My obsession with the perfect Red Velvet recipe is Andrew’s fault. In October of 2011 he went to New York for two weeks. He said he had the most amazing Red Velvet cupcake at Zaro’s while he there. I had never tasted, never mind made, Red Velvet before but decided I could make one just as, if not more, amazing. I scoured the web for Red Velvet recipes, but none of them quite made the grade. Some were too dry, other’s were lacking in flavour. Finally I decided to just wing it. After 6 batches I finally achieved what I was looking for. Here is the result of my adventure. Many thanks to all my friends and acquaintances who were forced to play guinea pig for me.
Red Velvet Cake
1 1/2 cups canola oil (Oil type makes a big difference. Vegetable oil exploded in my oven! When the hell did “vegetable oil” become “soybean oil”?)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 tablet mexican chocolate finely grated( I use Nestle Abuelita)
2 tbsps red food colouring
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups of sifted flour (Yes sifting does make a difference, and sift before you measure)
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp espresso powder (I use Nescafe)
1 cup buttermilk
2 tbsps apple cider vinegar
1 tsp baking soda
Preheat oven to 350 F
Combine oil, sugar and tablet chocolate in mixing bowl. Mix on medium till smooth, add eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each. Add food colouring and vanilla. Mix until colour is even through out.
sift dry ingredients, except baking soda, together. Add 1/3 at a time to oil mixture, alternate with buttermilk. Mix thoroughly between additions.
Pour vinegar into a small bowl. Sprinkle baking soda over vinegar. Stir mixture into batter. Make sure it is thoroughly blended.
Pour batter into 2 8 inch cake pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes. If making cupcakes times vary. Mini cupcakes take about 10 minutes.
2 8 oz packages cream cheese, at room temperature
8 tbsps of unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 cups of icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt.
Beat cream cheese and butter at medium speed until smooth. Add sugar, vanilla and salt. Blend on low speed until blended, then medium-high till until fluffy.
I put a layer of frosting between the cake layers, then frost with the rest.