This should have been posted long ago, but somehow got lost in the shuffle. Several of my co-workers were starting a major diet plan on January 1, 2010, so everyone wanted one last piece of cake before the fasting began. I made this red velvet cake and brought it to work on December 31, and it quickly disappeared. I particularly enjoyed the icing, as it complements the cake well without being as sickeningly sweet as some other cream cheese icings I have tried.
RED VELVET CAKE
From America's Best Lost Recipes
INGREDIENTS - CAKE
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons natural cocoa powder
2 tablespoons (one 1-ounce bottle) red food coloring
2 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
INGREDIENTS - ICING
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
4 cups confectioners' sugar
16 ounces cream cheese, cut into 8 pieces, softened
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1. FOR THE CAKE: Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 9-inch cake pans. Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk the buttermilk, vinegar, vanilla, and eggs in a large measuring cup. Mix the cocoa with the food coloring in a small bowl until a smooth paste forms.
2. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter and granulated sugar together until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the flour mixture and the buttermilk mixture alternately in two batches, beating after each addition until combined. Add the cocoa mixture and beat on medium speed until completely incorporated. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool the cakes in the pans 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely, at least 30 minutes.
3. FOR THE ICING: With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter and confectioners' sugar until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the cream cheese, one piece at a time, and beat until incorporated. Beat in the vanilla and salt.
4. Spread about 2 cups frosting on one cake layer. Top with the second cake layer and spread the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting. Serve. (The cake can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.)