At Your Request – Red Velvet Cupcakes

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Yesterday, while going through my file of photographs, I posted this one on Instagram and Facebook:

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Well, now!  I heard from quite a few of you requesting this recipe so…here it is.  FYI, this is a true Red Velvet Cake.  If any of you read my previous post with the Red Velvet Pound Cake, I gave a very brief history of this dessert and stated that an authentic recipe doesn’t call for much (if any) cocoa or butter because these were expensive items back during the depression when it was first introduced.  This recipe uses no butter (vegetable oil instead) and a small amount of cocoa.  Stop turning up your nose!  Think about who I am – you know that I like good stuff! I would never steer you wrong. However, it does taste a bit different from what people are now passing off as Red Velvet Cake.  Good, but different.  I think that it balances perfectly with the Cream Cheese Frosting, which is simply the best Cream Cheese Frosting recipe…EVER! Having said all of that, I’m giving it to you preparing it as a three layer cake but, if you want to make cupcakes, fill two muffin/cupcake pans with cupcake liners.  Using a cookie scoop, fill each liner with two scoopfuls of cake batter and bake @ 350 for about 20 minutes, or until the cake tester (toothpick) comes out clean.

Red Velvet Cake

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon fine salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 tablespoons red food coloring (1 ounce)
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cream Cheese Frosting, recipe follows
Crushed pecans, for garnish
Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil and flour 3 (9 by 1 1/2-inch round) cake pans.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In another large bowl, whisk together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla.

Using a standing mixer, mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined and a smooth batter is formed.

Divide the cake batter evenly among the prepared cake pans. Place the pans in the oven evenly spaced apart. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through the cooking, until the cake pulls away from the side of the pans, and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean, about 30 minutes.

Remove the cakes from the oven, let cool slightly, then run a knife around the edges to loosen them from the sides of the pans. One at a time, invert the cakes onto a plate and then re-invert them onto a cooling rack, rounded-sides up. Let cool completely.

Frost the cake. Place 1 layer, rounded-side down, in the middle of a rotating cake stand. Using a palette knife or offset spatula spread some of the cream cheese frosting over the top of the cake. (Spread enough frosting to make a 1/4 to 1/2-inch layer.) Carefully set another layer on top, rounded-side down, and repeat. Top with the remaining layer and cover the entire cake with the remaining frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1, 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened

1, 3 oz. package cream cheese, softened * Please note, I only use Philadelphia Cream Cheese instead of a store brand because, over the years I have noticed that it blends better.

3/4 cup butter, softened

1, 16 oz. package powdered sugar, sifted

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Beat the first 3 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.  Gradually add powdered sugar, beating at low speed until light and fluffy. Stir in vanilla. Makes about 3 1/2 cups.

On a completely separate note, tomorrow I will be hosting the link up for members of Rising Bloggers on Facebook .  We are a group of new bloggers and writers supporting each other in finding our way through the blogosphere.  About every two weeks we all write on the same topic which provides a lot of different perspectives – some funny, some insightful, all interesting.  I missed the link up a couple of weeks ago (that “life getting in the way” thing) so I’m really excited to host this collection of talented people.  Be sure to check back tomorrow and follow the links! Bye, now.

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