionally the red color came from a chemical reaction when the acidic buttermilk and vinegar came into contact with the cocoa powder although now days it is more common to add red food coloring or beetroot juice to deepen and enhance the color.
- 1/2 cup (102g) shortening
- 1 1/2 cups (300g) sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 tablespoons cocoa
- 1 1/2 oz red food coloring
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/2 cups (315g) flour
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon soda
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 1 cup (200g) sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup (2 sticks or 230g) butter
- 1 cup (240 ml) whole milk
- Cream shortening and gradually add in sugar.
- Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each egg is added.
- Make a paste out of the cocoa and food coloring, then add in cream.
- Sift in salt, flour and baking soda the add the vanilla, and buttermilk, beating well after each ingredient is added.
- Pour vinegar over the batter.
- Stir until well mixed.
- Finally, either separate the cake into 3 batches (to use as layers) or cook as one large cake (and slice into thirds after baking). The cake should be baked in a circular tin about 8-inch/20 cm is ideal (although you can use another size if preferred) and bake in a 350ºF/180ºC oven until a toothpick inserted in the center come out clean (approx 60 minutes for the one pan cake).
- Wait until cake has cooled before frosting.
For frosting we chose to use a cream cheese icing … yum!
Red Velvet Cake Tips
There are a number of ways to decorate a red velvet cake, we went for a simple frosting then sprinkled some of the red cake crumbs over the top to make the cake stand out, but check out these talented bakers for some inspiration
Red Velvet Cake with Chocolate Icing … what? I didn’t even know it was a possibility looks good though doesn’t it?
The Bundt it just looks so festive – right?
This Lady has serious styling cred, how gorgeous it the whole shoot – looks waaay to pretty to eat!
*Also the cake stand is my latest craft project – look out for a diy post soon on how I created it!