Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Let there be cake!

After my first bite I was hooked!  There was just something about that rich velvety chocolaty deliciousness that they call Red Velvet that sends my taste buds into another dimension of flavour.  Why was this cake so different???  I had no clue.....all I knew was that I had to figure out how it was done!  So I began my search on the internet....only to find only about a gazillion recipes out there.....all with slight variations.  So I tried out a few recipes....some were terrible others amazing.  But I've found the recipe that works best for me.  I like my Red Velvet with Cream Cheese Icing over the white icing....but that's just me.

I've made them for my daughter's 2nd birthday - she hated them but the adults LOVED em!
Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing

And I made a Red Velvet cake for my classmates to celebrate the year we spent together....(it was my first time writing on a cake!) 

Red Velvet Cake for my PR Class of 2011

 Here's the 'winning' recipe!  Feel free to give it a go!

Red Velvet Cake:
1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 Tbp (heaping) cocoa
1/4 cup red food colouring
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
2 1/4 cup cake flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbp white vinegar
1 tsp baking soda

preheat oven at 350 degrees
1. Cream butter and sugar together til 'fluffy'
2. Add eggs
3. Make a paste with the food colouring and cocoa and add to the creamed mixture
4. Add vanilla
5. Add buttermilk and sifted flour and salt alternating between the two
6. In a separate bowl add baking soda to the vinegar (as you will remember from grade school science -- IT FOAMS! so choose a not so small bowl)
7. Blend (rather than beat) the soda/vinegar mixture to the batter

for cupcakes --> bake for about 20 mins or until a toothpick poked in the center comes out clean or when you touch the top...they 'bounce' back

for cakes --> bake for 25-30 mins or until a toothpick poked in the center comes out clean or when you touch the 'bounces' back

I used a homemade cream cheese icing on the cupcakes and a store bought (I was feeling a tad lazy) icing for the grad cake......mind you I regret using the store bought stuff.......the homemade version tastes WAAAAYYYYYYYY better! 

For the cream cheese icing I used on the cupcakes....the trick to making pipe-able cream cheese icing is to start with COLD cream cheese and no over mixing!

Cream Cheese Icing
250g cream cheese (COLD)
1/2 cup unsalted butter (Room temperature)
1-2 tsp vanilla (use less if you're not a huge vanilla fan)
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1. Start with COLD cream cheese and combine with room temperature butter
2. Add vanila 
3. Sift in powdered sugar gradually 
4. Mix until smooth (DO NOT OVER MIX!)

Then feel free to pipe your lil heart out! :)

Good luck and happy baking!

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