I don’t know what the hype is about the Red Velvet Cake. It seems to be a big thing on this side of the planet, for whatever reason. For me, it’s a cake with red colour, that’s it. I doesn’t taste like anything special, at least I didn’t notice. But, I admit, it looks pretty and is very appropriate for Valentine’s Day.
So, that’s what I made for my husband’s Valentine’s Day cake, Red Velvet with Cream Cheese Icing and Fondant plus flowers. Yes, all that. It was a load of work but he was not in so I had enough time to do what I had to do.
Actually, I baked the cake over the weekend, cut out a two heart shapes and put it in the fridge. The rest of the cake was used in the Heart Cake pops for a pre-Valentine’s bake sale. So I just had to get out the cake, make the icing, fondant and decorate. That is still enough work.
The recipe comes from Bakerella’s webpage. I check my baking books/cook books and none had red velvet cake. Considering everyone on the blog sphere goes nuts about it I was surprised my books don’t. Not even the cupcake book I just got last year.
– 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
– 2 cups sugar
– 1 tbsp. cocoa
– 1 tsp. salt
– 1 tsp. baking soda
– 2 eggs
– 1 1/2 cups oil
– 1 cup buttermilk
– 1 tbsp. vinegar
– 1 tsp. vanilla
– 2 oz. red food coloring
You beat the eggs a bit and add the rest of the liquid ingredients. Then, in separate bowl, you mix all dry ingredients together really well. Now slowly add the liquid to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Transfer into any shaped baking pan you liked but make sure it’s big enough. You get quite a lot out of this. I had two square elastic rubber pans, that do not need any greasing. Bake at 350°C or 180°C for about 30 min or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Let the cake(s) cool before proceeding with decorating.
The Cream Cheese Icing comes from “125 best Cupcake recipes” from Julie Hasson, which you will find on page 163. I used this and not Bakerella because I had a much smaller cake. Make sure you have enough icing.
– 125g cream cheese
– 1/2 cup unsalted butter
– 2 1/4 cup icing sugar
– whitening gel
Beat the butter and cream cheese together until creamy. Slowly add the icing sugar until it’s fluffy. Add some whitening gel until you’ve reached the desired white colour.
Tip: You can use less icing sugar if you are don’t like it overly sweet.
Ahh, the cream cheese icing is good.
Finally you will need fondant, which you can make yourself. I would say easily but it’s some work.
– 9 large marshmallows
– 1 tbsp. water
– 2 cup icing sugar
Place the marshmallows and water in a bowl (microwaveable plastic) and heat for 30 sec. On a clean surface place some icing sugar and put the marshmallows on top. Start kneading but be careful, it’s hot. Knead until combine then add more icing sugar until you have used 2 cups.
Tip: I used only 1 cup, the fondant war workable and I prefer less sugar anyway.
Now you have everything together and it’s time to put the thing together. *haha* I suggest you use a lazy Susan that way you can turn the whole thing while icing the sides.
I didn’t get the lazy susan out until later.
Place your first cake on the lazy susan so that you can ice the top with your cream cheese icing. Use an icing bag and a star tip. Place you second cake on top and switch the tip to a flat one. Which one doesn’t matter because you will go over it with a spatula. Using the lazy susan to turn your cake ice all around and finish up with the spatula.
First layer done and pretty too.
It is a good idea to place the cake in the fridge for a while so that the icing will harden up a bit. While it’s cooling off you can work on you fondant. I used liquid food colours to colour the fondant. It’s a bit tedious because it involved a good about of kneading. Once you’ve reached the desired colour you can start rolling. There are special fondant rolling pins but mine was too small so I used the regular rolling pin.
I have no fondant pictures, stick hands and all that.
Remember, you cake, icing and fondant is very sweet, so it is a good idea to make the fondant thin. Take out the cake and place fondant on top, smoothing it as you go. This is difficult when you do it for the first time and the heart shape doesn’t make it easier. Be patient and careful and use a fondant smoother. Cut off the excess.
Not pretty but of no concern, the spatula will clean it.
Tip: My fondant was somewhat dusted with icing sugar so I slightly brushed it with water to make the colour pop. This makes the fondant a bit stick but works nicely. If anyone knows a better tip, let me know.
Now is time for extra pieces such as flowers or hearts cut out of fondant. The flowers were some work and I used a booklet from Wilton to get it somewhat right. You can tell from the pictures they are not perfect and I can’t even describe how to do it. So please: GOOGLE IT!
Not perfect roses but good for the first try.
Finish you cake the way you like and enjoy it with someone, by yourself or give it away.
I don’t get the hype about red velvet cake either, but it is Roy’s traditional birthday cake. Apparently the original red velvet cakes were red because of a reaction between the buttermilk and the dutch cocoa, however the cocoa now is too processed and so we have to add the red. I have tried one recipe with a can of beets blended to add the colour, instead of food colouring, and it was a very nice moist cake, you couldn’t taste the beets, however it still wasn’t too red. I finally found a red velvet cake that tasted really good this year for Roy’s birthday, it was from Walmart!
Andrea – you are SO AMAZING! I am so proud of you. I remember loving to make things when I was first marrried – for a number of years. I loved creating things, but in my wildest dreams, I could never come up with the wonderful things you do! Congratulations on a job well done!! … in fact, VERY well done!! 🙂
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