Southerns (I guess since I'm in Canada, when I say Southerns, I'm talking about Americans in the Southern states) believe this cake originated from there. But in reality no one knows when it started. It's been seen in recipe books in the 19th century.
Eaton's department store made red velvet cake at their stores and bakeries in 1940s and 1950s. It was marketed as an Eaton exclusive and staff were sworn to secrecy. Because of that, many thought the red velvet cake was an invention of Lady Eaton. (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_velvet_cake)
First I mixed flour, baking soda and baking powder in one bowl.
In another bowl, I mixed eggs, vanilla, vinegar and buttermilk.
In a third bowl, I mixed cocoa and red food colouring. I initially wanted to use natural red coloring (beets) but read that it doesn't get very red. So I decided just to use food coloring.
In a fourth bowl, creamed butter and sugar.
Once butter/sugar mixture was creamy and fluffy, I added the flour mixture and the buttermilk mixture slowly.
My poor hand mixer was getting hot with all the mixing. I've had this mixer for almost 8 years. I bought it cheap and it's been reliable. At times I'm tempted to upgrade to a better model but then realize that it's been faithful to me so I should be loyal too!
Then I added the red cocoa paste.
And put the batter into a cupcake pan.
Bake and voila!!
It's so easy to make!!
So I was so excited to pipe my cream cheese frosting. I've never really piped (ok I did it for cookies but not like this). I was really looking forward to it.
Since I didn't know how to pipe, I searched on the Internet. That's where I disappointedly found out that cream cheese frosting does NOT pipe well - it's too soft. I didn't care; I wanted to be like the cupcake bakers on the food network.
So I made my frosting, piped and added sparkles. I tried "dipping" the sprinkles that doesn't work. Maybe I dip too hard or maybe the frosting is too soft but as I "dipped" the frosting became flat. So decided to stick to pipe and sprinkle the sprinkles. As I piped, I realized making the frosting higher is more attractive. (I'm pretty sure that cream cheese frosting is pipeable cos a classmate's sister piped a flower and the shape stayed. Her frosting wasn't too soft.)
I bit into it and it was soooooooo yummy. The cake was very moist and fluffy. I think that's due to the buttermilk. It wasn't too chocolately but a nice mix with cream cheese frosting.
But the colour.... It wasn't the red that you see in books, Internet or tv. I was and still am disappointed because I only made red velvet for the colour and nothing else!!!
The red colour in red velvet is due to vinegar and cocoa mixed together and further made red with food coloring. I already added 1 bottle of food coloring and it's still not enough. :(
Did I mention I bought it to work for potluck. My coworkers were excited but I think the best compliment was when a co-worker didn't want to eat it cos she thought it was store bought.
Going back to colour...one coworker was impressed that my cupcake had 2 tone (notice the middle being more red and outside more brown). She thought my technique was amazing.
She asked me how I did that. I told her it was a mistake - it should have been one tone. *sigh*
I will make it again. I'll try the recipe again and see if it turns more red. If not, I'll try other recipes. I found some on the Internet that shows potential.
The cake was really good. I like the moist texture and taste. And the cream cheese frosting goes well with the cake. I'd probably make it as a layered cake as well. Unfortunately, I don't have enough places to share my baking. *sigh* Anyone want some baked goods??
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