I promised that while I am getting myself organized that there would be some wonderful guest posts. The first one comes from Branny Boils Over! Her blog is full of delicious and healthy meals. She has a great collection of vegetarian recipes, and I have been trying some of them to work a meatless meal in once a week. You must try her French Onion Grilled Cheese or her Cookie Dough Hummus. She has prepared a fabulous guest post with my favorite red velvet cake!
“Let me tell you something,” the principal of the high school where I teach mentioned to me on the first day of school, “these are just a bunch of Southern country kids.”
And that sentiment rang true when I asked them what dessert, if any, my students would want me to bake for them to enjoy after their first test. They responded in unison: Red Velvet Cake.
Foolishly we planned for me to bring a cake. And I set about making assignments for forks, plates, and napkins. And as I greased and floured my 8″ round cake pans I realized the flaw in my plans. Duh. Cupcakes. No wonder the trend. Easy. Self contained. No fork needed. No plate needed.
Southerners are perhaps the greatest critic of Red Velvet Cake. And the survey of my Southern students says this recipe is five stars *****.
Makes 1 8-inch 3-layer cake
For the cake:
2½ cups cake flour
1½ cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1½ cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons (1 oz.) red food coloring
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
For the frosting:
12 ounces cream cheese, softened
12 ounces butter, softened
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1½ cups chopped pecans (optional)
1. For the cake: Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Sift together flour, sugar, baking soda, cocoa, and salt into a medium bowl.
3. Beat eggs, oil, buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla, and vinegar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until well combined. Add dry ingredients and beat until smooth, about 2 minutes.
4. Divide batter evenly between 3 greased and floured 8″ round cake pans.
5. Bake cakes, rotating halfway through, until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean, 25-30 minutes. Let cakes cool 5 minutes, then invert each onto a plate, then invert again onto a cooling rack. Let cakes cool completely.
6. For the frosting: Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla together in a large bowl with an electric mixer until combined. Add sugar and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes.
4. Put 1 cake layer on a cake plate, level off with a serrated knife, and spread one-quarter of the frosting on top. Set another layer on top, level, and repeat frosting. Set remaining layer on top, level, and frost top and sides with the remaining frosting. Press pecans into the sides of the cake, if desired.
5. Chill for 2 hours to set frosting.