Our friend G celebrated his birthday this past weekend and IMHO birthdays require cake. He requested a cake of the red velvet variety. After a bit of research I came up with the following recipe. When finished I frosted it with cream cheese frosting for a delicious result.
Sadly, despite a whole bottle of gel paste food coloring, this cake did not turn out red. It was, however, a very delicious chocolate cake and I’m pretty sure part of deep chocolate color came from all the red dye. So I updated the name of the recipe and kept the food coloring.
Very Chocolate Cake
Prep time: 30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 10 minutes plus cooling time
- 2 1/4 cups cake flour
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa, sifted
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. table salt
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 oz. red food color
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 tsp. vinegar
- baking spray
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 13″x9″ with baking spray and then use a sheet of parchment paper to create a sling inside the pan.
- Combine flour, cocoa, soda and salt in a bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
- Place the sugar and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium-high until fluffy. While butter beats beat the eggs and food coloring together. Add the egg mixture to the butter/sugar and beat until combined.
- Combine the buttermilk, vinegar and vanilla. Add a third of flour mixture to the butter/sugar followed by half the buttermilk mixture. Beat on low until just combined then repeat with another third of the flour and the remaining buttermilk. Beat again until just combined and add the remaining flour. Scrap the beater and give the batter a final stir by hand.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and distribute evenly. Bake for 35-40 minutes, rotating the pan 180° half way through cooking. Cake is done when a toothpick inserts in the middle comes out clean.
- Cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting. Cool for 2 hours before frosting.
I used gel food coloring paste in place of liquid food coloring. With a white or yellow cake batter the coloring paste produces a very vibrant hue. Red velvet being a chocolate based cake came out more murky red-brown.
I took inspiration from a couple of recipes I found online, which you can view here, here, and here.